Tag Archives: editing

Thursday Morning Pancake Sessions

7 Sep

Source: Pancake Sessions: Video Light and Getting Ready Details Post

Tomorrow after you roll out of bed and grab a warm beverage, head over to Justin & Mary’s website to check out their next Pancake Session post. There’s a fresh one every Thursday, which promises to be interesting and informative, plus they break everything down into bite-size, easy to understand pieces. Best of all, they’re up there on the interweb for posterity, so you can visit right now and learn about everything from Black and White Post Production Tips, Branding, Off Camera Lighting, Destination Wedding Tips and much, much more.

Thank you fellow Photo Betty Susannah Gill for sharing another helpful tip with us!

Review: The WPPI Road Trip

29 Aug

WPPI Road Trip

Who:  WPPI
What:  Road Trip
Where:  Philadelphia
When:  August 22, 2011

Why?  Couldn’t get to Vegas for the largest Portrait and Wedding Photography Convention? Well, WPPI decided to make a Road Trip to select cities bringing speakers and vendors right to your hometown.

Pros:

- Avoided Philadelphia International Airport – just had to take a train.

- One day commitment only, which meant no need for an overnight stay.

- The same impressive speaker lineup – right in your own backyard

Cons: A Fellow Photo Betty, Amanda Young, and I did not win any of the awesome prizes that were drawn. We think there was a serious conspiracy…

Speakers:

Susan Stripling

I am a big fan of her work. What I appreciated about her opening was the challenge she posed to the audience on never being satisfied. The challenge was to always challenge yourself. This is the competitive edge that will set you apart. She discussed composition techniques and working to search the room, to go beyond the obvious. Her work can be found at www.susanstriplingblog.com

Dawn Shields

Dawn was able to speak about the power of a personal project. She shared her “Legacy” Album, which won the Grand Album award at WPPI in 2010. As photographers, it is important to always be growing creatively. When you can find something that is truly your own project, from beginning to end, the creation in itself is both rewarding and fulfilling. Learn more about Dawn’s work at www.dawnshields.com

Damon Tucci

Very fun and engaging speaker. I loved the image examples shown and discussion of how he used lighting. He focused on the usage of speed lights, video lights and available light to enhance your photos while shooting in the field. Beyond just usage, we discussed how to use these tools to make images more dramatic. He had great examples for posing brides and grooms to relax them, giving them a completely natural appearance. To find out more about Damon, visit his site at www.damontucci.com.

Jared Platt

In just 90 minutes, we were given great solutions to reduce editing workflow by almost 50%. His discussion identified time wasters, and how to effectively eliminate them while focusing on true post-production efficiently. I loved his teaching style and was glad that he can be found on Vimeo with quick sessions, under Jared Platt. A sample is here http://vimeo.com/24735627 and his site is  www.jaredplatt.com.

Lindsay Adler

Lindsay covered the essential concepts of fashion photography and how these can apply to portrait and wedding photography for stunning imagery. She discussed key concepts such as simple location, utilizing unique props, posing, lighting and styling. Quite frankly, I am not sure what my opinion is on the usage of props for shoots, but Lindsey was able to show and demonstrate creative ways to set a scene to make the images vivid and inviting. There were truly some great learnings from this presentation. She will also be speaking at PDN in October on Social Media Marketing, which I think will be something worth attending. You can find out more about Lindsay’s work at www.lindsayadlerphotography.com.

Tech Tuesday: iCloud and iOS 5

7 Jun

Apple’s commitment to user experience, function and design was summed up in Steve Job’s opening statement at yesterday’s WWDC 2011 Keynote: “If a hard drive is the brain and sinu of the computer, the software is the soul.”

If you didn’t watch the 2-hour video, and haven’t made sense of all the articles and posts that have bombarded the interweb, you’re in the right place. We’ve got the highlights that photographers will appreciate – with big visuals* and details on how it’s all going to make your digital life easier. It’s a lot of ground to cover – so today we’re going to start with the mobile benefits you’ll get from iCloud and iOS 5.

Farewell MobileMe. Hola iCloud!

Apple has replaced MobileMe and it’s $99/year fee with iCloud, which syncs all your documents, photos, books, music, videos and app data automatically, and backs them up over wifi.


- Works on Mac, iPod touch, iPhone and iPad
- Seamlessly integrates your apps – including iTunes, Photo Stream, Apps, Books, Documents, Backup, Contacts, Calendar and Mail – so all your content is available and up to date on all devices
- Keeps your email, contacts and calendars up to date across all your devices
- Manages and backs-up your content effortlessly – no syncing required
- Includes 5GB of FREE storage when you sign up, which excludes any purchased music, apps, books or your Photo Stream

Better, faster, smarter – with iOS 5

The newest version of Apple’s mobile operating system has over 200 additional features. It’s available this Fall and is compatible with iPhone 3GS, iPhone4, iPod touch (3rd and 4th generation), iPad and iPad2.

Camera: Never miss the shot again

When not wielding fancy dSLR’s, chances are we’re grabbing inspiration or special everyday moments with our phones. Apple’s updates to the Camera app make it possible to capture a photo at a moment’s notice, instead of fumbling to unlock, load the home screen and then open the app.

- Access the Camera directly from your Lock screen with the new Camera button
- Zoom in and out, take a photo using the volume-up button
- Use the new Photos app editing features from the same screen to enhance, remove red eye and crop

- If you have Photo Stream enabled in iCloud (more on that in the OS X Lion section), your photo will automatically download to your other Apple devices

Reminders: A smarter way to get things done

There are tons of to-do list apps out there, each with their own benefits and caveats; I mentioned my love for Teux Deux in a recent post on iPhone apps. And it rocks. But Reminders is different. It isn’t just a simple list making app. It’s smart. Super smart. Say you need more Compact Flash cards and batteries. Next time you are near your camera store, Reminders will send you an alert based on your GPS location. How cool is that?

- Create tasks from your iPhone, iPad, or iPod touch
- Specify due dates and locations for your tasks
- Create location-based alerts that remind you to perform tasks when you’re in a specific place
- Works and automatically syncs with iCal, Outlook, and iCloud

Notification Center: Everything in one spot

No more jumping from app to app to check your new messages, listen to client voicemails, check Saturday’s weather for your upcoming shoot or see what’s on your plate for the day. Now you’ll get all of your notifications, alerts and updates in one place, including Weather, Stocks, Reminders, Calendar, Mail, Messages and more! How it works…

From the Lock screen:

- Notifications appear right on your lock screen so you can see what’s happening at a glance
- Easily swipe any item to view it directly in the app

From the Home Screen:

- Wwipe down from the top of your screen to view the list
- Tap on an item – like a new email – to be taken directly to that email in the app

From an Application:

- A subtle notification bar appears up top when you have an alert
- Tap to view it, swipe down from the top of th screen to view your entire list, or do nothing – and quickly it disappears
- Customize which notifications you want to see and which you don’t

Twitter: Native integration for easier tweeting!

- Enter your twitter account information once in Settings, and every application and device links up
- Tweet directly from Safari, Photos, Camera, YouTube or Maps
- Add locations – no matter where you are
- Take a photo and tweet it in three simple taps; take a photo, tap tweet and send!

PC Free: No Mac? No PC? No problem!

Apple has finally cut the cord. Now users will be able to use the iPad, iPhone, or iPod touch right out of the box!

- Activate and set up wirelessly
- No more cables required; OTA (over the air) software updates can be downloaded directly on to device
- Back up and restore automatically using iCloud

iMessage: Now iPad and iPod Touch can chat too!

- Chat with friends between iPhone, iPod touch and iPad
- Works over Wi-Fi and 3G

Other Great Stuff

With over 200 new features, we could go on and on. Here’s just a few more great updates worth noting:

+ Safari reader strips out ads and other distractions for easier reading.

+ Mail now offers rich text editing and a system-wide split keyboard option.

+ Newstand lets you keep all your magazine and newspaper subscriptions in one beautifully designed spot – and organize it to your liking.

The only thing we’re bummed about – is that it won’t be available until the Fall! Good thing we have summer to keep us distracted…

If you want to check out the complete list of iOS 5 features, visit Apple or watch the video.

* All content was sourced directly from Apple’s website and YouTube page, and includes links to learn more.

“Wedding in a Week with Lightroom” Recap

23 Mar

Last week Isabel March welcomed fellow Photo Betties to her studio to introduce us to the wonderful world of Lightroom. Some of us were die-hard Photoshop users intrigued by the hype over faster production and ease-of-use, and others had taken baby steps with Lightroom and were ready and eager to learn more.

What a reception! Isabel and her husband Mike greeted everyone as they arrived, and there was a delicious spread and super cute notebooks with pens to jot down notes. She jumped right in and literally flew through an engagement session – from culling to editing and final export – in no time at all.

When I heard Isabel could edit an entire wedding with Lightroom in a matter of hours, not days, I was mystified. After seeing her intuitive and efficient process and Lightroom skills, it made complete sense to me how she accomplishes it. She also shared tons of helpful tips about workflow, her favorite presets and tools, and answered any all all questions we threw at her. Much of what we learned was explained with on-screen examples, but here’s a few fantastic tips that translate without visuals:

• Before you even begin editing, back-up your files multiple times so there’s no danger of losing anything (Isabel has six back-ups, two of which go off site).

• Work on photos stored on an external hard drive – rather than your computer – to process faster and ensure everything is safely stored.

• Give each of your clients their own folder within your system. Keep everything subdivided within that folder, i.e. contracts, sessions, weddings, albums and your Lightroom catalogue. It makes everything related to your client easy to find.

• When culling and editing your images, let go of super fantastic perfection. Select the very best photos and spend your time and effort on those specifically.

• Isabel uses Photo Mechanic for culling – rather than Adobe Bridge or Lightroom – because it renders quickly and provides clear, detailed previews of your images. First she rates the top images then exports them to a folder – to edit only those select shots in Lightroom. There’s no need to import an entire wedding into Lightroom…only the images that will be presented to your client.

• When importing a new project into Lightroom, give each project its own catalog so that your computer can process everything faster. Save each catalog with the respective job so you don’t have to hunt to find it later.

Courtesy: makmebel.eu

If you’re switching over, or looking to increase your knowledge of Lightroom, here are some helpful places to go:

• Adobe’s Learning Center has articles, video tutorials, links and resources for all things Lightroom.
Julianne Kost is the guru of LR. She’s amazing!
• Lynda.com is an excellent resource for online training with easy-to-follow tutorials – there are hundreds on Lightroom alone!
TheLightroomLab.com has a wide range of tutorials from practical to fun to search and be inspired!
Kelby Training offers online and in-person courses in Lightroom.

A few spots to pick up presets:

Kubota Image Tools has a bevy of Lightroom goodies including presets, a RAW workflow system, and SpeedKeys!
Totally Rad has a set of 103 presets (including 9 for the adjustment brush exclusively), plus tips and ideas to make photos uniquely your own.
Marcus Bell has educational DVDs and presets available, and is also donating 20% of your purchase toward the Brisbane Flood Relief.
Cuba Gallery has tutorials and a wide range of presets.
Flourish, PresetsHeaven and Presetopia have a few awesome presets as well.

Tech Tuesday: Motibodo Espresso for Workflow

8 Feb

By Noelle Andrews

As photographers, and especially portrait and wedding photographers, we are always looking for ways to cut editing time and make workflow more efficient. Those of you reading this are most likely avid Photoshop and Lightroom users and have your own arsenal of tools and tricks to get you through the rigors of photo editing. If you are like me, up until about a year and a half ago before I started working at a high-volume studio, I was using keyboard shortcuts in Photoshop and Lightroom to help speed up the process. However, I was introduced to the genius of DQ Studios’ Quickeys and my approach to workflow and editing has changed drastically. It’s no longer an arduous task but a rather carefree and enjoyable process. That’s right kids, I said enjoyable.

So, what is it?
Well, first I have to start off by saying that if you are familiar with DQ Studios, they are now operating as Motibodo “espresso for workflow.” They have recently introduced a few new products to replace the older module that I have been using for Photoshop – previously called “DQ Quickeys.” These new products include the MotibodoBOARD for LR and the MotibodoSKINS for LR and PS. So instead of using your regular keyboard with shortcuts set up for the tools and actions you normally use, everything you need is customized in a keyboard made just for LR and PS users. I will admit that I have not yet tried MotibodoBOARD for LR but am extremely excited for this new addition to the product line!

MotibodoBOARD for Adobe Lightroom
This is a very sleek and sexy Apple titanium keyboard that is custom printed with the Motibodo symbols and editing tools. Not to worry my fellow PC users, the software that comes with it allows the keyboard to be compatible with both Mac and PC. As Dave simply states in his online video tutorial, you can imagine that if you were to place your hands in the regular typing position, your fingers would rest on the F and J keys. This is where they have placed all of the basic adjustments that you would use in LR on a regular basis. So there is where you will find your exposure adjustments up and down, fill light, contrast, brightness, etc. Other relatively important keys include the next button, toggle between library and develop modes, crop tool, and the paintbrush tool with eight local adjustment brushes right on the keyboard. As an added bonus the function keys come pre-programmed with twenty presets, ten of which are Dave and Quin’s favorite Totally Rad LR presets. Sweet!

MotibodoSKINS for Adobe Lightroom and Photoshop
The MotibodoSKINS for LR and PS is a silicone cover that can be used overtop of your regular keyboard* or if you purchase the Motibodo Board for LR, you would just need the PS skin to go on top of that as well. Like the LR keys, the Motibodo Skin for PS has all of your tools and basic adjustments right at your fingertips. Some highlights include Motibodo retouching tools like Non-Destructive Dodge, Burn and Contrast, Heal and Clone Tools, dedicated workflow keys for Straightening and Cropping, Magic Object Removal and a Quick-Liquify tool. As expected, there are twenty Photoshop actions from the DQ Studios line that includes Skin So Soft, Shine Remover Makeup, Teeth Whitener, Warming/Cooling Filters, Vintage DQ, B&W Grain and much, much more. So you’re wondering what the bonus is this time right? An entire Suite of Album Design tools are included as well. You really are getting an entire workflow army included in these bundles!

Wrapping Up

So in a nutshell, having used DQ Quikeys and actions I can honestly say that it’s worth the money for the amount of time and effort you will save by using these products. The engineering and ingenuity of these products are well thought out and very intuitive as you can tell by the research and testing that was put into making them. The layout works just as well for both right-handers or left-handers and when use in conjunction with the Wacom Tablet (previously introduced by Jenna in her recent Tech Tuesday post) the results are mind blowing! Not to mention the customer service and support that you will receive from them is outstanding. There has never been a time where I didn’t email a question and get an immediate response. I would highly recommend their products to any professional photographer looking to enhance their workflow efficiency. Be sure to check them out at WPPI and see for yourself!

What else do I need to know?
System Requirements are Adobe Lightroom 3 and Adobe CS5. So if you have an Operating System that runs these programs, then your computer is already equipped to run the Motibodo Software. You must own a copy of these Adobe programs because Motibodo does not come with LR or PS.

*In order to use the MotibodoSKINS you would need either the MotibodoBOARD for LR3, an Apple USB compact Keyboard (no numeric keypad; English) or an Apple Wireless Keyboard (English). The MotibodoBOARD can also be used in place of your regular QWERTY keyboard. Each purchase comes with a Motibodo Personal Usage License and a portion of every sale will be given to a non-profit organization. All sales are final so no refunds or exchanges.

For more information and pricing please visit Motibodo.

- Noelle Andrews

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