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- Sean Connery as William Forrester in "Finding Forrester"

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Monday, April 30, 2007

P&P Weekly: #31

Sorry for the delay in posting this week's P&P Weekly but we were busy with a large youth event until last evening and I've just been home recovering.

Here’s what’s been happening this week in The Photoshop & Photography Blogroll:

Update your blogs often! I will only include links to posts added since the last P&P Weekly.

As always, if you have any suggestions or notice a discrepancy, please email me.

Friday, April 27, 2007

Friday Tips: #2

It's tip day once again! Here are a few tips that I use to make work in Photoshop and Lightroom a bit easier:

  • In Photoshop, when you make a mistake you want to hit Ctrl-Z to undo, right? Well, if you make a few mistakes in a row and need to undo multiple times you may notice when you Ctrl-Z again it isn't undoing but rather redoing. It's an easy fix. Under Edit>Keyboard Shortcuts, replace the shortcut for "Step Backward" with Ctrl-Z (you will be told in the info area that it will remove it from "Undo/Redo" but that's OK. Now, when you hit Ctrl-Z it will take you back one step in the history each time instead of just toggling back and forth.
  • When you hold down Alt while adjusting the exposure or black levels in Lightroom or ACR the image will temporarily go black or white, respectively, to show you the highlight/shadow clipping as you move the sliders.
  • Ever have a lot of documents open and get annoyed by having to close each one when you're done? Holding down the Shift key in Photoshop while closing a single document will close all open documents. Haven't saved everything yet? You will still have a chance to save any unsaved documents before they close.
  • When using shape or selection tools you may know that holding down the Shift key will constrain the proportions to perfect squares or circles and that holding the Alt key will grow your shape/selection from the center. If you add the Spacebar to that, you can move your selection around to make sure it is properly aligned with what you are trying to select. Give it a try and you will quickly learn how great it is to use!

Thursday, April 26, 2007

Peter Strong

As I was looking around the NAPP Member Portfolios Wednesday I came across the gallery of Peter Strong's images. What first caught my attention was his shots of the familiar scene of the Shanghai skyline, particularly the Oriental Pearl Tower, which was one of my first views of the city upon waking on Semester at Sea nearly 5 years ago.

His New York City shots also provide an interesting perspective. It's a small portfolio and I would definitely love to see more of his stuff, but it's a solid body of work and worth a peek.

Wednesday, April 25, 2007

P&P Workflow: #8

by Jason D. Moore

Taken one year ago tomorrow in Redwood National Park, CA 4/26/2006, 2:46PM (PST). Taken with available light, no flash.
  • Nikon D50
    Auto Exposure Mode
    18.0-50.00 f/3.5-5.6 lens
    1/25 at f/3.5
    ISO 800
    Focal Length 18mm

In Adobe Photoshop Lightroom 1.0 (Develop Module):
  • Basic:
    White Balance:
    -Temp: 4750
    -Tint: -8
    -Exposure: -0.52
    -Recovery: 100
    -Fill Light: 0
    -Blacks: 34
  • Tone Curve:
    -Highlights: 0
    -Lights: +30
    -Darks: -18
    -Shadows: 0
  • Saturation:
    -Red: +100
    -Orange: +75
    -Yellow: +4
    -Green: -41
    -Aqua: -13
    -Blue, Purple, Magenta: -100
  • Detail:
    -Sharpening: 25
    -Color Noise Reduction: 25
  • Lens Vignetting:
    -Amount: -60
    Midpoint: 42

*If you would like to contribute to the P&P Workflow, please email Jason.

Tuesday, April 24, 2007

Rosco LitePad

My dad sent me a link to an interesting product from Rosco called a LitePad. According to the site:

Rosco LitePad™ is a slim profile light source that generates a soft even beam of light and almost no heat. Its small form factor and light weight make the Rosco LitePad™ perfect for use in many places where a larger, typical luminaire could not fit. Drawing just a few watts of power, LitePad is simple, fast and economical to use in film and television, theatre and live entertainment, and retail and event lighting.
Ranging in sizes from 3x3 to 12x12 - either square or rectangular - the LitePad is about 1/3" thick and has a lamp life of 100,000 hours, producing a color temperature of 7,000 degrees K.

Though it is advertized for use in film, video, and stage as accent lighting or to illuminate objects/subjects in hard to light places, I could certainly see how this could be a useful addition to any lighting kit. I've looked around and haven't found a price yet but

Monday, April 23, 2007

P&P Weekly: #30

Here’s what’s been happening this week in The Photoshop & Photography Blogroll:

Update your blogs often! I will only include links to posts added since the last P&P Weekly.

As always, if you have any suggestions or notice a discrepancy, please email me.

Friday, April 20, 2007

Friday Tips: #1

It's tip day! Periodically, I will post a handful of quick tips on Fridays to help make your Photoshop life a little easier.

Here are this week's tips:

  • To open a document, instead of clicking on File>Open or Ctrl-O, simply double-click on Photoshop's desktop and the Open dialog will appear.
  • If you want to have a flattened version of your image on its own layer, select your topmost layer (or any visible layer), hold down the entire left side of the keyboard (Ctrl-Shift-Alt) and the letter E. This will this is called "stamp visible."
  • When you are using the brush tool, hold down the Alt key and your cursor temporarily turns into the eye-dropper tool to select the color you would like to paint with.
  • Also, as a bonus tip, if you click and hold with the eye-dropper, you can move outside the bounds of your current document in order to sample colors from other areas of your screen. If Photoshop isn't taking up the whole screen, you can even sample colors from other programs or from the web, as long as the color you would like to sample isn't underneath the Photoshop window.

Thursday, April 19, 2007

Remembering the Journey

I went through some of my shots from last May's Alaska vacation and came across this forgotten shot. Right when I got back we entered one of our busier seasons at work and a number of my photos from the trip were neglected and went untouched. So I thought it was time.

This shot was taken just south of Anchorage on my way down to Seward during my first full day in AK. Cropped into a "fake" pano and processed entirely in Photoshop Lightroom.

Wednesday, April 18, 2007

Scott Kelby's Lightroom Book

I'm in the process of reading Scott Kelby's new The Adobe Photoshop Lightroom Book for Digital Photographers. Because of my normal work responsibilities I'm only able to read a chapter every few days but I am already hooked. I've read other books by Scott - his Digital Photography Book and his Photoshop Channels Book, a great read on my flight back from Alaska last May - and this one has so far proven to be a great read. It is, of course, chocked full of great information and tips on how to make work in Lightroom faster, easier, and with the highest possible quality. And it wouldn't be a Scott Kelby book without the elaborate "non-introductions" at the head of each chapter - the first one is on a conspiracy theory surrounding the covert government plot to conceal stock piles of missing Chapter 1s in an unmarked Midwestern warehouse and Scott's heroic efforts to stand up to "the man" to bring us a Chapter 1 - or "An Unexpected Q&A Section" at the beginning of the book.

I'll write a more comprehensive review when I'm finished, complete with some of my favorite tips. Already, though, I know this is going to be great!

Stupid Laws

For a diversion, I was looking around at strange, funny, and down-right stupid laws last evening. It is crazy what some states come up with. Some of my favorites from my own state of New York include:

  • It is against the law to throw a ball at someone's head for fun.
  • A license must be purchased before hanging clothes on a clothesline.
  • A person may not walk around on Sundays with an ice cream cone in his or her pocket.
  • Slippers are not to be worn after 10:00 P.M.
  • In Greene (near where Kim is from), during a concert, it is illegal to eat peanuts and walk backwards on the sidewalks.
  • And, in NYC, citizens may not greet each other by "putting one's thumb to the nose and wiggling the fingers."
Do you know of any stupid laws?

Tuesday, April 17, 2007

PSWorld Portrait Tip

This tip comes from Scott Kelby's Killer Tips for Photographers class at Photoshop World. He also showed it to viewers on last week's Photoshop TV.

Though I added a few steps before the final output, here's basically what I did to turn an ordinary photo that my friend Kevo took of our friend Al into something a little more dramatic. (If you know another way, I'd love to hear it. I just love this effect.):

  • Duplicate your background layer twice.
  • Change the blend mode of the middle layer to Screen and the top layer to either Soft Light or Color Burn (which ever looks better)
  • Adjust the opacity of the upper layers until you get your desired color balance
  • Flatten the image, or stamp visible (Ctrl+Shift+Alt+E)
  • Add some noise and then sharpen it
  • Duplicate the layer and change the blend mode to Multiply.
  • Make a rectangular selection around most of the image and then feather it at least 100 pixels and hit Delete
Give it a try.

Monday, April 16, 2007

Now Shipping CS3!

Adobe has just announced the "immediate availability" of all Creative Suite 3 bundles as well as the individual applications that compile the various suites. Click here for the full press release.

P&P Weekly: #29

Here’s what’s been happening this week in The Photoshop & Photography Blogroll:

Update your blogs often! I will only include links to posts added since the last P&P Weekly.

As always, if you have any suggestions or notice a discrepancy, please email me.

Friday, April 13, 2007

New Look!

It's been awhile since I've updated the look of my website and blog so I thought I would. I have the design created and have integrated it into the blog but I'll be working on the website tonight. You should see the changes made by tomorrow at the latest.

UPDATE: The updated website is now online!

Another One From Photoshop World

I think this will be the last shot from Photoshop World. Taken from my seat in one of the ballrooms while waiting for a session to start.

Thursday, April 12, 2007

Hynes Convention Center - Boston, MA

From Photoshop World in Boston.

Wednesday, April 11, 2007

Photoshop World Moments

I'm not really happy with how some of the shots turned out - a little blurry, a little over or underexposed, all shot in jpeg, shameful - as I said Monday but it's the opportunities to meet some of these amazing people that really matter. I attended Scott Kelby's Photoshop Killer Tips for Photographers and Even More Down and Dirty Tricks sessions at Photoshop World. Not only is he a great educator and really funny guy, he's a really warm and approachable man. With everything he's responsible for at these events, Scott, and all the other instructors, makes himself available to the many fans and eager learners who come for the Photoshop and stay for the show.
My first class of the event was Ben Willmore's Easy as 1, 2, 3 session. He took us through a series of effects that can be be accomplished in 3 straight-forward steps.
I ran into Dave Cross on the Tech Expo floor - wearing the same shirt as his blog's profile photo - and was soon joined by his daughter, and Photoshop TV news anchor, Stephanie and Photoshop Lad Cory Barker. I also sat in on Dave's 7 Functions You Never Use, But Should class.
I caught Matt Kloskowski's class in the Peachpit Expo Theater and stuck around as he answered questions and signed the guy's lens hood - that Matt referred to on this week's Photoshop TV.
John Nack, Photoshop project manager for Adobe, was on hand for the opening keynote and to walk us through some of the new features of Photoshop CS3 in the Adobe booth.

Tuesday, April 10, 2007

Photoshop TV - Live!

Last week at Photoshop World in Boston, the guys over at Photoshop TV taped a live episode on the tech expo floor. I had the chance to sit in on the taping - about the 3rd row - and boy was it fun! If you're a regular viewer and think they're whacky in the studio, you haven't seen anything yet!

As I was watching, they panned the crowd after Scott's "Paystation 3" tutorial and I caught a glimpse of me in the background as the camera zommed by. Pretty cool!

P&P Weekly: #28

After a packed week at Photoshop World, I'll be posting a more limited Weekly this week. Please visit the member blogs to see all that they have been posting.

Here’s what’s been happening in The Photoshop & Photography Blogroll:

Update your blogs often! I will only include links to posts added since the last P&P Weekly.

As always, if you have any suggestions or notice a discrepancy, please email me.

Monday, April 09, 2007

I'm Back!

It's been a whirlwind week here at Soup Questions HQ. On the Photoshop & Photography side, I just got back from Photoshop World in Boston where I learned a lot, I laughed a lot, and I got to meet a few of the blogroll members including Scott Kelby, Dave Cross, Matt Kloskowski, John Nack and a number of other Photoshop users from around the world - I bowled a few games with a guy from Belgium at the After Hours Party at Jillian's.

I'm still getting used to my new camera - the weight of the vertical grip made it difficult to get steady handheld shots - and I'm definitely not a fan of taking shots in a more rushed setting, since PS World is so hectic, so I'm not thrilled with how the people shots turned out. I'll be posting them in the coming days as well as a few shots more typical of my style. I will also be posting a tip or tutorial from each of the sessions I attended throughout the week. And the P&P Weekly will be posted tomorrow now that I've had a chance to recover a bit.On a more personal note, as I returned from Boston on Friday night, Kim surprised me by showing up at my apartment to welcome me home. We stayed up late talking and in the wee hours of Saturday morning I just couldn't wait any longer. I pulled out my grandmother's wedding ring, placed it on her finger, and the rest, as they say, is history! We haven't set a date yet but we're just so happy!

Tuesday, April 03, 2007

On the Road

Today I am on the road to Boston for Photoshop World. A friend of mine from Semester at Sea lives north of the city and is letting me sleep on her couch and I'll be commuting in each morning. Someone I've known for a number of years and used to live around here is now working in Boston and has made his parking space available for me (Thanks, Bob!). So I am all set and ready to go!

Because it will be a full schedule these next few days I will not be posting during the rest of the week. On Monday I will post the next P&P Weekly and throughout next week I will feature shots and thoughts from my Photoshop World experience. As a teaser, I have been in contact with Scott Kelby and Ben Willmore and will be meeting up with them at some point during the conference to say hello and get a couple of shots together. If you're going to be in Boston for Photoshop World, definitely track me down. Here is a preliminary schedule of which sessions I'm planning on attending (subject to change).

Safe Travels and Happy Trails!

Unrelated Post Script - Just a reminder if any of you know of any tips for travel in London and/or Paris and know of any "must see/do/eat here" suggestions for our trip, leave a comment here or email me with ideas!

Monday, April 02, 2007

P&P Weekly: #27

Here’s what’s been happening this week in The Photoshop & Photography Blogroll:

Update your blogs often! I will only include links to posts added since the last P&P Weekly.

As always, if you have any suggestions or notice a discrepancy, please email me.