05 September 2013

Photoshop World 2013


Art Model, Emily © 2013 Terrell Neasley
"I want the viewer to look into my images and see a new world with new rules."

I don't think I've ever posted about my convention or trade show attendences. I've only ever done WPPI and Photoshop World on a regular basis. Today is day one and it was a good day, complete with one learning from one of my favorite instructors, Julianne Kost who is the most brilliant mind/guru of Photoshop and Lightroom I've ever seen. Her dry, yet witty humor keeps you entertained as you unconsciously learn something of value. Before you know it, she's having to cut things short because she's running out of time. I try to get at least one of her classes as a rule. Brooke Shaden spoke during the opening keynote. While Julianne Kost was the most entertaining, I gotta give props to Brooke Shaden for being most inspirational. This little bitty spitfire got up on stage and in a soft, but spirited voice and laid down an air of possibilities that left you wondering what you could do if you cast aside fear and conforming rules (sound familiar) and did what you wanted to do.

Art Model, Emily
© 2013 Terrell Neasley
It was sort of a toss up this time. There are two things I usually want to focus on when I come to these trade shows. One is Photoshop techniques. I had to start out learning Photoshop on my own with a bootleg old copy of PS7 that was given to me when I first came to Vegas, while I was still doing film. It was strictly trial and error. I mean, STRICTLY trial and error. There weren't as much in terms of tutorials on the web as there are today. But it was quite the trick to learn the different tools and what layers were. I eventually got a book to help me.

Art Model, Emily
© 2013 Terrell Neasley
“If I saw something in my viewfinder that looked familiar to me, I would do something to shake it up." 
~ Garry Winogrand

My breakthough came from my first Photoshop World convention. I only attended the free trade show, but when I saw an exhibition of the Nik Silver Efx, I was hooked. Why? I had seen other black and white plug-ins at this point. And I could convert to B&W in Photoshop too. What made Silver Efx so special? Well, I'll tell you. It was the first piece of software that I had ever seen that came so close to the actual darkroom. It aided me in my conversion to digital photography. Before Silver Efx, I just couldn't get the rich black tones that I had with silver-halides in photographic paper brought out by chemicals. It was simply unmatched. The burn and dodge techniques were not mimicked in any other software so well. Masking, which I sucked at in Photoshop at the time, was made more simple with Nik's U-point technology. And on top of all that, Silver Efx, was also the best at simulating the different brands of pro-grade B&W film I used...principally, Kodak TMax 100 & 400.

Art Model, Emily
© 2013 Terrell Neasley
To learn that Nik had several more editions such as Color Efx, Dfine, and Sharpen only cinched it for me. But I learned all this at my very first Photoshop World and its always been a blessing for me every since. Sometimes its learning of a new vendor to process my photos. Sometimes its learning a new post-processing workflow that is much more efficient and effective. Other times, I get educated on a better business practice, such as back-up techniques or copyrights management. One thing I don't really go to Photoshop World as much for is photographic techniques. They have some great lighting specialists here for sure and other tips on improving your photography. I think they are great, but its much easier for me to get photo tips. I can manage that from anywhere.

This year, my focus has been more on the Photoshop end of things instead of the business side. So these are the classes I've been taking as of day 1: Compositing with Julianne Kost, Smart Objects with Dave Cross, and Commercial Post Processing with Jim DiVitale. Days 2 and 3 are a bit more tricky as to my choices, but I will figure it out. Photoshop and post-processing classes have the priority and I can choose 6. Thursday is the longest day and we finish up on Friday. Should be good days ahead.

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