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Posts tagged ‘Photoshop’

Tuesday’s Bits and Bobs: Getting Things Done

Today I wanted to talk more about what I need to get done, as really the new year has been slow and I need to start getting on with things.  Time seems to be getting away from me, so I do have to be stricter with myself.  I need to stop wasting time on other things. The things I am trying to get organised the most are the classes, so much of my time has been spent getting those ready to start advertisig.

Classes in the Mallee

I really want to get going with classes.  I have classes in the Mallee organised for the long weekend in March, the 7th, 8th and 9th of March.  I am going to be teaching more about organising your photos and some basic editing using Lightroom.  We will go and take photos first though, that is always fun.  I am going to be doing this class twice, in Swan Hill on the 7th and then in Hopetoun on the 9th.  I need to get some posters done and will work on those this week.

For those that missed the Getting your Camera off Auto, I am running that class again in Hopetoun on the 8th.shepparton-country-dookie-paddocks-135

If you are interested in doing any of these classes please let me know.

Classes in the City

I am still trying to organise a place to teach editing here in Melbourne.  At this stage I am looking at classes in or around Heidelberg.  I want to start doing teaching classes in Photo editing and would like to do both Lightroom and Photoshop.  At this stage I am looking at 4 week courses, and they would be one night a week, well one night for Lightroom and another for Photoshop.  At this stage I am thinking the cost will be $260 for the 4 week course and their will be a maximum of 10 people per class.  People will need to bring their laptops and have the software on them.  I am hoping that won’t be a problem, most people seem to have laptops these days, and that is what they work on.

I also want to see if I can take peoplescyarra-2243 through more beginners things with Photoshop.  I found when I was learning that there were lots of classes for beginners and not a lot for beyond that, if any, so I had to learn on my own.  I want to be able to offer people that option of having somewhere else to go to learn beyond the basics.  I feel like my tagline should be “what I don’t know,  I know how to find out”.

Again if you are interested in doing one of these, please let me know.

Classes Online

Another option is running classes online.  I could do something on Google+ with a small number of people, maybe 8, where I can show you how to do things on my computer and you can see what can be done, ask me questions that sort of thing.  I haven’t really looked into this, but if people are interested, I would love to hear from you.

Newslettershepparton-country-dookie-paddocks-114

It is coming together, and while I had hoped it would be out this week, next week is looking more of a reality. I hope you don’t mind.

If you missed the posts about the Newsletter, and would like to get it from me, it is free, then send me an email.

Social Snappers

The first Social Snappers Photography Excursions for Women is coming up and if you want to participate in them, then take a look at the site and pick your excursions.

Photos

scyarra-HDR2A friend is on holidays at the moment and we have lots of plans for photos, so on top of organising all this I have a lot of trips to plan and do.  It’s going to be quite amazing.  My friend knows lots of places I’ve never been too before, so I am going to be learning about lots of new places.  It is going to be really exciting I think, I can’t wait.  Lots of long exposures too.

Speaking of photos the images today are from two different places and were taken about 3 years or 4 years ago.  I like going through my archives and taking a look at some older images.  Some are of the Yarra River in Warburton and the remaining ones are from Shepparton around the small town of Dookie.  I used to get there a bit for cycling.

I will leave it there now, so remember if you are interested in any of these classes then let me know.

Up for Discussion – PC or Mac

My desktop is almost ten years old and I think it is about time to replace it.  I want to replace it for a couple of reasons, one is the age, it is getting slow, and two because it is too old to run windows on it, well according to my tech guy, my husband.  I run Ubuntu now, a Linux based operating system and it is great.  I don’t have a problem with it at all, however I can’t use Photoshop on it, apparently hangingrock0047the computer is too old and Windows would be too slow on it.

At the moment if I want to use Photoshop I have to use it on my laptop, a Dell XPS 17, which is nice, almost 4 years old, but with only 8GB of memory we are starting to run into problems. I can connect the laptop to my monitor, so it is like using a desktop computer, which is great.  My real issue is that now that the file sizes of my images are so large with my new camera the laptop is getting very very slow.  It starts out well, but after working for a while if I get scslaughterhouse00201it to do something, well, let’s just say I could go out for coffee while waiting for it to do what I have asked it to do.  I don’t have enough RAM, and you can’t put more into my laptop.  We tried, but this one won’t allow it.  As it turns out Windows 7 won’t support more than 16GBs regardless.

So this is where the dilemma starts.  My husband is a programmer and we looked at new Desktop computers, but there isn’t a lot of choice if you want 32GB.  I want as much as I can get so I can do things quickly.  Of course the other issue I am having is Windows.  I hate it.  It won’t run Photoshop properly, keeps closing the sctrain-0025program down, even straight after I start it.  We thought I might have a virus, but the scan check revealed nothing, and it still does it.  I keep getting asked to do things that I know I have done before.  It is driving me crazy.

I was talking to someone recently who had gone to a Mac and she has never looked back, so I wondered, should I consider it.  My husband has always been so against Mac.  He thinks anything from Apple is overpriced and is more about image than whether or not it is really any good.  His words, not mine. I have always thought I should stay away from it.

Now I am starting to give the whole thing a rethink.  There has to be a reason why all the top photographers and anyone really, who works with visuals uses a Mac.  My husband always said it was because, well, you don’t want to know what he said.  I told him the other day I think it is because Windows is crap and they use Macs because they work better.  He is starting to concede, I think, that perhaps Mac scfedsq-0000is the way to go, but I thought I might find out what you think and what you use.

Finally, what I want to say is that if Adobe wrote Photoshop for Linux, there would be no need for this discussion, it would be my absolute first preference.

So todays questions are what do you use a Mac or PC?  Why do you use that?  Do you wish you had the other?

I don’t want this to be a debate about what is better, other than why it is better for you.

The last couple of these I have done have been great, and I think this is a great way for us to share knowledge.

I will not respond to every comment, if that is okay, it can be very overwhelming.  I will approve them, as long as they are nice and not nasty in any way.

Feel free to respond or reply to other comments.  It would be good to generate some discussion.

Finally, I have used Black and White images today that were taken with film many years ago, I thought it might be a nice prompt for people to get their Monochrome Madness submissions to me soon for my next post.

 

“Learning isn’t a means to an end; it is an end in itself.” ~ Robert Heinlein

In the last 10 or so years I’ve spent a lot of time trying to learn how to be better at manipulating images.  I purchased a book by Scott Kelby on Photoshop about 3 or 4 years ago and I haven’t looked back.  I really pushed myself to keep learning more, and I have, but there are always new things to learn.

I initially looked into courses on Photoshop, but they were so expensive, hundreds of dollars for one day, and you couldn’t take it away with you.  Then someone I knew introduced me to online learning, and I haven’t looked back.  I have spoken often about one particular place, but after sending emails to them about some ideas, I received nothing back.  I am sure most of you know this is a pet hate with me, how hard is it to send an email back to say “thanks for your interest, but it isn’t something we are interested in right now”.  There you go, took me 10 seconds to type that.  So I decided that if they were going to be silent with me, I would be the same, which meant that I had to find something else, and I did.

I know that many of my followers are new to photography, or know that their skill level needs work, I don’t mean that in a horrible way, but I realise that many of you do want to learn, so I have been doing some research.

Screenshot at 2014-02-19 09:37:32When I was doing some research on Joel Grimes he mentioned somewhere that he had done some courses for KelbyOne.  I had never heard of it, of course, I knew who Scott Kelby was, but not this website.  I decided I had to do more research.  So from what I can work out it seems fantastic.  It is another one of those pay by the month sort of deals, but at only $25 per month, and you get a discount if you pay for the whole year, it is really reasonable, especially when you consider what you are getting.

Screenshot at 2014-02-19 09:21:48

It is a site for photographers.  It is where photographers share what they do to other photographers.  There are so many courses available.  There are courses on Photography, courses on Photoshop, Lightroom, then there are courses for running a photography business.

Screenshot at 2014-02-19 09:19:50Business for photography is not something I have wanted to watch much. How you run a business in the US can be very different to how you run a business in Australia.  I have often found that much of the information is not relevant, but then there is always something you can pick up, so I have been watching this one about Social Media, which isn’t country specific, and I have picked up some great information from it.

Once you pay your monthly membership you can view the courses online anytime, where and when it is convenient for you.  At least that is the impression I get.  If you want to download the courses and have them on your computer, then you can pay for specific ones as well.

One of the things I enjoy about the courses is that they aren’t too long, a couple of hours or a few hours, but not for days.  If you are like me, and find it hard to concentrate and just stare at the computer, then this is good, it doesn’t require hours of attention.  Actually, it is perfect for me.

Screenshot at 2014-02-19 09:22:56There is a long list of instructors and I have found some of my favourites here as well.  It has been great going through what courses there are and working out which ones I would like to watch.  Ben Willmore is there, Joel Grimes, Dave Cross and Lindsay Adler, and I am sure some others that will become favourites too.

Screenshot at 2014-02-19 09:23:32It seems to be more than just a site to learn and there seems to be a real community there and you are encouraged to participate in that as well.  I haven’t gone into it yet, but it will be interesting to see what is there.

They release new courses every week, at least one or two, and you receive emails from them to let you know what is available.

Screenshot at 2014-02-19 09:20:21They are doing a Creative Cloud Month and a new course is being released every day for the whole month.  I imagine you would learn everything you needed to know about CC here.  Creative Cloud is the new thing that Adobe are doing, my version of Photoshop is Photoshop Creative Cloud, and I pay a monthly subscription fee to be able to use it.  However Creative Cloud is a lot more than just Photoshop, there are more programs that come under that “cloud”.

I think this is the best online service I’ve seen for photographers.  At $25 a month, it is reasonably priced, and what you get for that money is amazing.  It is something I would definitely do.  If you want a discount, then paying the yearly amount is good, you get 12 months for the price of 10, so you basically get 2 months free.  I think I am going to save the $249 and do that.  I love a bargain.

The courses are designed for all levels of knowledge and experience.  There are courses for the beginners, and there are courses for those who have more experience, but want to know more, or try something different.  I am sure as the community grows, the number of courses being offered will grow as well.

I hope you will all go and take a look at KelbyOne, it really is a great place for learning.  Going back to the top bit, of course the best thing about them is that I sent an email and I got a response, you have to love companies that realise customer service is important.  The idea that if you don’t hear from them then they aren’t interested, says to me, we aren’t interested in providing good customer service, we don’t care about our customers.

So KelbyOne, go check them out.

Just going to add a gallery so you can see the screenshots better.

Changing the Feeling

We are still experiencing our heatwave here.  Today it is predicted to be 44ºC, and we have already reached 40.  My poor cat Tiddles just doesn’t know what to do.  We keep trying to cool him down, and I think he appreciates what we are doing.

The heat itself is uncomfortable, and annoying, but the worse thing about it is how terrifying it also is.  When we have really hot days like this, it means thunder storms, which mean lightning, and then fires.  There have already been lots of fires in Victoria, and with the worse day for winds predicted to be tomorrow.  I have a massive park across the road from me that goes along the Yarra River, so we are also on high fire alert.  It has never been a problem before, but you just never know.

The hardest part, and perhaps the scariest is that they are saying these are the same conditions that lead to the worse fire storms in Australian history, the Black Saturday bushfires in 2009 where almost 180 people lost their lives, and thousands and thousands of acres were damaged, and whole communities destroyed.  No one wants to ever see that happen again.

I know people think we are being whinges, that the temperatures are not that high, but we are all living on the edge of our seats, it is a scary time to be in the state right now.

Now on another note, before the temperature gets too hot and I can’t work on my computer anymore, I thought I would work on another image and see what I could do with it.

I did an image a couple of years ago and I was curious about what I would do with a similar image.

sccity-hpm6608-5

I have always liked this image, but over time my processing has changed and I know a lot more about Photoshop now.  I didn’t want to just repeat the image, but thought if I took another one it would be interesting to see what I would do.

city-20140111-6464

This image was taken on the weekend, I showed it to you on Sunday and I decided that I would use this image.

LeanneCole-city-20140111-6464-2The most obvious problem with the image was the sky, so I tried to find a sky that I could add to it that would help with the mood of the image.  I have added lots of textures to the image to help give it an aged feeling.  I think I was trying to go for the feeling of abandon.

There are problems with it, but I know the more I do these, the better I will get at doing them.  I need to start collecting some different sorts of photos now, I think. Things that I can add to images like this that will help with that feeling.

I am going to put the images into a gallery now so you can see them a bit better.  Take care everyone.

Hot/Cold Timetables

scsunflower-HDR2That is the title for the latest post I have written for Photographers.com.au.  The post is about things we can do when it is too cold or too hot to go outside.  I hope it gives you lots of idea.

Hot/Cold Timetables, please take a look and it would be wonderful if you could leave your comments there as well.

If you have any other ideas, please share them.

Emotion Coming Through

On Saturday when I taught my class I got some many fantastic photos of my model and so I have prepared two more for you today.

LeanneCole-thea-20131116-1449I do love this table, it is quite amazing.  I also love this pose, though I do wish her eyes were different.  I love the feeling of the image, is she just lying there because she is feeling depressed, or is there more too it.  I did tell her to pretend she was dead, as though she had been poisoned.  I think the image could convey many things.

I know a few people have asked me how I edit my images.   I don’t want to do a tutorial on it, but I am looking into software that I could do a screencast of it and then make it go faster for you, so you don’t see everything, but you get an idea of how one of my images comes together.  I don’t know much about this kind of software, but if I find out I might try it.  Though would prefer it to be free, so if anyone knows anything about software, screencasts for Windows, I’m all ears.

LeanneCole-thea-20131116-1561I was trying something different with this image.  I told her to pretend she was terrified sitting in the corner, and then I worked on making the image darker.  I wanted to convey a scared girl trying to hid in the corner at night.  The original image was so white, so it took a bit of effort to get it like this. I am not sure the scared part really came out.

I am really happy with where my images are going.  I do feel like I am growing as an artist and the work feels more like my own, rather than me imitating what others have done.

The weather has been horrible here, but we are finally seeing some better weather.  I really want to get out and some preparing images for the compositing, so this week looks like the first time I can do that.  So fingers crossed it holds and I can get on with it.

As I did the other day, the before and the after shots, one after the other.

Weekend Wanderings – Flowers on Footpaths

Last weekend I took a couple of photos of some flowers, and since I don’t have anything else to show, thought I might show them here.  I have been trying to work out some posts to drop and I think the Sunday one is one that I might stop doing.  If I do keep doing it, it won’t be much.

Leanne Cole - Orchid 1I love these flowers and as we were walking past this florist in Flinders Lane I couldn’t resist taking some photos.  I might have to buy one one day and take some extra special photos of it.  I have seen some fantastic ones.

Leanne Cole - Orchid 2A close up of one of the flowers.  They are so delicate and beautiful.  I just wish they weren’t so expensive.

I don’t know what the etiquette is when it comes to taking photos like this.  I figure, why not, until someone tells you to stop, or maybe take some and buy a bunch of flowers.  I often think if you give some service back then why not.  People usually don’t mind.

I have been spending the weekend learning more photoshop skills and working on the photos that I took yesterday of Alannah.  It was great and she really enjoyed it, which is even better.  I have posted two of the images on my facebook page and they are getting some great  reactions.  I think this shoot is probably my best so far, though with each one I continue to learn more about what I need to be doing.

I have added them to my website as well http://www.leannecole.com.au/, I have also added another link as well.  It was suggested by 87004 photography that I should push the artist aspect and the fact that I do have a Fine Arts degree, so I have now included my artist’s CV on there as well.  I think it is important to let people know that I am an artist and photography is my choice of medium.

I think it is Fathers Day in some countries, so Happy Father’s Day to those that are fathers.  Enjoy your Sunday.

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