Every time we upgrade Lightroom we have a great chance to get a fresh start, shed bad habits, and tweak our workflow. Customizing one’s process in Lightroom and reducing dependency upon Photoshop is the key to having a smart, efficient workflow that minimizes our time at the computer and maximizes time spent making images. I’ve been spending the last few months visiting with pros in their studios, auditing their workflows and getting them started on the right foot with Lightroom 4. Here’s are some of the common suggestions that I’m encouraging people to do: (more…)
I’ve spent nearly 20 years traveling internationally visiting with pros in their studios, reviewing their process and getting them started on the right foot with modern workflow procedures. Choosing software, training, calibrating equipment, lighting implementation, paper choice, print presentation, image critique and setting up one’s work environment are all a part of this process.
Smart workflows allow people to spend more time making images and less time at the computer. I encourage image-makers to reduce their dependency on Photoshop and rely more heavily on (more…)
I have been testing the new i1Pro 2 (codenamed “Raven”) since May of last year. Xrite’s spectrophotometers have evolved considerably since the original i1Pro, so with this next generation device they’ve completely redesigned it from the inside out, and all of the accessories that go with it. It’s a versatile, handheld device that has a lot of advantages over it’s predecessor. With dual light-sources, the i1Pro2 is capable of taking measurements with or without UV information. i1Pro People will particularly love using the new LCD display adapter with it’s comfy beanbag counterweight. The projector stand is surprisingly solid and well made. There’s a new spot measuring adapter who’s swinging nature makes it easy to take a variety of spot measurements quickly in the same way that offset press devices do. In addition to the usual audio feedback, when measuring strips the i1Pro2 has colored lights that indicate successful or unsuccessful measurements. The colored lights also indicate the direction for your next scan. It’s these small tweaks that make the new device really nice to use. The Raven has a different shape than the previous i1Pro so the old accessories (more…)
Recently I wrote an article on “Using ColorPort for QTR grayscale measurement and profiling.” Today I’d like to talk about using i1Profiler v1.3 for QTR grayscale measurement and profiling. I’ve been using i1Profiler’s new “Measure Reference Chart” feature and the new i1Pro2 “Raven” device for a year and now that it’s officially released I can tell you about it.
i1Profiler is XRite’s new professional level application that anyone can download for free at XRite.com. While some of the features require a purchase or dongle, the “Measure Reference Chart” that we’ll use for this doesn’t require a purchase. Measure Reference Chart is a new feature in i1Profiler version 1.3 so previous users will need to run the free update process to access this feature. While QTR grayscale measurement will work with the i1Pro, i1Pro2 and iSis devices in i1Profiler 1.3, those that purchase the new i1Pro 2 *must* use i1Profiler since ColorPort and other applications don’t support the new device.
ColorPort is free utility from XRite that allows users to make and measure profiling targets with a wide variety of spectrophotometers, including the versatile 1Pro. This software and hardware combination is the modern day equivalent to yesterdays densitometer that provides much more information and functionality. I’ve been using ColorPort on a daily basis since 2005 and love it’s flexibility and versatility. If one is savvy enough to hack color patch spreadsheets and XML files, one can design beautiful targets for nearly any profiling purpose. I’ve preferred ColorPort over MeasureTool for years, but now that XRite has discontinued MeasureTool and the Mac OS will no longer launch it; color geeks everywhere are making the switch.
B&W inkjet printmakers and Quad Tone RIP (QTR) users in particular will love to hear that I’ve just made it easier than ever to ditch MeasureTool and start using ColorPort. Visit www.on-sight.com/downloads/ to download the 21 and 51 step gray ColorPort XML files that I’ve made for the i1Pro and iSis. These files can be installed (more…)
February 16-18th, 2012, 10am – 4pm in Xalapa, Mexico
with Scott Martin
This 3 day workshop takes an intense look at optimizing photography workflows from capture-to-print using Adobe Lightroom. As a special treat, this workshop will be held at one of Mexico’s finest printmaking studios, Izote Editions.
Day 1 – Capture and organize
Optimizing exposure for RAW development
An overview of all RAW software available today
The story behind Lightroom and it’s direction
The DNG format and how to incorporate it into your workflow
File Management (several scenarios including transitioning between desktop and laptop)
Organizing your images and preparing for 100,000+ image libraries (more…)
I had the privilege of teaching an unusual photography workshop last week with two fantastic photographers I admire – Lynn Johnson and Penny De Los Santos. Our PhotoMuse workshop helps people find their inspiration and photographic eye through self-assigned photographic projects – finding their muse, if you will.
We push participants outside their comfort zones and encourage them to make work they’ve never made before, and more importantly, to engage in the process of making images differently and more fully. This can be difficult. Sometimes people say they don’t want to be pushed, but we push anyway. Some people have a hard time finding and starting their projects. Daily group critique is an important part of this process. This workshop had some challenging, teary moments including a ‘photographic intervention’ but amazing transformations happened by the end of the week. People had grown so much, were trusting their instincts and were intensely engaged in their process of making powerful imagery.
At the end of our weeklong workshop we had a big feast and watched a slide show of everyone’s best images. It was amazing. These are photographers working outside of their areas of expertise – experimenting with whole new styles and genres. Here’s a condensed version of their work:
“I’ve never been more exhausted and never felt more alive. I feel as if my awareness of the world has expanded, and I’ve become more sensitive to the light and moments around me. PhotoMuse changed my way of seeing and showed me how powerful photography can be in a very real and direct way.”
– Danielle Tsi
We’re considering bringing this workshop to NYC, San Francisco, Pittsburgh and other locations. Let me know if you’re interested.
I think it’s important to show your work to your peers and get feedback, especially when it’s new work you’re experimenting with. In this spirit, I thought I’d share a few night portraits I’ve been experimenting with.
At this year’s Night Photography Festival in Mono Lake, CA, I had a blast teaching an advanced class and making images side-by-side with so many people. But it was all the guest speakers, instructors and fantastic night photographers all in one place that was so unique about this gathering. Lance and I reserved Bodie State Park for two nights instead of one this year so that our group of 40+ could have ample time exploring and making images in the king of all ghost towns. Despite having this exceptional nighttime access to such an extraordinary place, I felt compelled to make portraits of the photographers themselves instead of the ghost town.
Now I’m no portrait photographer, and I don’t have any experience doing this, but I wanted to explore this idea of making portraits of night photographers in their habitat. These are 1-2 minute exposures by moonlight where I’m adding light on the subject with a flashlight (not a flash!). Since I prefer side-lighting from two sides with a handheld flashlight, it was challenging for the subject to keep still during the light painting and throughout the rest of the exposure.
As it turned out, other photographers started adding their own light while my shutter was open and some became a collaborative effort. So a tip of the hat to Lance Keimig, Troy Paiva and Tom Paiva for their added light and all the subjects for their collaboration and enthusiasm with this – it was a blast working with all of you. Perhaps those of you that know their work can pick out their handiwork?
I’ve included the names of these photographers below their portrait. They are all much more experienced photographers whose work I admire – please Google their names and check out their work if you aren’t familiar with them. And feel free to leave comments below.