• Learning About Lens Quality

    MTF at 24mm

    Today on Single-Serving Photo I’m bringing you something a little bit different. Instead of news stories about amazing photographers, press releases about equipment you can’t afford, or overbearing pontifications on the usefulness of HDR as a medium for artistic expression… Drumroll please… Graphs.

    To be more specific, graphs of modulation transfer functions. Dry-sounding? Absolutely! Exciting? I sure hope so!

  • NAPP Presents Retouching Week

    The Photoshop

    You remember the National Association of Photoshop Professionals? NAPP? Their president, Scott Kelby, is like the Photoshop guy, he teaches Photoshop and Lightroom and travels all around the world doing seminars and evangelizing for Adobe (in an indirect way, as a representative of over 30,000 people who use Photoshop professionally). He’s as close to a Photoshop guru as you can realistically get before you become Thomas Knoll or Russell Brown.

    What I’m trying to say here is that you really couldn’t learn Photoshop (or Lightroom) from any better folks than Scott Kelby and his Photoshop crew (Corey Barker, Pete Collins, RC Concepcion, and of course Matt Kloskowski). Normally this type of instruction costs a few bucks or at least a trip somewhere. But not this week.

    This week only, presented in a live format, Scott and his crew (he calls them “The Photoshop Guys”) are doing a series of retouching presentations that you can watch for free. This starts tonight at 6 PM EST. The presentations are, in order:

    • Wedding Retouching (tonight, Dec. 5)
    • Digital Makeup (Dec. 6)
    • The Next Level of Retouching (Dec. 7)
    • LIVE Show - Audience Participation in Q&A (Dec. 8)
    • Tips from the Industry (Dec. 9)

    My understanding is that the fourth presentation is the only time that The Photoshop Guys will take any questions directly from the digital audience, but all five presentations will be streamed live.

    To tune in, just visit “Retouching Week on Photoshop User”:www.photoshopuser.com/retouching-week. It looks like the video and chat feeds are having some problems at the moment, but since the event has not yet started I’m sure the IT screw at Photoshop User will be able to work out all the bugs before it gets underway tonight at 6.

    I don’t know about you guys but I’ll be tuned in!

  • Controlling Lightroom with Physical Knobs

    Using Lightroom is a joy compared to Photoshop. But it isn’t a joy compared to, for example, cheesecake. It’s definitely nice to be able to adjust nearly every aspect of an image with convenient sliders, to have all of the settings right in front of you without having to open lots of dialog boxes. At the same time, though, your mouse hand can get pretty tired, and that never happens with cheesecake, now does it?

    Never fear, there is finally a solution. Well, the beginning of a solution. A solution in the early stages of beta testing, but a solution nonetheless, and it doesn’t involve uninstalling Lightroom and eating more cheesecake. Although you are welcome to eat more cheesecake anyway if that’s your thing.

  • Scott Kelby Stands Up For Photoshop Users (As He Should)

    Photoshop. The program that became a verb, a lifestyle, an indispensable tool. The first time I ever used Photoshop, it didn’t have layers. Now it feels like the third hand I never knew I wanted but couldn’t reasonably live without. I have used it seriously and continuously since version 4 and as much as I love free and open source software, there is absolutely no replacement for it.


    Few people in the world know any of this better than Scott Kelby. As the president of the National Association of Photoshop Professionals (by the way, you know your software is influential when a 70,000-member association springs up around it), he is intimately in touch with the pulse of the Photoshop user and the photography industry.

  • Lenskirt, What a Neat Idea

    Right, so I’m following Tom Anderson on Google Plus. You remember Tom? There is a fairly good chance that if you were on the Internet around 2003 or so, you were friends with Tom. Well, OK, you’ve probably never gone to lunch with him, or shaken his hand, or talked to him, or met him. But you were friends with him on MySpace… Because everyone was.

    Tom Anderson was the first president of MySpace and the guy who was automatically added to your friend list the moment you joined. Yeah, that Tom. There he is over there on the right, you remember that guy? With his judgment-free smile and his own whiteboard to sit in front of? When you’re the president of the first truly successful social network you can have your own whiteboard. You can put it right next to your desk if you want to.

    Of course, absolutely none of this matters. I should get to the point.