In the field and “on Location”

Hi everyone! I hope you all had a great Fourth of July Weekend! I spent the past week parked a little north of Spokane, Washington, doing a mixture of shooting and event prep. You may be confused by the title of this post, because “in the field” and “on location” sound like the same thing. To clear things up, I have named my current bus “Location” so that when people ask me where I am, I can say that I’m “on Location.”

If you read my last post, you saw lots of images from our shoots in the Palouse area. Well, I was so happy with that area that I went back to spend more time there this past week. Karen spent the week at her parents’ house in NJ, so I was exploring on my own. I managed to get some really nice light, as you can see in the shots below.

PalouseLandscapePanoI shot this pano near the top of Steptoe Butte in the Palouse.

1013163_10153420865980355_292144191_nLone tree in a wheat field with Steptoe Butte in the background.

As I mentioned above, I also spent a lot of time this week “on location” getting ready for this week’s training event. I am teaching a 2-day class at creativeLIVE called “Photoshop Mastery: Creative Explorations.” I’ve been teaching the Photoshop Mastery series for several months now and this is the newest segment. As with all creativeLIVE online classes, when the class is live, it’s totally free to watch. After it’s finished, you can buy the class to watch any time you’d like. When you buy the class, you also get all the supplemental material that goes with the course, such as the course handbook and practice images. The class is today and tomorrow (July 8-9) from 9-4 PST.

Here is a rundown of what the “Creative Explorations” class is covering:

Explore the creative side of Photoshop. Take a walk down the filter menu and learn what’s lurking in the not-so-obvious filters like Displacement Maps and Lighting Effects. See how the simple text and shape tools can be taken to the next level by incorporating layer styles, clipping masks and more.

• Learn which filters have a special relationship with Photoshop’s Blending Modes, which allows for unexpectedly creative results
• Start to use Photoshop’s 3D features to add dimension to otherwise flat imagery
• Create animated slide shows that better keep your viewer’s attention
• Add texture to your images to give them more personality

CreativeExplorationsSlider

On Wednesday, I’ll be teaching an additional class at creativeLIVE called “Image Ambulance,” where you’ll learn how to deal with the most difficult problem images. Techniques will include:

• Removing dust and scratches
• Extreme color correction techniques
• Tonal Rescue Techniques
• General Repair and Restoration Techniques
• Unifying skin tone and color
• Eye and Teeth Tweaking
• Red Eye Removal
• Removing Lens Flare and glasses glare
• Whatever else you can think of and have an example image to submit

Click HERE to learn more and to enroll for free!

976540_10153428575930355_824597638_oI shot this image last year on the road to Taos, in New Mexico. I used Photoshop’s Oil Paint filter on it, as I was finalizing the creative techniques I’ll be covering in this week’s class. 

Karen and I will be in Seattle until Thursday, mostly immersed in creativeLIVE workshops. After that, we’ll head back to the bus near Spokane. More to come!

Another kick-butt creativeLIVE course in Seattle

BenCreativeLIVEA little pre-show goofiness. Here I am with my studio audience, about to kick off my Color & Tone class.

Hi everyone! I hope everyone had a good a week, and for all the moms out there, that you had a great Mothers Day! For me, it was another week and another city. This past month has just been crazy travel-wise. We’ve hit all four corners of the country and the middle as well! This week, it was Seattle, as I was presenting my Photoshop Mastery: Color & Tone class at creativeLIVE. This was a two-day course that is part of a larger series designed to make you efficient in Photoshop. The first part of this series, which I presented last month, is called Photoshop Fundamentals, and is designed to give anyone a solid foundation with the program. This week’s Color & Tone class, covers just that: How to enhance, and even fix, the color and tonality of your images. If you missed the live broadcast and would still like to see it, you can purchase it HERE. When you buy the class, you also get the training materials, including my practice images and the handbook that goes with the course.

If you’re not familiar with creativeLIVE, here’s how they work. They broadcast all kind of classes live, every day, and while you watch them live, they’re free. If you decide that the class really resonates with you, you can purchase it to watch any time, and you will also receive the bonus material that comes with the class. I’ll be returning to creativeLIVE next month to present the next part of this series, Photoshop Mastery: Retouching & Collages. Click here for more info or to register for the free broadcast.

As always, my time at creativeLIVE was excellent. They’re such a fun gang to work with, and Karen and I really enjoy being there. We also really lucked out with the weather in Seattle while we were there. It was in the 70s and 80s, and the sun was out! For some of you, this might not seem like a big deal, but if you’re used to rainy Seattle, it’s huge!

BenKarCreativeLIVEKaren and I on the creativeLIVE set

After wrapping things up at creativeLIVE, I flew back to the bus in Eugene, Oregon. It had been nearly a month since I’d last been “home.” Since my vintage bus is also being restored near Eugene, I was able to collaborate a bit with the shop that is working on creating the interior of that bus that we will eventually call home. Unfortunately, I must have caught the bug that seems to be going around, so the last part of my week was shot. I feel tons better now, which is good, because tomorrow, I need to fly to Columbus, Ohio to present my Kelby Training seminar, Photoshop Artistry. If you live near Columbus, I hope to see you there!

And last, but not least: This week, the schedule for this year’s California Photo Festival was posted! The California Photo Festival is five days of digital photography immersion. Intensive workshops, seminars, lectures, shooting, parties, and more with over 15 industry leading photographers and digital industry gurus designed to boost your creativity, spark your passion, and take your photography, art, or business to the next level. This year, it’s Oct. 7-11 in San Luis Obispo, CA. Learn more about the festival and schedule here.

CAphotoFest2013

Learning Encaustic and more fun in Portland

This past week was our final week in Portland, at least for a while. We stayed parked there for quite some time… longer than we usually stay in one given spot. Part of this past week was focused on learning a new (to me) kind of art medium. While I’m used to teaching workshops, this time I was the student, and the medium was encaustic. Encaustic basically means art created with beeswax, and I had been wanting to learn it for a while. I had been looking for a new an interesting way to display my photos, and encaustic really spoke to me.

I signed up for a two-day workshop in Portland with Linda Womack. I learned about the different methods and tools, and ended up going home with a handful of finished pieces. It’s definitely something that is better to learn hands-on in a class rather than just out of a book. Lots of the techniques are tedious and must be done very fast, because the wax is constantly drying. Now that I have a solid foundation, I’m probably going to start buying supplies so that I can practice on my own.

Here I am working on one of my pieces in the encaustic workshop.

One of my Rt. 66 images that has been transferred to wax, but not fused yet.

Here, I experimented with pigments under the photo.

I guess this was just a classroom kind of week for us, because Karen also took a class on knife skills at Portland’s Sur La Table. She had a little rule for herself, and that was she couldn’t buy a GOOD, sharp knife until she took a knife skills class. (she has been known to be a tad accident prone in the kitchen) She ended up loving the class and buying a new chef’s knife and paring knife shortly after.

Karen shot this before her knife skills class in Portland.

Aside from the classes, we had a fairly low-key week, with a few fun distractions. One of our favorite things to do in Portland is see movies at the McMinnemin’s Brew Pub Theaters. They have slightly older movies and only charge $2-3 for admission. What’s even better is that you can have beer and wine in the theater as well as GOOD food. We’ve gotten Thai bowls, hummus, salads, etc. This week, we went to see the movie “Looper,” and both enjoyed it. We also got to meet up with my friend and fellow photography instructor Chris Hurtt. He’s a Portland local and we spent a bunch of time catching up at The Bye & Bye, another one of our favorite places in Portland. It’s a vegan bar, and the food is actually amazing!

On a completely different note, I was featured on Nik Radio this week, where in my interview, I talk with Scott Sheppard about Photoshop, photography and gear. If you’re not familiar with Nik Radio, here’s what they do:

Nik Radio delivers a variety of educational programming created to inspire digital photographers of all levels. Sponsored by Nik Software, Nik Radio features digital imaging tips and techniques, highlights the work of popular professional photographers and experts through in-depth Pro Talks, showcases industry events, and shares insights and the stories behind the most popular images of our time. Listen today for unique educational content that will help you achieve your goals behind the camera and on the computer!

Click HERE to check out my interview

Well, that’s all the news for this week. We’re now making our way south the the Eugene, Oregon area where my vintage bus will be getting its new interior. More to come…

Excellent week teaching at creativeLIVE!

*All the images in this post were provided by the creativeLIVE team. Thanks guys! *

Hey gang! I’ve just wrapped up a great week teaching classes with creativeLIVE in Seattle. It’s been an intense couple of days, jam-packed with Photoshop, photography and light painting sessions. If you’re not familiar with creativeLIVE, they are an online classroom for all topics relating to photography and creativity. They have the best description of themselves on their website, which reads as follows:

creativeLIVE is about providing the best free, live creative education on the web. From our studio in Seattle’s South Lake Union neighborhood, we offer free online workshops in photography, video, web and graphic design, app development and a wide array of other creative topics.

All of our live creative workshops are available to watch for free in realtime. Once a live workshop is over, we edit the best of this content into easily downloadable files available for purchase through our online store. It’s that simple.

At our core, we’re a dedicated group of creative-minded individuals. Our aim is to work with the very best instructors who want to share their knowledge and creative expertise with the world.

I’ve got to say, my experience working with the creativeLIVE gang was awesome. Their whole operation is run so well, from the perspective of both the students and myself, the instructor. While the classes are live, tens of thousands of folks tune in from all over the world. Even though this audience may not be physically in front of me, the event is still extremely interactive, as virtual attendees communicate to me and to each other via the creativeLIVE chat rooms and Twitter feed. Periodically, the class “moderators” will relay the chat room questions for me to answer. In addition to the viewers who tune in online, we also have a very small in-studio audience for some one-on-one interaction and Q&A.

Here I am, on the creativeLIVE set during my Photoshop for Photographers class

My first creativeLIVE event this week was a 3-day class called Photoshop for Photographers. During this class, I covered all the Photoshop features that are essential to a photographic workflow – all of the features I use every single day. I included everything from Camera Raw, to Adjustment Layers, to color correction, to HDR and panos. The list goes on and on. Here’s the class description for this event:

Photoshop for Photographers

Photoshop can be overwhelming. Master the art of Adobe Photoshop by focusing just on the tools photographers need to know. Optimizing images, sharpening, retouching, black and white conversion, directing the viewer’s eye, HDR, panorama-stitching, and more, all the things photographers do with Photoshop. But Ben’s not going to dig into every option in every menu–this three day course will have no fluff and no frills. You won’t be wasting any time and energy learning effects that you’ll never use, leaving you struggling to find the meat you need. Everything Ben teaches in this course is something that photographers use everyday!

To purchase the course (download or stream), CLICK HERE.

My second event was a 1-day class on light painting. Light painting is probably my favorite form of photography, as it allows for endless amounts of creativity and creates such a stunning and unique look. In addition to the 1-day, in-studio class, we shot a bonus session the night before! The bonus session was a live night shoot where I demonstrated my lightpainting techniques on a VW Beetle. Here’s the class description for this event:

Lightpainting

You can create amazing images with light painting, and Ben Willmore is going to show you how! Making light trails, highlighting parts of your image, crazy spiral effects–all the fun secrets of light painting will be yours in this special 1-day workshop! Ben will show you how to use everyday light sources to make striking images, as this is a technique that doesn’t require a lot of equipment. If you have a tripod and a flashlight, you can light paint, and Ben is going to show you how!

To purchase the course (download or stream), CLICK HERE.

Here we are, preparing to lightpaint this Beetle during the bonus night shoot session.

Me with Kenna and Susan, of creativeLIVE

As I said before, I had a great week here in Seattle and I look forward to teaching more creativeLIVE events in the future! In the next week, I’ll be preparing for my classes at the upcoming Photoshop World Conference & Expo and then flying over to NJ to spend time with Karen’s family. More to come!

Join me at CreativeLIVE!

Hi gang! I’d like to invite you to two online classes I’ve got coming up next month with creativeLIVE. The best thing about these classes is that they’re free while they’re live. Afterwards, you can purchase them to watch whenever you’d like.

Photoshop for Photographers • August 22-24

The first is a 3-day Photoshop for Photographers class where I’ll cover all the essential Photoshop techniques that every photographer should know. This will include optimizing images, sharpening, retouching, black and white conversion, directing the viewer’s eye, HDR, panorama-stitching, and more. Check out my more detailed description in the video below. Click here to purchase the course or to enroll for free.

Lightpainting • August 25

I’ll also be teaching a 1-day class on the art of lightpainting. I find lightpainting to be one of the most creative forms of photography, and it’s easier than most people think. After watching this class, you’ll know what tools you need, what camera settings will give you optimal results, and you’ll have a solid foundation for creating your own light-painted masterpieces. Learn more in the video below. Click here to purchase the course or to enroll for free.

 

I hope you’ll join me for one or both of these classes next month! We’re going to cover a ton of material, and you’re going to learn how to create some amazing images. Enroll now at creativeLIVE.

 

Back to this past week’s travels…

We’ve spent this past week just north of Eugene, Oregon getting a lot of bus work done. There have been a lot of mini projects accumulating, and we’ve been knocking off a bunch of those at Paradise Coach. I’m also considering having these guys work on the interior of my vintage bus, as they’re accustomed to doing high-quality work on bus interiors. So far, I’ve been really happy with their work. From here, we’re going to move north to Portland, where I’ve got a lot of friends to visit. More to come…