Join Me On The Adobe Create Now North America Tour

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It’s time to hit the road again! However, this time most of the stops will be right here in the USA and Canada. Join me, Jason Levine, Paul Trani and other Adobe Evangelists as we hit many US/Canadian cities with our Adobe Create Now US Tour covering Design, Photography, Web and Video presentations. While I personally won’t be at every single event, I will be at most of them. Stay tuned to my events listing in the sidebar of my blog to know which ones I’ll be at personally.

For a list of cities and registration information go here.


What’s New in the Adobe Muse CC August 2013 Update

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In this episode of Adobe Creative Cloud TV, I’ll show you what’s new in the August 2013 Adobe Muse CC update. There are updates to the way it handles active states of anchor links as well as a New Scroll Motion Panel. One thing I forgot to show in the video was that the Scroll Motion effects now work on iOS Devices such as iPhone and iPad.

Are you missing out on my Bonus Content?

See more of my Adobe Creative Suite Videos on my Adobe Creative Cloud TV and get the App below. It features EXCLUSIVE CONTENT that no one else gets to see. This episode has a BONUS CLIP that is available only in the App! My iOS App is a Universal App for iPhone, iPad and iPod touch. I also have an Android version on the Amazon App Store:

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Priolite Leipzig MBX500 2-Light Kit Review

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I held my Master the Shoot Digital Photography Workflow Workshop this past Saturday in my studio. We had a great turnout and a great time shooting and exploring my digital photography workflow. During the workshop and on our third shoot I decided to give the Priolite MBX500 a shot. I had just received this kit to review and quite honestly after setting it up and testing it only to make sure it fired, I hadn’t actually used it in a real shoot yet. I figured what better real world testing than during a live shoot in front of a room full of other photographers. Yeah the pressure was on, but as I always say it will either work or it won’t. It worked!

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Photo by Jason Lykins

What’s a Priolite MBX500?

The Priolite MBX500 looks like a standard studio strobe at first glance. What makes it special or different is the fact that it has a removable/exchangeable battery pack built right in! That’s right, you can go completely wireless. This means that these are not only great studio strobes, but they also double as on-location lighting.

What I liked

The Priolite MBX500 strobes are very easy to set up. I didn’t receive a manual with my review units, but I was able to figure out everything I need to know on my own.

They were easily adaptable to my existing softboxes with the supplied speed ring.

Having full powered strobes that run on a removable/exchangeable battery is KILLER

Not having a battery pack dangling from them is also great.

Being able to leave them plugged in while in studio means uninterrupted shooting.

The LED modeling light is another nice benefit

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What I wasn’t thrilled about

It’s really hard to find anything wrong with this solution, but here are a couple of things that I wish were better.

The strobes are larger/heavier than the average strobe. Not the end of the world and that battery has to go somewhere.

The only other issue for some will be the price. They are a bit pricier than other studio strobes, but if you were to combine both on-location lighting and studio lighting, then you’d probably come out ahead with the Priolite MBX500 kit.

 

Would I recommend them?

Absolutely! Here’s the real kicker. For anyone looking to make an investment in quality lighting gear, it’s hard to go wrong with the Priolite MBX500. The reason is that you’re getting two lighting solutions for the one price. You’re getting a great studio strobe AND you’re getting location lighting too. Having paid for BOTH studio strobes AND on-location lighting I can testify that I spent more than the Priolite kit costs.

You can get the kit here.

I could go on talking about them, but it’s probably better to see them in action here during my workshop (thanks Jason Lykins for shooting the video):




How To Create QR Codes Using Adobe InDesign CC

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We see QR Codes all around us. Now there’s an easy way to create QR codes right along side the printed material that they’re going to go on. In this episode of Adobe Creative Cloud TV I’ll show you how to generate QR Codes right in Adobe InDesign CC. Here is the Scan App I use on iOS (iPhone and iPad)

 

Are you missing out on my Bonus Content?

See more of my Adobe Creative Suite Videos on my Adobe Creative Cloud TV and get the App below. It features EXCLUSIVE CONTENT that no one else gets to see. This episode has a BONUS CLIP that is available only in the App! My iOS App is a Universal App for iPhone, iPad and iPod touch. I also have an Android version on the Amazon App Store:

Learn Adobe Creative Suite with Terry White - Wizzard Media

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Taking My Westcott Travel Portrait Lighting Kit Out For A Spin

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I finally got a chance to really put my “Terry White Travel Portrait Lighting Kit” to the test. I was doing an educational video shoot with Westcott and of course capturing some new images for my upcoming Photoshop and Lightroom tutorials (I can never have too many example images).

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We decided to head to the lake! The biggest problem as you can see above was it was the wrong time of day. Actually it was the worst time of day! High noon.

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Luckily it was partly cloudy and therefore it was a matter of patience and waiting for big clouds to block the sun. I consider myself to be very LUCKY. This shoot had all the wrong conditions and should have been a bust.

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The kit performed very well. I used my Nikon SB900 on it and was able to cast just the right amount of soft beautiful light on my subjects.

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What I learned

photo by Kandice Lynn

photo by Kandice Lynn

It wasn’t so much what I learned as much as it was what I was reminded of. Time of day is probably the most important factor in doing any kind of outdoor shoot. Especially landscapes since you won’t be lighting them. I was also painfully reminded to make a checklist (I need a better app for this). I packed filters that I forgot to take out and use. I could have wirelessly shot to my iPad and didn’t bother setting that up, yet I complained the whole time about not being able to see the LCD on the back of my camera. I wanted to shoot a little video using my AR Drone 2.0, but both batteries were dead as they had sat for weeks without being used. Yes, I got good images, but in spite of my mistakes. On the bright side I definitely have images to show how to correct in Lightroom and Photoshop ;)

Check out my Westcott Terry White Travel Portrait Lighting Kit here.

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Join me for my “Master The Shoot” Digital Photography Workflow Workshop

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By popular demand I’m doing a digital photography workflow workshop. The 1st one will take place Saturday, August 24th, 2013 from 10 AM – 3 PM in my Troy Michigan photography studio. After that I’ll head to Cincinnati Ohio for another one on September 14th.

I’ll walk you through my complete end-to-end digital photography workflow. You’ll get a chance to see how to work with models, how to light for beauty and fashion photography as well as the secrets to my workflow for bringing images into Lightroom 5, organizing, picking the best shots, delivering client galleries and retouching the final selections in Adobe Photoshop.

Seating is LIMITED! So Register Today!

Register for August 24th, Troy MI

Register for September 14th, Cincinnati OH

Why attend this Master the Shoot workshop?

There are several great workshops that concentrate on lighting or photography techniques, what makes this workshop different is that I will take you through the entire process from start to finish. You’ll learn tips and tricks to speed up your entire workflow including image management and retouching techniques that will help you deliver the best shot.

What should I bring?

If you want to participate in the portrait shoot bring your camera.

If you want to follow along with the workflow bring your laptop with Adobe Photoshop Lightroom 4 or 5 and Photoshop CS6 or higher. While this will be mostly a lecture on the workflow and retouching techniques that  I use, you should be able to follow along with many of the tips and best practices. Please note: Everyone is going to have different configurations and shoot slightly different images and therefore it will NOT be a hands on class step-by-step session. If you bring your laptop you’re bringing it as a convenience to you, as there will not be time for me to work with everyone one on one. With that said, you will walk away with my notes/workbook so that you can go back and practice the main points of the day.


Adobe Bridge CC vs. Lightroom 5

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I have gotten the question “Which one is better, Bridge or Lightroom?” more times than I can remember. In this episode of Adobe Creative Cloud TV the gloves come off for the ultimate smack down. Well actually no, they don’t. The gloves stay on because it’s not really a competition although there are those out there that feel that there needs to be a winner. Actually like many tools, both Bridge and Lightroom have their strengths and weaknesses. In this video I show you how each one works and more importantly which one might be best for you depending on the work you do. Also if you use Bridge or Lightroom I’ve included a few tips that you may not have known about each app.

 

Are you missing out on my Bonus Content?

See more of my Adobe Creative Suite Videos on my Adobe Creative Cloud TV and get the App below. It features EXCLUSIVE CONTENT that no one else gets to see. This episode has a BONUS CLIP that is available only in the App! My iOS App is a Universal App for iPhone, iPad and iPod touch. I also have an Android version on the Amazon App Store:

Learn Adobe Creative Suite with Terry White - Wizzard Media

 





Review: Westcott Skylux LED Studio Light

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I use both standard studio strobes AND continuous lighting. I pick and choose between the two depending on what I’m lighting and what I think will do a better job. For my continuous lighting I have relied on the Westcott’s Spiderlite TD5 and TD6. The TD6 has really served me well with a better overall design over its predecessor. As nice as the Spiderlites are the one thing you’ll never hear anyone say is that they are “easy” to travel with! With the TD6 you have a fairly large head and 6 individual bulbs that need to be unscrewed and packed in a way that they won’t break. Clearly studio strobes and speedlights have the advantage here. So Westcott thought outside the box and combined the two

The NEW Westcott Skylux

The Skylux is an LED continuous light in the form factor of a regular studio strobe. This is smart for a few reasons. First off they are smaller and MUCH EASIER to travel with. Set up is also faster as it’s just a matter of putting the light on a light stand and attaching whichever modifier you prefer. Speaking of modifiers, that’s the next advantage. You can use virtually ANY light modifier you want. There’s a built-in umbrella mount and you can use a Bowens S-Type Mount Speedring to adapt any of your existing softboxes.

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The Skylux puts out a 1,000 watt equivalent of soft beautiful light. This puts it on par with the TD6. It also has a dimmer on the back to dial it up or down to give you a 30%-100% range.

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The Skylux is 5,500K daylight balanced just like the Spiderlites. This is something that a lot of people take for granted and sometimes go with cheaper solutions only to find out that the color temperature of some of those cheaper products can vary over time.

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You can buy the Skylux as a standalone light or in a complete kit with a stand and either a 36″ or 48″ deep octa softbox as pictured above.

The Good

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OK so what do I like about the Skylux?

  • Small compact design that fits right in with my strobes
  • Lightweight and easy to travel with if need be.
  • LED light is cool (low heat)
  • Great for both still photography AND video
  • Low fan noise which is crucial for video
  • Easily adaptable to various modifiers
  • Great catchlights

 

The “Could Be Better”

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Like any product the Skylux is not perfect and many of you know that I try to do fair and balanced reviews so here’s the areas where the Skylux could be better:

  • Like the Spiderlites, the light output is good, bright and soft, but strobes will give you more light. This means that in certain situations you’ll either need to lower your F-stop, slow your shutter speed or increase your ISO to expose the shot the way you want. With most modern day DSLRs you can usually go up to 800 ISO without batting an eye, but I like to stay at 200-400 ISO as much as I can.
  • There is a power switch on the back of the Skylux head AND on the power brick. However the dimmer is only on the back of the Skylux head. I’d love to see one on the power brick as well.
  • Speaking of the power brick, it is a BRICK and large. In studio this is no big deal at all, but on the go it does add weight and little more bulk.

The Bottom Line

Westcott is no stranger to LED continuous lighting solutions. See the Ice Light below. The products are great and provide great professional results. I have no problem recommending. However, like most newer technologies there is a price to pay and the cost of LED continuous lighting may be price prohibitive to some. What helps me justify the cost in my head is knowing that these solutions can not only be used for still photography, but also for video work. Since every DSLR being made today does both still photos AND video, video lighting is something that more and more people will want to have. I welcome the Skylux to my arsenal.

Skylux Head

Skylux XL kit with Rapid Box 36″ Softbox

Skylux XXL kit with Rapid Box 48″ Softbox

 

See my original Ice Light Review here.

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I’m still trying to figure out if I like the Ice Light so much because of being a Star Wars fan :-)

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How To Use Bitmapped Images as Custom Brushes in Illustrator CC

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You’ve been able to create custom brushes in Adobe Illustrator for years. However, those brushes had to be made from vector objects that you drew or traced. Now in Illustrator CC you can also create custom brushes from bitmapped images. In this episode of Adobe Creative Cloud TV, I’ll show you how to use bitmapped images as custom Brushes in Illustrator CC, starting with how to prepare them first using Photoshop CC.

 

Are you missing out on my Bonus Content?

See more of my Adobe Creative Suite Videos on my Adobe Creative Cloud TV and get the App below. It features EXCLUSIVE CONTENT that no one else gets to see. This episode has a BONUS CLIP that is available only in the App! My iOS App is a Universal App for iPhone, iPad and iPod touch. I also have an Android version on the Amazon App Store:

Learn Adobe Creative Suite with Terry White - Wizzard Media

 





How To Use Adobe Camera RAW as a Filter in Photoshop CC

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The beauty of Adobe Camera RAW (ACR) is that it provides you with a non-destructive way of making several adjustments to your images easily. However, the problem has always been that once you were in Photoshop and you had an image open, if you wanted to edit that image in ACR you would have to close it first and reopen it in ACR. Now with Photoshop CC you can use ACR with ANY layer on any image without having to close it first. In this new episode of Creative Cloud TV I show how to use the new Camera RAW Filter in Photoshop CC.

 

Are you missing out on my Bonus Content?

See more of my Adobe Creative Suite Videos on my Adobe Creative Cloud TV and get the App below. It features EXCLUSIVE CONTENT that no one else gets to see. This episode has a BONUS CLIP that is available only in the App! My iOS App is a Universal App for iPhone, iPad and iPod touch. I also have an Android version on the Amazon App Store:

Learn Adobe Creative Suite with Terry White - Wizzard Media

 





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