Creating Web Galleries using Lightroom

As Photoshop World is starting tomorrow, I imagine most are watching the pros blogs to see what news, events, and info is forthcoming from that semi-annual event. Something tells me I will be ponying up the $500 to go to the September one in Vegas. (Benefits of NAPP membership notwithstanding…) In looking at the classes that they are offering for this Spring I guess two things caught me as surprising – first that there are so MANY classes to choose from. In a way a lot of options is a good thing, but it also has downsides. The upside is there are lots of choices. The downside is that sometimes the subject matter is so compartmentalized, you really have to pick a path and stick with it. In other words, if you pick one subject, you are also conversely choosing not to go to other subject matter. Case in point, I would like to have seen Painting With Photoshop by Bert Monroy on day one, but that conflicted with the Top 10 Photoshop Techniques by Matt K. – and since very few classes are repeated, there’s no chance to catch the other class later during the event.

In light of that – one small suggestion for future shows (like anyone is even listening to me)… offer fewer classes but repeat them more – that way you give everyone a chance to see everything. I realize it sounds kinda cheap, but for the price tag of entry, I really would rather get to learn from everyone rather than 3 or 4 instructors only.

The other thing that surprised me is that the head honcho himself, Scott Kelby, is teaching very little this go around. One of the things that has made Scott so endearing to so many is his supremely effective teaching style. yet for this Spring ’08 show, he’s only teaching three classes (and one of them is basically his 7-point system which can be gotten from Amazon for a mere fraction of the cost for Photoshop World entry. I’d rather spend my time learning stuff I can’t get from a book. As kind of the “front man” for NAPP, Photoshop World, and leading pitchman for Adobe products, it would have been nicer to see more classes with him up front. Maybe that will change for Fall ’08.

Although I should also note that Scott just busted up his leg the other day, so is heading out on crutches, and that may have mandated some scheduling changes. He is also delivering the keynote speech, which I am sure took a great deal of time to prepare, so there are possible mitigating circumstances involved with his decreased participation in the instruction. Since I hopefully will have saved enough to go to the Fall ’08 one in Vegas, I’ll look forward to seeing if he’s doing more instruction.

In other, more directly related news to Canon Blogger, I’ve finished the tutorial for this week a little early, so will post it here now. Last week I went over some of the basics of how to create a web gallery using teh automated feature of Photoshop CS3. This week, I look at another product in the Adobe family – Lightroom. Setup and generation is pretty quick and easy, just a couple pointers on what to avoid and precautions to take in putting everything together, from both the perspective of the photographer and the viewer. A little shorter than last weeks tutorial, but still hopefully useful. The flash version is linked, and the Quicktime version is attached for those tuning in via feeds, iTunes, and with iPods.

Web Galleries II (Lightroom)

Happy shooting and watch those apertures! For those going to Photoshop World, have a blast!

Here we go again…another round of web galleries!

It’s Monday again, and I’ve been working on the first round of revisions to my set of articles on creating a web gallery. As the age old saying goes, if you really wanna learn the nitty gritty of how to do something – try teaching it! To take that to the next level, try teaching it without an audience!

After sharing my first rough draft of the Introductiion and Chapter 1, I saw some areas where improvement was (and possibly is still needed.) I tapped away at that over the weekend, since the weather turned out to be such a downer (cloudy with a chance of rain and just blustery and cold – bleah!). So, no shots to share today, instead it’s a revision of the Chapter 1 for the new set of articles. Also, I am pleased to say that Tuesday’s tutorial is finished and should be prepped for early release, so it should be available after work today. In the meantime, here’s the edited Chapter 1. Feel free to share your thoughts, feedback and discussion in the comments section. Until this afternoon then, hope all your snaps are good ones! Happy shooting and watch those apertures!

The Nitty Gritty on Photoshop Express

I was going to wait until Monday to make this post, but in light of all the hubub, decided to go ahead and make an exception this go around and do a weekend post.  So…without further ado:

Adobe on Thursday unveiled it’s latest incarnation of photo editing software, an online editor it’s calling Photoshop Express. In the aftermath of the online communities reviews, first looks, tutorials and grabbing the headlines, some salient questions are coming to the fore on the value that PE will bring to the marketplace.

What is Photoshop Express?

First and foremost, even heavyweights from NAPP are quick to say that PE is not really Photoshop. Scott Kelby, Matt K., Dave Cross, and the whole bunch were clearly in on the development, but only to a degree – since the Photoshop moniker was there on release. In retrospect, Adobe may re-brand this down the road so as to clear up perceptions of what it’s trying to accomplish here. With that in mind, it does seem pertinent to say that Adobe is likely trying to bring a web-based application into play that can compete with the likes of popular online image-sharing repositories like Facebook, Photobucket, and Picasa (which you can log in to via the PE interface with what is likely a means to transfer images from one repository to another.) It does seem interesting that there is no similar facility in place between PE and Flickr though…perhaps someone could share some thoughts on that in the comments?

The Legalese

The other big hubub surrounding the release was a bit of legalese that granted Adobe some pretty potent rights on images uploaded. Full terms are disclosed here. The specific part that many seem to be having an issue with though, are on transference of licensing. Specifically, the terms stated that:

“Adobe does not claim ownership of Your Content. However, with respect to Your Content that you submit or make available for inclusion on publicly accessible areas of the Services, you grant Adobe a worldwide, royalty-free, nonexclusive, perpetual, irrevocable, and fully sublicensable license to use, distribute, derive revenue or other remuneration from, reproduce, modify, adapt, publish, translate, publicly perform and publicly display such Content (in whole or in part) and to incorporate such Content into other Materials or works in any format or medium now known or later developed.”

Apparently there was enough of an outcry (especially the license granting) that Adobe is re-writing the terms to accommodate the concerns. This comes according to some news from the blog of John Nack (who works for Adobe). It will be interesting to see how things roll out from here.

Photoshop Express Backlash

Finally, a question about its value came up on the NAPP forums where members share their feedback on everything NAPP and Kelby Training has going on. Some have expressed concern that even though the new application is being touted as intended for the “18-24” crowd, that with the photo editing that is available, this could further dis-illusion the average Joe Public into thinking that they can do their own photo editing and no longer need professional photographers. As one poster put it, “it’s giving the consumer a false sense of what it really takes to truly manipulate and retouch photo[s]”.

Conclusions

From my perspective, as both a photo enthusiast and as a consumer, that this is merely an attempt by Adobe to expand their market footprint. They’ve already got the pros and enthusiasts (like myself), but there is a huge market share out there of the next generation to appeal to and gain market share from. With the internet expanding past its infancy and getting to the point of ubiquity, the growing trend for online collaboration and Web 2.o applications becoming more common, it only makes sense for Adobe to expand in this regard. Why should other companies like Facebook, Photobucket and Picasaweb get exclusive access to this demographic?

As for the notion that PE will dip into the market share of professional photographers and retouchers – it’s unlikely to have an impact on the higher end professionals that cater to corporations, businesses, and clientele who are interested in the highest quality. Where there likely will be some fallout is the GWOC (guy-with-camera/gal-with-camera) who wants to hang out a shingle. It’s actually a win-win situation for Adobe because the GWOC’s will find that there is no market for them unless they upgrade their skills and buy a higher end product like full versions of PS. At the same time, the next generation of photo enthusiasts is likely to try this Photoshop Express for a while, then want to do more. It would only make sense to “upgrade” to the standalone application for their computer. My hats off to Adobe for an excellent marketing plan to expand their footprint in todays competitive marketplace.