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Celebrate the Birth of the Portrait Zoom: The New TAMRON 35-150mm F/2.8-4 Di VC OSD (model A043)

For the first time ever, a dedicated portrait lens that allows you to zoom through various composition options as the creative alternatives zoom through your head. The versatile 35-150mm zoom range incorporates the 85mm focal length (optimum for portrait shooting) and covers everything from full-body shots that include the surrounding area to sharp head-and-shoulders shots. With this single lens you can make the most of every moment you spend with any subject. Combined with potent VC (Vibration Compensation), fast F/2.8 aperture (F/4 at 150mm end) and compact design, this is the only zoom you’ll ever need for portraits, street, landscapes, travel, family snapshots and across a wide range of photography subjects. It’s also the ideal “normal zoomâ€? …

Tamron’s New Prime Lens Series for Sony Mirrorless Offers More Choices for Creative Expression

Sponsored Tamron has just announced three new models for Sony E-mount full-frame mirrorless cameras. In addition to bright F/2.8 apertures, all three new prime lenses have enhanced close-focusing capability (1:2 reproduction ratio) and all are marvelously compact. Choose the ultra-wide 20mm F/2.8 Di III OSD M1:2 (Model F050) to stretch your imagination. Or the 24mm F/2.8 Di III OSD M1:2 (Model F051) to widen your horizons. And the must-have lens for everyday use is the 35mm F/2.8 Di III OSD M1:2 Model F053. The close-focusing capability lets you capture scenes dynamically by leveraging the unique perspective. Enjoy many different types of photography including nature, tabletop, and family snaps. All three lenses are light in weight …

Platypod: Knocking it Out of the Park with Platyball

By Shiv Verma Sponsored Just recently, I had the opportunity to test drive a new ball head, the Platyball. Not available for direct sale until later in the year, it was a preproduction version designed and manufactured by the makers of the popular Platypod Max and Ultra. The Platyball will come in two models, the Elite and the Ergo. Both units have identical mechanical features. However, the Elite has an incredibly accurate LED-based leveling device that makes it stand out from all the other ball heads on the market. I loved working with this ball head. The Platyball not only has a unique design, it is visually striking. Its sleek ergonomic design reminds me of a Ferrari. Even the rich color…

Turning a Standard Upside Down

By Skip Cohen Sponsored For those of you who don’t know my background, I’ve spent my life in the photography industry. And in all those years, I’ve never been involved with any company or products I didn’t honestly believe in. When asked to join the Platypod team last September, l accepted because of two things – the owners of the company and the quality of the products. While I wasn’t involved in Platyball’s design, I’ve been part of the team every step of the way, helping to educate the industry, starting with why the world needed to be turned upside down. Tripods haven’t…

Social Media News Update

Hi Gang: Happy Monday, and I thought we’d kick this week off with a quick look at some social media stuff for photographers: (1) Twitter finally stops penalizing us for using photos I wrote a post about this problem back in December — begging Twitter to step penalizing us for attaching a photo by taking away characters from our 140-character limit. Well, they recently announced that they are lifting that penalty and now we can add a photo and still have our full 140-character limit. They haven’t given a firm date for this yet, just that we should expect it “…over the coming months” (you can read their announcement here). Now, if we could just…

Photoshop World 2016 Update

Hey gang – just a quick update for what’s new and going on at the upcoming Photoshop World 2016 Conference in Las Vegas this summer, July 19-21, 2016: (1) CALL FOR ENTRIES: The Photoshop World Guru Awards This is a photo/image competition just for people who attend the conference (so your odds of winning in a category are pretty decent), and there are categories for everything from illustration to retouching to compositing, and entry is free to any registered attendee (and entry is only for registered attendees). The official rules and form for uploading your images to the competition are right here. Good luck! (btw: if you’re on the fence about entering, …

Where Will You Be….

…when the world’s best teachers in Photoshop and Photography take the stage in Las Vegas next month, on the 19th – 21st, at the Photoshop World 2016 Conference? Why not come and be a part of it all? Don’t just read about it afterward. Experience it yourself. Save $100 by getting your tickets before this Friday! The Early Bird special $100-off deal ends this Friday, so get your tickets right now…then: (1) Get your special hotel room discount for conference attendees (2) Grab your airfare (we have a discount airfare finder) (3) Start booking some show reservations, and making dinner plans (4) Pack your bags, ’cause we’re going to Vegas, baby! Best, -…

Free Perfect Effects (and Presets) for Photoshop and Lightroom Users

Hi everyone. I usually post presets on Monday-ish but I’m traveling to Sacramento today for my Lightroom seminar tomorrow, and things have been pretty crazy around work, so I haven’t had much time to work on some new ones. But I didn’t want to leave you hanging so I’m going to tell you how to get a ton of free presets that you can use on your photos. See, one of the problems (as an instructor) I always face, is showing off photos that I edit with plug-ins. I can usually assume that if you’re watching a Photoshop tutorial that you have Photoshop But I can’t assume that you have the plug-in that I’m using. I always feel like I may be leaving some people out by using a plug-in, but honestly, they’re such an integral part of my photo workflow that I can’t get the job done without them. Well, I’m really excited to report that onOne Software has released yet another version of their free effects plug-in called Perfect Effects 4 Free. I know you’re probably thinking it’s a very stripped down version of their full plug-in. It’s not. It’s got 70 effects in it, and many of the ones that I use all of the time are in the free version. Plus it’s got the same masking brush that’s been reinvented for their new suite of products – so if you want to paint some detail or some portion of the preset out of a certain area of the photo (I do this all of the time since sometimes the preset affects, say, clouds or people that I don’t want to affect), you can do it right there, without going back to layers, masks and selections in Photoshop. And on the totally selfish side of things, having this free makes it much easier for me because now I don’t have to worry about whether some one has the same plug-in I’m using. It’s free so everyone has access to it. Here’s the link to the Perfect Effects 4 Free page. It’s even got a few videos on it that show off some of the new features. Enjoy!

Lightroom 4.3 Is Released!

Adobe released the latest update to Lightroom yesterday (4.3). Tom Hogarty (Lightroom’s product manager) has a full list of what’s in this release but here’s the highlights: – The big thing (to me at least, even though I don’t have one) is that it brings retina support for the new Macbook Pros. – Some bug fixes (mostly things that I haven’t personally experienced) – Raw Support for newer cameras – Updated profiles for some new lenses You can either go to the Help menu to check for updates to get 4.3 or hit Adobe’s website. – Mac version – PC version One more thing. Don’t forget that anytime Lightroom is updated, Camera Raw is updated as well. So if you have Photoshop CS6 you may want to do a quick update check and make sure you have the latest and greatest. Have a great weekend.

New Photoshop CS6 updates with Creative Cloud

<!–screen–> During Create Now, an online event taking place at 6pm GMT this evening, Adobe announce the latest Creative Cloud updates that offer members access to over a dozen exclusive new features for Adobe Photoshop. Additionally Adobe will also introduce a new version, Creative Cloud for teams, which makes it easy for creative professionals to collaborate with colleagues. Adobe will be showcasing new capabilities for mobile website design with Adobe Muse,  launching Creative Cloud Connection for desktop synching and collaborative sharing and debuting Creative Cloud Training. Adobe will also be supplying a library of premium instructional video from leading partners;and demonstrating the unlimited access to the Digital Publishing technology, used by major publishers to create interactive content for the iPad. Tune in to see the full details unveiled at the Create Now online event at 6pm GMT with new Creative Cloud capabilities, including Creative Cloud for teams, available at that time. New Photoshop CS6 capabilities available to Creative Cloud members, include: Immediate support for HiDPI (Retina) displays for Apple MacBook Pro. This feature was also made available to perpetual license customers as a free update. Smart Object support for Blur Gallery and Liquify. The ability to quickly export CSS code for text and objects, and import colour swatches to easily design incredible websites. New workflow timesavers including Crop tool refinements. 3D enhancements including improved live (OpenGL) previews of shadow effects and additional control over illumination using 32-bit colour picker to create glow effects. Conditional Actions that automatically select the appropriate Action based on user-defined rules, giving users enhanced image processing speed. Pricing and Availability Adobe Creative Cloud membership for individuals is £38.12 (ex VAT) per month based on annual membership; existing customers who own CS3 or later get their first year of Creative Cloud for individuals at the discounted rate of £22.22 (ex VAT) per month. Students and teachers can get Creative Cloud for £22.46 per month. Creative Cloud for teams is priced at £53 (ex VAT) per month per seat with an annual contract required; existing customers who own CS3 or later get their first year of Creative Cloud for teams at the discounted rate of £38.12 per month per seat.

New Offering Brings Teams into Creative Cloud

<!–team–> Creative Cloud for teams is the latest major update from adobe. These new services have been designed with to help creative professionals work better together. Creative Cloud for teams delivers everything that’s included with the individual version of Creative Cloud, but also includes additional 00GB of cloud storage per user, expert support services, centralized administration for the quick and easy deployment of new seats, and centralized billing and efficient license management. Other new Creative Cloud additions include an update to Adobe Muse, a desktop app that allows designers to create professional, HTML websites without writing code. Adobe Muse now includes the ability to create unique layouts for desktop, iPhone, iPad and other mobile device versions of a website. Designers can now customize each experience whether the site is viewed on a large monitor while sitting at a desk, or viewing on a small screen while on-the-go. A desktop sync app, which allows users to automatically sync files to a Creative Cloud account by saving files to the desktop folder, or simply dragging and dropping. In addition, new exclusive Creative Cloud Training (available to all paid Creative Cloud members soon) offers an extensive library of tutorials and trial courses from renowned training partners, Kelby Training, video2brain and Attain, designed to help make Creative Cloud members successful with the tools and services available to them. For more information

It’s “Lots of Quick News” (and it’s “Big Adobe Event” Tuesday)

Adobe’s online Creative Cloud event is today! It’s the one where they’re unveiling what’s next in the Creative Cloud is today, and I’m part of the presentation (I’ll be talking a little about the cloud itself, but then later on I’m doing a segment called “Hidden Gems” where I’ll be showing some new stuff and some little-known existing features in Photoshop.When: TODAY, December 11th, 2012 Time: 10:00 PST (1:00 pm New York Time) Where: Here’s the link.  My new book is already sold out But if you didn’t get your order in yesterday, you can still order the Print edition from and they’ll deliver it as soon as the next batch hits their warehouse — here’s the link just in case.If you can’t wait ’till then, it’s available right now from Apple’s iBook Store (for IOS) — here’s the linkSubmit your images for our “Blind Critiques” episode of “The Grid” If you’d like to have your photography considered for TOMORROW”s blind critiques (we show your images but don’t mention your name on the air), just leave us a link to your images AT THIS ADDRESS:’ll pick 20 or so photographer’s work to go over on the show (not based on who posted first — we choose based on showing variety and images we think can help our viewers), and the live show is broadcast TOMORROW at 4:00 pm ET at  — see you on “The Grid”Catch Matt Kloskowski on “The Hallmark Channel’s: Home & Family” That’s right, our own homegrown Mattski is going to be a guest Wednesday on broadcast TV on the Hallmark Channel’s show, “Home & Family.” They’ll be talking about photography and Photoshop and what Matt uses to make his hair so shiny, so make sure you tune in. Here’s the details:When: Wednesday at 9:00 am ET Where: The Hallmark Channel (check your local cable guide) When Again: It’s possible it’s not at 9:00 am everywhere, so again, check your cable guide.Want more megapixels? Be careful what you wish for.  I was reminded this week how large the file sizes are for images I shoot with my Nikon D800. I grabbed a hard drive to copy around 1,000 images I took in Cuba, and I was shocked to see that it wouldn’t fit on the drive because it was a whopping 43 Gigbytes!!! I looked at what the Raw files were from my Nikon D3s, and for around 1,000 Raw files it was 1/3 the size (around 15GB) and for the same number of JPEGs from a similar camera it around 6GB. I’ll shoot more than 1,000 photos at any given football game in just three hours (glad I’m shooting JPEG).Anyway, I added a chart below with the specs. Eyeopening. (And yes, I know it’s just simple math, and that hard drive space has never been cheaper, but until you actually try and copy that many GB and your hard drive says “Not enough room” and you think, “Nah, it can’t be” you found out, “Oh, it be.”).You will get a kick out of this video! I know I’m probably the 15,000th person to share this very cute Jimmy Fallon/Mariah Carey rendition of Mariah’s “All I want for Christmas is You” Christmas song, but Kalebra and I just watched it a few mornings ago and it really got us in the Christmas Spirit (and I’ve been singing it ever since).Hope it makes your Holiday, and your Tuesday a little brighter. :-)Gotta run! Hope to see you all today at the Adobe event (it’s free!). Cheers, -Scott