Highlights of 2011

December 2011

DIY Holiday Cards: December 10. In the spirit of the holiday season, the PhotoCenter offered a day of tips and tricks, as well as instructed work time to create fun and personal holiday cards.

Getting to Know Your Digital Camera: December 15. The workshop covered what different settings mean, when and where to use them, how to set manual exposures, as well as other features offered by your camera. Participants may bring digital point and shoot cameras as well as digital SLR.

Holiday Portraits: December 17. Photography by Jacqueline Lynch. The PhotoCenter Studio was opened up for booking! Participants could being in their family, friends, pets, and loved ones to have a holiday portrait taken.

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November 2011

Camera Raw Explained: November 10. This workshop explained the difference between Camera Raw and jpeg to participants as well as the benefits to shooting in Raw. We discovered when Raw is necessary for optimal results and when it isn't, as well as looking into Camera Raw workflow when working with your images in post production.

Creating Abstract Photography From the World Around Us: November 17. Being able to open our imagination and vision to create complex and interesting imagery can improve the way we photograph in all situations. This workshop was a demonstration of various photographs where elements of shape, light, and color create the photograph rather than recognizable subject matter. Participants were given various exercises to try to expand the way they see as well as an open invitation to send back images created during these invitations for feedback and thoughts.

Turning Still Frames into Motion: November 19. Using digital images to make short, motion videos is a fun and ever growing technique that can be fun and open up creativity to all. This workshop began by showing different examples of stop motion videos for inspiration and talk about the process of creating these short videos. Participants experimented with creating videos themselves.

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October 2011

100 x 100 Project Opens: October 7. Work donated to the Photography Center was be on display through November 1, when a drawing took place.

Backing Up Your Important Files : October 13. Backing up your photographs and important files is a precaution every photographer, digital artist, and basic computer user should take. Working digitally allows us to shoot and save thousands of files, but it can be scary when technology fails and work is lost. This workshop demonstrated procedures and equipment to back up your files, recovering lost files, and the different ways to do so.

Getting into Food Photography : October 15. In honor of Troy's Fifth Annual Chowder fest we learned about the amazing world of food photography. This workshop will go over all the tips and tricks to create images so appealing your mouth will be watering. We will go over how to photograph main dishes, ingredients,  desserts, and more.

Fun Fall Digital Effects : October 20. As autumn comes upon us, the opportunity for great photographs is at hand. Warm tones and vibrant colors are all around us;  these can be expanded in digital post production. This workshop showed various ways to work with your images as well as some fun digital manipulation techniques to expand your artistic freedom.

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September 2011

Workflow — Managing Your Growing Library of Digital Files: September 15. This session showed effective and efficient ways to organize and document your ever-expanding collection of images. Various software tools were demonstrated to show what can work best for your circumstances.  Included were suggestions for file management with Elements, Lightroom, Bridge, Picassa, and homegrown systems. 

Photoshop Basics: September 22. Understanding the basic layout of Photoshop as well as the functions of basic Photoshop layers, tools, and filters is essential when learning new techniques or editing your digital files. This workshop taught participants what they need to know to enable being able to progress and new things working with the program in the future.

Studio Lighting Portraits: September 24. Great lighting can make or break a portrait, and knowing how to create the lighting you envision is key. In this workshop participants learned about lighting in a studio setting, how to set up strobes, work with a reflector, and create deep shadows (dramatic, a la Rembrandt), as well as smooth flattering lighting on their subjects.

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August 2011

Buttons on Your DSLR: August 11. Participants learned the common settings on most DSLR cameras, when to use them, and when they can be beneficial. We also covered what purposes all those buttons, wheels, and switches serve. 

Adobe Bridge and Photoshop: August 18. Adobe Bridge media manager is helpful in locating, organizing, and viewing your files. This workshop showed participants what Bridge is used for, how Bridge is set up, how to tag and rate their images, how to view only selected and rated images without removing them from the folder, how to navigate through the utility, how it works with Photoshop, and uses for mini bridge.

Studio Lighting for Portraits: August 27. n this workshop participants learned about lighting in a studio setting, how to set up strobes, work with a reflector, and create deep shadows (dramatic, a la Rembrandt), as well as smooth flattering lighting on their subjects.

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July 2011

The Exposure Triangle: ISO, Aperture, and Shutter Speed: July 14. Participants were taught what ISO, aperture, and shutter speeds are, as well as how they work together.

Learn about your Laptop — Private Q&A sessions on Mac and PC: July 16. The PhotoCenter offered half-hour sessions to take participants to the next level of proficiency.

Alternative Process Photography — Cyanotype: July 23. Cyanotypes are a non-silver photographic printing process which results in a cyan colored print. This workshop taught participants about the chemical process, as well as how imagery can be created using digital photographs as well as found objects.

Topaz Labs: July 28. Capabilities of this software package were demonstrated. Participants saw the following plug-ins in action: InFocus, Detail, Simplify, DeNoise, and Adjust.

Figure Study: Shape, Form, and Tone: July 30. We focused on the form, shape, and lighting when photographing the figure.

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June 2011

Get Focused! Understanding Auto Focus and Manual Focus: June 16. Expanding your creativity through photography includes choosing to manually focus. This workshop was an information and demonstration session on when to use auto focus and when to use manual focus, showing the benefits of both. Participants learned when to turn off their auto focus to improve their image as well as hints that help when using manual focus.

Tools for Retouching and Restoring: June 23. This workshop was a demonstration and explanation of helpful tools to use and tips to know when retouching an image. We covered retouching techniques as well as what tools to use and why when restoring an old photograph. This workshop was a demonstration and discussion of retouching technique.

Elizabeth Opalenik's Portfolio / Publication Workshop: June 24. Participants had a constructive portfolio review and produced a publication of their work. Participants learned how to sequence a coherent and interesting compilation of images; how to effectively use the publishing software; and will produce a publication of their images.

Figure Study: Shape, Form, and Tone: June 25. We focused on the form, shape, and lighting when photographing the figure. Before getting started we looked at inspirational images similar to what we will be creating.

Tools and Basic Techniques of Photoshop Elements: June 30. Participants got comfortable with the tools and perks of Adobe Photoshop Elements. This workshop included: working with layers, color balance, resizing and saving. For example: How to resize an image for print and web, cropping, color balance, contrast, exposure, and much more.

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May 2011

Introduction to Lightroom: May 19. This workshop demonstrated the process of organizing your photos before you import them to Lightroom for easier workflow. We also showed how to use adjustments in Lightroom and how to export your images after working with them. This workshop was a demonstration as well as a question and answer session.

On Location: Innovative Photoshoot: May 21. You have got a location, you have got your model, and you have your camera, but how do you capture the best photos possible and images that will impress everyone, and even yourself? We spent the day at a couple different locations in historic Troy working with a model, brainstorming, and learning how to turn your standard outdoor portrait into a stunning image. We will talked about how to make your model as comfortable and natural as possible.

Working in Camera RAW: May 26. When you save in JPEG, you compress image detail and reduce information. With RAW files you have the ability to make more adjustments to your images in Adobe Camera RAW without losing any information. This workshop introduced participants to the process and taught them how to recover lost highlights, make corrections, and much more.

Maggie Taylor Inspired Workshop: May 28. Maggie Taylor is a photographic artist who creates compelling images that tell a narrative and provoke your imagination to run wild. Her work is a combination of scanner-as-camera methods, Photoshop manipulation, and photographs. In this workshop participants looked at Taylor's work and learn about her life, her work, and her technique. Participants were guided to work with their own imagery and added objects to create images influenced by these techniques.

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April 2011

Being Creative in The Studio — Portraits: April 9. When shooting in a studio setting, the aesthetic qualities of your photographs don’t have to be limited. This workshop focussed on bringing out your creative side in the studio. We focussed on what mood and outcomes can be created with lighting as well as how to achieve the photograph you envision. We covered the impact of angles, composition, lighting, and style of shooting to really spice up your studio shooting!

Creating Color with Curves: April 14. Jacqueline Lynch showed how to transform your black and white image into a color photograph without painting in color and messing with layer masking! This workshop showed how to give color to your image by using curve adjustments. This quick and easy to remember process is done in layers making it simple to go back and make changes.

Indoor Lighting: April 16. Light can dramatically influence the subject, and alter the mood in your photographs. Understanding how to work with Indoor light and what light sources to look for you can exercise greater control of your image. We covered understanding color balance, tools to help exposure, and how to make the best out of indoor lighting situations, by practicing with a model.

Introduction to Your Point and Shoot: April 21. This workshop was run a little bit differently. Summer is coming and lots of us have new point and shoot digital cameras we are eager to use. (Or if you were considering adding a new camera, we offered some suggestions.) We gave you a run down of camera functions, how to use your camera, what settings are best for what, and why, and explain to you what that "little weird symbol" means.

On Location — Innovative Photoshoot: April 23. You’ve got a location, you’ve got your model, and you have your camera, but how do you capture the best photos possible and images that will impress everyone, and even yourself? We spent the day at a couple different locations in historic Troy working with a model, brainstorming, and learning how to turn your standard outdoor portrait into a stunning image.

Outdoor and Indoor Panoramas: April 30. Panoramic images can be breathtaking that intrigue any viewer. This workshop introduced participants to the correct shooting process for creating digital images to be stitched into panoramas.

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March 2011

Composing Better Photographs Workshop: March 10. It is essential in many styles of photography that photographers have given thought to and framed their composition before capturing their shot. In this workshop participants looked at images and discussed what makes them strong or weak compositions.  Participants were also be given techniques and information on how to see subject matter in new ways to help improve the aesthetic quality of their photographs. 

An Introduction to Blogging: March  17. Blogs are created to share your images with writing on the computer in a private or public way. More and more families are using blogs to connect with far away family and share happenings on a daily or weekly basis. You can also start a blog to just introduce your self to cyberspace as a photographic artist featuring a photo of the day. People who subscribe to your blog can leave comments and add great feedback to your creative endeavors. It can even be a “cyber journal” for you.

“Ordinary Subject, Extraordinary Images” — Abstract Photography: March 19. Abstract photography is created when a camera is combined with a creative mind. Photographing objects followed by digital processing can create a series of immensely interesting photographs of various abstract forms and colors. Participants in this workshop learned preparation, proper lighting and exposure, as well as ways to alter shapes by stretching or compressing. Participants were able to shoot as well as receive tips and tricks of how to enhance their photographs further with photo editing software.

Inauguration of the PhotoCenter's "D.D. Night" (Discussion & Demonstration): March 21. To start this monthly series, we will do a show-and-tell about Diane Arbus, view her work and discuss her significance in the history of photography, and include a rare recording in her own words about her work. This is another PhotoCenter activity to help expand our photographic interests.

Correctly Photographing Your Artwork: March 26. Artists of all media need to photograph their work at one point or another. Having correctly photographed images of your work can be beneficial for cataloguing, entering into exhibits, websites, and sharing with the community. In this workshop participants learned how to properly light, crop and shoot their artwork to create accurate representations of their work.

Fascinating Digital Effects: March 31. Digital Photography creates a world of opportunity to use numerous effects on your images. In this workshop participants learned the workflow and process of how to create these effects and how to alter each photograph to enhance their unique aesthetics and compositions.

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February 2011

Introduction to Gimp (Part 1): February 10; instructed by Jacqueline Lynch. Gimp is an acronym for GNU Image Manipulation Program. It is a free program that can be downloaded online and used to enhance your photography with photo retouching, image composition, and photo editing. It includes all of the most useful capabilities of the high-priced spread. In this workshop participants were informed on how to download Gimp correctly and safely, and introduced to the set up and tools offered through Gimp. We covered how to work on your photographs in Gimp and become familiar with the program's capabilities.

Valentine's Day Inspired Sweetheart Shoot! February 12 and February 13. We made Valentine's Day special this year through a Valentine's Day Portrait Session.

Introduction to Gimp (Part 2): February 17. In this workshop we began where Part 1 left off. We covered how to work on your photographs in Gimp and become familiar with the program more in depth. Discussing which tools may be most useful when editing your photographs.

Creating Photographic Art Without Your Camera — Intro to Scanograms: February 19. This workshop familiarized participants with the process of creating fine art imagery using a flat bed scanner to capture subject matter. We looked at the work of artists using this process and discuss the world of possibilities this style of working enables. Using a scanner as a tool of choice provides incredible sharpness, saturation and various lighting effects that are unlikely to be captured any other way.  We also touched base on digitally altering your scanograms to enhance your work.

Digitally Retouching Portraits (The Digital Makeover): February 24. Taught by Jacqueline Lynch, In the fashion industry, and when working with digital portraits, retouching skills are in high demand. In this workshop participants explored methods to professionally correct technical errors and to boost the impact of images. We learned how to perform a "digital make-over" by smoothing skin, removing blemishes, whitening teeth, and accentuating eyes.

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January 2011

Creating a Vintage Effect on Your Digital Images: January 6. You learned how to take your photographs and give them a truly vintage look and feel. Using software, we will go over the steps to alter your image's color, opacity, saturation and brightness to create a unique effect for each image.

Expanding Your Creativity in Manual Mode: January 8. This workshop by Jacqueline Lynch was designed to encourage participants to study their composition and learn the benefits of the manual setting to open up creativity when capturing images. We will focus on the added control gained by shooting in manual mode. Bring a sample of three images from your files, and your camera.

Digital Hand Coloring Your Photographs: January 13. Hand coloring is a photographic process developed before the start of color film. Photographers used different mediums over prints to bring a sense of reality to their black and white photographs. With digital photography we have the ability to take black and white photographs and color them using software techniques to create photographs with a color palette that is completely up to us. In this workshop we taught how to lay color over your black and white images and turn them into color photographs. We went over proper technique and aesthetic qualities to consider when coloring your photographs, including selective coloring and the mood and feel implied by color.

Studio Lighting Portraits: 1January 15. In this workshop on creating studio portraits, we reviewed the work of various portrait photographers and discuss concept, composition, and lighting that makes their work strong and compelling. Participants learned how to light and pose their subjects in a studio setting using a mix of strobes and constant light to work with shadows and lighting to convey drama and emotion through each portrait.  Participants used white or black backgrounds for a clean and contemporary aesthetic, paying extra attention to the lighting and detail.

Introduction to Encaustics: January 22. Encaustic medium is composed of beeswax, resin, and pigments. In this workshop we covered the history of encaustic and the different ways it can be used to create gorgeous artwork. A demo of how to apply and work with the medium will be given and after a break for lunch, participants will be able to experiment on their own photographs with this wonderful and fascinating medium. The workshop coincides with the exhibition of the work of Jeri Eisenberg which is entirely based on an encaustic process.

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