Skip to main content

General Q&A

Lesson 12 from: Concept-Driven Commercial Photography

Joel Grimes

buy this class


Sale Ends Soon!

starting under


Unlock this classplus 2200+ more >

Lesson Info

12. General Q&A

Lesson Info

General Q&A

To use actions. Yes, you develop actions for this process, but not all it not all of this, but actions are great except for one problem. If someone hands you in action, you buy an action that's great. They've done all the work for you, but you don't know what's going on, right? So I like to know what's going on so I know what's going on. Then I build the action. Then it speeds it up, so don't just go and say, oh, inaction! Oh, joel grimes looked well, that's not real. I can't in fact, I can't really do that do that. But the point is, people have tried it. I've had so many people try to build the joel rhymes action and it just doesn't really work. So the reason why, but I want to know what's going on that way I can I can alter it later I go oh, I don't really like what that's doing. I could change it, so be wary of actions unless you know what's going on that hope helps that I love your look, I absolutely love it. And I love that there is a an algorithm basically that you used to create...

the same look you know repeatedly it's unclear what's funny to me is like now we im what looking at all the pictures that we have hung around here and the ones that are composited like okay so there's the line there's the globe like and I'm seeing the techniques and in images that I had just I don't know necessarily which ones of them actually are that's what I like about it it's just so cool to have no idea how you how you had created these images and then to watch you create one with your same style I just think that's amazing thank you for sharing all of that yeah that glows damn a spirit glows helps sell the fake right um and you see that in almost every one of these pictures somehow there's this is shot during ten o'clock the backgrounds ten o'clock in the morning it's not night I'm creating that look and buy these little effects none of it's rocket science but also every little step adds on to the fact that you're selling a fake so like a magician sleight of hand I'm doing things that help sell that fake well speaking of that question came in from joan ames can you talk about matching the direction of the lighting of the background with the direction of lighting on the subject? Ok, how do you make that really it's all right, so if I'm shooting rembrandt cross light one directional light and I drop it in a background you have to match the background light in the same direction as your light across your subject if you don't it looks really weird but with a two edge light and the overhead I'm doing it's not as critical now I didn't know that in the beginning but I learned that later so I could get away with it there aren't two necessarily lights coming from but there's maybe more from there but it could be theirs open door and there's a light coming from the right and there's a big light floodlight over there so so your eye gets kind of fooled into it right? But if I had just crossed light and the cross light was going this way and that light was going that way it would not look what right? So in that scenario yes, you have to be right on but for a two edge light with the overhead light you khun sell a fake a lot easier and again I didn't know that the beginning and just kind of fell into place but it was a great adam little bonus for me when I started dropping in backgrounds that oh, it kind of works so that's a good question and I'm glad someone asked that well, that and one more from apn up who says how do you know how to place the people in the background like based on the perspective how far back how far should the background appear compared to the person who do you think about that well you could take like the painters did and you can draw these like infinity lines and you know you that's that's what they taught when I wasn't painting and you bring your subject up and you could like say they have to fit within that you know infinities perspective right? And I've had people come to me say while you know here's a little you know I don't this action button that puts lines in the pictures and you can move your subject around right or you can use your intuition don't get it right every time but most of time I just put my per person in there and I'm moving around size him up close my eyes bring it down going down small like this helps me a lot and look at it go who is that working bring up now this was really easy that's an easy scenario but my point is is my intuition tells me when I've got my perspective right and another thing here's another little trick watch this we're gonna go hit tab watch what happens here let's get rid of this watch what happens here when okay I've got him sitting here and you know he looks like maybe the floor is not quite right like he's on ly got feed up to his knees right? Now watch what I do I do this a lot command a command tea which is my three transform and watch this boom I can now bring that floor down just a little bit to make it look like he's the floor matches his height does that make sense so hey go click yes I'm destroyed a few pixels stretched a few pixels but guess what the main subject is him I hardly ever stretch a person with pixels like that I always construct the background doesn't get away with it more but I just now dropped the floor he looks a little more like he's standing there that makes sense but this we're concerned where things happen I've had pictures where a year later ago me and that that is not very good perspective right but people have been loving the image all are right she was good enough to sell the fake so as I get better at this I learned to celebrate better but the idea is it's the emotional impact that's when my viewers over not technically perfect thanks john on one thing when you when you were shooting the background pictures you use the till shift but if you what if you don't have one well the till shifts on ly given me a little bit longer panorama without having to cut the top of the bottom off on my regular you know and it gives me a lot more megapixels that's it but could you just pan and nor I do I have the really write stuff slider with the nodal point and I go up, up, up, up, up, up, up I get a huge file but here's, what happened? See, when I dropped him into this background, I didn't have to raise the background up really or him up, so I got what would be a probably a twelve millimeter lans perspective seventeen till ship I'm shifty loved right? And I got thirty six megapixels of information and so when I dropped him in, I'm not having it adjust things so it's a real simple fit for me get my panorama, I get two megapixels I dropped him in and so in essence think about this one if I'm dropping him in a thirty six megapixel background and I'm not raising him up it down he's actually getting a red thirty six megapixel resolution so it's like a shot with thirty six mega pixel resolution on him so that's why? If I had shot a regular frame twenty one twenty two megapixels and then chop the top and bottom then I would have to raise him down or raise the back ground up and so then you're really crunching or losing your s o this till shift idea makes it perfect for me and so I use this more and more but not everybody can afford that so I use a sixteen a lot of stuff you're looking at we're sixteen millimeter um that's a sixteen millimeter that wasn't even till shift so the point is you don't have to have a tilt ship I wanted to show you how I did that plus with till shift I've gotta go and stitching together that takes more time so I wouldn't necessarily go on by till shift unless you have the cash ola to do it because it's a sixpence of lens and I have a twenty four to so I use them back and forth all the time but um I had to do some serious winning over my wife on buying these two lenses because that's a big chunk of money just to sit there and at first I didn't know if I was really gonna use it but then once I got into it it was like wow this is really kind of fun so yes a good question you don't have to have a tilt chipped so great well jaw I love that you have come in here and created this image today you know when I looked at your image is walking in edison how how the heck does he do that? No idea it's sure she was just walking around like how did you do that? All it was really funny actually watch so that every time have you come in here and just simply just the your easy nature kind of put this whole thing together the way you have and just the way it's I don't know it's just been you've made it look so easy but there is a formula you've taught it to us and I just think that's awesome it's simple if you make it look simple and if you really want to practice it and study it could be simple for you to go at this point. It's how many composites do you think I've done? I would say quite a few so here here's here's what I ask of people because that get emails all the time they'll send me their first composite john here's my first joel grams composite what do you think? Well, now I got how many e mails I get forty thousand emails a year, so it's a lot for me to have to answer every one, but I say and you probably got emails like this if you've done it, I say excellent now do three hundred of them that's what it takes it repetition practice okay, so my very first drawing class in college I walked in the door sat down teacher got up and said anybody in this room can learn to draw, but not everyone will learning to draw just is practice and repetition, okay, so that applies exactly to what we're doing anybody in here can learn it. But not everyone will. Because nobody, a lot of people don't want to put in the time.

Ratings and Reviews


Fantastic!! He is so down to earth and humble. His work is unique an exceptional and he shares his techniques, experience, tricks, and best of all his life stories that took him to where he is now. One of the best instructors in CL. I love how he checks the ego at the door and just shares his art and techniques with us. I definitely recommend this course and I was lucky enough to get it at a great discounted price but it is worth its regular price imho.


He's my new favorite instructor, there are many CL instructors I really like but the second I watched and heard him I bought the course, love his style, love his knowledge and the way he conveys it. His way of Frequency separation is fantastic and pretty precise and takes care of a lot of flaws. Learned lots! Thanks Joel! Thank heavens I am not color blind ;)


Joel makes it easy to follow when it comes to editing and shooting. He is a wonderful teacher and very easy to learn from. I enjoyed the photoshop techniques he taught as well as his approach to lighting. My favorite part is his advice on business it's very motivating and inspirational. I thoroughly enjoyed this course!

Student Work