The Art of Post Production: Stills Part 1


Storytelling on Location


Lesson Info

The Art of Post Production: Stills Part 1

In the last session, we went over post production on video you saw all of the content that we captured in beaver lake, and we went through and put together a pretty rough, but I think you got a really good feel for a thirty second spot with visuals, music, voiceover as well as motion graphic at the end, not much motion graphic, but at least the graphic came on screen. So if you think back to the beginning of our concept that I described on day one session to which feels like about three years ago at this point, we also the second part of our assignment was this still photography. So we really had two assignments or two shots that were responsible for we actually had the still, which was the half in the water half out of the water shot with the fish jim standing up on his kayak and I have to say, you saw this already from the video clip it's pretty impressive how close to the storyboard we actually shot that in, and that doesn't always happen. It's pretty difficult, teo repair image to ...

storyboard I mean, it doesn't always play out that way, so I feel pretty confident about that shot. Then we went over to the dock and we did a lit shot jordan seamans was helping me with this shot and so we used a pro photos lit it and the idea was jim and I think this posture this gesture that we have in the comp that wasn't quite right I think there was really a question of how do we pose? And then you saw how we really kind of worked that situation to the point where we found a nice moment we wanted to show who jim was, you know, with his hat on he's wearing all of his kayak and year we wanted some context in the background, which was the kayak of course when we did this storyboarding we had no idea where we're going to be shooting it, you know, the constance were we knew that jim was going to be in the shot we knew we were gonna have a kayak and there'd be water in the background, we didn't know if we'd be on the dock or if we'd be on a beach, so you know, there was a little a little bit of imagination and we expected to see the olympic range in the background that didn't quite happen, but nonetheless that was our starting point, so so what I wanted to do is just describe our normal workflow in terms of the way that we deal with those production for those of you that are just tuning in this is bligh gillies he works in our office in lake tahoe he's our photo shop wizard among other things he also can carry the heaviest backpacks when we're going into the field so that's that's a huge advantage so typically what we d'oh we're shooting too and I've said this once or twice before in the course don't save money on cards I'm your memory codes don't go in to staples and buy the cheapest car you can buy spend money on cards that that is your content and putting a lot of energy a lot of time into capturing these moments you don't want to lose, you're content card fails so we take our sandis cards were shooting always on extreme pro cards on the d a hundred it's worth pointing out that you actually have the option of shooting to a cf card or you can actually shoot on an sd card and I'll always go for the sd card thank you that's really strange, but this is an extreme card usually it's extreme pro that I'm shooting but what will all shoot on the sd card for the reason that this is a waterproof card? You know we're working around water if that water housing actually flooded and we're on the eight hundred water housing floods it's going to ruin the camera but least we don't lose the content there's no guarantee on a cf card that that's the case, so every sd card on the market is water proofs you can stick this in the washing machine and it's still going to work the next day so sd cards are actually pretty nice the other the other bonus to an sd card of course is most of our modern laptop computers this apple for example you have an sd card reader which is pretty nice so it's one less piece of gear that you're tearing along on your trip so first ideas were goingto first first step in the process is down mode or sd card using light room duplicate back up into our hard drive system and then we get into actually next step would be we have redundancy then we rename the file so we have a file naming convention that we use in our office for every shoot and it's very simple we start with the date said two thousand thirteen oh a which is the month and then the day which I believed yesterday was the twenty seventh is that correct and then sometimes we're on shoots or multiple people are operating cameras and so then we put initials of who was actually operating the camera so that was me so cr corey rich goes in than underscoring we put a sequence variable and the sequence variable is just everything that we shot that day goes into sequence so that of course everything is in order now that means when we go into our server and back in the office any any file actually you can go in and you know when it was shot which is great without having to look at metadata you know who shot it you know where in the sequence we have one more layer of boulder and that folder is the human readable name and that would come next that human readable name would say something like jim sam jim underscore sammons fishing and may be rude at jackson kayak for example usually we try to go client first then who's in the shot or some subject descriptor the next step would be after we've downloaded their redundant backup we've renamed the files we would add just some very basic metadata to maybe you can show because we've already done it we could just show that how you do that so we would select all on these air pretty generic images we could do two different batches of metadata one we could say you know, fish popping out of water as one of the descriptions and then the other batch of images we could actually say something to the effect of torti were notice we're adding keywords essentially but we would the other option is we could actually go in and say, you know portrait of jim sammons but we try to put the universal information we apply that to all of the images so the universal information here is jim sammons jackson kayak cuda ad campaign world's greatest fisherman beer drinker and on honestly, we would put all of this stuff in because who knows how we're going to remember how to find these images of jim? It might be that someone remembers seeing the tv spot where the video spot may remember he loves beer, fishing and kayaking and said those three words certainly should be in this metadata. So if you just did a search in light room for beer, fishing, kayaking, thes images should pop up okay, so and I know a lot of this is pretty basic. This is stuff that you guys were all doing, but I just want to give you kind of lay the ground work before we get into the actual postproduction it's super important on the front end to organize your photos like that because of with somebody like corey rich, when you go on to his server, you know, there's literally hundreds of thousands of photos from years and years, all the way back into film, and so if you're trying to find something from fifteen years ago and you haven't labeled it like that, you haven't key worded it, you're practically out of luck. You're going to spend days trying to find an image that's a really good point, black mean, one thing that I've noticed in our office, you know? I've been there the whole time, but a lot of other folks have come in and now grown and then moved on to the next thing in life, and if you if you stray from your system, it causes huge problems down the road. So it's having a system, we have a procedure notes document that anyone can walk into our office and it's a step by step, that description of exactly how we download still photos exactly how we down the video content, where it goes on the server, how we back it up, how many sets of backups and if if everyone sticks to that system, it means into into perpetuity anyone can go into our database and actually find content the instant someone start skipping a step for doing it their own way because they think it's more efficient were more clever, it really like you don't know it until a year, two, three, four down the road, you're going to look for content and it's really difficult, if not impossible, to find, and we're now dealing with, you know, we've watched a lot of technology change over my career it's not examine old guy just started early, you know, like glass that I started shooting film in the very beginning, we have nine, four, four drawer filing cabinets loaded, full of just this select slides it but there's a million slides in those filing cabinets and we threw away the other eighty percent of that film but that was all organized geographically and so the instant someone doesn't and this is really it's identical to the digital world if someone didn't put those slides back into that correct geographic folder we're never going to find those slides again I mean it would be a monumental task it would require someone physically going through a million slides to try to find that one slide that we're looking for and in some ways I think digital information is even harder to find if you stray from the path and you don't have the correct amount of data so you know that missing caption or a file name that doesn't fit into the rest of our file naming convention causes massive problems on the back end um let me just because I have a feeling we're gonna get this question I'll just address it right now so this is what we're doing in the field we have double back up we have redundancy in the office we have a raid configuration and we actually have a backup set that works overnight so we have several terabytes of on lee our select content that's what we put the most energy into backing up so our select content is actually on a raid in the office which is accessible by all of our machines and then we have a gigantic wave. Three hard drives that actually rotate and of the office takes about two weeks to do a full back upset and there's going out of our office and out of the lake tahoe basin so that if, as there is a moment to giant forest fire comes through california, it doesn't wipe out everyone in the base and including all of the backup sets of our server. And so they go down into the gardnerville area and simple as we send my mom and dad lived down the hill. So once every two weeks, it's an excuse to see my mom and dad, we get to watch our baby and we give him the hard drive back when they drive it to gardnerville from the actual content that we shoot in the field, we're now doing back up to the entire rod take will go into another hard drive. So we have a lot of g tech hard drive stacked up right now, and we graduated from using dvds, so we have literally thousands of dvds, and now maddie is beginning to help us convert those dvds transfer dvds on the hard drives, and I'm really thankful that we skipped the tape drive. There were moments where we almost went to a tape drive, but we skipped it. And eventually will probably get rid of all of those hard drives and going to another raid server raid device or we'll go on to a cloud someplace, but so there's redundancy is way that a lot of drives fail over the years that's part of the deal they don't last forever we've had dvds failed, so back up is pretty riel and we're doing the same thing on the video side we keep our project files and all the associative media on the server and then that doesn't triple back up on its offsite all of the raw files we're getting backed up on external drives and they're just on site, so if they're really important projects will actually do a second backup consented offsite? Yes, how long do you guarantee your clients that you like, save the backup for their use if you unless they mean well, actually have that conversation? And unless it's something that really specifically asking us to do, we don't guarantee the backup we just we were not in that business. Of course we've never lost content for you and that's from the very beginning of my career we have lost slides when we have, you know, content, that's missing and it's also worth saying that our best slide content we scanned best sliding images and we converted them to digital so it's less important, in fact if we can actually find that slide, and I'd like to believe that we have all of our best select, but in today's world, it's all about digital anyhow, yes, speaking of redundancy, how are you doing with light room catalogs in that information? And then worry about the backup of those? And since you're referencing the fouls on a raid found, how do you keep track of you? Make a light line catalog for each huge? Are you keeping a matte master one? Or you're doing separate one for just doing a portrait? And I'm making one for this high, keep those organized, so they're all we create all of our catalogs off of our raid system on our servers, so we always know that those servers there going to be there. And so instead of trying to create light room catalogues from individual drives like I did today, because we're here it's much, much easier to know that we're never gonna lose that catalog because it's on a server that's, you know, we can access it from all of our machines, on all of our light rooms on any computer. So, you know, that's, what we're doing, and we do have a catalog for each job we have catalogs for, you know, if we need to put together a select of lifestyles or if we need to put together a selective portrait's and you know that will create a catalogue off the server from actually question I don't even know the answer to this because I'm a little removed from how we're tracking it did we have one catalog which is there are entire database right? And then we do sub catalogued within those what are they called galleries or folders? This is where I'm a little removed whatever this is collection collection so we have one catalog I think to your question which is several hundred thousand images which is our select and then within that we have what is it called cattle logs collateral in elections and so then the collections every assignment that we do this would be jackson kayak slash creative life that wolf that is a catalogue selection e worked from memory loss apparently that is a collection and so it's much easier so that the first step if we were looking for images of jim sammons from the shoot we would remember you ok? Jackson kayak that's what the assignment was for creative life boom there's the collection and then we go into and all we're gonna have in our catalogue is the select so we're not going to keep this whole shoot and that's probably a great segue into the next step, so I didn't shoot much that's probably the least I've ever shot on a shoot period ever I mean how many frames did we shoot like I think we shot a total of one hundred fifty one photos usually that would be like the first five minutes but because I was so busy talking and turning to cameron explaining what we're doing one hundred fifty frames for a shoot there's no way that whatever happened must there was some kind of super unique situation so the next phase to be clears we would go in and actually all doing at it and let's just do this and I'm going to talk out loud so I'm always looking at like, what was I shooting for right and with this particular assignment we had some story where did calms that we're looking at so we're trying to match these cops to some degree so I'm going to go through the way that I like to do it is don't go through the images that I like I'll give them a star so I'll go through them fairly large and I'm just going to go out loud and talk about my thought process as I'm going through these images so of course and I see everything you guys are going to see everything that went through this camera from the sample frames and you know here I am I'm picking up the camera and just figure out is it working and I'm listening at this point is the shutter actually firing yeah there's blinds back I submerged the camera and I probably take this picture to see if I can actually see the fish underwater like how does the exposure look? And you can see that these air greatly different exposures it's three stops darker probably under that water than it is above water and the white skies not helping us and I remember immediately when I when we got in the water and I looked over and I thought, oh man it's a white sky dark you know, kind of a little dirty water and I said to blind like where we need like a plate I think I said it to you guys we need a plate of the sky of the clouds so that later we can go in and add the clouds back into the frame so none of this stuff we don't need to keep this that's kind of cool to just see how the water actually moving I'm playing with actually how deep the camera needs to go on and you can see I think I realized immediately how wide the lens wass and I realized there was nothing that we could do we weren't going to go and change port some housing way had a sixteen millimeter fisheye and so the reality is underwater of fish there's magnification and I should know this, but I think there's like a twenty five percent magnification ratio underwater so underwater it doesn't look like a fish but above water sure does. You can see the trees wrapping into the edge of the frame and so I'm trying to just understand what's gonna be in my inn within my frame within that rectangle at sixteen millimeters, you know? And here I think bligh's, you know, able I put the camp, put the fish pretty low and they realize, well, he's gonna have a hard time keeping his head out of that shot. I'm trying to gauge how far jim should be and then here we are, just testing it like how's that fish gonna look when it pops out of the water. Well, I can't see the screen from here what's r shutter speed an aperture right now we're at one one thousandth of a second of a five point six. Okay, so two thousandth of the second, I think that was a conscious decision that we made so that we could actually freeze the water. You know, you khun sometimes freeze water at about two hundred fiftieth of a second, maybe five hundred but a thousandth of a second guaranteed you're going to get really razor sharp droplets of water in the air again, you know, I wish I wish we could back like, I wish I had a blue sky that would've been pretty nice but that water is a challenge when you see the water against white sky you just lose some of that detail in the water so jim's kind of in position now and so I think these air that's actually pretty good except jim is covered by the water droplets in the background and to my eye right now you know what there's the obvious stuff that's bothering me you know I can see bligh's hand in the bottom of the frame I can actually see by his face in the top left I can also see the doc I'm both the left and the right sides and I don't really like the trees and that upper right hand corner you can see the distortion from the lens and it's probably a combo of distortion from the aqua tech housing as well as distortion from the actual you know it's a fish island so that's what it does in the corners so I think but I like the moment the fish looks great I'm actually amazed how good it looks we can hold that detail underwater a few stops darker and have another detail above water so I think where I think I've probably said to jim hey, you're drifting too far out so he's holding a paddle so I haven't tagged anything yet because we still we certainly haven't nailed the shot so you know water's covering jim those don't make sense okay, we're getting closer right now we're starting to get there that's like all that's the first frame for me that's an almost I'm tempted to I'm gonna tag that because I really love the fish the fish looks great but I feel like jim is covered by that wave of water but I'm in my head at this first pass I'm just tagging even images where I feel like there's an element that we might want to go back in and grab so I like that fish worst case scenario if I don't get a better frame of jim we could use or one frame that has great fish great water and jim in the right spot we could potentially grab the fish from this frame and then grab jim from another frame so you see, I gave it a star down there on the lower left side of the screen I'll to show you seek and sea whips okay, I gave it one star not no great attributes their I'm actually going back to just say yes and jim you can see jim there but he doesn't have a fishing rod in his hands it doesn't make sense tagging that frame that's pretty good I mean it's a little hard to see the fish it's kind of buried in the water but jim is really clearly separated from that background wise hand is still in there that's kind of cool nice splash on a tag that for the heck of it jim's too covered you know, this one the fish the profile of the fish changed a little see kind of lose that it's actually a fish and so I'm sharing everything that's going through my head because this is you know, you need to be critical when you're actually going through your own work. Okay, so kind of looks like we just made an exposure adjustment to maine is our exposure is still the same. No, we change that exposure. What did we get? Teo, we went teo a sixteen hundred of a second. Okay, so we really wanted to freeze, so I probably felt like I probably wrongly felt like we're over exposed, so I probably said, but stop it down and let's also try to freeze the water droplets so that's you know, obviously the exposure still looks good and I'm noticing we go back here a frame I'll show you in another frame here you know that's not usable you can't see the fish the fish is just barely coming out of the water not usable, not usable, not usable that's pretty good that's getting close you can sort of see jim's rodham give that star they're not adults, not enough splash it's not bad, but not great that's pretty good but jim's pretty far in the frame I like the action you know water splashing off the fish you can see the fishes I that's not bad now one thing that I can see happening here I like the way that the water is splitting the frame there's kind of a school curve but you see bligh's hand that's easy to get rid of we can just make that black but what's going to be a problem we could probably resolve it and this is something I would ask a blind when we're sitting in the studio what's a bigger issue see how wise arm is reflecting off the top of the surface that's going to be an easier that's going to be harder fixes my sense because now he actually has to create what supposed to be the reflection off the sky but now you have skin tone in that water so I get a nice to me because he's in front of the camera usually say working on that for the next eight hours okay, so any I'm not gonna tag that one even though I like the that's kind of nice we'll get out clear. So so let me say one other thing blind I realized we were standing in the water that his hand was gonna be a problem every frame that I reviewed in the back to the water housing we realized even after we put that black fabric of his hand we should have borrowed borrowed a black glove as well so it was just black black tends to be the easiest color to other you ignore it or just make it darker and then it disappears so as soon as we finished the shoot or later yesterday afternoon we actually decided we were going to shoot a photograph of just fish lang not a doc in case we had to bring the fish tail back in so we'll get to that for a reality show to get back to that frame so you'll see we shot this photo just thinking that we might have to replace where bligh's hand is with that fishtail and we'll show you how how we do that later okay? So I'm going to do this at a little faster because I'm realizing I'm going to eat all of glass tom diction show you how he works his magic okay that's pretty nice that's really nice that's pretty good even the fiberglass fish was crime when jim walked into the house with fish knew the slayer was into that's pretty good that's cool I love that reflection jim's reflection in the water I'm going to give that to tag what could we do? They're blind could we your hand would be pretty easy to remove I'm not too concerned about that hand reflection on the water sure, I mean, maybe we could add a little water, so goes deeper. We don't need all that white sky above, jim. So I mean, I like that I didn't. I hadn't noticed that shot with all that reflection. And then if we can cheat it and get kind of deeper in the water, that would be a great frame. Give that two stars that's pretty good. That's what now? Jim is closer to the camera and these frames. And I think that works a lot better. Like having him closer. You kind of remember. Oh, it's, actually, about jim. And you can sort of see the kayak in the background. Actually did I tagged that that's a really great frame that's really great, but we're definitely enough to remove bligh's arm. That would be a hard one to give that three stars that's really good james really wrestling that fish there. That's that's a heck of a nice frame. Give that to it's great. And look it out. Jim is just in the perfect spot there like him and they both sort of float one he's closer. So these larger in the friend but he's also framed in that llo point in the trees kind of right in the notch in the back and I'm breaking that gun sight and so it helps separate him from the background so I'd say that's probably not enough splashing ooh that's really good give that too it's really nice what it's really tough that is that gonna be a problem right there belial that reflection in the water but there's not much there's not much of a bottom of a fish there to kind of pull your eye down underneath the water that one I think I like that more is that that's our last frame that's the last right let's go okay let's go to the three stars real quick and I think what we're going to do for a time let's work on this image before we actually dive into the portrait I think the portrait's and much more straight forward shot and I think depending on how our time plays out I'd rather you see how we do this versus the portrait but I think we'll have time for both okay, so we basically have two three star images I love that tim's body position is great fish look sharp there some nice water who I think I even like the water there more church what do you guys need is a little more into it so let's say this is one or two one two so how about hands up for one wow can sit at one end versus two okay, so almost an even tie here um let me think a little deeper about this a bit of the lower yeah, I think that is and because I don't know anything about fishing and can't tell us that's supposed to be out of the fish's mouth or not it said yeah yeah let's go with uh you know, I have to say it feels like it's gonna be easier to well let's go with one everybody agreed on one okay, so I think the things that we want to do one we're going to try to isolate allies hand and remove his hand and actually put in the fish tale number one I think that's most important number two you know that's a high resolution photographs so we can push him when we can crop so I think we're going to change our friend we're going to come into the edge so you don't have those trees in the upper right and you can show us that great because I think that's all distracting everything on the right hand side of the frame is distracting we don't need is much sky and what sky we do have we want we're going to bring in a second sky that we shot yesterday evening there was that this morning I think I was this morning so we shot the fish because we knew we needed the fish tail and then we actually just shot the sky this morning when we got up to start building the interview scene so tell us what you're approaching me what's your first pass here black so obviously you know we're shooting with the nikon d for the g eight hundred on dh cory is always going to be shooting raw because of the factors of you know, adjustability with white balance adjustability with exposure all of those things are so much easier when you're shooting a raw file but not that we ever needed we always now court isa nails exposure first time and never messes up the white count um but so you know, we were going to drag that raw file into photoshopped out of light room and automatically it's going to give us this raw better depending on you know how great cory has picked his exposure and white balance settings they're pretty much the two main things I'm concerned of in the raw editor to start with before I actually opened that up in photoshopped proper her and in the ideal situation is bligh's making these kind of baseline adjustments are going through this process usually the way this works is I'm sitting on my laptop responding to email and then any time bly wants like a reference hey corey, what do you think about this? How far should we go then it's I look up and get into the creative dialogue and typically a minute this is in all seriousness while he's doing this I'm looking at a new set of storyboards are thinking about a new project that we're shooting three days later and so it's always that's that team approach both on the video side and on the stool photography side is you know what kind of doing twice as much work at the same time supplies doing what he's really good at now I'm doing a part that I need to be involved with, which is planning the next production or we're solving problems for the next production so you can see I all I did was cem really minute adjustments first off because I know we went back and shot some plates that we can bring in later such as the sky there's some data and there you can see in your history and their that we've cropped a little bit of the sky on dh so I'm not even gonna bother to try and bring that back and it'll start turning grey and muddy and you know it doesn't do us any good so we actually have a second shot of a sky that could be easy pretty easy to drop in here and make it look a little more dramatic I pulled the shadows just a touch because down here in the water on the fish here and even jim ended up being a little dark and that's only because we've split this frame so hard as faras a really bright sky really dark muddy water that's a really you know it's an impossible exposure to grab so the little adjustments by the way when he's working with the raw file these air global meaning edge to edge top to bottom it's affecting the entire friend and so when I had open image there it's going to pop it up into photoshopped proper and you know I just happen to have this laid out specifically how I like it kind of like how dane has his premier laid out it's completely up to you you can save your pretty sets over here, which is pretty nice so I have my little profile here that keeps all of my positions all my toolbars where they are so might look a little different to you as faras your screen at home, but this is how I enjoyed work this how I learned so corey, why don't you go over again exactly what we wanted to shoot? So I want to say and I'm going to prioritize what we want to do and this is something that we do in the office all the time because inevitably we run out of time top priority let's actually get rid of your arm, you don't bring in the fish tail yeah second priority let's actually bring in the sky and by the way, this is pretty heavy lifting like this is so let bly start on that stuff interrupt me at any point this is not the norm for us we're not constantly doing heavy heavy photoshopped manipulation in the ideal world we would do nothing in the ideal it would be some color in contrast adjustments and a little sharpening but this is a commercial shoot eric jackson doesn't care when we deliver this picture he knows that we're bringing a fiberglass bitch we've already started we're using a fake fish we can go in and manipulate the image if need be so I guess my point is if you're sitting at home right now thinking yourself holy cow every picture that you shoot there's like nine hours of photo shop work on the back end that's not the case a lot of what I shoot is absolutely it's raw like the final image looks a lot like the raw file I mean we're simply making global adjustments and that's enough maybe describe what you're doing so all I've taken is a small selection from that shot that I took this morning from the sky and you can see well that doesn't look good but the sky itself is a lot more dramatic it's got a lot more tones and it's properly exposed you have to be careful with this because you can make photos look really fake which is some people style you know like an hd our style photograph that's not how cory works and so I kind of have tto bounce ideas off of him a ce faras what he wants it to look like you know, it's a team process the whole time so I've done is taken that quick little selection and dropped in here on top of my background layer on dh to me this is way too dramatic so I'll go in and I'll drop my opacity really quick to something a lot lower so that it's not you know, quite so prominent in the frame then I'm going to do is go in quickly you can see that I'm working with a tablet here you know these are really kia's faras I'm concerned when you're going in tow work with, um photo shop really any graphics work it all to try and do this stuff you know, on a track pad on a laptop or even a mouse we'll take you a lot more time and just gets you know, it's really, really tricky, so I'm always switching right over to my tablet here that just makes my life a whole lot easier. And so what all do is on you know I'm going to do this quick and dirty so it's not going to be perfect just because of our time constraints here, but you get the idea as far as trying to go in and remove this sky where I don't want it you can see I have a crop this image it's korea asked as faras trying to get this right side off the reason for that is because maybe once I get this sky and corey changes his mind and decides that he doesn't like that crop, are you saying him indecisive? Those words didn't come out of my mouth so cropping is something that I say teo u know the very last minute because it's something that if you do a crop it's really hard to go back in and bring that back so now I'm going to do is I kind of did a quick clean up around the edges part is along the trees along jam long fish you can see it really looks haley it looks pretty fake right now as a quick you know, if I was really going to do this image, I'd go in really tight and try and clean that up really nicely a nice quick at it a quick fix is too drop your flow really low down on your eraser, which is what I'm using here and you can just a race along the horizon lines right along the trees there along jim and it's kind of a natural you know your your horizons usually fade anyway, eh? So it can be really it makes it a lot easier as faras you're the eyes concerned to make the uh make it a little less kind of hayley around the people so you know that's quick and dirty as faras trying to make that look like a little more dramatic and from but you can see there that it's added quite a bit as faras bringing back in a little bit of that sky to make it make it look a little nicer I'll drop that past not just a little bit and if we were trying to do this without post production, we probably would have put that grad filter is split variable grab uh late split grand uh the radiant filter yeah graduated nd filter um however doing that in the water housing is pretty complicated and you can't just once you're in the water housing, but that is that's something that you could actually do sort of actually couldn't exude a gym up in your sky so you don't know your grad with the over the top with kim, so in many ways this is the best way to do it for you and shoot you shoot it with a very soft edge grad so that gym doesn't look too obviously filtered, okay, so now we're going to go and step two it's going to be grabbed this fish tale, the fishtail and I just shot this on the dock because really it doesn't matter that fish was down below the water surface it's in a really dark kind of hazy water I knew that you know, we didn't need to match that look right off for that and so, you know, we just literally put it on the dock and took a quick shot of that so I'm going to do is take my lasso tool and go in I just need the bottom half of this fish do a quick dirty select something like that I'll copy and paste it to a new layer and literally just drag and drop that image right into our file that we're working on I can, you know, rotate this scale it tio however I want as faras position wise, obviously it's way too big we're going to bring that down and you can see you're gonna want to try and match your size in position, you know pretty closely so this is gonna look somewhat riel something in the reality is underwater the fish I mean, I think that's the perfect size because it shouldn't look smaller like that's actually, how water effects and image looks smaller, magnified by twenty five percent I guess that would make it look bigger larger so maybe you are so something like that you can see I've almost match those spins up there it's going to be pretty close we'll call that good I'm gonna press center so it does that selection and then now that I'm in here, I know that I know where that water line is so that I can start to clean up that, uh, that selection, that quick and dirty selection that I did before and you can see with with a tablet, it just makes my life so much easier because it's almost like I'm drawing with a pan instead of trying to take that house and do those adjustments. Now that I've got it there, I think that I wanted a little bigger because of that that, uh, refer a magnification there in the water and I'll go in and, uh, continue to just quick and dirty clean up around this fish so that, uh let's start making it look like I actually belong there way should just give that image to the client looks pretty good now my hand is still there, obviously, but that's that's uh, really easy to take out. I'd use a clone stamp tool on dh this is a really easy fix because this water is just transitions, you know, really smoothly it's all the same kind of pattern it's all the same texture so it's something like a clone stamp toe it's really easy to go in and I've created that layer below my fish tale so that, um all I have to do is this adjustment is actually going to go underneath that fishtail make sure I'm actually doing what I almost here so I can go in and select a point when all it's going to do is copy that point to wherever I tell it to go and just like that the hand disappears and it makes it a lot easier to try and make that fish look like it actually belong there you might want a little less tail on the water that looks good so of course go ahead well, the first thing that I notice is obviously that tail is way too bright because you know, it should be it's in the water it's in that dirty murky water on dh you know, it wouldn't be that crisp and clean in real life, so all I would do is take a quick selection of this water over here copy and paste it into a new layer and, uh, throw that right over top of that fishtail and then dropped that opacity so that it looks like we're look going through the water and maybe even a little more than a drop in a little more I think the other way darker I think it looks great and of course this is a highly colored calibrated tv here living rooms, you know, so we're starting to get somewhere here and obviously this is quick and dirty, but you know I can duplicate this back lower in there and drag it on top to kind of show you what we've um the adjustments that we've not that one the adjustments that we've done as faras trying to make those look a little truer to what we were look that we're going for you know so we can see there just just some slight adjustments to drop it in that sky and removing that hand we've already started to get somewhere there so now and one other thing to point out of course this is a print ad for jackson kayak so we have to have space for their logo so of course when lot for me when I look at this image the dead space the obvious place for that logo would be the lower right so I think at this point I would like to start actually seeing the image in the right proportion so we're gonna crop down did you really just do a crop dead? Let me see this starting point again got it. Okay, so let's go and show the crop again perfect that's good. I would still like to have that right corner you and it's just I know the crop is perfect I think we might want to just clean up that upper right corner so truly goes toe white maybe itjust lets actually lose some of their oh sure sure, sure and it just it bothers me when I see an image where just kind of leads your eye out of the frame. There's really? Nothing there. So I would, you know, cleaner frame again. This is a commercial slash advertising image. We can manipulate anything it's all fair game. So you have that works better for me right now, okay? And then the other thing, and it doesn't bother me. Is this water droplet that's just to the to the right of jim? It is a little distracting. Fix your eye kind of goes from the fish right to jim. And then the next thing my eye looks at is actually that water droplet. So the idea of getting rid of that water droplet like hell, I just did really makes a big difference. So let's bring in the logo actually gonna be nick picky now. So the other things that in a perfect world we would get rid of. I'm starting on the far left, you see, like a dock for a house on the far left, just that one little brown square again. We're not analyzing this super closely, but I want to get rid of that and then remember, at the end of the day, we're trying to sell a chi coming jackson kayak is trying to sell this kuda kayak, so the other thing we want to do is get rid of that little dog then we want to get rid of on the right side I don't care about the houses I'm fine with that but the doc that's actually just intersecting with the kayak that round doc so I'd like your both docks on both sides and so again, why is gonna show you the quick and dirty way to do that? Maybe tell us how you're doing it so again the stamp tool is a huge huge pool there goes the doc you have to be very careful as faras repeating patterns with stamp tool that gets really tricky if you're working with a really small area that you're sampling from s oh, it takes a bit of practice, but once you get it down it's it's ah kee you know it makes life a whole lot easier allows you to really grab different areas and remove you know what you really don't want in the frame and again, this is quick and dirty I would spend a lot more time trying to do this if it was actually going to print but you know, zooming in and really kind of cleaning this up let's lose that the poll's right there it looks like the ladder to get off the dock and maybe just that house right behind that I think that one is kind of key because again this brings the eye back to the kayak now jackson kayak wants to point to the cuda now you actually know what we're talking about yes uh blind for you guys using the content aware brush for any of this stuff no I don't I don't like to use the really any of the tools and photoshopped that kind of do something for you I I like to have full control myself with my tools that's just the way that I've learned you know a lot of those things are really great if you know how to use them I've just never taken the time to learn them because I like to do the full you know I like to have complete control he's he's he's a renaissance man he's a renaissance man school were cannot see us too I use away come tablet this is nothing fancy at all it does the job for me you could get them that have screens you know where you're actually drawing on the screen those you know I don't need him I'm not going to spend the money on him this is a lower and model of what way come makes and it doesn't mean you know works really really well it has tons of pressure points on the pen I don't even know what they are these today's one hundred thousand or something like that that allows me to depending on how much I press with the pen happen, you know, changes my brush size and you know that again makes this a lot a lot easier for me. So so let's, I think the two things we still want to do on this image it's removed the house right over the top of the the kayak and then bring in the jackson logo. Eric was pretty liberal with which logo we had to use, the two things that he asked actually was one that we put into jackson kayaks logo and number two he wanted to id the athlete you wanted to make sure that if a viewer if they ran, this is a double page spread, for example, in a fishing magazine, you know, part of what sells the jackson kayak is it's jim sammons on that boat and and he's a legend in the fishing world. So we're going to basically put in the logo and we'll try to scale that so that it feels like it's about the right size and let's make it subtle. I think let's make the little girl fit entirely in that black underwater area. Great, yeah, is that the correct orientation or did they do it is the kayak word no it's actually like this the way that it wass was kind of a really till I don't know, okay, yeah, I think we leave it in so you can put it down there in that corner and you know, with corey you know that's where he wants he's seen that dead space there and the first thing that I notice from, you know, kind of graphic standpoint is that well, you can't really see it, you know it says jackson back there, but but it gets really tricky to read down in that really dark dark water wait show us in the white sky I lost that on the black um you know, we could change it. We could add a drop shadow if we wanted there's a lot of techniques that we can do to really make it pop down there if that's where he wanted it but you can see that, you know, wherever, if we stick it in the sky might not be necessary to do something like why don't we even go smaller in the sky and skill every so small yet perfect and then why don't we in white copy and again this is just quick and dirty were not graphic designers but so that you can see where how this all comes together final delivery to a client let's go and put in the lower right it's uh jim jim's name and it's his greatest fisherman ever to live on planet earth uh jackson damn and so in shooting this photograph we knew and we've talked about this there had to be space for this copy that's pretty important so it's part of the beauty of getting a client to sign off on this story bored of this this comp is they've looked at it and they know that they can actually make the logo fit and they can also make the copy set in terms of jim's name and a little bit you know, biographical information just to be safe in the event they were like oh, we want no not in an advertising situation in an advertising situation if this is you know, if they're buying ad space in a kayak fisher fishing magazine or fishing you know, one of the publications they know they have actually bought that horizontally in a double page spread for example, if I were shooting an editorial story we're really you have no idea what's gonna land on the cover what's gonna be the double page spread in the layouts how many verticals versus horizontal sze then absolutely I would be shooting vertical and horizontal lt's the whole time and for me I looked that I think it's a little gimmicky that angle text I would probably just make it much more conventional and bring it right down to the bottom corner you know, kind of in the safe zone that's right skeet always work you know it's as a team because one person's I may like one thing and the other person is going to tell you know, looks horrible and I think the glowing text puts jim and like the disco era but for me I would just go to straight clean white taxed yeah, that looks beautiful, you know? And so there you and I would probably jim's name is more important than his all right, so I guess we should have jim, do you want greatest fisherman ever larger than your name or you want name larger than I just like the legend theo legend you'd prefer we checked this ryder and affection just says jim sammons the legend instead of greatest fisherman of all time I think the legend is key and then jackson kayak fishing team your team you guys I think that's a pretty good feel for where we went from the starting point of this image to something that we could at least show to the client as as the next step for where they wanted it to go often times actually, ninety eight percent of the time we would never be adding logos or text to the photos. We would be delivering the rock the file manipulated as a photo shop document and then they would hand it to a designer they would hand it to the magazine remember, they're gonna have do that post work with a final layout I assume, quite quite honestly, there'd probably be a picture of the cuda, the actual kayak somewhere dropped into this ad if that's what they were really trying to do with this photograph. So all right before we jump into the next one. Any questions on this photograph of the process of the thought? Yeah, from a process standpoint, there's a reason why you used raw within photo shop instead of light room? Um, I've just always you know, they're the same. I believe that they're the same raw editor right in in light room or in photo shot we're using light room as an organization piece, okay, so actually, no editing gets done in light room for us and that's, you know, that's, just the workflow that we've come to, you know, learn in love. S o we're not actually touching anything up until it comes into photo shop that's just easier for us to manage once we save that file, it gets put back into our catalog and write in light room right next to the original, but we don't never touch you. We don't do any editing and light room only from an organizational standpoint.

Class Description

The future of storytelling, for enthusiasts and professionals alike, is all about capturing great pictures AND great video during a single dynamic shoot. However, attempting to be both a still photographer and ace filmmaker at the same time is rife with opportunities to mess up, miss the shot, and blow the whole shoot.

A lot of photographers have learned to add video into their repertoire through trial and error, often with frustrating results. Join seasoned visual storyteller Corey Rich for a 3-day live still-and-motion shoot on location. Corey will walk you through every step of the process — from storyboarding to post-production.

Whether you’re an enthusiast wanting to capture stills and video of your cousin’s wedding, or a professional photographer looking to offer stunning motion spots to your clients, this workshop will help you seamlessly bring your stories to life.


a Creativelive Student

What a great class it is such a great opportunity to what some real pros at work. This class will inspire you to do what it takes to get the image. You will see that even the pros struggle sometimes.

Edina C.

Very informative class! I loved it... Thanks Corey!

a Creativelive Student