Issue 4 ▪ Well the wait is over. PPP is here. More on that below.▪ Another fantastic new Trekabout workshop is also here ready for release. More det

Issue 4 Header

Issue 4

Well the wait is over. PPP is here. More on that below.
Another fantastic new Trekabout workshop is also here ready for release. More details below as Michael and I bring you the Trekabout "Brisbane City Lights Experience".
The new Q & A section kicks off in this issue. Don't forget to send me your questions for next time.
In this issue The Photographer's Process continues as I expand a reader's question to discuss Smart Objects in Photoshop.
I'm starting a new FOR SALE section in this issue. If you have any photography equipment you would like to sell ( cameras, lenses, tripods etc.) drop me a line and I will include your item in the next newsletter. No fees involved, just a service I'd like to offer for past and future workshop participants. As a buyer if you are interested in any of the items for sale I will put you in contact with the seller.


PPP - Portrait Process Print Experience

The "Portrait Process Print Experience" is here. The first date, 10 September sold out in hours. A second date, Saturday 24 September 2011, has been released and still has a few spots remaining.

Call me on 0754229529 or 0459 221678 to reserve your spot or shoot me an email at .

Time has beaten me and I have yet to complete the Trekabout web page but the details are as follow:


8:30am Introduction and briefing on camera settings, studio lighting basics, use of natural light.
9:00am Family portrait session - Natural Light - This session will be outdoors in various settings through Newstead Park.
10:00am Morning tea (working) - we will further discuss the next session and studio lighting set-up during morning tea.
10:15am Family portrait session - indoor studio lighting. During this session we will have two photographers shooting together (studio lights have two remote wireless triggers). We will also work in a baby shoot during this session (baby cooperation permitting).
11:15am Glamour model portrait session - indoor studio lighting, speed-light, soft box, snoots etc.
12:30am Lunch (provided)
1:00pm Glamour model outdoors session - natural light, dealing with harsh light conditions.
2:00pm Post processing of the days images - batch efficiencies, white balance adjustments, soft lighting effects, skin smoothing and glamour touch-ups.
3:00pm Afternoon tea
3:15pm Post processing continued into print (we will be print a couple of 8 x 12 from each participant )
5:00pm Wrap-up

During studio lighting sessions you will also act as assistants to the photographers and models in action. Each participant will set-up the studio lighting from scratch for their studio session. This way everyone will gain an understanding of the workings of the studio strobes.


DSLR camera.
Prime or zoom lens that covers between 50mm to 135mm (call me to clarify if you are concerned). A further lens coverage of around 200mm would also be beneficial.
Laptop with Adobe Photoshop pre-installed.
Card reader or USB cable (suitable for your camera) to upload your images.
Speed-light/s (if you have them)
Five in one reflector/diffuser (if you have one)

Note: If you don't have a laptop I will have a spare Macbook will be available.


Date: Saturday, 24 September 2011

Where: Newstead House Resource Centre and Gardens

When: 8:30am - 5:00pm

Price: $340.00 (lunch and refreshments included)

This workshop is limited to 8 participants so please get in quick.

Please, if you have any questions prior to booking, feel free to contact me.


Q & A

Thank you to all of you who sent in your questions. I will endeavour to answer as many as I can each newsletter. If your question is not answered in this edition it will probably pop up in the next one.

Q. Smart Objects in PS. Is doing it the way you have suggested in The Photographer's Process 3 different from ticking the Open in PS as Smart Objects in the Workflow Options or File/Open as Smart Object? I am grappling to come to terms with Smart Objects and don’t understand what they really do except ‘retain the pixels’ and I am not sure what that even means. Maybe a short tutorial in PP4? What are the advantages and why would you use it and do you use them all the time (automatic part of workflow)?

A. The short answer is NO. It gives exactly the same result. Like many things in Photoshop there are many different ways to achieve the same result. The long answer, as suggested, has become my topic for this issue of The Photographer's Process.

Q. How do you achieve the soft silky water look of the seascape shown in the newsletter (the image is presented again below).

A. Quite simply it is all about shutter speed. I have found that a shutter speed slower than 1/2s will generally yield good results.
But (there's always a but isn't there), the speed of the incoming waves will also influence the result of your masterpiece. If the sea is raging and pounding into shore with fast moving crashing waves, then you will require an even slower shutter speed. If there is only a gentle swell then you may very well achieve the desired look with a slightly faster shutter speed.

The example below was taken with a shutter speed of 3 seconds. To achieve the slow shutter speed I stopped the aperture down to f/16 and lowered my ISO to 200.

Coolum Headland

Coolum Headland ----Nikon D3 14-24 f/2.8 ---- 3 seconds @ f/16 ISO 200

Please feel free to send me any photography (equipment or technique) or post-processing related questions or concerns and I'll do my best to answer them for you.

Please send your questions to and put "Photographers Process Question" in the subject line.


The Photographer's Process - Part 4

In the last issue I showed you (one of the ways) how to open an image as a Smart Object in Photoshop.

To start with let's go over that process.

If you are opening an image from Camera Raw to Photoshop and you hold your cursor over the "Open Image" button and click, your image will open up in Photoshop. You then have access to all the normal Photoshop tools.

Open Image

However, if you hold down the "Shift" key you will notice that "Open Image" has now changed to "Open Object". Click your mouse and your image will now open as a "Smart Object" in Photoshop.

open Object

Now you will notice a small section of the thumbnail in the "Layers" panel is different. If you double-click on this, your image will open up in "Camera Raw" where you can carry out any edits (there may be some things you prefer to do in Camera Raw) you wish to do.


When you click done your image pops back to Photoshop. You can repeat this process as many times as you need to.

If you are a Lightroom user you can also right-click and "Open in Photoshop as Smart Object".

You can also convert an image to a Smart Object from within Photoshop.

So, what else can you do with Smart Objects and why should you use them. Firstly, you don't need to use them all the time. There are some processes which work fine using traditional editing. I do, however, find myself using Smart Objects more and more as my depth of understanding of all their benefits continues to grow.

Smart Objects preserve the original data of the image to allow you to perform all manner of changes without affecting the original file. Let's say you were compositing an image. You may copy an item into another image and decide that you need to resize the copied item. So, using the "Free Transform" tool you drag the corners of the item in to make the selection smaller. You might think your done so you save the file (as a PSD or TIFF to preserve the layers) and move on.

But let's say you then decide that you made the selection too small and you want to change it and make it slightly larger. You open up your saved PDF or TIFF and all your layers are sitting there as they should be. Traditionally, if you hadn't used a "Smart Object" you would now be in trouble because as you start to drag your selection slightly bigger it starts to become badly pixelated. Quite frankly it's useless and to obtain a good result you would need to repeat your entire process from scratch.

Now, if you had used the Smart Object when copying your original selection across, you could simply resize the selection and the detail would be perfect. The reason is that the original data is still intact and your selection is reading that original data when you make your changes. Think of the Smart Object sitting in the background feeding it's information through to the image you are working on.

Another handy use for a Smart Object may be where you have the Smart Object embedded in a number of images and you wish to make a change. It could be the banners on your website for instance. You might have a dozen banners with the text relating to your site on each banner. Now you find yourself having to change some of the text. Without the use of Smart Objects you would need to open each of your banners individually and edit the text for each one.

If, however, you had saved your original text as a Smart Object and copied that to each banner, you could simply open the Smart Object, edit the text and save. The text on each banner would be automatically updated to the new version saving you a tremendous amount of time.

The key to this particular time saver is to make sure you save in a format that preserves the layers. PSD is probably the easiest.

Once you have finished any editing and use of the Smart Objects you can save as JPEG (for printing or web). The image will be flattened and will no longer have the editing characteristics of the PSD or TIFF files. The referencing to the Smart Object will be gone so any changes you made will be final. The smart (excuse the pun) thing to do is to save your original workings as a PSD and create a JPEG when you are ready to print or post to the web.

Don't forget that files saved with multiple layers can be huge and will chew up disk space very quickly so you should only be saving with all the layers intact if you know you will be coming back to edit further at a later date (like the banners mentioned above).


Brisbane City Lights Experience

20110704173822-MPR 7929
20110809 174918 MPR 9910
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20110809 180545 MPR 9935

NEW - Brisbane City Lights Experience

Where – Brisbane city
When – Tuesday 13th of Sep 2011
Commences – 5pm
Duration – Two and a half hours

Price - $99.00 per participant

Trekabout Photography’s exciting, new “City Lights Experience” workshop is designed to show participants the best way to photograph our beautiful city before and after sunset.

Our workshop starts at Kangaroo Point where Michael and I will show you how to best photograph the city buildings across the river, as the sun starts setting. The ‘mood’ and ‘feel’ of your photos will change as the sun sets and the colourful lights appear.

We then head to the southern side of the Kurilpa Bridge (near the GOMA building) and photograph the Kurilpa Bridge which will be lit up with blue lights. The amazing shape and architecture of this bridge, as well as the gorgeous blue lighting, makes this a wonderful subject for photography. There are so many different angles to photograph the Kurilpa Bridge and you will be shown various ways to compose your shots.
There is also a great opportunity to photograph the William Jolly Bridge, with its wonderful ‘snake’ shape that is also lit up at night.

We finish the night with shots of the Conrad Treasury and nearby buildings across the Brisbane River. The Conrad Treasury is lit up a brilliant purple colour and makes for some great shots.
Apart from learning how to best take shots of the city before and after sunset, and be shown the best vantage points to take these shots, you will also be with like-minded people who are there to enjoy and share their experience.

You won't find this workshop on Trekabout website for a few days yet so if you wish to book a spot on the inaugural 13 September workshop, please drop me an email at and I'll reserve your spot.


Post Processing and Workflow - Next series - 7,8,14,15 September 2011

This very informative series starts Wednesday 7 September. Held over four nights the workshop covers a multitude of issues designed to improve your post processing workflow and expertise.
Topics covered will include but not be limited to:
* Importing and opening images
Image resolution * Selections and masks Colour and white balance adjustments
Retouching * Histograms * File formats * Filters * Actions * Scripts * Plug-ins * HDR Metadata
Batch processing * Presets * Keyboard shortcuts * Exporting and saving Automating tasks
Re-sizing * Sharpening Noise reduction

I will also be introducing new sessions on integrating Lightroom into your Photoshop workflow.
Spaces are still available but limited to a maximum of 8 participants to ensure quality of learning.
To find out more have a look on the Trekabout website here.

The price is $240.00 for the entire 4 night (12 hour) workshop.

Loyalty discounts are available for returning clients.




Epson Stylus PRO 7600 Wide Format Inkjet Printer - $1500.00

I have my Epson 7600 printer for sale due to lack of use due to lack of time (slack I know). The printer is in excellent condition and comes with a brand new (unopened) 24" wide roll of Canson Artist Canvas and a part 24" wide roll of Hahnemuhle Photo Rag (beautiful paper). A brand new maintenance tank is also included. This printer has huge 220ml ink tanks with considerable ink remaining. This is a big printer so it's going to have to be pick-up only.

80 to 400

AF VR Zoom-Nikkor 80-400mm f/4.5-5.6D ED - $1250.00 plus postage

Michael is upgrading to a super prime so his MINT condition 80-400 has to go. In as-new condition, this lens will be an excellent addition to your Nikon system. Comes with the original standard accessories (hood, case etc.)

Hoya Circular Polariser - 67mm - $40.00 plus postage

Kenko UV Filter - 55mm - $20.00 plus postage

Don't forget if you have any photography equipment you would like to sell ( cameras, lenses, tripods etc.) drop me a line and I will include your item in the next newsletter. No fees involved, just a service I'd like to offer for past and future workshop participants. As a buyer if you are interested in any of the items for sale I will put you in contact with the seller.


So that about wraps it up again.
I hope you enjoyed this edition and will continue to enjoy many new issues into the future.

If you do not wish to receive future newsletters, don't worry I wont be offended or upset. Simply unsubscribe at the bottom of this newsletter.

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