Rick Sammon

Tomorrow Night at CLICK: Sunset Riders

Tomorrow night's activity at the California Photo Fest: horses running on the beach.

This is the 3rd time I'm teaching on the beach out here in Los Osos. Here are few of my favorite images.

My gear from last year: Canon EOS 7D and Canon 70-200 f/4 IS lens. All hand held. This year I will be using the Canon 5D Mark III.

As I tell my students, it's all about the light. Check out my Light class on Kelby Training.

Composition, of course, is important, too. iI's the topic of my latest Kelby Training class: Composition, the strongest way of seeing.

Another tip: exposing for the highlights is always key - as is checking one's histogram and the overexposure warning.

Getting a shot with all the horse's hooves off the ground will be a main goal. The key to getting a shot like this: take lots and lots of shots. Using a shutter speed of 1/000th of  a second and setting your camera on rapid frame advance helps, too. Also use focus tracking or continuous focus.

Explore the light,

P.S. For more examples of my photography - and tons of photo tips, check out my apps.

My Classes at the California Photo Fest

I'm getting ready for my classes at the California Photo Fest next month. Can't wait!

I'll be teaching Social Media Marketing, which includes info from my Social Media Marketing for Photographers app.

I'll be leading a few photo walks, at sunrise and sunset and in between. The highlight being a photo session with horses running on the beach.

I have a speedlite class, where I will share a few one-light wonders, some of which are included in my apps.

And I have two plug-ins sessions where I'll talk about removing the reality from a scene, as I did below on my image from Coney Island.

I hope to see you at the festival. It's not only a great learning experience, but it's a ton of fun!

Explore the light,

P.S. Click here to see all my events, which includes my Alaska workshop with Hal from Light.

What Are Your Favorite Photoshop CS6 Beta Features?

Composite, drop shadow, canvas size and type created in Photoshop CS6 Beta.
If you are a serious photographer, you should download the Beta version of Photoshop CS6. Hey, it's free, fun and fantastic.

There are lots of new features (more than 20), including my favorites, which are listed below.

Create a spotlight effect with Lighting Effects for a more dramatic portrait.
- Dark and cool-looking interface;
- Updated icons, buttons and dialogs;
- New Camera Raw 7;
- Re Camera Raw... they don't call me Rick "Raw Rules" Sammon for nothing:
- New Crop Tool (more on that toward the end of this post);
- New Content-Aware Move, Extend and Patch tools;
- New and improved Lighting Effects (see end-result above on the right, which is just one of many lighting effects effects);
- New Blur Gallery (see title-shif effect below).

Tilt-Shift blur effect can create miniature-looking images. Selective blur is also possible.
Tilt-shift effet in Photoshop CS6 Beta. 
Like my friend Dave Cross, I use Photoshop more than Lightroom, although I teach both application on my workshops - as well as plug-ins for both programs.

Another one of my favorite features in Photoshop (CS6 Beta and CS5) is Shadows/Highlights.

Check out the before-and-after set of images below. With a quick adjustment using the S/H sliders, I was able to see more details in the birds without blowing out the sky. You might want to try this feature on your high-contrast images before going to HDR.

After Shadows/Highlights.
Before Shadows/Highlights.
You probably noticed that the above picture is cropped from the standard format. Photoshop CS6 Beta also has a new Crop Tool - which offers non-destructive cropping.

Hey, if you are into shooting HD video, Photoshop CS6 Beta also supports video. If you want to get into HD video with your SLR, check out the DVD that Juan Pons and I produced.

I'd love to hear from you. What are your favorite PS6 Beta features? Please leave your comment in the Comment section here on my blog.

Explore the light,

P.S. If you want to spend less time in Photoshop and Lightroom (that is getting the best possible in-camear exposure), check out my apps. They are packed with how-to info.

In-studio creativeLive Students Selected

For those of you who are new to creativeLive, it's an on-line class that's free during the studio class. My class is October 21 - 23. From now until then, you can purchase the class (for at-your-leisure-anytime-watching) at a discount: $99.

Part of the deal is that cL asks photographers who want to be in the studio during the class to submit videos. The photographers who produce the most fun and most creative and most passionate videos get picked.

Below are the winning 6 videos for my class. Congratulations to all. I look forward to the photo fun - but keep in mind that I will put you to work . . . especially during the studio lighting demos.

The folks at creativeLive will contact you soon about the details. For now, shoot me an email so I can say hi!

For those who did not get picked, thank you so much for making the videos. Keep shooting and tune in during the weekend - and tweet to say hi!

The winning vidoes:







Yes! The focus of my class will be on still photography, but I also have a Business/Social Media session that I don't think you want to miss. I will cover Google+ and other social media outlets. Here's my Google+ page if you want to see what I'm up to.

As an added "thank you" to the in-studio students, I'll be brining a copy of my Creating HD Videos with the Canon EOS 5D Mark II and Canon 7D DVD - which is also available as a download. Yes, my class is about still photography - but I encourage all still photographers to get into shooting HD videos, too.

Hey, if you like hands-on learning, check out all my live workshops.

Explore the light,

P.S. One of the winners, Chris, is a guitar player. Chris, I am trying to get two guitars for the Shoot Rick session at the end of the class! Creative lighting will be the goal.

Sunrise Wonders and Wonderful Waterfalls in Mt. Rainier

Day one of the Mt.Rainier workshop that I am co-leading with DPE podcast co-host Juan Pons was spectacular. Here are a few of my shots - and a few tips.

Above: Expose for the highlights. Move the histogram to the right - but make sure you don't have spike on the right. Also, get up super early to capture the sunrise. You can rest when you are dead. :-)

Above: Use slow shutter speeds to blur moving water. Start with a 1 second exposure and then try 2, 3 and 4 second exposures.

Above: Compose with different lenses. Here I used a Canon 14mm lens on my Canon 5 D Mark II to capture an extremely wide-angle view of the this beautiful waterfall. The lens is actually "seeing" ahead and down at the same time.

Above: Look for texture. The moss surrounding this waterfall adds a nice texture to the flowing water.

Explore the light,

P.S. Want to have more fun with your photography? Come on one of my photo workshops.