People Pictures Are The Focus of My Panama Workshop

© Rick Sammon
If you like travel photography – especially people photography – you'll enjoy my upcoming Panama workshop, March 3 to 6, 2012.

Joining me as co-leader will be my friend and professional photographer Tito Herrera.

I'll be giving a one-day seminar in Panama City on March 3rd. Then next day we fly to Kuna Yala for the two-day workshop.

© Marco Sammon
I'll show the small group (max 16) how to make nice portraits as well as environmental portraits.

© Rick Sammon
Tito and I had a fun group in 2011, and we expect this year's group to have just as much fun!

If you'd like to participate in this workshop, shoot me an email.

Explore the light,

P.S. If you can't make the workshop, check out my lighting gear on my Gear page. Also check out my post on Plug-ins for Portraits.

Quick HDR Tip: Experiment with Creative Color Variations

Here's a quick HDR tip: Play with colors to create a different feeling of an HDR image.

My standard HDR image (below) was OK, just OK.

To make the image pop, I used the Color Blast filter in Topaz Adjust (opening picture for this post).

For a more subdued feel, I applied a Pastel Filter in Nik Software’s Color Efex Pro (below).

Below is some info on the photo and the HDR process and plug-ins that I used.

Title: San Blas Resort

Location: San Blas Islands, Panama

Exposures:   0, +2, -2 EV

Processing: Nik HDR Efex Pro, Nik Software Color Efex Pro/Pastel filter, Topaz Adjust/Spicify filter.

Gear: Canon 7D, Canon 17-40mm lens, Induro Tripod and Induro ball head. 

For more info (and discounts) on HDR plug-ins and programs, click here.

Yes! I took this picture on my recent Panama photo workshop. Scroll down to see previous post about the workshop.

Explore the light,

P.S. Which image do you like best? Standard HDR, pastel or color blast? Also, would you like to see more quick tips like this? Let me know by posting a comment here.

Reflectors Rocked On My Panama Photo Workshop

Just back from my Panama Photo Workshop. Tons of photo fun! Check out this before-and-after example of the effectiveness of using a single gold reflector. Nuf said.

Check out this behind-the-scenes shot of some of my workshop students (now my good friends) using a reflector to control the light. Nuf said. In this photo, the student (the colonel . . . we all had nicknames) had not yet found the ideal position in which to hold the reflector.

Here is another example of how using a reflector can enhance a photograph. Yup! Nuf said.

Here is the behind-the-scenes view of the "Kuna woman in the window" image.

We were using a Westcott 6-in-1 reflector/diffuser kit, which features:
• a gold reflector, for warm light;
• a sunlight reflector, for a sunlight effect;
• a silver reflector, for a natural light effect;
• two diffusers, to diffuse the light; and
• a black light absorber, to reduce the light.

Info: Westcott 1032 6-in-1 Reflector Kit 42in.

Above is an example of using a reflector and a diffuser in combo.

Some of the students had Pocket Wizards, which are great for off-camera flash photography.

Info:Pocket Wizard FlexTT5 Transceiver For Canon TTL Flashes and Digital SLR Cameras.
Hey! The photo and reflector fun did not stop when the sun went down! One night, after happy hour, we bounced the light from our flashes into a reflector. This technique increased the size of the light source for a soft and pleasing lighting effect.

All of these pictures were taken in the San Blas Islands, Panama. I'd like to thank all the Kuna men and woman who graciously posed for us during our workshop.

And, I'd also like to thank the students. What a great group!! One of my expressions: "The closer you get to the equator, the weather gets warmer . . . and so do the people."

And . . . . I'd really like to thank Tito Herrera, the director of the Panama Photo Workshops (the dude holding the reflector) and his wife, Jamie, for setting up the workshop.

All of my photographs were taken with my Canon 5D Mark II and Canon 24-105mm lens. Info: Canon EF 24-105mm f/4 L IS USM Lens for Canon EOS SLR Cameras

Explore the light - and please join me on one of my fun-filled and info-packed photo workshops. I'll be back in Panama for the 2012 Panama Photo Festival. Stay tuned!

At Photoshop World in Orlando, I'll be doing a Canon Speedlite session. Hope you can join the fun!

For more lighting tips, see my Light It! app.

You'll also find lighting info in my books.


Photos and Tips to Come From My Panama Photo Workshop

Kuna Woman. © Rick Sammon
Tip: Place the subject off center for a more interesting image.

Info. Canon 5D Mark II, Canon 17- 40mm lens.
I just returned to Panama City from the beautiful (and humble) San Blas Islands, where I conducted a photo workshop (fun shop) for the Panama Photo Workshops. Tito Herrera, the founder of the Panama Photo Workshops, was the co-leader of this way-cool experience. Above is one of my favorite photographs from the trip.

Over the next few days I will be posting images, including some HDR images, from the trip. Here are just a few for now.
Our happy group after happy hour on our last day in San Blas.
Photo workshops are a ton of fun! Non-stop action and creativity.
I think these folks wish they had signed up for the workshop. :-)
Here is one of the shots we worked on. © Rick Sammon
Tip: Just don't take pictures, make pictures.

Info. Canon 5D Mark II, Canon 24-105mm IS lens.