Saturday, October 29, 2011

Photoshop CS5 Magic

Here is a little Photoshop magic...

I took the original photo of our model Jessica (top photo) and replaced the top of her hair with the hair from the other shot of her where I had used hair lighting instead.  (See the two images from the 10-28-11 post on Professional Models.)  I re-sized that second photo so that her head size was exactly the same, then repositioned the hair to fit on top of her first photo.  Blending things together, you can't tell that the bottom image is a composite of two images.  So now the image of her shows the image with "new" hair lighting on it.

To see a "flip" comparison, click on any of the images above and then "flip" between the two images in the resulting screen.  You'll immediately see what was done with the hair this way.

I often do a similar thing to people's eyes in group photos.  For instance, when I take a group photo, I usually shoot several of the same shot, just in case someone's eyes are closed.  I just take the "open" eyes from one of the other images and place it on the closed eye image.  Blend it together just right and you end up with a perfect image with everyone's eyes open!

Want to learn how to do things like this?  Come take a Photoshop CS5 class at Balanced Exposure!  Want to learn how to take great flash studio photos?  Come take a Flash class too!   :)

Friday, October 28, 2011

Professional Models

Here are two photos from last night's Flash Photography class.  This is Jessica who is a model for Balanced Exposure.  You'll find her working hard modeling for some of the classes offered at the studio.

As a professional model, Jessica knows how to pose and helps our students out by posing naturally without having to be told to do it.  Still, she'll take direction from students too if they want her to pose a certain way or to help find the perfect shot.

The top image was taken without hair lighting and the bottom image with hair lighting.  Also a blue gel back light was added as well.

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Doyle Dykes at Skokie Theatre - Oct 14, 2011

Better late than never!

As always, I went to see Doyle Dykes perform last Friday at the Skokie Theatre.  While it is always good to see Doyle, I was a little sad not to see his daughter Haley with him.  In all the years I've been going to see Doyle perform, this is the first time that Haley wasn't there.  She stayed home with her husband Jake.

I originally had sent a message to Haley saying that I might not be able to go to this concert, but Haley told me I wasn't allowed to miss any Doyle concert within 300 miles of Chicago.  So, rearranging my schedule, I went with my friend Jerry as always.

Seeing that Haley wasn't going to be there, Jerry decided we should help Doyle at the merchandise table so that Doyle could take more time signing autographs.  Our friends Steve King, Johnnie Putman (both from WGN radio) and Pastor Steve Lyons (Moody Publishers) all pitched in as well that evening.  Steve and Johnnie had chauffeur duties and Pastor Steve brought more of Doyle's book, "The Lights of Marfa" for us to sell.

It was fun selling the CD's, DVD's and book.  All we were able to do was take cash or check that evening and we didn't have any change!  Luckily, people helped out giving us change along the way and everyone was able to buy what they wanted without a problem.  Afterward, Doyle told us he actually had change for us, but we had already started selling and he was stuck on stage setting up.  No matter... it all turned out ok.

Doyle played well and introduced some new arrangements I've never heard him play before.  Among the songs was an incredible Beatles Medley played on his custom R. Taylor 12-string guitar.  It was amazing!  Steve King told Doyle afterwards that he just has to put this on one of his upcoming albums.  I agree.  It was really great and sounded so full on the 12-string.

Doyle also spent time playing a Fender Telecaster.  The amps he used for the show were borrowed from his friends at The Guitar Works in Evanston, IL.

Overall, the sold-out Skokie Theatre audience was treated to great music that evening.

Monday, October 17, 2011


I'm back to 5 stars out of 5 stars!  The single negative review has gone to the "filtered" area of the "not to be named" review site!

This reviewer only had one review to his name and so it should have gone to the filtered area like all the others, but it remained on the main viewing area for many weeks.  But checking in today, I found it had finally been moved to the filtered area like all the other good reviews I had been given that had only a single review from the reviewers.  It sure took a lot longer for this to happen though...

Edit Note:  As of 11/08/11, the "bad review" has come back out of the filtered area!  The reviewer still has only one review to his name, so really, it should have stayed "filtered" like all the other good reviews that have been banished there.  This time, I have figured out how to place a comment in the review, so I did that to set the record straight.

The "not-to-be-named review site" actually called me several weeks ago to ask if I wanted to advertise on their site.  I told them "NO WAY!"  I wonder if this is why we now see the bad review resurfacing?  Makes you wonder, doesn't it....

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

And yet another review goes filtered...

I don't want to beat a dead horse... but yet another one of my good reviews has gone to the "filtered"area of the "not to be named" review site.

So now... I have 3 reviews left that can be easily seen... 2 good, 1 bad and 10 good reviews filtered in the "hidden" area.

Is it me, or is this review site totally off base here?

I'm now waiting for all of my good reviews to go to filtered... just so that the one bad review stays.  At that point, I guess I can say I'd be batting 1000 for bad reviews.  Wouldn't that be interesting?

Doesn't seem right, does it?

Thursday, October 06, 2011

Sometimes You Just Can't Win

Another one of my "good" reviews just got "filtered" again.  It's now 9 reviews on that "not to be named" review site that has been filtered.  While the company claims to filter reviews that are questionable, each one of these "good" reviews were removed even though they all came from students who liked my classes... not from me.

It just doesn't seem right that a person with one review to his name can have his negative review remain while another person who might have four reviews to her name gets hers filtered.  Is a negative review to be trusted more than someone who gives a good review?  I checked the other reviews from these people who have given me a good review.  A couple of theirs are "negative" towards the the other businesses.  I wonder, did they filter these negative reviews on the other businesses?  Or is the filtered review only for the ones they wrote that are positive?

It's frustrating to see that of the 13 total reviews I've had on this site, only 3 good reviews are seen and 1 bad is seen.  9 other good reviews are hidden.

Just doesn't seem right to me...