Sep 13, 2006

Photoshop World Report

Room with a view…34th floor looking North.

Photoshop World was last week and it was both a lot of fun and educational for those who attended. This is my report of the first day of my first Photoshop World. I only shot stuff on this first day (I was speaking the other days) so this is the only posting I’ll be doing.

Mandalay Bay is a very large but very nice complex. Of course, when I checked in, they didn’t have my room reservation. Fortunately, Kathy Siler, the Photoshop World coordinator, just happened to walk by to help out. Seems the hotel had misspelled my name (not an unusual occurance) so she helped straighten out the confusion. I must say I was taken care of very well…limo from the airport, VIP treatment; the whole nine yards. That’s because I was a Photoshop Hall of Fame inductee.

Vegas is known for its casinos and the one at Mandalay Bay is huge, which is totally wasted on me. The only sort of gambling I ever do is in the stock market where the odds are a lot better.

I was here for the Photoshop World convention which was way over on the other side of the complex in the South Convention Hall. I didn’t actually measure the distance, but I must have walked well over 10 miles over the three days of the convention. If I am invited back, I’ll be asking for a special instructor’s perk-a Segway so I can roll to my sessions.

I was asked to be in the hall 15 minutes before the start of the keynote but the regular attendees had to cue up outside the hall. Registration seemed to be pretty simple.

This is the main keynote hall with seating for over 2,000. I don’t know how many of the PS World Convention attendees actually made it to the keynote but the total count of attendees was over 3,000. Wow, 3,000 Photoshop junkies all in one place – scarey.

Russell Brown always mugs for the camera.

Here JP Caponigro (right) and Scott Kelby (center) talk with security. They let us in.

JP had a friend, Tim Morrissey (who seemed REALLY happy to be with JP).

Kevin Connor from Adobe. See Kevin, this shot wasn’t so bad (you should have seen the ones I didn’t post)!

Deb Whitman, Adobe’s Vice President of Product Management for Digital Imaging was there.

Here’s a nice shot of Scott Kelby. (no retouching required Scott).

JP and I.

Scott and I (ok, maybe I should have retouched this one, huh Scott?).

I showed Scott what I just shot.

Here’s Eddy Tapp and I.

I got up on stage to see what the room looked like from there. Big, really big.

There were tech cages on either side of the stage where demos could be run.

Dave Story, Adobe’s vice president of Digital Imaging Product Development, was preparing a demo.

Ohmygod, what happened Dave? He was just kidding…

Here the Hall of Fame and Guru awards are lined up.

There is a front tech station for AV…

…and then the main stage…

…but it’s behind the stage where the really cool stuff happens.

The main video switcher with cue screens is quite a set up.

Back out front, the house is filling up.

Just before the presentation starts, the lights start (ok, they are kinda disco) and the music is playing and they toss tee shirts into the crowd. No XXX sizes :~(

As a VIP, I got to have friends and family up front. Here’s Andrew Rodney, my wife Becky with Bert Monroy and his wife and Greg Gorman. Mac Holbert couldn’t make it because he had to take his daughter to college.

Adobe types from left to right; Kevin Connor-Adobe’s Senior Director of Product Management, Chitra Mittha-Sr Product Marketing Manager for Photoshop, Deb Whitman and Cari Gushiken-Adobe PR.

Dave Story, left and John Loiacono (aka “Johnny L”), the new Senior Vice President Creative Solutions Business Unit (that includes the Creative Suite and Photoshop).

The keynote started with a video themed on CSI and was actually shot on the set of CSI New York starring (left to right) Dave Cross, Scott Kelby and Matt Kloskowski. Guest stars were Bert Monroy (as the dead body) and Deke McClelland (as the murder suspect). It turns out that in the story, Deke killed Bert because Bert was going to do the new Photoshop Bible. But the crack CSI Team investigated the “crime” and caught the suspect (Deke). PhotoshopNews is trying to secure permission to offer the video as a download including really funny outtakes!

Here’s the three main guys with Scott “larger than life” on screen. Doesn’t he look like a Southern Baptist preacher?

Scott welcomes Johnny L up on stage to do the Adobe portion of the keynote. It seems John didn’t like the “vanilla” bio written for him by Adobe and suggested that Scott write something “creative”.

Scott’s intro to John Loiacono was way over the top (what did he really expect?) and it took John several moments to get over the intro. Scott, in his best “announcer voice” introduced John as basically the savior to mankind (or at least the best thing since sliced bread).

John talked about Adobe’s position in the industry and the importance of digital imaging-particularly Adobe Photoshop relating to current American culture including references from recent TV shows such as West Wing and Desperate Housewives talking about “fixing things in Photoshop”.

Next up it was Kevin Connor, Adobe’s Sr. Director of Product Development for Digital Imaging, on stage for a demo of the new Adobe Lightroom Beta 4. Since Beta 4 has some radically new and seriously cool functionality, it was unclear, until the last moment whether Beta 4 would be shown.

Kevin showed the new interface look of Beta 4 as well as highlighting some of the new functionality in B4.

In particular, the new tools in Develop including radically new ways of adjusting the image from the curves tool with direct on image adjustments as well as showing and adjusting points on the curve.

He also demoed the ability to adjust the image right from the histogram and the ability to use the arrow keys to adjust curves. Shown here in this shot of the screen is the new Fill Light and Vibrance adjustments originally in Raw Shooter Premium and now incorporated in Beta 4. In addition to highlighting Beta 4 in the Keynote, George Jardine was demoing B4 in the Adobe booth. More on that in a separate article.

As rumored, Adobe did indeed show Adobe Photoshop CS3 (version 10) at the Keynote. The splashscreen above shows “Red Pill” (the code name for PS CS3) launching. The Mac version of the application is now a Universal Binary (UB) that will run native on MacIntel machines.

But, don’t get too excited-the only real “demo” was to show a PSD document open with incredibly quick launch time (a few seconds) and the image above with embedded videos of clouds in a Photoshop document. No hint of any new interface or tools was shown. In fact, Photoshop CS3 was open for all of 30 seconds as Adobe wished to keep everything else about PS CS3 secret.

Next up was the Photoshop Hall of Fame inductions.

Eddie Tapp was the first to be brought up.

Here’s Eddie nervously waiting to be introduced while watching a video tribute to Eddie.

Eddie was congratulated by Scott and given the Hall of Fame award.

I was next up. After my video I walked on stage with my camera to document my award. Here’s Scott applauding.

Here’s a shot of Scott handing me my award.

Here’s the shot I took of myself while standing in front of over 2,000 people in the audience. I explained that I was covering the event for PhotoshopNews.

Here’s a shot holding my award.

Here’s Scott laughing because of my photo-hijinxs.

Andrew Rodney grabbed this shot of me speaking. I love it because it makes me look even bigger than Scott when he was on stage. Greg Gorman also shot a video of my speech which you can view. The video is here (253MB QT movie) or a lower rez podcast size .m4v video here (14.7MB iTunes video).

After me it was time for John Paul Caponigro to receive his award.

Not to be outdone by my camera on stage, JP actually brought his laptop on stage so he could read his speech from it.

JP pointed out just how dear and how much freedom a laptop provides a photographer. Greg Gorman also captured a video of JP’s acceptance speech. The Quicktime .mov (379.13MB QT file) file is here and the lower rez podcast size .m4v is here (22.1MB iTunes video).

Here’s a self-timer shot of the three Photoshop Hall of Fame inductees for 2006. Eddie, JP and I. Ironically, we’re all members of Canon’s Explorer of Light program and we’re also photographers; the first time all three Hall of Fame inductees were photographers.

The crowd looked impressed (ok, at least they were awake!).

Next in the ceremonies were the Photoshop Guru Awards. Check the Photoshop World web site for the winners. Some pretty cool images, I must say.

A special award was also given, called “the Vinnie” in honor of Vincent Versace for the best photographic entry.

Here’s Vinnie and me.

With Dave Story…

Deb Whitman. These are all obviously shots I took.

Somebody grabbed my camera to take a shot of Deb and I.

Here’s Scott explaining to Johnny L why it really isn’t a good idea to let Scott be “creative” with introductory bios. But it was all in good fun (although the odds are Johnny will never leave it up to Scott to write his bio; or I don’t know, maybe Johnny liked it and Scott will get the job full time).

End of the Keynote and the hall is empty.

First class I sat in on? Andrew Rodney doing Real World Color Management.

Andrew filled in for Bruce Fraser who couldn’t travel due to illness. Andrew did a great job.

I did a large room session titled “In Search of the Perfect Color Print”.

There were a lot of people in the room…

…and all of them learned what it took to make a “prefect color print”.

Stalking the halls for photos, I encountered Scott’s Special Agent badge.

There was this really weird guy with really weird hair running around, turned out to be Mad Dr. Brown who had taken over Russell Brown’s body…

We cornered him and under intense questioning, he admited that Russell actually likes to play dress up and assume other characters as a way to deal with the stress of daily corporate life.

I snuck up on Eddie Tapp again.

As well as fellow Canon Explorer, Jack Reznicki (with a ‘Z’ not an ‘S’).

Jack, Eddie and Steve Inglema from Canon USA were doing a workshop on digital photography.

Here’s Steve talking to the group (sorry about the hair Steve).

Ok, I promised I would put a “nice shot” of Jack in the story.

In the Tech Expo area I saw Bert Monroy’s “really big print” of the Monster Painting he did of Chicago.

I also stopped by the Canon booth to look at the new Canon Rebel camera as well as the newly announced lenses.

I turned a corner and guess who I surprised?

Yep, another startled Jack Resnicki shot. Sorry Jack…(not really).

I stopped by the Epson booth to see friends.

Here’s Greg Gorman and my wife Becky (she’s the short one on the right).

Actually, there was some question regarding Becky’s identity-seems she didn’t get a badge so she borrowed one from Greg.

Here’s a closeup. See…seems the guard at the Expo wasn’t going to let her in since she didn’t “look like a Greg”. No problemo, I pulled my VIP status and got her in (actually, I think I scared the poor old guy).

Here’s the Microsoft booth-seems Microsoft has discovered photograpy and digital imaging in a big way recently.

I caught Jeff Greene, Tech Evangelist from the Pro Photo Community at MSFT.

Here’s Tim Grey doing a Photoshop demo on the Microsoft Stage. Tim saw me shoot him and announced a bounty for the first member of the audience who could wrestle my camera away from me. No takers…

And of course, at Photoshop World, there’s always an Adobe booth.

Here’s a closeup of John Nack, Product Manager for Photoshop doing a demo of…Photoshop CS2.

John gives “good demo” but I bet the crowd would have been bigger John if you could show “Red Pill” which is a reference to take the red pill, not the blue pill from the movie Matrix.

From left to right, Victoria, Lori, George and Addy.

Johnny L, Dave and Deb-I was showing them how I shoot without looking through the viewfinder of the camera. See guys, it really does work.

I commented to Johnny L that he had excellent taste in eye glasses but I noted his beard needed a little work.

The end of the day for my VIP status as “Photoshop Hall of Famer”. After that, I was just a regular Photoshop World instructor. Ironic (as I pointed out in my acceptance speech) the first time I accepted a speaking gig at Photoshop World, I get inducted as a Hall of Fame member. Hum…

I missed the Thursday night Photoshop World party. I had tickets to Love. I did make it to Midnight Madness (which I was surprised to find out ENDS at Midnight and has no liquor involved) where I pointed out to Scott Kelby that the use of “Layer Comps” would have simplified his needing to turn layers on and off for the 25,000 Pixel Pyramid Game. I also introduced a new “Celebrity Comment” component to the Photoshop Tips competition and noted in passing a new “Photoshop Phrase” coined by one of the Tips commentators, “Jump It”! (done with a sexy female voice).

I must say, as my first official Photoshop World, I was very impressed by both the well organized efficiency of the operation as well as the professional and friendly atmospshere of the conference. The attendees were all very ardent Photoshop officienados and the intructors were are very well prepared. The Tech Expo has grown considerably since the early days. The Photoshop World Team of Dave Cross, Scott Kelby and Matt Kloskowski and others made for a greatly entertaining yet very educational proceedings. And it was great fun to be hanging out with over 3,000 Photoshop junkies. I hope to see them and everybody else at Photoshop World in Boston next April.

One Response to “Photoshop World Report”

  1. hoffner Says:

    OK, so how did you manage a shot of Las Vegas without smog?

    R. Hoffner

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