Seeking Photoshop or Lightroom lessons? Need photo retouching or compositing? Need Photoshop help?
Learn Photoshop at your own pace. My creative services include: photo editing, photo retouching, photo restoration, digital imaging, color and tonal correction, photo compositing, graphic design, image production for print and web.
I am available for the Santa Monica, Venice, West LA, Brentwood, Beverly Hills, West Hollywood, and the greater Los Angeles areas.
Contact Andrew at:  imagebliss@gmail.com or 310-866-9450

Interview with Lee Varis – Photographer & Photoshop Educator

Lee-Varis
What is your title, and can you explain what your daily responsibilities are?
I like to call myself a photo-digital illustrator, but these days I am more of a photo educator. I teach two different interactive online courses at ppsop.com (thats the Picture Perfect School of Photography) and develop tutorials, workshops and seminars that I teach all around the country.

What inspired you most to become a Photographer/photo artist? Why did you pursue this as a career?
I’ve always been interested in photography. I started off by taking photos of my monster models with a Kodak Brownie camera when I was 8 years old. I started developing and printing photos for my Dad, who was a safety engineer — he took pictures of various factories and other commercial building for safety reports. I had a darkroom in our bathroom with chemical trays in the bathtub! I guess I just got hooked on seeing the pictures developed.

What do you think is the biggest obstacle to pursuing a career in the creative fields?
Making enough money! Everybody with a cell phone is a photographer and we are exposed to so much media that most people don’t have an appropriate context for the value of creative work. This mostly means that to have any success you must become an expert at marketing.

With all the new versions of Photoshop what changes do you personally feel are the most exciting or brilliant?
Layers was the first and most important one! After that, there has been a steady evolution of features that make image editing and image creation easier. The history panel is another great innovation, the various newer retouching tools: Spot Healing, Healing Brush, Content Aware Fill, etc.. Some of the big wow features have been great for demos, but end up having limited application in the real world. Photoshop has sort of become the Swiss Army Knife of graphics applications with support for 3D, Video, and god knows what else will be added in the near future.

What Photoshop artists/creatives do you follow, and why do they stand out from others in your opinion?
Dan Margulis, who is more of an educator than artist, but he is a true genius with color in Photoshop. I’ve followed him for years. Dave McKean, an incredible creative genius who has been an amazing illustrator, designer, film maker, and graphic novelist – really amazing. Bert Monroy – need I say more about him? Some great photo-illustration artists: Christophe Gilbert, Riccardo Bagnoli, Erik Almas, There are hundreds of really amazing people all over the world – Justin Maller in Australia, Maciej Mizer in Poland, (Poland is a hot bed of talent)

What social networks do you like most? Which present good examples of Photoshop and Photography the best?
Oh… I don’t know, Facebook and Google+, certainly. I like 500px for photography, Flickr, maybe Deviant Art? Behance is growing since Adobe’s support…

What is your prediction of the evolution of social networks? How do you think these networks will showcase artists and Photographers better in the future?
Well… its all about the social network, isn’t it? We will see continued growth of all kinds of specialized networks but Facebook and Google will continue to dominate. There’s no barrier to entry as far as showcases go so there just way too much material to look through – the individual will still need to develop a creative marketing strategy to get noticed among the millions of posts, and images online!

What predictions do you have for the future of Photoshop and Photography?
Photoshop will continue to evolve and I don’t see anyone offering anything competitive, which is too bad because we could use a little competitive stimulation. The technology of photography will eventually embrace computational photography and we’ll see more professional versions of things like the Lytro camera and other really innovative technologies for image capturing. There is a new wave of imaging technology right around the corner but I have no idea how long its going to take to become integrated into mainstream imaging.

Follow Lee here! http://www.varis.com online course: http://courses.varis.com on Facebook  on Google+ Helpouts:

Lee’s classes at PPSOP:

“Photoshop Layers Fundamentals” at PPSOP: http://www.ppsop.com/play.aspx and

“Portrait Retouching Fundamentals” at PPSOP: http://www.ppsop.com/prfp.aspx

Photoshop Cafe DVD

Interview with Theresa Jackson – Digital Artist

Theresa Jackson - Digital Artist
What is your title, and can you explain what your daily responsibilities are?
My title depends on the time of day. During the day I am a graphic artist. It is primarily how I make my living. At night I work on my digital art and I teach. I am also a photographer, writer and an Adobe Community Professional.

What inspired you most to become a Photographer/photo artist? Why did you pursue this as a career?
I didn’t originally pursue this career. I always knew that I was supposed to be an artist, but it took me many years to figure out how.

I graduated in 1984 with a BFA from UCLA before there was such a thing as digital art, digital photography or Photoshop. I primarily took drawing, photography and sculpture classes. I loved photography, but couldn’t embrace the technical side of it. I hated making test strips. Much of the photography I did in college was experimental, like exposing my images through ink washed Mylar to create a painted effect.

My first full time job was with a small offset printer, which began my career in graphics. In 1989 I was introduced to digital editing (before Photoshop). My career path afforded me the opportunity to grow my skills alongside the emerging digital technology, but it wasn’t until 2009 that I embraced those skills as my art.

What do you think is the biggest obstacle to pursuing a career in the creative fields?
Self Confidence. I don’t know why us artists are so insecure, but we are.

You have to absolutely love being creative and have faith in yourself, because you aren’t going to pursue a creative career for the money.

With all the new versions of Photoshop what changes do you personally feel are the most exciting or brilliant?
The Adobe Creative Cloud Photography Program makes Photoshop affordable and accessible for so many more people. That’s pretty exciting.

The new Perspective Warp tool is brilliant. Recently I had to composite a bunch of tablets into a three dimensional space. The original tablet was photographed in a way that would have made the project impossible without the Perspective Warp tool.

I also love one click updates for all of my CC applications, Camera Raw as a Photoshop filter and 32bit HDR editing in Lightroom.

What Photoshop artists/creatives do you follow, and why do they stand out from others in your opinion?
First, I think it is important to make time for the masters of past eras. I recently rediscovered Gustav Klimt and had one of those OMG moments. I’ve obviously been influenced by his work without consciously knowing it. Gauguin and Matisse have inspired me as long as I can remember.

As for current artists, I follow many. I picked these three, because their talent and friendship inspire me almost daily.

Patrick LaMontagne is a prolific digital painter and cartoon artist. His paintings inspire me to want to draw or paint. His hard work and dedication motivate me to do the same.

Chuck Uebele is brilliant, and funny and humble. I am awed by his Photoshop knowledge and honored to call him a friend.

Alan Hess is a local San Diego professional photographer, with the coolest job in the world. The first time we met, I asked him to tell me why I should go to Photoshop World. He gave me the perfect answer, and for that I am forever grateful.

What social networks do you like most? Which present good examples of Photoshop and Photography the best?
I like Facebook because of the interaction. It’s definitely not the best platform for image sharing, but it’s a great place for relationship building and that is important too.

What is your prediction of the evolution of social networks? How do you think these networks will showcase artists and Photographers better in the future?
Whomever figures out how to protect an artist’s image rights, and makes it easy to track image theft will win.

What predictions do you have for the future of Photoshop and Photography?
Everything will be mobile, Photoshop and photography. The DLSR as we know it today will die. The new professional camera will be small like our phones, but with removable lenses, memory cards, and manual controls. Everything will be controlled on the screen, which will essentially be the entire camera body. Before the DLSR completely dies, the remaining ones will be wifi enabled, include editing capabilities and social networking apps.

Follow Theresa here! www.orchardviewcolor.com  & on Facebook

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