How to get a professional up-to-date portfolio for a reasonable money.

If you are on the way to create new or update your old portfolio this post is for you. I can show you 3 different ways to do it: easy, intermediate and advanced.

1. Easy

Only for $50 per year you can get Gorgeous Portfolio with your own domain and without any upload limits. iPhone & iPad ready. And it is really easy. Just upload your best photos and write bio and contact info. There are several themes for choosing. They are simple, clean and elegant.

Go to and you will have a great portfolio in minutes. Also there you can start your blog if you want.

This is the photo portfolio example:

Continue reading How to get a professional up-to-date portfolio for a reasonable money.

How to do a water splash butterfly. Post production.

Some time ago I was impressed with stunning water splash photos some photographers did. I saw flowers, birds, bulls, horses. I was curious  how they actually did it?

Now I know the answer:-)
First, you need a huge set of water splash images and second, many hours of assiduous work. And here is my water splash butterfly:

Water splash butterfly

Water splash butterfly

As you can see at my Layer palette, I did many trials, errors, experimentation. See how many layers turned off:-) But for me it’s only one way to learn – error and trial, and trial again. This what we call experience:-)

Continue reading How to do a water splash butterfly. Post production.

Light brush painting. Post-production.

Recently Alex had a new post on Using light painting (lighting brush) technique in product photography. It’s not a new technique, we play with it almost 10 years ago, but I think this method is pretty spectacular and expressive.

At the same time working with a light brush is so very creative process that it’s hard to stop:-) You fill yourself  like a painter:-) Look at the video below and you will see how the final image was created, stroke by stroke.

[kml_flashembed publishmethod="static" fversion="8.0.0" movie="" width="600" height="736" fid="video" targetclass="flashmovie" play="true" loop="true" quality="high"]
Get Adobe Flash player

To create the image, in addition to the knowledge of light and the camera, you should know how to work with masks in Photoshop. I will not teach you the basics of how to work with masks, Google it and you’ll find many great tutorials. Knowing masking in Photoshop is a must for up-to-day photographer or digital artist, IMO.

Continue reading Light brush painting. Post-production.

Recent discovery: Dr. Brown’s Adobe Photoshop CS5 Script – Edit Layers in ACR.

Update: This script is for edit psd layers in Adobe Camera RAW ONLY, because you can open any TIFF and JPEG through Bridge. Right click on the image and choose Open in Camera RAW… I did not know it. Thank you guys from  LinkedIn :-)


Some days, working on customer’s images (not RAW), I had a dream:-) I wish it would be possible to edit TIFF or even JPEG files in Adobe Camera RAW converter. ACR has a very convenient interface and controls, and I’ve got used to work with it.  And what a surprise:

Calvin Hollywood asked Russell Brown to write this amazing script. You can download the script here. With this script, you are able to open any layer of your psd file in a camera raw converter. It does not matter what image it is: TIFF or a crappy JPEG because you can still use RAW converter interface to adjust it as if it were a RAW (obviously, it won’t make file RAW-like). You can see the video how it works.

For a quick test, I tried to edit a JPEG file (made by point-and-shoot camera) of my daughter working in class. The result was truly impressive! Love it!

I do not  have much TIFFs or JPEGs (we shoot only RAW),  but if you have to edit such files this script is able to save a lot of time as ACR converter is very intuitive and convenient.

Mouse Over to see Before and After

Edit layers in ACR script. Photoshop.

Edit layers in ACR script. Photoshop.

Thank you for looking. Any feedback and suggestions are very welcome!
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Advanced sharpening for web in one click and full control.

There are many tutorials how to sharp images for web, and I tested majority of them. Finally I found the one which works best for me. I did not invent the algorithm, big thanks to smart Russian guy, photographer Pavel Kosenko for his research, summarizing the knowledge and finally action he created. I use  this action couple years already and very happy with result.

I am not a theorist I only filter and use the best on the marker:-). So if you are interested in theory, please read books and another blogs for the explanation on how and why every step works this way. Here I give you  only a practical part. This action works best for web size images from 300 х 200 px to 1200 x 800 px.

Below one of the examples of how this actions works. Mouse Over to see Before and After

Advanced sharpening in photoshop for web.

Advanced sharpening in Photoshop for web.

Now, the sharpening process, step by step (or you can download Action at the bottom of this article):

Continue reading Advanced sharpening for web in one click and full control.

Using curves in photoshop for retouching. Very useful trick.

I was asked couple times what the strange mode I used in my video. So, here is the answer:

I used curves presets to see differences in gradients and colors. When I apply various curves  even slight  difference in color or brightness become extremely visible. Here are two examples:

1. On this image I want to see clearly every tiny dust piece on the black background. It highlights it very well by using such curve:

Using curves in retouching.

Continue reading Using curves in photoshop for retouching. Very useful trick.

Landscape photography. My post production.

I have been asked many times about the post production I do for a landscape photography. This post should answer some of the questions, as I’ll show you how and what I did on the images from our trip to Key West, FL.
A funny thing is that there is no Photoshop (by it’s common meaning): I’ve used RAW converter to do all (except sharping) the job.
This is why Alex always shoot RAW, and I like to work with RAW files. It is much faster and cleaner to use a RAW converter and a batch processing to get a perfectly adjusted large stack of photos.

Below, I show you several screen shots so that you can see what adjustments I did in a RAW Converter for the particular image. You can’t simply apply these settings for your picture, as they may not work in your case, but you can see the idea and experiment with your own image by moving  sliders and see the difference.

Continue reading Landscape photography. My post production.

Product photography behind the scene video: Post production part.

A recorded LIVE broadcast from the product photography masterclass you can find at Alex’s blog. Here is a post production part with some explanations what I did. Hope you will find it interesting:-)

Mouse Over to see Before and After retouching

Product photography retouching, video.

Product photography retouching, video.

Thank you for looking. Any feedback and suggestions are very welcome!
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All the best,


How to shoot watches like a pro: new AKELstudio LIVE Masterclass announced!

This is the announcement of our next LIVE Masterclass. More details please find at Alex Koloskov’s blog.

LIVE Masterclass will be completely free, but recorded video will cost $49. Video will include bonus; a retouching  for the watch.

Below is the image before and after post-production. Similar photo we will do on our Masterclass.

Join us  Sunday 24 of October 2010, 4PM Eastern time. The link to LIVE broadcast is on AKELstudio main page, top menu: AKELstudio LIVE! You have to have an account to get there, member login is on top of the page.

Mouse Over to see Before and After

AKELstudio product photography, watch lesson masterclass

AKELstudio product photography, watch lesson masterclass

How and where learn High End Photo Retouching. Tips and resources.

If you believe in self-education (like I do), you don’t need to go to a school or college to become a retoucher, you should only know the right places where to find an information and spend many many hours, days and years for practice. I can help you with right resources where you can learn the High End retouching techniques. Hope it will save your time, energy and money (I wish I had these links couple years ago:-)

Most helpful and friendly community for retouchers is RetouchPro.

RetouchPro hosts a  regular  live, interactive masterclasses where you watch a guest retoucher’s desktop as they work in real time. You can also ask questions for the guest retoucher.  These live events usually cost only $10 and for this money you will get a ton of useful information.

Free tutorials:

Continue reading How and where learn High End Photo Retouching. Tips and resources.