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Editor’s Retreat Offers Expanded Content

The Editor's Retreat has announced even more speakers and sessions.

  • The Evolving Role of the Editor
  • State of the Union by Avid, Apple, & Adobe
  • Power Tools - Photoshop Automation, Small Format Tips: iPods and Beyond
  • Color Grading Theory and Techniques
  • Business Track: Freelancers, Boutique Owners, Facility Managers
 
Speakers who've been added that we know and work with:
 


The Editors Retreat is an unparalleled industry event, exclusive to highly experienced editors of film, TV and video. To ensure that only the best of the best attend, participation is subject to an application and screening process by a committee of peers. Running for 5 days and 4 nights, the Retreat will only be open to approximately 75 qualified applicants.

The Retreat’s focus will be evenly split between high-end technical sessions and ‘the world behind the timeline’ – the creativity and the craft of the editor, and the business of creating a thriving editing career. Presenters include award-winning editors and icons from the editing world, alumni of previous FMC ‘Master Editor’ programs and known industry power users.



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Never Lost on a Road Trip Again

I have found the best gadget for traveling... an affordable GPS system that you can take with you on the road. I'm in LA for the Podcasting Expo and I bought a portable GPS unit (for those of you who've driven LA, you'll understand the need to bale from a clogged highway and find a new route). The Garmin Nuvi 360 Pocket or Vehicle GPS Navigator just rocks.

• It just works, zero problems getting a signal and clear directions.
• It has Bluetooth which is really cool. Pair it with your cell phone and it works as a speaker phone. Need to find a hotel or restaurant, click the built-in guide then push the phone button and you are connected. Dial the office and you have a great hands-free speaker phone. It's clear for both parties and totally works.
• It has built-in storage, and can play music (and even cooler Audible books).
• The screen is bright and clear, plus its a touch screen
• It charges via a USB cable or runs of a cigarette adapter.
• You can put it into a pedestrian mode for walking around cities (it'll ignore one ways, or places that aren't accessible to pedestrians).
• There are no subscription fees.

Be sure to
check it out... this little device has taken away a big chunk of the stress I feel in rental cars (and makes my wife happy as she uses it in her non-GPSed car when I am not traveling).

Thanks to
Terry White from Adobe for the initial tip.

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16 UAP - Quick Mask Mode, Part 1 of 2

Instructor Richard Harrington explains how you can use the quick mask command to make a complex selection in Photoshop. Part 1 of 2.



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Books.
|

A Good Week for our New Photoshop Podcast

So... I've never been able to say this... forgive the indulgence... “We're number one... we're number one!” Okay... I’m over it. This week our new Podcast hit #1 on the iTunes Store for Software Training (and we broke the Top 5 for all technology). I am quite happy that thousands of folks are accessing our Photoshop training and I hope you all find it helpful. In case you haven’t subscribed yet (it’s free) be sure to check it out on the iTunes store (if you don't want to use iTunes, click here.)

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Going to Podcast & Portable Media Expo?


I'll be at the Podcast and Portable Media Expo next week in California. This two day event is all about podcasting and the such. If you plan to attend, I'd love to catch up. I'll be sure to bring back a report on all that I learn. I'll also be filing reports for Inside Media Networks and will add links as the stories go online. The event will be held September 29 & 30 in Ontario, California (not far from LA). Hope to see some of you there.



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15 UAP - Smart Objects

Instructor Richard Harrington explains serveral options you can use to modify your selections in Photoshop.



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Books.
|

A Universal Media Player

Tired of trying to open your media files in a variety of players only to suffer from incompatibility and versioning issues? Video Lan Client (or VLC) is the most universal player I've found. In my tests, I opened Windows-formatted media files on my Mac with surprising success. I also see greater compatibility on the Windows side as well (plus an easier-to-use interface than Windows Media Player). If your Web video experience seems incomplete, or you are looking for another app to test your media files before distribution, be sure to check this one out. You can open and view pretty much any form of audio or video on both a Mac or a PC (or any flavor of Linux for that matter).
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Classic TV Test Pattern Now as Desktop Wallpaper


A few folks commented about my desktop pattern at a recent conference. It seems the old 'Indian head' pattern evokes some memories in many audience members.

Well the version I had comes from a Russian designer named Art. Lebedev. You'll find it and several other pieces of artwork on his
posters page. For the test pattern, scroll down to the bottom and you'll find it in the right column. All are free to download.



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Why You Must Download iTunes 7 Today


The short answer... it rocks.

Apple has taken a nearly perfect piece of software and made it better. There's a
full write-up on Apple's site, but I'd like to share some standout features and what they really mean to the end user.


Movies – So they're only from Disney-owned companies (for now)... someone had to be first. What's nice is Apple upped the quality to 640X480 which looks great on a laptop and playing off an iPod to a TV set via the AV cable. By the way... it's you buy movies (and everything else) from the iTunes Store (they dropped the word Music).

Cover Flow – You can now flip through all of your 'albums' by cover.... it's a cool 3D effect that encourages browsing and helps put a face back on those 'virtual' albums. Missing artwork? No problem... iTunes will now download artwork for free and add it to any song in your library (provided the album is listed in the iTunes store).

New User Interface – The Source List allows you to view and manage all of your files and devices. It really lets you take control of your collection (especially if you have multiple iPods). iPod Games – Just what I need... a waste of time... but I've already bought three. So far Cubis is my favorite, game-play with the scroll wheel is enjoyble and at $4.99, it wasn't a hard sell. The games only work with the 5G (or video iPods) but no problems for me as my nearly year-old iPod worked fine.

Device Management – You know get total control over each iPod, including which elements sync. I particulary like the visual interface that displays the contents of an iPod.


Download Manager – You can now control the order of downloads (useful when you want to hear the music you just chosen and its stuck behind a HUGE movie file. What is even better is the ability to pause (or stop) a download and resume where you left off. This was helpful while riding the Amtrak Acela to New York as my Internet connection kept dropping (hey... tunnels... Hudson River... I understand).


Onscreen Video Controls – Straight out of QuickTime, you now get a great controller that floats over the picture (when you move the mouse). Convenient controls are easy to reach (including a useful full-screnn button). I find this most useful as my keyboard shortcut database has no room left in the brain.

Library Backup – Having lost music... I really appreciate this feature. You can now initiate a “Back Up to Disc” command. This quickly allows you to back up your entire iTunes library to CD or DVD.

Reverse Sync –
If you plug your iPod into another computer that has been authorized for your iTunes account (up to 5 machines), you can now transfer music OFF the iPod. It only works with music purchases... but its flawless.

To get the new update...
visit the iTunes page.

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My Laptop Backup Strategy

I have bad luck when it comes to laptops (or perhaps as the Apple tech said, I work my laptops harder than 99% of the users out there). It seems I have experienced data loss a few times to many and I finally sat down and figured out a back-up strategy. So you can save yourself a headache, I offer you my workflow to achieve data nirvana.



1. Get a small, high-quality drive that you can take with you. My choice was to get an OWC Mercury On-The-Go case. There are four different options to choose from and they each offer connection options that are impressive. My choice was to get the case only and drop in a SATA laptop drive. I was able to get a 160 GB drive that is big enough to hold the contents of both my MacBook and MackBook Pro. (If you are curious... the MBP is my small writing/blogging machine while the 17 inch is for teaching and production... 17 inch laptops and coach seats don't go together.)

2. Get backup software like Data Backup from Prosoft. I like this package because its affordable and I have had great experiences with the company's other software like Data Rescue and Picture Rescue. This package allows you to Clone your drives and make a bootable image so you can easily restore files. My favorite feature is its robust scheduling tools including the ability to have a backup start whenever you plug in the backup drive. Simply set the program to automatically open as a login item (right click on its icon in the Dock at choose Open at Login). Then choose to set a schedule and set an event for the presence of the backup target.

3. Remember to plug-in the backup drive weekly, and keep it in the bag of your laptop.

That's it... much less stress for the road warrior.
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Lost Fans or Casual Bystanders... Catch Up!


So iTunes and ABC are doing something cool. You can download the season finale of Lost (as well as Grey's Anatomy and Desperate Housewives) for free. The first Million viewers can pull down the show as well as "The Lost Survival Guide" so you can catch back up.

As a podcaster, it's an interesting concept. Making something free, but 'exclusive' (if you consider a million to be exclusive). Still, I like free TV as much as the next creative type.

Be sure to
check it out.... it's free after all!




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Automating FCP Project Backups (Works for others too!)

Over at RHED Pixel, we've finally come up with a reasonable backup strategy for our FCP systems. Figured I'd share for those of you who need it

1.
Target One Folder – We save all FCP projects to an FCP folder on the internal drive.

2. Use Backup Software – We've started using Data Backup from Prosoft. I like this package because its affordable and I have had great experiences with the company's other software like Data Rescue and Picture Rescue. This package allows you to pick a folder for backup. My favorite feature is its robust scheduling tools.

• Simply purchase a 1-4 GB USB thumb drive and plug it into your system.
• Then set Data Backup to automatically open as a login item (right click on its icon in the Dock at choose Open at Login).
• Then choose to set a schedule for backup and target the thumb drive.

May your project files find a safe haven.... All for about $150 a machine (software plus thumb drive).



|

Why You Must Download iTunes 7 Today


The short answer... it rocks.

Apple has taken a nearly perfect piece of software and made it better. There's a
full write-up on Apple's site, but I'd like to share some standout features and what they really mean to the end user.


Movies – So they're only from Disney-owned companies (for now)... someone had to be first. What's nice is Apple upped the quality to 640X480 which looks great on a laptop and playing off an iPod to a TV set via the AV cable. By the way... it's you buy movies (and everything else) from the iTunes Store (they dropped the word Music).

Cover Flow – You can now flip through all of your 'albums' by cover.... it's a cool 3D effect that encourages browsing and helps put a face back on those 'virtual' albums. Missing artwork? No problem... iTunes will now download artwork for free and add it to any song in your library (provided the album is listed in the iTunes store).

New User Interface – The Source List allows you to view and manage all of your files and devices. It really lets you take control of your collection (especially if you have multiple iPods). iPod Games – Just what I need... a waste of time... but I've already bought three. So far Cubis is my favorite, game-play with the scroll wheel is enjoyble and at $4.99, it wasn't a hard sell. The games only work with the 5G (or video iPods) but no problems for me as my nearly year-old iPod worked fine.

Device Management – You know get total control over each iPod, including which elements sync. I particulary like the visual interface that displays the contents of an iPod.


Download Manager – You can now control the order of downloads (useful when you want to hear the music you just chosen and its stuck behind a HUGE movie file. What is even better is the ability to pause (or stop) a download and resume where you left off. This was helpful while riding the Amtrak Acela to New York as my Internet connection kept dropping (hey... tunnels... Hudson River... I understand).


Onscreen Video Controls – Straight out of QuickTime, you now get a great controller that floats over the picture (when you move the mouse). Convenient controls are easy to reach (including a useful full-screnn button). I find this most useful as my keyboard shortcut database has no room left in the brain.

Library Backup – Having lost music... I really appreciate this feature. You can now initiate a “Back Up to Disc” command. This quickly allows you to back up your entire iTunes library to CD or DVD.

Reverse Sync –
If you plug your iPod into another computer that has been authorized for your iTunes account (up to 5 machines), you can now transfer music OFF the iPod. It only works with music purchases... but its flawless.

To get the new update...
visit the iTunes page.
|

Paralells Gets Even Better

Long time readers will know that we are big fans of Parallels Desktop solution for running Windows on a Mac. No need for multiple partitions or rebooting, you can have both Operating Systems going at the same time. Plus you can install the optional Tools that allow you to copy and paste between systems and even access folders on your Mac.

The good news... their
trial is still available and a new update has been released.

Recent improvements include:
  • Support for new quad-processor Mac Pro towers outfitted with up to 3.5GB of RAM
  • Experimental support for Windows Vista
  • An improved Parallels Tools package
  • Better video output improvement and acceleration
  • Added isochronous USB devices support (including WebCam devices)
  • Keyboard support improvement: Eject CD key support and more
  • Clipboard synchronization tool
  • Sound playback and recording improvement
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iTunes 7 – My Review


I've put the new iTunes 7 software through a hard core review and it's awesome. With great new features for managing your media, retrieving purchased music from the iPod, and browsing by album art, it's a great update.

If you'd like to find out its best features, then head over to my graphics blog Raster|Vector for a hands-on review. You can check it out
here.




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Just Can't Get Enough Photoshop? We've Got Two Free Podcasts for You.

If you're a Photoshop fan, then we've got you covered. We've got two Photoshop podcasts you should check out.


  • Understanding Adobe Photoshop This is a weekly podcast targeting new and intermediate users of Photoshop in all industries. It's sponsored by Peachpit TV.
  • Photoshop for Video This one also comes at you every week and focusses on those issues facing video and motion graphic designers. Other kinds of users may enjoy its emphasis on speed and flexibility as well.

    By the way... we're not the only one's who like them. Apple has featured both on the front page of the Technology section in their New & Notable spotlight.

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Machine Wash Filters for Photoshop

While much of my time is spent making photos look better... sometimes I have to go the opposite direction. Mister Retro has three filter packs available called machine wash that can mangle and age images or text. Think of those "new-old" tee-shirts that are so popular in stores like American Eagle and Abercrombie and Fitch.

I first started using Machine Wash when they were actions for Photoshop, now they've evolved into actual filters. I checked them out at Photoshop World in Las Vegas, and the plug-ins are fast and responsive. These filters are of course well suited for clothing, but I find myself using them on photos and type treatments for the screen as well. To see a real-time preview, check out their gallery.

The filters are priced at $49 a set, and upgrades for previous users are available if you contact tech support.



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14 UAP - Smart Objects

Instructor Richard Harrington explains Smart Objects and how this feature can help you retain the quality of Photoshop layers and imported images while allowing you maximum flexibility.



Like the podcast? Subscribe for FREE.
Want more training? Check out our
Books.
|

New Conference Notes


As Photoshop World winds down, its time for homework. Be sure to check out the conference handout section for extra notes and practice files. If you took a class with me, I hope you enjoyed. Have fun and keep learning.


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New DVD – Motion Control: Turning Photos into Moving Footage

It’s finally shipping, my new DVD. If you need to use photos in your videos or film, you'll enjoy this new disc. I go very in-depth on how to create standard and 3D camera moves with photos.

Motion Control: Using Photoshop and After Effects To Tranform Still Images into Moving Footage
No longer locked to a stationary position on screen, your photos now possess distinct storytelling abilities.  Join Richard Harrington, Photoshop and motion graphics guru, as he reveals the top techniques used by pros to bring still images to life.  This DVD will benefit all users interested in improved storytelling abilities. You’ll learn essential techniques both in 2D and 3D space.
  • Adobe Photoshop essentials
  • Traditional two-dimensional motion control
  • Using 3D cameras
  • Working in 3D space
  • Using 3D lighting to enhance your images
  • Performing advanced camera operations
Bonus Features
  • Original and processed images
  • Adobe Photoshop and After Effects project assets
Estimated ship date is September 20th 2006. You can order it here.


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New Photoshop Podcast


Join us each week for a dose of professional Photoshop training. We've turned our new book, Understanding Adobe Photoshop into a weekly podcast. It's a good idea to subscribe via iTunes, as back episodes won't hang around long. If you are impatient (or want to get the whole set on a DVD) you can purchase the book.

Subscribe now and receive a dose technical training delivered every Monday. Understanding Adobe Photoshop with Richard Harrington .

The new podcast is brought to you by the fine folks at Peachpit Press.

Hope you all enjoy...

NOTE: If you haven't subscribed... don't miss our free Photoshop podcast exclusively for video pros – Photoshop CS: Essentials for Digital Video.



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13 UAP - Free Transform Command

Instructor Richard Harrington covers the free transofrm command, a very flexible way to move, rotate and scale images within your Photoshop document.



Like the podcast? Subscribe for FREE.
Want more training? Check out our
Books.
|

Understanding Adobe Photoshop Gets High Marks


A few months ago, my new book on Adobe Photoshop was released. I'm not one for fancy titles... so I simply called this one "Understanding Adobe Photoshop." The book combined everything I learned teaching Adobe Photoshop to both college students and working pros, and it is targeted for both new users and those who are self-taught (having never taken a full college-level class).

The book is doing well (but of course... I'd be happy to sell more). It is
very well-suited for classroom use as well with hundreds of hands-on exercises (including images) as well as 4.5 hours of training videos. Enough of my thoughts... what are others saying?
Read More...
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New Design Tool for Slow Days


Looking for a new design tool? Well this probably is not it... but it is fun. The Official Seal Generator can create 'official-looking' seals in a flash. Enter your text then choose a border and an emblem. You can even customize colors. A simple click of the 'Go' button and an 'Official Seal' will be generated for you. If the presets don't do it for you, the author encourages you to make contact.

There's a ton of funny things like this made by the same group, be sure to check out
their site.





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If You're an Experienced Video Editor... Check Out this Event

One of the most influential events I've ever attended was Avid's Master Editor Workshop series. But it appears that the workshop has gone the way of Umatic tape machines. The replacement? A new event called the Editors Retreat. This is truly a retreat, in that editors come to live together and learn (did I mention the living part happens in South Beach in January). The event runs for 5 days and 4 nights, and is open to approximately 75 qualified applicants. The Retreat’s focus focusses on high-end technical sessions and ‘the world behind the timeline’ – the creativity and the craft of the editor. Other classes delve into the business side as well. Its a great learning opportunity and worth checking out.


|

Missed SIGGRAPH? Want News?


If you couldn't make it to SIGGRAPH, be sure to check out these great video reports. Over at the Digital Production Buzz, you'll find several video podcasts with the newsmakers at SIGGRAPH. Additionally, you'll find additional podcasts from NAB and E3. You can subscribe to this occasional feed of video-of-interest here.


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Final Results of the NLE Survey

The polls are now closed for our August survey.
We asked:
Which NLE do you prefer to use the most?



We set an all time record for responses. All said, 510 users weighed in... and the results were surprising.

1. Apple Final Cut Pro/Final Cut Express (36.27%)
2. Avid Nonlinear Editing Systems (
31.96%)
3. Sony Vegas (
14.12%)
4. Adobe Premiere Pro (
13.73%)
5. Media 100 (
3.92%)

Given the number of respondents, we have determined that the survey is accurate within +/- 4%... That means Final Cut Pros lead was slim, but it still took the top spot.



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Going to Photoshop World? Then Take My Classes...

Hope to see some of you at Photoshop World in Las Vegas. If you plan to attend, I hope to see some of you there. Here's my teaching schedule for those who'd like to catch up.

Thursday – September 7
Do No Harm - Non-Destructive Color Correction
NAPP Expo Theatre – 03:30-04:30 pm

Help Desk Live
Various Times

Friday – September 8
Your Photoshop is in My After Effects
Motion Graphics Track – 09:30 -10:30 am

Podcasting for Educators
Peachpit Expo Theater – 12:00-12:40 pm

Photoshop in the Classroom
Peachpit Expo Theater – 2:00 - 2:40 pm

Typography in Motion
Motion Graphics Track – 4:00 - 5:00 pm

Motion Control 3D
Motion Graphics Track – 5:15 - 6:15 pm



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Photoshop for Video Podcast Gets Reviewed

Thanks to Sheila Ward and DV Guru for the write-up on our Photoshop for Video podcast. We appreciate the link and turning people on to our show. If you've never checked out their site, have a look. Its a great community of bloggers posting on digital video and related technology.



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© 2010 Richard Harrington LLC