New Video Workshop/Tour with Shane Hurlbut

The Shane Hurlbut Illumination Experience Video Tour

I’ve spent the last few days supporting the opening sessions of Shane Hurlbut’s Illumination Experience Video Tour. Datacolor is a sponsor of these events, which will take place in 26 cities.

The sessions are “intended for any filmmaker seeking industry insight on cinematic lighting and cinematography” – but they are much more than that. These workshops cover a lot of ground – from lighting basics through full cinematic setups, to camera operation and exposure management, to on-set color controls, plus post-production tips and more – and, Shane is one of the top instructors in the field.

Shane incorporates Datacolor technology into his color workflow, starting with lighting/camera setup through post-production.

shane photo


Quoting from the press release:

“The Illumination Experience is a two-part series; the Illumination Workshop, which will be taught in all 25 cities, and the Experience Masterclass which will be available to students in nine of these cities. (see link at the end of the post)

For the Illumination Workshop, Shane will demonstrate his avant-garde approach to three-point lighting during an interactive live shoot. Divided into three phases: discovery, creation, and execution, Shane’s students will…. design, develop, enhance, and supplement the storytelling process with lighting, script analysis, storyboard preparation, lighting schematics, and shot lists.

The Experience Masterclass is a day-long hands-on intensive consisting of two live shoots. The class will be divided into four teams. The teams will follow Shane’s lighting schematics to re-create film scenes from Crazy/Beautiful (2001) and Swing Vote (2008). With Shane’s guidance, students will learn to integrate methodical lighting with precise camera motion to achieve impactful results. Students will experiment with gear such as the Fisher 10 Dolly, the Movi, and the Kessler Crane in conjunction with various lights, filters, flags and bounces. Shane will critique each scene and provide customized feedback to each team.”

Shane Hurlbut, A.S.C., is a world-renowned cinematographer who has shot multimillion dollar blockbuster films such as Act of Valor, Drumline, Terminator: Salvation, The Rat Pack, We Are Marshall. Shane is a member of the prestigious American Society of Cinematographers and The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences. He is among a select group of cinematographers recognized by Canon as an “Explorer of Light” and by the Tiffen Company as an “ImageMaker”. “

For more information and registration:

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Fuji XE-1 – Just Received Camera for Review!

Well, I have a great way to start the New Year – got the loan of a brand new Fuji XE-1 for review! I’ll be writing an article of course. First impression out of the box: very light, classic layout for controls. Took a few test shots and now I’m reading through the manual….. I will be working with the camera for a week or two, and I will publish some images and brief comments here. I’m particularly interested in the performance of the new CMOS sensor. I will also be writing a review article for publication.

Fuji XE-1, Front View

Fuji XE-1, Front View

fuji rear - stock

Rear view

fuji with kit lens

New Master Class: Fine Art Digital Printmaking

Master Class: Fine Art Digital Printmaking
Instructor: David Saffir, July 15, Inkjet Paper Plus, Carlsbad, CA

“The Palouse” © D Saffir 2012

This is a full-day intermediate- to advanced-level one-day intensive class, intended for aspiring pros and professionals alike. Medium- and Wide-format printing will be the focus of this class. We will have the Epson 3880 and 9800 printers on hand, plus pro-level color management gear from Datacolor.

Contact me for more info or registration, or call 1-888-884-0144

If you pre-reg by July 5, fee is $245 incl lab fees. After that, $295

Thanks to Canson, Hahnemuhle, Digital2You for their support!

Selected Hints and Tips – Fine Art Printmaking for Print Competition

Selected Hints and Tips – Fine Art Printmaking for Print Competition

Sounds obvious, but only use your very best images. Test some of your better prints with friends and colleagues.

When you do this, watch for reactions. Which images create that “wow” response? tell a story effectively? show a subject in a new or unique way?

Composition – keep the “rule of thirds” in mind, and create a print that really provides focus on the main subject. Unneeded objects in foreground/background can ruin your score, as can distracting bright areas or intrusive shadows.

Generally, prints made on luster, pearl, or glossy paper show better in a competition environment. Fine art and “watercolor” papers tend to wash out under the bright lights used by judges.

Make sure that your colors, highlights, shadows, textures, and the like are presented as you want them to be. In general, you’ll want to see at least some detail in highlights and shadows, colors should be smooth, realistic, and show detail where appropriate, etc. Make sure uniform colors, such as skies, are free of digital artifacts like banding.

Make your prints a little darker overall than usual – again, we’re working with very bright lights.

Think about presentation – prints should be mounted on firm, flat stock, no irregularities, bumps, ripples, orange peel, and the like. Watch for color or saturation changes after mounting; although this rarely happens, mounting at high temps can ruin a great print.

If you use an outside printmaker, provide a digital file that is edited and ready to print. Use Adobe 98 RGB or ProPhoto RGB color if printing on inkjet, and usually sRGB if you are using an outside lab (ask them). Take care with your pixel dimensions – a 16z20 print can be 4800 x 6000 pixels at 300ppi. Ask your printmaker about image preparation.

Good luck!

© D Saffir

Click here for details of our upcoming Palouse Photo Tour, June 2012!

Color Comparison: Canon 5D Mark ll and Mark lll (article by C. David Tobie – Link)

Color Comparison: Canon 5D Mark ll and Mark lll

Posted by cdtobie on March 29, 2012
As the next generation of Nikon and Canon cameras hit the street, one of the questions that always occurs to me is how these new bodies interpret color, in relation to the tried and true models they are replacing. I will be testing more than one such pair, but lets begin with the newly released Canon 5D Mark lll, and its predecessor the Mark ll.

read more….


Join us for our next big photography workshop in the Palouse in June 2012 – click on the WORKSHOPS tab at the top of this page.

Segment 9, Photo Review Series: Line, Light, and Color with David Saffir and Sally Wiener Grotta

Photographers Sally Wiener Grotta and David Saffir analyze David’s midnight Manhattan street scene photo, which was created by engaging his technical expertise, but being guided by compositional instinct.
Image © David Saffir
(Video is part of the Light, Line, and Color series © 2012 by Sally Wiener Grotta and David Saffir.)

Next Segment, New Photo Review Series: Line, Light, and Color with David Saffir and Sally Wiener Grotta

No photographer can plan everything. Sally Wiener Grotta and David Saffir discuss how photographers hone their eyes and minds to take advantage of often fleeting accidents of nature and timing that can lead to momentous photographs. Image © David Saffir
(Video is part of the Light, Line, and Color series © 2012 by Sally Wiener Grotta and David Saffir.)

PS – take a look at the Workshops tab at the top of this page!