Home > Graphic Design > Review: Kelby Training, Down and Dirty Tricks D.C.

Review: Kelby Training, Down and Dirty Tricks D.C.

Josh Frankel: Review of Photoshop Down and Dirty Tricks

April 30th 2009 | Josh Frankel


To ensure Thycotic team members remain leaders in our areas of expertise we are encouraged to attend classes and seminars offered by experts in our various disciplines. To this end, I attended the “Photoshop Down & Dirty Tricks” seminar at the D.C. Convention Center.

The seminar teaches Photoshop techniques at all skill levels and appears to be one of the few large-scale designers’ conferences to come to D.C. Having already attended two Photoshop Worlds where training focused on issues specific to professional photographers, this seminar was much broader and the emphasis was on practical applications.

A Positive Commercial Shift

There was a shift towards Photoshop in a more commercial sense with references to popular trends in advertising and commercial typography. The main presenter, Scott Kelby, gave an awesome demonstration involving working with type in Photoshop – one of my favorite and most helpful classes. I was impressed with a lesson that dealt with working with limited source material – in this case one football player – and using various techniques to make an interesting and appealing poster. Having limited source material is rare for me, but I do enjoy the problem solving process that this sort of challenge presents.

On the Negative Side…

A minor negative aspect to the commercial focus of the class was that some of the looks and styles felt a bit played out. And one segment of the seminar covered the popular “shiny reflecting floor” which already has about a billion online tutorials, so I felt that time spent using this look in all of its variations was simply wasteful.

That being said, the value of training for me has always been to see which experiments and fortunate accidents are guiding other peoples’ work. These seminars serve as a constant reminder that as much of Photoshop as I learn, I’m really only using about 3% of its capabilities at most.

Find out more about the Kelby Training Seminars at www.kelbytraining.com/seminars/index.html.

And if you’re in the D.C. area and are in the field of design, there is an Adobe User Group that has meetup events, as well as a NetSquared meetup event that brings together individuals from various fields related to web presence.

Josh Frankel is the junior graphic designer and marketing team member at Thycotic Software Ltd, an agile software consulting and product development company based in Washington DC. Secret Server is our flagship enterprise password management product.
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