Wacom eStore - official Onlinestore Wacom InfoChannel http://eu.shop.wacom.eu/wacom-infochannel?p=8 2017-11-17T21:58:31Z Fixing a Tattoo with the Cintiq Companion 2 http://eu.shop.wacom.eu/wacom-infochannel/fixing-a-tattoo-with-the-cintiq-companion-2/1016?c=2213303 Wacom teamed with Big Gus this year at The Biggest Tattoo Show on Earth and chronicled a nightmare tattoo fix from start to finish, including his stop at the Cintiq Companion 2, where he worked with his client to view an accurate mockup and ensure he'd love his repaired should...

Fixing a Nightmare Tattoo with the Cintiq Companion 2

Since 2012, Big Gus of Big Gus Ink has been helping body art enthusiasts right regrettable decisions on Spike TV's Tattoo Nightmares. Along with Jasmine Rodriguez and Tommy Helm, Big Gus has used his exemplary skills to transform old tattoos into completely new works of art to suit each client's needs and help them shed the weight of wearing a tattoo they just can't stand anymore.

Wacom teamed with Big Gus this year at The Biggest Tattoo Show on Earth and chronicled a nightmare tattoo fix from start to finish, including his stop at the Cintiq Companion 2, where he worked with his client to view an accurate mockup and ensure he'd love his repaired shoulder piece.

Watch the full Cintiq Companion 2-aided tattoo transformation below:

]]>
Tue, 23 Feb 2016 15:28:21 +100
Tutorial | How to Make an Animated GIF http://eu.shop.wacom.eu/wacom-infochannel/tutorial-how-to-make-an-animated-gif/1015?c=2213303 They say a picture is worth a thousand words, but these days people count on animated GIFs to convey an additional dimension of emotion on social media.Illustrators needn\'t worry about getting lost in the GIF shuffle, though. It\'s easy to make your own using your original ar...

How to Make an Animated GIF With Brooke A. Allen

They say a picture is worth a thousand words, but these days people count on animated GIFs to convey an additional dimension of emotion on social media.Illustrators needn't worry about getting lost in the GIF shuffle, though. It's easy to make your own using your original artwork.

Comic book creator Brooke A. Allen, known for her work as the artist of Lumberjanes from Boom! Studios, has you covered with this Create More tutorial that shows you how to create an animated GIF using Adobe Photoshop and an Intuos Pro tablet.

Start with a piece of art and use Photoshop's timeline to transform a single image into an animated file you can share on sites like Tumblr, or in text messages on your smartphone. Who knows? It may kickstart even more animation creation with your Wacom tablet of choice.

Learn how to create an animated GIF with Brooke below:

]]>
Tue, 23 Feb 2016 15:02:12 +100
Intuos Art | Step by Step Guide to Painting Digitally http://eu.shop.wacom.eu/wacom-infochannel/intuos-art-step-by-step-guide-to-painting-digitally/1012?c=2213303 Whether you're a beginner to digital art or art in general, our five-step tutorial will show you how to create a work of digital art from start to finish.

Learn to Paint Digitally with the Intuos Art Tablet

Artist Aaron Blaise has been working on some of Disney's most celebrated animated features as both an animator and director for almost 25 years, and much of that time has been spent at the helm of a Wacom tablet. So when we went looking for the perfect instructor to demonstrate how to create beautiful digital paintings with the Intuos Art and its included Corel Painter Essentials software, the director of Brother Bear was a no-brainer.

Whether you're a beginner to digital art or art in general, Aaron's five-step tutorial will show you how to create a work of digital art from start to finish. You'll see how to start with a rough drawing, refine it, rough in color, create shadows and highlights, and complete a piece with finishing details. You won't just learning how to use software and hardware, you'll be absorbing fundamental skills from a master.

Watch the entire series for more than 45 minutes of expert instruction, below:

Rough Drawing

 

 

Refining a Drawing

 

 

Roughing in Color

 

 

Creating Shadows and Highlights

 

Adding Finishing Details to an Image

]]>
Fri, 12 Feb 2016 11:17:12 +100
How to Create Your Own Stationery on the iPad http://eu.shop.wacom.eu/wacom-infochannel/how-to-create-your-own-stationery-on-the-ipad/1008?c=2213303 Some things in life require that personal, hand-written touch. Everyday greetings, lunch notes, or love letters get that extra bit of substance when you break away from the keyboard. As a busy freelancer, I’m always looking to pack in creativity that’s simple, fun, and quick t...

How to Create Your Own Stationery on the iPad

by Valerie Seijas

Some things in life require that personal, hand-written touch. Everyday greetings, lunch notes, or love letters get that extra bit of substance when you break away from the keyboard. As a busy freelancer, I’m always looking to pack in creativity that’s simple, fun, and quick to complete. I like using my Bamboo Stylus fineline with the Bamboo Paper app for the iPad to create something more personal on the fly.

In this tutorial I’m going to walk you through a few simple steps to creating your very own stationery — for print, email, or somewhere in-between.

1. Visualize the Finished Product

Setting a goal can really help kickstart a project. What do you want your stationery to look like? Tall and skinny? Perfectly square? Maybe something simple and classic?

Sometimes I refer to standard stationery sizes for inspiration. Here are a few good starting points:

4 Bar — 4 7/8″ x 3 1/2″
aka: The Perfect Thank You Note
Also great for reminders and quick to-do lists.

Square — about 5.5” x 5.5”
Easy to mail, easy to Instagram.

A7 / Postcard — 5”x7”
Classic size for invitations, postcards, mailers, or holiday greetings.
Most any size work for my printer at home, so whipping up a quick note on some photo paper was never easier.
Remember, it’s just a starting point. Since my iPad is about the same size as a standard postcard, I’m going to start with a 5x7” card in mind.

2. Select a Style

A blank screen can be daunting! Sketching on themes or motifs can help you hone in on the perfect idea.

Themes

Themes are a great way to personalize stationery. Think of everyday objects or symbols and ideas that tell a story about you.

What represents you? Are you an avid skier or a secret bird watcher? Do you love Paris, books, or binge-watching Netflix?


Motifs & Patterns

Express your creativity using graphic elements. The arrangement of simple geometric shapes, lines, and colors can make a smart note pop.

What shapes or patterns surround you? Are you more paisley than polka dot? Chevron or stripe?


Initials & Monograms

Artfully include your initials or signature on your stationery to make it truly personal.

What represents you? A decorative single initial? A simple signature?


or this card, I think I’ll use some fresh flowers as inspiration.

3. Sketch Thumbnails of Your Layout

Here’s why you try out a few different layouts to get a sense of how much space you should fill using the Bamboo Stylus fineline (for tips on getting started with your fineline, click here). For these quick sketches I like to use the classic Pencil brush with a medium grey tone.

Sketch out some simple ideas to see what works (and what ultimately does not). Keep in mind the basic elements of good design and remember to leave enough room for notes, signatures, or stamps.

4. Select Your Favorite

After sketching a few ideas, take a look at your work.

What’s working for you? What isn’t working? Will you have enough room to write? Is the design simple enough to complete?

5. Create a Color Palette

Before we move onto the final design, pick out a few colors that work with your sketch. Bamboo Paper makes picking a palette easy and accessible.

First, I choose my flat colors. The Brush Pen is great for quickly laying down bright color and filling in shapes. Draw a few basic shapes so you can see how your colors coordinate. Erase and choose another color if your first shot doesn’t feel quite right.

Once I have my palette, I’ll use different brushes to play with layering and textures. Here I used the Felt Tip to see how the color blends when I overlap strokes.

Start simply. One or two colors can really make your design stand out. You can always add more as you go along if it feels incomplete.

6. Draft Your Final Design

Create a new page in your notebook. Using your favorite thumbnail as a guide, start drafting your final design.
I like to start with a line drawing, adding more color and fill after I get the main shapes in place.
Keep it loose and don’t be afraid to change things up as you go.

7. Round Out the Details

Now that I have a great line drawing, it’s time to play with color and add the final touches.

Choose a brush for the fills — the Felt Pen and Watercolor brush are great for layering. Here, I used the Felt pen to create a watercolor-like effect. For the bloom, I began in the center, working my way outwards in layers to capture the light that comes through the bloom of the flower.

Don’t worry about coloring precisely in the lines. Layered colors and depths can give your design an expressive quality.

When the design just about finished, I’ll make one final pass with the Eraser to clean up any unwanted marks I may have made in the creative process.

8. Save & Send!

Use the Share button to save or send your new notecard. I like to use the built in Wacom Dropzone feature. It keeps all my ideas in one place and makes it easy to send or print from my computer later on.

- Print It at Home
- Email It to a Friend
- Share it on Instagram, Facebook, Pinterest, or Tumblr
- Send it off to a professional printer like Shutterfly

Stationery is about accenting your words with personality. Keep things simple and let your design shine.


Keep creating on your iPad with the latest tutorials, tips and inspiration from Bamboo News by clicking here.

Valerie Seijas is a freelance Illustrator & Designer who works with Fortune 500 companies, startups, and non-profits to solve problems and create better digital experiences. She lives and works in New York City. To see more of her work, visitwww.valerieseijas.com.

]]>
Mon, 08 Feb 2016 10:33:45 +100
Bamboo Spark for Writers: Write Longhand and Covert to Text http://eu.shop.wacom.eu/wacom-infochannel/bamboo-spark-for-writers-write-longhand-and-covert-to-text/1007?c=2213303 Introducing Bamboo Spark: a smart notebook that saves your handwritten notes digitally. In a beta-version it even allows you to convert those handwritten notes to plain text instead of retyping. Now writers of all stripes can write like their heroes while continuing to move th...

Bamboo Spark for Writers: Write Longhand and Covert to Text

Writers: now you can join the ranks of Joyce Carol Oates, Neil Gaiman and Amy Tan. Those famous writers write longhand. For most writers, however, the thought of writing by hand and then typing all of those words can feel like a backward step in the creative flow.

Introducing Bamboo Sparka smart notebook that saves your handwritten notes digitally. With a Wacom Cloud account, you can also convert those handwritten notes to plain text instead of retyping. Now writers of all stripes can write like their heroes while continuing to move their process forward.

What is Bamboo Spark?

Bamboo Spark is smart notebook that you can carry with you for taking your notes or writing your drafts using any paper you want and the Bamboo Spark pen. Bamboo Spark saves your notes as you write them. As long as it’s on, your notes are being saved digitally. Press the button to start a new page and transfer your notes to the Bamboo Spark app for Android or iOS. There you can split your notes, or make light edits. In a beta-version you can also convert your handwriting to plain text then keep typing. The handwriting to text conversion is free to use for a limited trial period and will turn into a paid premium feature later.

 

Writer’s workflow made simple in 3 steps

Bamboo Spark is awesome for a writer’ workflow. And in a beta-version it even allows you to convert everything from initial brainstorming and longhand note-taking into a draft with a minimal amount of fuss. Once you convert your writing into text, you can move things around, cut and paste, and combine elements of each document.

Here’s how it works:

1) Brainstorm your ideas in your Bamboo Spark notebook. You might even want to try sketchnoting to help your ideas take shape. Once your genius is down on paper, hit the button, then open up the Bamboo Spark app to export your writing to plain text.

2) Tear off a new sheet and use your notes to help you write out a longhand first draft. You may be thinking this is a really slow way to start a draft, but it’s so worth it. Writing things out is a more deliberate process, so your end result is going to be more cohesive than if you typed it out.

For most people, typing is much faster, but that means words and concepts can get away from you since they’re flowing so quickly through your fingertips. When you’re writing longhand, you’re inherently more mindful of what you’re composing and that means a more structured and organized draft. Sometimes going back to old school methods is the quickest way to move forward.

3) Once your first draft is complete, use Bluetooth to connect Bamboo Spark to your iOS or Android device, press the button to sync the captures, or to convert your writing to text. Now you can share it via email or put it in Evernote or Dropbox and start editing.

After that, your creativity awaits. Look out Neil Gaiman!

Introducing Bamboo Spark: a smart notebook that saves your handwritten notes digitally. With a Wacom Cloud account, you can also convert those handwritten notes to plain text instead of retyping.
]]>
Mon, 08 Feb 2016 10:19:31 +100
Bamboo Spark | How to Take Smart Notes and Improve Your Answers to Job Interv... http://eu.shop.wacom.eu/wacom-infochannel/bamboo-spark-how-to-take-smart-notes-and-improve-your-answers-to-job-interview-questions/1001?c=2213303 For recent grads and young professionals, first job interviews are a crash course in interpersonal skills, thinking on ones feet and the danger of homonyms (pro-tip: led is the past tense of ‘to lead’). To ease the learning curve a bit, we’ve got tips below on how to take smar...

How to Take Smart Notes and Improve Your Answers to Job Interview Questions

For recent grads and young professionals, first job interviews are a crash course in interpersonal skills, thinking on ones feet and the danger of homonyms (pro-tip: led is the past tense of ‘to lead’). To ease the learning curve a bit, we’ve got tips below on how to take smart notes in your job interview to answer questions intelligently, schedule the second (or third) interview and, of course, land your perfect job.

What is the Interviewer Looking for?

A job interviewer knows that a recent grad will not have a wealth of direct experience to bring to the interview. Instead, the person sitting across the table from you is asking you questions to gauge your future potential and critical thinking skills. Interviewers are looking for:

*How you process information
* How you analyze problem
* How you formulate solution
* Cultural fit with the company

The notes you take in the meeting will help you process the information that the interviewer is sharing, help you organize your thoughts so you can then share your problem-solving skills during the interview, and be used later in your thank you email and subsequent interviews.

Pro-tip: Always end an interview with the following question, “If I make it to the next interview, what should I expect?”

Note-worthy Information

You want to appear engaged in the meeting and capture notes that will help you remember key information. It’s a delicate balance. Take too many notes and you’ve missed part of the conversation and you aren’t making eye contact. Take too little notes and you have no documentation of the meeting. By taking notes in bullet point form on the topics below (and with Bamboo Spark) you will have a complete overview of the relevant points of the interview.

* Information about the company
* Challenges of the role and for the company (these are the topics in which you’ll demonstrate your critical thinking skills)
* Details related to the job
* Your questions before you start the interview
* Cultural items to which you have a connection (perhaps the interviewer has a mug from your alma mater.)

Follow the format in the video below to organize your information within the meeting. Click here to learn more about Bamboo Spark.


Pro-tip: Immediately after the interview, find a café and take additional notes on anything you missed during the interview. Notes could include: impressions of the interviewer, next steps, or cultural insights you didn’t want to document in the moment.

What to do with your notes

1. During the interview

Use your bullet points to bring your solutions to the challenges of company back into the conversation. This shows that you are actively listening, and processing the information offered.

2. After the interview

Always follow up with a thank you email. In this email, expand on a few of the solutions you offer to the company problems. To develop thoughtful solutions, try drawing a mind map based on your notes. This gives you an opportunity to experiment with new ways of thinking before sharing your thoughts with the interviewer.

In your thank you email, mention any culture items in which you think you might have a fit.

If you are invited to a second or third interview, go back to your original notes, and rewrite them in a narrative form. This will help you prepare for your next interview. In each interview, your responses should build on the information of past interviews. Your answers should be more thoughtful and better informed, proving that you are able to consume information, process it, and offer solutions.

Seal the deal

When you’re interviewing there is one big element you can’t control: the interviewer’s personality. Observe the interviewer as much as you are being observed. Learn about that person and sell yourself to that individual. Listen to their questions and tailor your answers to that specific person, not the canned answers you’ve prepared in the mirror. 

]]>
Tue, 12 Jan 2016 09:28:51 +100
Bamboo Smart AES | Introducing Bamboo Smart For Windows http://eu.shop.wacom.eu/wacom-infochannel/-bamboo-smart-aes-introducing-bamboo-smart-for-windows/999?c=2213303 The Bamboo Smart line just got even smarter with a new stylus specifically designed for select media tablets and Windows 2-in-1 devices.

Introducing Bamboo Smart For Windows 2-in-1 Devices

The Bamboo Smart line just got even smarter with a new stylus specifically designed for select media tablets and Windows 2-in-1 devices.

Debuting today at CES 2016, the new Bamboo Smart for select Windows 2-in-1 devices powers your creative workflow with Wacom’s Active Electro-Static (AES) technology. It joins the Bamboo Smart for select Samsung devices, which uses Wacom’s Electro-Magentic Resonance (EMR) technology. Both styli offer pressure-sensitive precision, ergonomic design and programmable buttons for the best-in-class pen-on-screen note-taking, concepting and illustration experience on your favorite productivity apps.

Built for comfort, durability and sleek style, the new Bamboo Smart pen powered by AES technology supports 2048 levels of pressure sensitivity and comes equipped with two programmable side switch buttons, which give users the most convenient access to their favorite commands. Because AES technology is built into compatible mobile devices, no pairing is required. You can simply put pen to screen and get to work.

Unlike the original Bamboo Smart, the new Bamboo Smart pen powered by AES requires a AAAA battery. Users can count on approximately one year of 3-hour work sessions on a single battery, making for a reliable 1,100 hours of pen input power.

Current Devices Compatible with Bamboo Smart for select Windows 2-in-1 devices:

Dell™ Venue™ 10, 5000 Series (5050)
Dell Venue Pro 10 5000 Series (5055)
Lenovo® ThinkPad® P40 Yoga™
HP Elite x2 1012 G1
Toshiba dynaPad N72

You can also find this information on our website. There are still some other devices which work with Bamboo Smart AES, however, we need to confirm this. We will continuously test devices which are able to communicate.

Bamboo Smart is available in February for €39.90 on the Wacom eStore, Amazon and other electronics retailers.

Follow Wacom on Facebook, Twitter, G+, Tumblr, Instagram and Pinterest for more Bamboo Smart tips, tricks, inspiration and updates from Bamboo News.

]]>
Wed, 06 Jan 2016 12:31:47 +100
Reflection and Ideation | How Entrepreneur John Gannon Uses Bamboo Spark http://eu.shop.wacom.eu/wacom-infochannel/reflection-and-ideation-how-entrepreneur-john-gannon-uses-bamboo-spark/997?c=2213303 John Gannon is an entrepreneur and thought leader who uses Bamboo Spark to capture his ideas each morning. Watch him work live in his co-working space Knotel in New York City where he takes his innovative ideas further.

Reflection and Ideation: How Entrepreneur John Gannon Uses Bamboo Spark

By John Gannon

A few months ago I wrote a post about my morning routine of generating 10 ideas a day that went viral. I had been typing those ideas directly into Evernote each morning. But then the fine folks from Wacom reached out to me to ask if I’d be willing to give their Bamboo Spark folio a try.

Here’s what happened next…

I slowed down

I can type a lot faster that I can write. And as a busy entrepreneur, anything that makes me faster is a good thing. But when you’re trying to reflect on the previous day and come up with ideas about the next big thing, pulling back and slowing down can be a great thing. That’s what I’ve found since I started using the Bamboo Spark as the backbone of my morning routine. My brain goes to a more relaxed place when I’m writing pen-to-paper instead of punching notes into my computer (where distractions are abound). And I like that place.

Integration was a snap

Even though I’m using the Bamboo Spark, I still want to keep all of my journal entries in Evernote. After all, I’m a tech entrepreneur :)
The Spark iPhone app makes it really easy to export my journal entries as images. Then I can share those images right into Evernote — where they get saved to the cloud and become text searchable.

I’m using it more (and more)

I’ve started to bring my Spark to meetings instead of my laptop. It makes for a more natural experience in terms of note taking – and keeps my nose out of the computer where I can get easily distracted by the latest email or alert coming in.
I’m also going to start using it to sketch out mockups and concepts for marketing campaigns and product features that I dream up. I often find that using pen and paper instead of going straight to PowerPoint or another mockup tool is much better at the earliest phases of ideation.

What’s next?

My company BEMAVEN is growing fast and I’m looking forward to having the Spark as my companion on the journey — wherever it takes me.

]]>
Tue, 05 Jan 2016 13:58:57 +100
Bamboo Spark | Handwriting to Text Conversion http://eu.shop.wacom.eu/wacom-infochannel/bamboo-spark-handwriting-to-text-conversion/996?c=2213303 Bamboo Spark‘s most requested app feature is now available to download. Beginning today, Bamboo Spark supports handwriting to text conversion, giving users the ability to write on paper, save their work to the cloud, and then convert their handwriting into convenient standard ...

Bamboo Spark Now Supports Handwriting to Text Conversion

Bamboo Spark‘s most requested app feature is now available to download. Beginning today, Bamboo Spark supports handwriting to text conversion, giving users the ability to write on paper, save their work to the cloud, and then convert their handwriting into convenient standard text files. It’s just one more way Bamboo Spark continues to deliver the best pen-to-paper-to-digital experience.

 

Bamboo Spark is your gateway to move your notes faster. Start writing on paper, then use the Bamboo Spark app with Wacom Cloud to turn your handwritten notes into plain text. Now your notes are in shareable shape for sending out in email or dropping into your archive on DropBox or Evernote.

Creating standard text files from handwritten notes in the Bamboo Spark App is a simple export to text function that resides in the application itself. Additionally, older files stored in Inkspace, Wacom’s Cloud based archive and delivery system, can still be converted to text files through Wacom’s Ink Layer Language (WILL).

Inkspace also provides advanced search capabilities, allowing one to search by single words, phrases or stings of text. Ink to text conversion is supported in 13 languages: English, Japanese, German, Spanish, French, Italian, Dutch, Polish, Portuguese, Russian, Korean, Traditional Chinese and Simplified Chinese.

Download the new ink to text conversion feature as part of the newly available Bamboo Spark app update now for more ways to make ideas with handwriting to text.

]]>
Tue, 05 Jan 2016 12:59:34 +100
Intuos Comic | Getting Started in Clip Studio Paint with Manga University http://eu.shop.wacom.eu/wacom-infochannel/intuos-comic-getting-started-in-clip-studio-paint-with-manga-university/995?c=2213303 In a new tutorial series from Manga University, Japanese mangaka Shiro demonstrates how to set up the application and get to work using its basic tools.

Getting Started in Clip Studio Paint with Manga University

The Intuos Comic and Intuos Pro pairs Wacom's pressure-sensitive drawing tablet tech with one of the most popular pieces of software among professional comic book creators and manga artists in the world. It's called Clip Studio Paint (also known as Manga Studio 5), and it's designed specifically for creating digital and print comics. Its host of pencilling, inking, coloring and editing tools speak to users who have worked in traditional pen-and-paper media, as well as those who are getting started telling their own stories through words and pictures for the first time.

In a new tutorial series from Manga University, Japanese mangaka Shiro demonstrates how to set up the application and get to work using its basic tools. Once you're familiar with the app's comic and manga-specific interface, a second tutorial on underdrawing (or digital "penciling," as some call it) can help set you up for sketching success in minutes. From there you can continue to learn inking, coloring, shading and illustrating backgrounds.

Get started using Clip Studio Paint and continue on with the lessons in underdrawing, inking, colouring, shading and adding background below.

Getting started

 

 

Underdrawing

 

 

Inking

 

 

Colouring

 

Shading

 

Creating background

]]>
Tue, 05 Jan 2016 10:42:39 +100
Entrepreneurs use the Bamboo Spark for the first time http://eu.shop.wacom.eu/wacom-infochannel/entrepreneurs-use-the-bamboo-spark-for-the-first-time/994?c=2213303 The Bamboo Spark is a great tool to enhance your every day note taking. We have asked four entrepreneurs to try out the Bamboo Spark for themselves and asked them how the device would fit in their workflow.

Entrepreneurs use the Bamboo Spark for the first time

User experiences of Bamboo Spark are flowing in since its release, and with them, praise for the smart folio’s performance pen-to-paper-to-digital experience. From Bamboo Spark’s high-accuracy to its convenient cloud features, designers and editors alike have been impressed with the workflow-empowering tool.

We have asked four entrepreneurs to try out the Bamboo Spark for themselves and asked them how the device would fit in their workflow.

Product Designer and Teacher Florian Obstfeld uses the Bamboo Spark

 

Visual Artist Lidy de Koning uses the Bamboo Spark

Innovation Strategist Christopher Peterka uses the Bamboo Spark

Management Consultant Victoria Gerards uses the Bamboo Spark

]]>
Mon, 04 Jan 2016 17:54:49 +100
Interview | How to Add Magic to Your Picture in Post Processing http://eu.shop.wacom.eu/wacom-infochannel/hiding-his-tracks-portrait-photographer-chris-orwig/993?c=2213303 Surf and portrait photographer Chris Orwig aka “The Portrait Whisperer” talks tools and technique and reveals his secrets.

“The Portrait Whisperer” reveals his secrets. 

Try asking Chris Orwig a couple of questions about himself and you’ll see – he’s way more interested in learning about you. It’s that deep curiosity about the world around him that’s at the heart of what makes Orwig so successful as a photographer and sought after as a teacher. His wish to truly see his subjects, to know them in an authentic way, sends his portraits from the realm of merely skillful to extraordinary.

“Whenever I’m working with someone there’s a high chance I won’t get a good portrait of him, and that’s OK because that’s not my end-game,” said Orwig, who is widely known for both his surf photography and deceptively plain but emotionally powerful portraits. “What I really want is to connect in such a way that if I were to see that person again it would be ‘Hey Chris – let’s go get coffee.’ “

Too bad for Orwig, then, that his newest project, a book on creativity he’s writing for Peachpit Press, is taking the form of a memoir. Like it or not, he’ll be the subject.

“It’ll be my story, even though I’m not that good at talking about myself,” Orwig said. “But for me teaching is really more about coaching, and in this book it’ll be done with stories rather than as a paint-by-numbers how-to.”

Through the looking glass

Orwig’s own story, of how he went from being just another California kid crazy about surfing and skateboarding to a renowned photographer and educator, starts with a magical wall in his childhood home. When Orwig’s father, a contractor, built the family home in central California, he designed one of the walls to function as an enormous window.

“That whole wall – it was 18 feet high and 40 feet long and it was just windows,” Orwig said. “It opened up to rolling hills and oak trees, the outdoors coming right in.”

Through that massive lens, framed by the home’s natural wood interior, Orwig watched as light moved, as the landscape changed, as the seasons shifted. The endless view in the windowed wall became the earliest source of Orwig’s visual education.

Years later, when Orwig was in college, he was hit by a car while skateboarding, and a different kind of lesson came calling. Suddenly, the athlete who saw himself in terms of all of the things he could do so well, was beginning to define himself by the things he couldn’t do at all. It wasn’t until his father gave him a camera that Orwig could move beyond the pain of his injuries and find his way back to the world.

“My photography and who I am fit the aesthetic of my childhood and my childhood home,” Orwig said. “I choose to err on the side of hope and beauty and the idea that life is good. I’m an optimist and the camera lens pulls me that way.”

Putting in the (10,000) hours

After college, where Orwig became skilled at web design, he joined the faculty of the Brooks Institute, the prestigious photography school in Santa Barbara, Calif., but not as a photographer.

“I got this dream job at this great photo school but not for photography,” Orwig said. “I was there to teach how to put together a good online portfolio.”

Orwig promptly sat in on as many classes as he could, becoming both a teacher and a student at Brooks. With the same grit and persistence he conjured to heal from his crash injuries, Orwig went from being the guy jokingly banned from ever contributing photos to the school’s web site to becoming one of its most popular photography instructors.

“It’s sort of that 10,000 hours thing,” Orwig said, referring to author Malcolm Gladwell’s theory that success in any arena boils down to 10,000 hours of practice.  “At some point I hit that mark and there was this transition.”

Another recent transition, for which Orwig resigned his position at Brooks, is joining forces with Bryan O’Neil Hughes, a product manager for Adobe Photoshop software, to start an outdoor adventure photo workshop company.

“We’ll teach the way we would want to be taught, blending adventure and learning so that the classroom isn’t a row of chairs but is outdoors, shooting and learning,” Orwig said. 

Enter the Intuos

While Orwig’s preferred camera is “whichever one I happen to be holding at the time,” he’s quite specific about his post-production tools: Adobe Photoshop, Adobe Photoshop Lightroom, and Wacom’s pressure sensitive tablets.

“Wacom has been crazy significant to my work,” said Orwig, who works with the Intuos line of tablets. “The connectedness you get from the Intuos is so important – it makes using a mouse feel like you’re drawing with a bar of soap.”

Orwig uses the Intuos in Lightroom at the start of his processing, then moves to Photoshop for the more intensive work. The pressure-sensitive interface of the Intuos is so instinctive that the gap between seeing an image in your mind’s eye and creating it on the screen is all but erased, Orwig said.

“It’s excavation, it’s how you listen to your image,” he said. “You’re not imposing something on it, but trying to discover, and that’s what the Wacom Intuos helps me with.”

The Portrait Whisperer

People have called Orwig “the portrait whisperer”, which makes him laugh. He downplays his gift for empathy and insists he makes his subjects comfortable simply by always having the camera in his hands, being casual with it, putting it down in the dirt, hanging it from a tree branch.



Whatever the reason, Orwig’s portraits have that rare magnetic quality that makes you look and then look again. As a viewer you feel the photographer’s rapport and appreciate his aesthetic choices – rich textures, muted colors, abundant light. Part of that’s the stuff of Orwig’s creativity lectures, and much of it is his delight in the technical end of the editing process.

“If someone says ‘Wow, you’re so good at Photoshop’, then you’ve failed because that’s not the point,” Orwig said. “I’m trying to hide my tracks as I work with an image and that’s what Wacom does for me.”

To see Orwig in action, watch the video below and visit his website

]]>
Mon, 04 Jan 2016 09:31:38 +100