Sept. 13th – "Photoshop Fantasy Boot Camp" by Jim Pierce

Photoshop Fantasy Boot Camp

by Jim Pierce, cpp

If you have ever had an idea for an image of people floating in the clouds, lightning crackling around them, smoke and fire forming into a person or a masterful rendition of delicate portraits blending into each other; then this is the workshop for you.

We will be covering how to take an idea, break down what you need to make it, and then taking all the pieces and putting it together like a giant multi layered jigsaw puzzle.


Topics discussed, explained, demonstrated and implemented will be:

Layers: how to stack them and strategies for making life easier in post.

Blending Modes:  What they do, why the do it and how to utilize them for creating some incredible effects.  We will also go over multiple copies of the same layer set to different blend modes and then masked for more natural transitions.


 Masking:  Some tips and techniques for taking out what you don’t want and keeping what you do and having it look seamless when done.

Textures and overlays:  Learn them, love them and live them!  Nothing creates an emotion quite like textures and overlays.  The old masters would use specific paints and brushes to give their paintings more depth; we can and should do the same.  Be it a hint of music notes in a portrait of a musician or making someone look like they’re made of marble,
nothing can add in a great personal touch as well as textures

and overlays.  We will go over different techniques and not only how to use them, but also how not to overuse them.

Bringing it all Together:  Once you have this great idea and all the elements you will need (hopefully, it seems there’s always something not there), then how do you go about doing it?  We will be going over ways to keep everything straight and organized.  When to flatten and when not to.  Strategies of layer stacking for the best effect and least amount of work.


Click here for his handout on Shooting for Composite Images.

Click here for his handout on Composing with Layers.

Presenter – Jim Pierce, ccp

I started into photography during High School using the darkroom and pestering anyone who knew anything about photography.  After that I went to Southern Illinois University and got an associates degree in Photographic Production Technology and went to work at Winona School of Photography PPA as a lab technician and assistant to visiting instructors in 1987.

From there I started custom hand printing images in my basement for local photographers and offering print and negative retouching.

Then along came Photoshop, and the world has never been the same for me.  I started using Photoshop in 1990, before it was a verb and you needed to explain to people what it was.  Doing freelance work for prepress houses and commercial photographers until I opened up Downtown Photo in 2003 and offering a full service photo lab to professional photographers.

I have been teaching Photoshop and studio lighting through the lab for the last seven years along with traveling to various PPA affiliates and Super Monday programs.

Monthly 8×10 Competition

The monthly 8×10 competition is starting off this month! Our “Photographer of the Year” is awarded based on your monthly print votes, and this is the time to start working towards it! So make sure to bring your prints in for submitting. You might be this year’s “Photographer of the Year’!  Studio, Active, and Aspiring members may submit to the competition.  Studio and Active members may vote in the competitions.

PPETN members may bring 8×10 prints to the competition each month. The cost is $3 per print. Points towards our annual “Photographer of the Year” will be awarded once we receive digital versions for submitting on our blog.  Any winning images will be posed on the website with back links to your website.  This will help with your SEO (search engine optimization)!

Meeting Cost (excluding food):

  • PPETN Members: Free
  • Non-Members: $20.00 (first visit is free)