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How did we get here? So many bad "teachers"...

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  #11  
Old 04-20-2015, 04:48 AM
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Doug Nelson Doug Nelson is offline
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Re: How did we get here? So many bad "teachers"...

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Originally Posted by insmac View Post
Show me three people making valuable tutorials showing a real agency workflow and common best practices. And I mean real life setup and flow.
http://www.retouchpro.com/index.php?page=adrentals2
http://www.retouchpro.com/index.php?page=ctrentals2
http://www.retouchpro.com/index.php?page=cbrentals
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  #12  
Old 04-20-2015, 05:38 AM
jklier jklier is offline
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Re: How did we get here? So many bad "teachers"...

Incidentally this pattern is not only evident in retouching but in photography itself as well.

There definitely is the 'magic trick' phenomenon going on that is the basis for every single email in your spam filter. Also, many of those 'new comers' aren't really career professionals in photography or retouching, but it's either a side-gig, or a re-tread. As such they don't have the mentality to invest into it the same way a career professional would.

That speaks to the reasons of demand for tricks, and lack of learning interest.

But why so many bad teachers? Well, for one in the Internet of age everyone isn't only a photographer but also a teacher. But there is a whole bubble economy of 'workshops' out there in the industry. The vast majority being taught not by people who actually know anything about teaching. Many are taught by photographer's who saw their traditional business dry up or get harder. So they found that it's actually a lot easier and quicker to make some money just demoing they way they shoot (without discussion of the why) and setting up quack shoots for others to pray and spray at. They're then being funded or sponsored by people trying to sell useless magic gadgets, which further derails good teaching.

There are some good teachers, and some good workshops. But they are in the minority.

The only hope is that just like the housing boom, this is a bubble that will burst before too long. When the magic tricks don't materialize, and nobody gets that Vogue cover after all, and being a photographer no longer is a babe magnet, and we've finally run out of mega pixels to add to our camera bodies in meaningful ways, then they will move on and find another bubble to play in.

The reason that spills over into retouching is that all those images on the web that weren't shot for clients or on bargain budgets don't really leave room giving the image to a retoucher. So they have to DYI it. And they're looking for the same type of tricks they've been sold on their cameras.

Last edited by jklier; 04-20-2015 at 05:43 AM.
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  #13  
Old 04-20-2015, 06:03 AM
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Re: How did we get here? So many bad "teachers"...

Quote:
Originally Posted by jklier View Post
Incidentally this pattern is not only evident in retouching but in photography itself as well.

There definitely is the 'magic trick' phenomenon going on that is the basis for every single email in your spam filter. Also, many of those 'new comers' aren't really career professionals in photography or retouching, but it's either a side-gig, or a re-tread. As such they don't have the mentality to invest into it the same way a career professional would.

That speaks to the reasons of demand for tricks, and lack of learning interest.

But why so many bad teachers? Well, for one in the Internet of age everyone isn't only a photographer but also a teacher. But there is a whole bubble economy of 'workshops' out there in the industry. The vast majority being taught not by people who actually know anything about teaching. Many are taught by photographer's who saw their traditional business dry up or get harder. So they found that it's actually a lot easier and quicker to make some money just demoing they way they shoot (without discussion of the why) and setting up quack shoots for others to pray and spray at. They're then being funded or sponsored by people trying to sell useless magic gadgets, which further derails good teaching.

There are some good teachers, and some good workshops. But they are in the minority.

The only hope is that just like the housing boom, this is a bubble that will burst before too long. When the magic tricks don't materialize, and nobody gets that Vogue cover after all, and being a photographer no longer is a babe magnet, and we've finally run out of mega pixels to add to our camera bodies in meaningful ways, then they will move on and find another bubble to play in.

The reason that spills over into retouching is that all those images on the web that weren't shot for clients or on bargain budgets don't really leave room giving the image to a retoucher. So they have to DYI it. And they're looking for the same type of tricks they've been sold on their cameras.
Well said!
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  #14  
Old 04-20-2015, 12:07 PM
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Benny Profane Benny Profane is offline
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Re: How did we get here? So many bad "teachers"...

Quote:
Originally Posted by jklier View Post
Incidentally this pattern is not only evident in retouching but in photography itself as well.

There definitely is the 'magic trick' phenomenon going on that is the basis for every single email in your spam filter. Also, many of those 'new comers' aren't really career professionals in photography or retouching, but it's either a side-gig, or a re-tread. As such they don't have the mentality to invest into it the same way a career professional would.

That speaks to the reasons of demand for tricks, and lack of learning interest.

But why so many bad teachers? Well, for one in the Internet of age everyone isn't only a photographer but also a teacher. But there is a whole bubble economy of 'workshops' out there in the industry. The vast majority being taught not by people who actually know anything about teaching. Many are taught by photographer's who saw their traditional business dry up or get harder. So they found that it's actually a lot easier and quicker to make some money just demoing they way they shoot (without discussion of the why) and setting up quack shoots for others to pray and spray at. They're then being funded or sponsored by people trying to sell useless magic gadgets, which further derails good teaching.

There are some good teachers, and some good workshops. But they are in the minority.

The only hope is that just like the housing boom, this is a bubble that will burst before too long. When the magic tricks don't materialize, and nobody gets that Vogue cover after all, and being a photographer no longer is a babe magnet, and we've finally run out of mega pixels to add to our camera bodies in meaningful ways, then they will move on and find another bubble to play in.

The reason that spills over into retouching is that all those images on the web that weren't shot for clients or on bargain budgets don't really leave room giving the image to a retoucher. So they have to DYI it. And they're looking for the same type of tricks they've been sold on their cameras.
I saw some data recently that some photographers make a little over half of their income doing workshops. Talk about incestual. Many cases of the blind leading the blind, but, there seems to be a lot of people out there with money that pays for bad to mediocre advice, so, there wouldn't be a market without that, I suppose.

I fear that, after outsourcing and the internet (stock and just plain old theft) has killed the photography market, that the robots, just like in so many other businesses, will deal the final blow, especially to the retouching trade. So many want it to be push button easy, and they'll probably get it, with push button skin programs and no brainer special effect software. Hell, most cameras being sold today are phones, and that trend is accelerating. You know that 90% of those images, if not just ignored or thrown away, wind up on something like Instagram, and get all hipped up with push button "retouching". This, unfortunately, is good enough for some clients, especially when they get it incredibly cheap or for free. I have to admit, in the hands of a good designer on a budget, some are good enough. It's all a race to the bottom, especially when consultants preach that something like a LUT is a tool to be taken seriously by good retouchers.
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  #15  
Old 04-20-2015, 12:28 PM
jklier jklier is offline
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Re: How did we get here? So many bad "teachers"...

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Originally Posted by Benny Profane View Post
I fear that, after outsourcing and the internet (stock and just plain old theft) has killed the photography market, that the robots, just like in so many other businesses, will deal the final blow, especially to the retouching trade. So many want it to be push button easy, and they'll probably get it, with push button skin programs and no brainer special effect software. Hell, most cameras being sold today are phones, and that trend is accelerating. You know that 90% of those images, if not just ignored or thrown away, wind up on something like Instagram, and get all hipped up with push button "retouching". This, unfortunately, is good enough for some clients, especially when they get it incredibly cheap or for free. I have to admit, in the hands of a good designer on a budget, some are good enough.
The market for photography has definitely changed a lot in recent years, and of course that has downstream effects on retouching and other related services.

Some of this has been good, some of it has been bad. As in all change, we come out ok on the other end, but we have to adjust our business along the way or we become roadkill.

The two primary changes I see is that the flood of images (by some estimates we take more photos every day today, than in the first 100 years of photography combined) has made us less sensitive to quality. If you are oversaturated with average photos, average becomes the new standard.

The other change is that the value perception of a photo has changed. Since everyone is a photographer now, and since on the surface digital appears to be 'free', it seems weird to some to pay a premium price for a photo. It has become a commodity.

Those two combined means that in many markets there is no longer a budget for photography, or the budgets are so small that it's not sustaining a business anymore, maybe just cover some expenses.

There are hold-outs in the commercial space, where brands still see the effect of a well produced image. And there have been some people who are starting to see brands actually move away from crowd sourcing and micro stock and pay for photography again.

But those areas are now a niche industry. It will most likely do reasonably well for a small group of pros that can innovate, morph along a changing landscape, and deliver value to those that can appreciate it.

On the plus side, we've become more visual than ever. So there is lots of opportunity to work in visual assets. It may just not be photography and retouching in the old sense.
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  #16  
Old 04-20-2015, 12:31 PM
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Benny Profane Benny Profane is offline
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Re: How did we get here? So many bad "teachers"...


You know, I just wanted to say, these tutorials you have given a home to are the best stuff on the internet right now for serious retouchers. The Chris Tarintino stuff is awesome. That guy is a savant. I recommend them to anybody looking to learn. I should get back into them, more.
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  #17  
Old 04-20-2015, 12:35 PM
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Re: How did we get here? So many bad "teachers"...

Quote:
Originally Posted by jklier View Post
The market for photography has definitely changed a lot in recent years, and of course that has downstream effects on retouching and other related services.

Some of this has been good, some of it has been bad. As in all change, we come out ok on the other end, but we have to adjust our business along the way or we become roadkill.

The two primary changes I see is that the flood of images (by some estimates we take more photos every day today, than in the first 100 years of photography combined) has made us less sensitive to quality. If you are oversaturated with average photos, average becomes the new standard.

The other change is that the value perception of a photo has changed. Since everyone is a photographer now, and since on the surface digital appears to be 'free', it seems weird to some to pay a premium price for a photo. It has become a commodity.

Those two combined means that in many markets there is no longer a budget for photography, or the budgets are so small that it's not sustaining a business anymore, maybe just cover some expenses.

There are hold-outs in the commercial space, where brands still see the effect of a well produced image. And there have been some people who are starting to see brands actually move away from crowd sourcing and micro stock and pay for photography again.

But those areas are now a niche industry. It will most likely do reasonably well for a small group of pros that can innovate, morph along a changing landscape, and deliver value to those that can appreciate it.

On the plus side, we've become more visual than ever. So there is lots of opportunity to work in visual assets. It may just not be photography and retouching in the old sense.

The ongoing death of print doesn't help. Any company that sells magazines and, of course, newspapers, is really hurting. Have you seen newsstand prices lately? They can no longer afford to give stuff away and make it up elsewhere, usually from ads. The budget for images is gone.
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  #18  
Old 04-20-2015, 12:38 PM
jklier jklier is offline
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Re: How did we get here? So many bad "teachers"...

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Originally Posted by Benny Profane View Post
The ongoing death of print doesn't help. Any company that sells magazines and, of course, newspapers, is really hurting. Have you seen newsstand prices lately? They can no longer afford to give stuff away and make it up elsewhere, usually from ads. The budget for images is gone.
Haha. Yes, the September issue of Elle last year had the Editor's letter on page 320 I believe. Everything before was nothing but brand advertisement.

The good thing is: Everyone of these ads has been done by a photographer and retoucher. There is no money in editorial. There is lots of money in brand advertising.

There was a good post by Paul Melcher a few months ago about this shift: http://blog.melchersystem.com/2014/0...e-next-decade/
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  #19  
Old 04-20-2015, 01:36 PM
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Re: How did we get here? So many bad "teachers"...

Thanks for the link.
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  #20  
Old 04-20-2015, 03:21 PM
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Re: How did we get here? So many bad "teachers"...

Quote:
Originally Posted by Benny Profane View Post
You know, I just wanted to say, these tutorials you have given a home to are the best stuff on the internet right now for serious retouchers. The Chris Tarintino stuff is awesome. That guy is a savant. I recommend them to anybody looking to learn. I should get back into them, more.
So Chris can teach. Can he do as well in your humble opinion because if so, I'm happy to see you evolve on your idea that those who can't do, teach:
http://www.retouchpro.com/forums/inp...ng-budget.html Post #22.
Perhaps we are coming into common ground and agreement. Perhaps.
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