Digital Photography and Workflow: An Interview with Taz Tally

When it comes to image and color management, it’s best to look at the big picture—your whole workflow. When you capture a digital photograph, you are making essential decisions that impact your entire workflow. Some people are right-brain, and some are left-brain. But everyone can learn how to capture and process high-quality images by learning the fundamentals from image capture to output.

Few professionals know this better than Dr. Taz Tally, Taz Tally Photography and Director of the Digital Print Production Program, Sessions.eduThe Online School of Design. He is leading “The Fine Art of Digital Photography and Workflow,” one of the most talked-about sessions of this conference. Now less than one month before he presents at the 2012 Color Management Conference, we have an exclusive interview with Dr. Tally on his much-anticipated session. See what you will experience during a day with this self-described adventure seeker!

What makes you excited about your pre-conference session, and what makes this conference unique?

This is an all-day, hands-on session that lets you capture and create color-managed images from start to finish. I take you through the whole color management workflow, from image capture to color correction to preparing your images for viewing and printing. You will see your finished product at the conclusion of the day. The Arizona landscape is spectacular with endless opportunities.

If I am not a photographer, will this session be useful?

Absolutely. We will be covering both the fundamentals of image composition as well as adjusting and  managing files in a Photoshop-based workflow for creating high-quality images for viewing and printing. We will first focus on capturing well-composed images, which is the first step in a high-quality image and color management process. We will then apply Photoshop image correction and management fundamentals to our well-composed images. This information will result in having better composed and higher-quality images and better color—it also makes you a more valuable and/or marketable employee! For this session, I recommend having a basic knowledge of Photoshop.

Have you created this session from a technical or creative perspective?

Both, actually. Some people lean more toward the creative side, some the more technical, while others see the whole process. The information is developed and presented to include photographers and pre-media personnel, and anyone involved in the image and color management process, whether you are design, photography, or production oriented. I teach trainable skills—you learn the fundamentals to get you started and fill in any gaps in your workflow.

Can you describe what attendees will experience?

We will be shooting at a prime location in Scottsdale, not far from the conference venue, the Hotel Valley Ho. We will go through the entire process of capturing the image, evaluating and correcting images, and preparing our images for viewing and printing. There is so much beautiful landscape here. It is the perfect setting to practice capturing engaging photographs because of all the details in an urban scene.  I follow my own rule: never be caught without your camera, because you never know where the next great shot will be.

What are the top takeaways going to be?

There are plenty of ideas and techniques you will learn and be able to apply back home, but the top three are:

  1. Composing high-quality images in order to produce well-composed images
  2. The fundamentals of effective color correction and management with regard to digital photographic images
  3. How to prepare an image for viewing and for printing on multiple output devices

There are many people excited that you are presenting Digital Photography because of your talent and reputation. Can you tell us a little more about yourself?

I am very excited to meet all of our attendees as well! I have always had a passion for photography. I went to college in the southwestern United States, so a lot of my early photography was done there. Now I am an outdoor adventurer in Alaska where I have my own “outdoor playground.”  I look forward to seeing you in Scottsdale!

For more information on The Fine Art of Digital Photography and Workflow or the 2012 Color Management Conference, visit www.printing.org/color.

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