Confession time. I'm a man. I don't read manuals. Ok, I generally don't read manuals.
I'm also a nerd/IT geek. I don't read software manuals. I do not read them.
Which means I'm generally self-taught. Which usually means I'm somewhat effective, but generally not efficient.
Let's see why this isn't serving me well anymore...
Fast forward to now, as I'm expanding my photography business. A workshop lecturer recently talked about his experience as a professional photographer. "This is a profession. Look it up - Webster's lists this as "a paid occupation, especially one that involves prolonged training and a formal qualification." Anyone can become effective and efficient at a particular task or skill. But, for that to develop into a higher, less common skill level of "professional," we develop a proficiency in our craft. For me, proficiency denotes a skill level that doesn't come from just adding "effective" and "efficient." It's greater than the sum of its parts. The professional is able to exponentially expand her competency to the point where a unique, personal style generally forms. This professional - or master, or mentor - is able to creatively borrow, create, alter, and integrate the particular styles and approaches, creating a signature style or professional niche of her own.
For me to become proficient in the full creative and professional workflow of a studio photographer, I can't continue to just figure things out... I can't learn to live with knowing "just enough" to "get by" using a key tool of the trade like Adobe Photoshop or Lightroom. I need to take some thorough and complete tutorials or demonstrations on both of these tools. Sure, I've "gotten by" with using Adobe Photoshop Elements for the past 10+ years... But, I'm wanting to "take this to the next level" - and that's going to require proficiency - and proficiency starts with knowing the basic elements and functions. And full Photoshop and Lightroom are exponentially more powerful (and complex!) compared to Photoshop Elements.
So, I'm creating the time to watch helpful video clips I've gathered that are focused on exactly the topics and depth/detail that I'm needing to build my foundational knowledge!
This is a GREAT one. It's foundational, but honestly - even after 10+ years of "getting by" with Elements, there were several workflows I understood for the first time. In the past, I've always stumbled through not being able to figure them out and giving up! Now, I can use them as I become efficient and proficient ;)
So, no matter how much or how little you think you know about Photoshop, check this out... Let me know your thoughts...