What a difference a header makes!

WordPress.com News

Our websites are our online homes. It makes sense that we want to give them personality and warmth, just like we do with our physical homes.

One of the simplest updates with the biggest impact is a custom header, a completely free feature that’s available to the majority of themes on WordPress.com. A header instantly sets your blog apart — and with free online photo and graphic editing tools, a custom look is accessible to any blogger, no graphic design experience needed.

Take a look at the world of possibilities with these ten blogs:

Text, taken up a notch

A custom header doesn’t require a beautiful photo or exquisite drawing skills. Fonts have personality; just ask the bloggers and writers behind Don’t think just eat, Ellie and Ace, andThe Lovecraft eZineElegant, quirky, eerie — fonts can communicate all that, and more.

dont think just eat

ellie and ace head


(Bonus points to The Lovecraft eZine

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Installing Lightroom Presets

Adobe Lightroom is a very powerful tool, especially when combined with high quality presets.

Downloading and installing Lightroom presets is easy – this quick and handy guide will show you how.

Step 1: Purchase and/or Download Lightroom Presets

The very first step is to download some Lightroom presets. Good news for you, we offer a free sample pack of 20 presets to our newsletter subscribers. Simply enter your email on this page and you’ll receive your sample presets within minutes. Then, simply download the pack to a location on your computer that is easily accessible (like on your desktop).

Most Lightroom preset packs come bundled in a ZIP file. Simply unzip the file and you will then have a folder that contains all the Lightroom presets.

Step 2: Locate the “Develop” Folder

Now that you have a folder with the presets on your computer, open up Lightroom. Then, find the preferences menu item and open up the Preferences panel.

How to install Lightroom PresetsAt the top of this window, you should see a few tabs. Click the “Presets tab“.

Lightroom Presets TabThen, click on “Show Lightroom Presets Folder“. This will open up your Lightroom Presets folder, inside it you will find a folder named “Develop Presets“. This is where you will install your Lightroom Presets, like the ones you purchased or downloaded from the Contrastly Store.

Lightroom Develop FolderOpen this folder. Inside of it you will find a few existing presets as well as any other presets you have installed already.

Now, simply move the presets you have downloaded (the ones from Step 1, they should be on your desktop or in your Downloads folder) into the Develop Presets folder.

Then simply quit Lightroom and re-open it. You will then see all your new Lightroom presets under the Develop module, in the Presets panel on the left.

Lightroom Develop ModuleEnjoy!

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24 Sound Basics That Will Help You Lay a Sturdy Foundation

24 Sound Basics That Will Help You Lay a Sturdy Foundation.

The Essentials of Three-point Lighting

So what is Three-point lighting really all about. Consider this re-blogged post by Richard Harrington and James Ball.

Photofocus (old site)

This article was cowritten with my friend James Ball

Three-point lighting is the basic starting point for film and video. It can also be used well as a portrait lighting approach for photography.  What’s ideally happening is that the subject is light in a way that illuminates their face (with one side more dominant) and some separation from the background. This method utilizes three light sources focused on the subject from different angles. Mastering this technique is the foundation for more advanced lighting strategies. This approach is the basis for portrait lighting, but it can be used in other situations as well.


Key Light

Ch05_Key1The key is generally your most intense light and is placed 15–45 degrees to the side of your subject. The main purpose of the key is to wrap the face in the appropriate quality of light based on the subject’s features and the story you want to tell.

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Acquiring Images for Photoshop — JPEG vs. Raw [UP9]

The alphabet soup of acronyms and codecs can often be as confusing as the work itself. As usual Richard Harrington does a great job of demonstrating and explaining the benefits and pitfalls of acquiring JPEG vs RAW images.

Photofocus (old site)

Understanding Photoshop is a biweekly column that takes an in-depth look at how digital photographs are built and manipulated.  It is a college-level course in plain English for free at Photofocus.  To learn more see this article.

Don’t Skip Column 8

Shooting JPEG vs. Raw

Fig 03_04 MemoryWhen digital cameras became commercially available, the memory cards used to store pictures were very expensive. Many photographers couldn’t afford multiple or high-capacity cards, so they wanted more images to fit on a single, smaller card. Many users also emailed their pictures to friends and family. Small file sizes enabled consumers who lacked an understanding of digital imaging to attach photos to emails with minimum technical headaches. With these two scenarios in mind, manufacturers turned to an Internet-friendly format, JPEG (Joint Photographic Experts Group). It was a proven technology and one that was familiar to many users.

What is a JPEG File?

The JPEG format…

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Five Lessons from a Career in Sound (so far)

How much does a video cost?

How much does a video cost?.

Who’s who on a film Crew? Film Set Roles Identified

Who’s who on a film Crew? Film Set Roles Identified.

10 Reasons All Small Businesses Need Video Marketing

10 Reasons All Small Businesses Need Video Marketing.

The first rule(s) of content

Cut a long story short

The first question I ask people who approach me about producing video – be it subject matter experts or delegates on my visual storytelling course is: who are they trying to reach and engage? Who is the audience?

This is then followed by ‘what do you want the audience to take away from this?’

The second question helps identify whether your video is likely to reach the target audience by questioning any preconceived assumptions that you may have made in the first.

Burns Library, Boston College

It’s not uncommon for production to begin, and even be delivered, with little real thought about the intended audience or the purpose (or key messages) of the content.  In broadcasting these are fondly known as “take-aways”, to which an academic friend joked, ‘Ah, the Tikka Masala theory of education!’ Whereas in education, they are more commonly referred to as learning outcomes.

Ensuring that a piece of content delivers on the…

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