Craig's Photoshop Actions, created by Craig Minielly, have been instrumental in developing our signature style. The main reason we were drawn to them was because of Craig's incredible photographic talent. His style was something we wanted to achieve. This guy knew "cool" years ago! The trendy actions you're seeing out there now-Craig has already done it.
Once we put his actions to work, we began receiving positive feedback from our colleagues and clients and knew we were onto something. We had stepped outside of the box and stood out from the crowd.
Craig's Actions are very user-friendly, can be tweaked to your preference, and are versatile enough to be used on both studio and outdoor portraits. We started out with the ShadowSoft series and Productivity Essentials. The ShadowSoft series is perfect for those wanting to achieve the soft effect while still maintaining control of the details on the image. There are so many different looks you can achieve with one single action-the possibilities are endless. All it takes is a little creative thinking on your part to complete the process.
Craig's StoryTellers sets, both 1 and 2, are definitely sets that we use with every single image that runs through our computers. Within StoryTellers 2 is a set of actions called Image Poppers. The Portrait Popper within that set is one that we start every image with. It boosts the saturation and contrast and brings the image to life. StoryTellers 1 has our all-time favorite action, Craig's Fashionizers. It is used in almost every high-school senior image our studio does.
The newest release of Craig's Creative Suite is a great way to save time. With Production Assistants like the Portrait/Wedding processes, we can now effectively work through high volumes of images while giving them that extra touch that clients desire and expect from us as professionals. What used to take us a week's worth of work to get through a wedding job, we can now complete in an evening.
With a simple setup that you're shown via tutorial, you can create a PSD file, a web-sized JPEG file, and a printable TIFF, all with one click. We can't begin to tell you what a lifesaver this has been for us. It now frees up our workflow schedule, so we're comfortable to take on more jobs, which equals more income. These actions have easily paid for themselves time and time again. The cost is minute compared to the potential profit you'll gain from incorporating them into your image processing.
The new iTones and Jazz Actions have that stylish fashion feel that our high-school seniors want to emulate. From gritty to soft, and from dark to high contrast, the Creative Suite has it all. Favorites of the iTones are the BelAire Action, the HiColor Action, and Hi-BW (black-and-white) Action.
We have always been a fan of Craig's black-and-white conversions. They bring out the ultimate contrast and tonal range while the black values stay true.
Craig's Actions have saved us hours of time, in addition to days of image processing, while increasing our bottom line. We honestly feel like we are at a higher level as a professional business because of them.
Steve & Shelley Harrington own and operate Steve Harrington Photography (www.steveharrington.net) in Garland, Utah. Steve handles the camera and Shelley takes care of the design and editing work. They started their photography business 5 years ago, specializing in high school seniors, but also photograph family portraits, weddings, and anything else that may come along.