Kubota Imaging Tools offers a wonderful variety of image enhancing tools including a set of actions specifically designed for Lensbaby images. We caught up with Kevin Kubota – the “Idea Guy” behind Kubota Action Tools – to get his advice for new photographers and offer you a chance to win his new Lighting Notebook. Just leave us a comment below for a chance to win!
Getting Started – What was the original inspiration for Kubota Image Tools?
Kubota Image Tools developed as I began creating systems to streamline my workflow and consistently enhance my images. Once I started sharing my work at photo conventions other photographers asked me about workshops and training materials.
I didn’t have any so I started creating them. I was originally hesitant about offering my actions for sale because I thought that photographers would rather learn to do these effects the long, manual way (don’t ask me why). I was teaching them how in my Photoshop workshops, but they consistently asked me to “just sell us the actions already!” So, I gave it a try and it was a big hit.
Advice for others – How would you advise photographers who are trying to balance the need to experiment with the need to maintain a consistent “brand” identity?
Make time to experiment, play, and try different looks and styles – but, be as consistent as possible when sharing your work on your website. You don’t want to give your potential clients the impression that you are still learning and not sure of your true “voice”. It may be true that you haven’t found it yet, but act as if you have. You can always change it later, but be consistent when you do.
Behind closed doors, however, be constantly experimenting and learning. You will hone in on – or maybe even stumble on, a style and look that will be all your own and feels just right. Embrace it, but never be afraid to change if that’s what you feel you need to do.
How do Kubota Image Tools encourage creativity?
I truly believe that creating photographic art is not simply about capturing an artistic image in the camera. For me, that is only half of the process – the rest being my vision and approach to enhancing it with Photoshop or Lightroom to bring out the feeling and emotion of the scene, as I imagined it while capturing it. When I see a scene through my lens, I am seeing the possibilities of what I can do with that image, not just the image verbatim. I am a photo impressionist, not a photojournalist or realist. I feel that just as an artist will choose different medium to express their vision, a photographer does the same through the artistic treatments they do in the post-process. Our tools give the photographer myriad options to express themselves. We eliminate the tedium and confusion and allow them to just “paint”.
Thanks Kevin! Readers, check out the Kubota-enhanced Lensbaby shots below and don’t forget to comment to win a copy of Kevin’s Lighting Notebook (UPDATE: this giveaway is now closed). For more tips on developing your creative style see our Art of Success posts.