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  • John Reuter Biography

    JOHN REUTER has been a photographer since the early 1970s, majoring in Art while attending SUNY Geneseo. He continued his studies on the graduate level at the University of Iowa, receiving two master’s degrees. It was there that he began to specialize in Polaroid materials, most notably his SX-70 constructions, combining photography with painting and collage. Reuter joined Polaroid Corporation in 1978 as senior photographer and later Director of the legendary 20x24 Studio. His own work evolved through large scale Polacolor Image Transfers to digital imaging in the mid 1990’s. He has taught workshops in Photoshop, Lightroom, Polaroid materials and encaustic painting around the world.

Fotofusion 2014 Seminars with John Reuter at Palm Beach Photographic Centre

Going Local in Lightroom 5 with John Reuter

Lightroom, with many powerful tools to control raw digital files, transformed the way photographers manage their images. Adobe has since added many local controls to fine tune and correct your images that have gotten so sophisticated that many photographers feel they can perfect their image without ever leaving Lightroom. You will explore the local adjustment and retouch tools of Lightroom, the Adjustment Brush, the Graduated and (new) Radial Filters, and the Clone and heal tools. Adobe has added the full range of global controls in the sliders for these local tools, greatly extending their power and flexibility. You will explore all of these tools and cover the ins and outs of masking in Lightroom, allowing you to get the maximum control of your vision.

Thursday, January 16  8:30-10:00 am

Photoshop Selections: Old School/New School, Which are You? with John Reuter

Making selections in Photoshop has always been one of the most important editing skills to master. In the early days, it was the Lasso, Magic Wand, and the venerable Pen Tool that helped us select certain pixels and not others. The star pupil of the New School, meanwhile, is the Quick Selection tool, a smart version of the Magic Wand, which you can train to quickly make a precise selection. Old School still has its place, and we will still explore Quick Mask editing to refine any selection; show how to save selections and load them later; and explain how to add to or subtract from a selection.

Friday, January 17 4:30-6:00 pm

DSLRs and then some: New Technologies for Personal Video with John Reuter

Sweeping new technology makes it easier not just to capture video — but to create stunning videos. Today, high quality video is available on cameras under $1000. The Canon 5D MkII revolutionized video, when it introduced full-frame HD video on a still camera.  The GoPro Hero allows spectacular video to be captured virtually anywhere. And the Blackmagic Pocket Cinema Camera delivers HD video with 13 stops of dynamic range. Meanwhile, technologies such as Magic Lantern have extended those capabilities even farther, as has the ability to capture RAW video and process it though Adobe Camera Raw.  John will demonstrate these advances with footage captured with the latest cameras.

Saturday, January  18, 4:30-6:00 pm






John Reuter and The Polaroid Years: Instant Photography and Experimentation

Revelation, 1978

Arc of Remembrance, 1978

Afterglow, 1978

Madonna and Child, 1978

John Reuter’ essay in the new book “The Polaroid Years: Instant Photography and Experimentation”.

When I began working artistically with Polaroid materials in the 1970s, I had already been exposed to their magic. My father was the quintessential Polaroid photographer, purchasing a camera every several years and two packs of film at each holiday or family occasion. I remember the stinky print coater, the sticky cards to keep the color photos from curling, the flash bulbs, the cold clip. These were all attendant rituals that accompanied the magic of instant photography. They also taught me that these photographs were objects with a physicality, a physicality that perhaps could be altered. I owe my photographic aesthetic to two wonderful teachers at the State University College of New York at Geneseo, Michael and Rosemary Teres, who opened my eyes to the creative possibilities of photography and painting. Michael was a relentless experimenter, and Rosemary, my art history and painting teacher, encouraged me to combine photography and painting.
In 1974, when I encountered the SX-70 camera, there was already a manipulation movement underway. It was led in my mind by Lucas Samaras, the iconoclastic maverick with Byzantine influences. Samaras had already staked out the territory in the late 1960s with his Autopolaroids, an encyclopedic exploration of self-portraiture and expression that double-exposed, cut, inked, and painted these 3 1/4 x 4 1/4 masterpieces. When he came upon SX-70 film, he learned that it could MOVE. Lighting his subject—often himself, using colored gels—Samaras manipulated the soft dyes underneath the polyester covering like expressionist paintings. To me, these works stand above much of the SX-70 genre. No one ever did that better.
As I began to experiment with the SX-70 in late 1974, I too attempted to make expressionist markings on my images. I would heat up the film severely, placing it in a toaster oven to induce separation of the polyester and the dyes. When they snapped back into contact it left spider web distortions in the image. It was not until 1975, however, that I really found the direction I wanted to go. A fellow graduate student at the University of Iowa, Rick Valicenti (now a successful graphic designer), generously introduced me to a technique of stripping apart the SX-70 film sandwich and introducing acrylic paint or collage elements inside. This opened up a whole world to me. Many of my photographic influences were in fact painters, and now I could take advantage of their influences in a very direct way. When executed properly, these surreal vignettes seemed to exist in a window of white-bordered normality.
To me, the SX-70 advantage was twofold. The instant feedback photographically was essential in working out poses and lighting, as I was also doing quite a bit of self-portraiture in those days. The second advantage, and one unique to SX-70, was the plastic nature of the medium, which you could physically manipulate and transform. The experience of working on these painted miniatures is one I treasure to this day. There has never been a photographic material like it.

John Reuter: Summer Workshops at Palm Beach Photographic Centre

Photo Technique Magazine: Recovering the Fuji FP 100C Negative

In the latest issue of Photo Technique Magazine I have published an article on the recovery of the negative from Fuji FP 100C instant color print film. You can download a pdf of the article here. Look for more articles in analog and digital technique from me in future issues. Check out Photo Technique Magazine.

John Reuter: Fotofusion 2012 Presentations

Fotofusion 2012: The 17th Annual International Festival of Photography and Digital Imaging
Where Creativity and Technology Fuse

John Reuter Presentations
Wednesday, January 25, 2:30-5:00 PM

Creative Photoshop with John Reuter

For those who feel comfortable with Photoshop’s tools but want to go to a higher level of creative exploration, this is for you. Explore powerful image control through Selections, Channels and Layers. These Photoshop essentials are misunderstood and underused by many. You will explore multiple approaches to the uses of Layers, from specific image enFhancement, through b & w conversions, faux infrared effects and complex image combinations and composites. Adobe Bridge and Camera Raw basics will be explored and creative effects possible within this tool set. Also learn the use of Smart Objects within Photoshop, not only with placement of Raw files but with existing Layers in your compositions. The History Palette will be explored, not just as a great way to keep track of movements in Photoshop but its many creative possibilities that users don’t take advantage of, particularly with Photoshop’s creative filters. Be prepared to produce images you never thought you were capable of.

Friday, January 27, 2:30-4:00 PM
Adobe Photoshop Lightroom 3 and DSLRs with John Reuter

Adobe Lightroom 3 provides the toolset that every serious digital photographer should consider. Quick performance has been dramatically accelerated in Lightroom 3, saving you time from first look to final image. With fast image importing the import interface is easy to set up and navigate, with clear visual indications of where your photos will be located and how they’ll be organized after import. Quickly and easily perfect images by automatically reducing lens defects like geometric distortion, chromatic aberration, and vignetting with single-click profiles. Even images from the best lenses will be improved with new lens profiling tools. Lightroom 3 offers a vast improvement in the de mosaic process as well as new sharpening and noise reduction tools and The Develop Module has become extremely powerful.

Saturday, January 28 8:30-10:00 AM

Take the Leap into Creative Video with your DSLR with John Reuter

Are you one of the many photographers with newer generation DSLRs that have amazing video capabilities, intrigued with this feature, but just don’t know how to get started with the numerous options the cameras provide? Leap into creative video as Reuter shows you how to get started by setting the video up in camera preferences. He will discuss realistic accessories to get the best footage, and alternative lens choices to make your videos even more unique. Explore time-lapse footage to still image slideshows set to music to full-blown narrative movies and everywhere in between.
Once you see how easy it can be, you will wonder why you waited so long to get started. For video editing, you will utilize Adobe Premiere Elements 10, a solid cross platform entry-level program that is easy to learn and produces professional quality videos, and can import video directly from your camera without the confusing choices of transcoding. You will explore simple editing techniques to get started, using transitions and how to work with audio. Imaging’s future will lie in video, and you will enjoy extending your skill set into the moving image.