We’re thrilled to have our guest blogger and Next Photoshop Evangelist winner, Gavin Hoey join us today on Photoshop.com to talk about his latest trip to Photoshop World Orlando.
Product Management Director, Digital Imaging
My Week As the Next Photoshop Evangelist
By Gavin Hoey
Of all the amazing things that have happened to me since I won the “Next Photoshop Evangelist” competition, the number one thing on my dream list was going to Photoshop World. So let me start by saying a huge thank you to the Adobe team that made it happen.
A few short weeks ago I stepped on a plane in London and just 10 hours later I was in Orlando, Florida soaking up the Photoshop World experience. And it really was an experience of a lifetime.
Right from the word go, I knew I was in for a week to remember. Within minutes of arriving I’d met a fellow photographer whilst we waited for the elevator. We got chatting and by the time I got out of the elevator I’d made a new friend… Only Photoshop World can do that I think.
The first big event of Photoshop World week was the tweet up at the conference hotel. This was a great chance for me to meet lots of people and make some new friends. The guys from D-Town TV were also on hand, filming an episode of their show and I managed to get myself to the front of the crowd for the intro sequence. You can see the video here. I’m on the left wearing my “RAW to the Core” T-Shirt and looking jet lagged.
The following morning the convention kicked off with the keynote speech and Adobe managed to bag me a seat right at the front. Keynotes have a habit of being dull, boring affairs… not at Photoshop World. Scott Kelby and the NAPP team made it laugh out loud funny and the Adobe team made it educational. It was a real sound and light spectacular full of colour and excitement.
That set the tone for the whole Photoshop World event. The education side of the week came in the form of the countless classes on almost every Photoshop and photography topic you could think of. I sat listening to many of the world’s best trainers giving top quality demonstrations. I can honestly say that I learned at least five new tricks from every class I sat.
After the classes had finished there was the Photoshop World Expo to attend and this was my chance to give something back.
Part of the prize of winning the Next Photoshop Evangelist competition was to give a short demo on the Adobe booth. Now I love teaching Photoshop to a live audience, so when Adobe asked me to give not one but two demos over the three days of the expo, I was thrilled. Not only that but I also spent time working on the Adobe booth right along side the Adobe team. Basically It was a chance for everyone at the expo to get their Photoshop questions answered by the people who know Photoshop better then anyone else I’ve ever met. I’m happy to report I was able to stand my ground and answer every question that came my way… well OK, almost every question.
Going to Photoshop World as the winner of the Next Photoshop Evangelist competition I was given the full VIP experience. I was treated to lunch with the Photoshop product managers, dinner with Julieanne Kost plus friends and even a visit to the after hours party with the stars of the Adobe expo booth team. To top it all off I was invited to meet some of my all time photography idols at the end of the convention party. My only regret is losing the power of coherent speech when shaking hands with some of the industry greats.
So on to the big questions…
Would I recommend Photoshop World?
100% yes. It was an unforgettable experience. Not only did I learn enough new skills to last me a whole year, but I also met many fabulously friendly people, many of whom I can now say are my friends.
What was my highlight of the week?
That’s a really tough question. There were so many great experiences to take away, that I just can’t pick one. But meeting my Photography hero’s and the experience of working alongside the Adobe booth team will stay with me for a long time.