Unforgettable San Antonio – Buckhorn Saloon Retouching

chris crisman san antonio tourism advertising buckhorn retouchin

Now that we’ve released our first shot from the Unforgettable San Antonio campaign, we thought it was only appropriate to take a deeper look at how it all came together. With a final file that tops out over 10 gigabytes and 200+ layers, it is hard for us to even describe the complexity of what we’ve created here. So we’re not just going to talk about it – we’re going to show it. Keep reading for a more in-depth, layer by layer look at the Buckhorn and an interview with the digital artist who helped bring this image to life…


Unforgettable San Antonio – The Buckhorn Saloon

crisman san antonio tourism

How do you approach creating the impossible? When tasked with making photos that simply do not exist outside of imagination and concept, how do you bring those ideas to life? More importantly, how does it all come together? – These are just a few of the questions that we had to ask ourselves earlier this year when we began an unforgettable project for the city of San Antonio, Texas working with Proof Advertising. It’s been weeks of shooting, months of retouching, and thousands of photos later, but we are rolling out the first of these incredible ads – The Buckhorn Saloon.

When you’re asked to create a photo in a famous historic saloon with eleven talent, one NBA superstar, two priceless paintings, nine unique costumes, 55 taxidermy animals, and one former NBA superstar, the only correct answer is simply “Where do we begin?”


Are Photography Skills Being Replaced?

Interesting question, isn’t it? When we got a call from Advanced Photoshop UK  asking us to weigh in on the issue we knew that it would be a worthwhile topic for discussion.

After some discussion over a few beers and a bit of deep thought, here is Chris’s answer, in his own words:

“Photoshop is just one tool in my arsenal used to help illustrate my personal vision. But the greatest tool is my mind, followed by my camera. There are some images that just can’t be captured through the means of traditional photography. Photoshop being applied by a talented digital artist helps me complete my vision. If any one piece of mine is better classified as illustration that’s fine by me.”

We’re not crazy either – Advanced Photoshop polled its readers, and an overwhelming 95% of them agreed that photography skills cannot be substituted by Photoshop and retouching ability.

What do you think? Let us know @crismanphoto or drop a line in the comments!

Advanced Photopshop Compositing Secrets

We’re happy to report that we have been featured in Advanced Photoshop Magazine issue 98. You might remember back to last summer when they first featured Chris’s work and an interview about his process. We’re back again, this time contributing a handful of tools and tips for maximizing your compositing workflow. Although the magazine is based in the UK, you can order it online or try and pick up a copy at specialty retailers in the US.

No worries though, we’ve summarized the tips here, keep reading to find out how we break down our compositing workflow…


Weekly Wrap-up, Janurary 16th-20th

All things considered it was a good week in Philly. We spent some time early in the week concepting and planning for a big personal shoot that we worked on today – I wanted to include a few photos from today, hence the late weekly wrap up. Aside from that, Chris spent a few days this week on the road, meeting with clients and friends. January is always a great time to dive into personal work, we’re definitely missing the opportunity this year.

Late but not forgotten, keep reading for our weekly review…