Lee Varis

Lee Varis is a photo-illustrator now working in the Boston area. He has been involved in commercial photography for more than 40 years. He started working with computer imaging over 20 years ago and currently works with digital as well as conventional photography in conjunction with computer graphics to create images for use in print advertising. 

Lee’s work has been featured on movie posters, video box covers, CD covers, numerous brochures and catalogs. He is responsible for the moth on the "Silence of the Lambs" movie poster, as well as photos of the Starship Enterprise for the Star Trek movies! 

The author of 4 books, his best-known book is the best seller: “Skin: The Complete Guide to Digitally Lighting, Photographing, and Retouching Faces and Bodies” Wiley Publishing 2006 & a 2nd edition in 2010.  This book has become a must-have reference for every portrait and fashion photographer.


Select Gallery of Lee's Images


Lee's Seminars & Field Workshops


WED 9 - 10:30 A.M.

A World without Adobe - New Alternatives for Post Processing

Lee Varis will examine various new software options to replace Lightroom and Photoshop in your image creation workflow. Recent developments in non-subscription software offer new and exciting possibilities for photographers looking for options other than the Adobe image machine. Software packages examined are: 
• Alien Skin Exposure 
• Affinity Photo 
• Aurora HDR 
• Luminar 
• DxO PhotoLab 
• GraphicConverter 
• Photo Mechanic 
• ON1 Photo RAW 

Lee will look at individual applications, as well as various combinations that can replicate, or in some cases extend the capabilities of the Lightroom/Photoshop imaging standard.

Photography Seminar

Meeting Location: Celebration Hall at St. Anastasia, 5205 A1A S.

Price: $25

Difficulty Level: All Levels

Max No People: 20

THURS 1 - 4 P.M.

21st Century Lighting Techniques – Light Painting with Photoshop

Learn a whole new approach to lighting that leverages the idiosyncrasies of digital capture to create spectacular effects with minimal equipment. 

Lee will guide students in a lecture/demo/shoot that explores unique lighting techniques using various simple light sources in combination with Photoshop. Students will learn detailed techniques for creating spectacular RGB coloring effects, as well as cool painterly light quality effects! Topics include: 

  • False-color lighting 

  • Light painting 

  • Multi-shot workflow 

  • Photoshop layers fundamentals 

  • Photoshop blend modes 

Participants will photograph 3 different still life setups and explore various light painting techniques and see how Lee assembles final images in Photoshop.

Indoor Photography Workshop

Meeting Location: Celebration Hall at St. Anastasia, 5205 A1A S.

Price: $25

Difficulty Level: All Levels

Max No People: 12

Suggested Gear List: camera capable of shooting "timed" exposures of 6 seconds or more, and a tripod. 

FRI 1 - 2:30 P.M.

Portrait Retouching for the Artistically Challenged

Lee Varis, the best-selling author of “Skin: The Complete Guide to Digitally, Lighting, Photographing and Retouching Faces and Bodies” will demonstrate new techniques for portrait retouching that leverage the powerful image processing capabilities of Photoshop to enhance the average subject, without requiring special artistic skills. You will see advanced techniques for:

o   Removing blotchy red skin and evening out skin color without painting or cloning

o   Lightening dark skin and darkening light skin

o   Precision dodging and burning to minimize wrinkles without disrupting skin texture

o   Shaping and sculpting the images using Liquify

o   Skin smoothing with two different approaches that iron out large defects while preserving fine skin texture

o   Eye enhancement with simple techniques for that extra sparkle

o   A special “skin-glow” effect

Lee shows how, with a little computer cleverness, you can create portrait enhancements the rival the experts in a few minutes. He will work on several portrait enhancements, start to finish, to illustrate the essential techniques that will take your portrait photography to the next level.

Photography Seminar

Meeting Location: Celebration Hall at St. Anastasia, 5202 A1A S.

Price: $25

Difficulty Level: All Levels

Max No of People: 20

FRI 3 - 4:30 P.M.

Modern Photo Workflows in Lightroom & Photoshop

Lee Varis examines different photo-imaging "workflows" that take images through a "life-cycle" of input through output for various purposes using Lightroom. Topics covered include: 
• importing, editing, and cataloging 
• working with Instagram 
• how to use Lightroom "Collections" 
• how to use Lightroom "Publish Services" 
• backup strategies 
 Participants will come away from this workshop armed with the knowledge necessary to effectively use Lightroom to craft their own personal workflows. 

Photography Seminar

Meeting Location: Celebration Hall at St. Anastasia, 5205 A1A S.

Price: $25

Difficulty Level: All Levels

Max No. of People: 20

SAT 3 - 4:30 P.M.

Aerial Perspective Technique in Photoshop

Lee Varis examines the principals of aerial perspective or the tendency of things to fade as they recede into the distance. This idea is then developed as it pertains to photographs and we look at a number of examples showing the application of “faux” aerial perspective in Photoshop. Finally, a project image is assembled that teaches how to create these aerial perspective effects. Techniques covered include:

  • Shadows/ Highlights adjustment

  • Pen tool to make paths and selections

  • High Pass Overlay technique for enhanced 3D contrast

  • Clouds filter to simulate dust

  • Screen layer to create light beams

Photography Seminar

Meeting Location: Celebration Hall at St. Anastasia, 5205 A1A S.

Price: $25

Difficulty Level: All Levels

Max No. of People: 20


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