The freelance Create Professional can easily be part of a group, but most often works alone. Consequently, the freelance Creative Professional has to learn to handle various aspects, all of them important if he wants to succeed at his chosen profession.
Unless you are famous and well connected, the starting point for a freelance work is the proposal.
What to include and omit in a proposal is critical as it influences the potential customer to click the link to your website to learn more about you.
Images might be what first captures the attention of an editor, but words are the assurance, and they have to be compelling. This balance between images and words is crucial even to the visual artist. Unless you are extraordinarily talented, enough to overrule the standard procedures, most freelance Creative Professionals have to communicate with the editor and art director by writing, and communication is expected to be uncluttered and to the point. Otherwise, they soon find a less troublesome replacement.

Having experienced a freelance Creative Professional life for more than two decades, I decided to make myself available to those who wish to better prepare themselves for the reality of a freelance career, or simply want to learn the craft more earnestly, like the serious hobbyist for example.

My approach is simple, but planned and structured to help you grow by building your skills on solid foundations.
The photography classes, for example, extend from basic camera functions to advanced image manipulation. By clicking the buttons below you can find examples of photographic related classes I offer.

The examples used on his web portfolio illustrates some of the basic skills the Freelance Creative Professional needs to possess. If one captures your fancy, please don't hesitate in contacting Manuel Bruges.

The freelance Create Professional can easily be part of a group, but most often works alone. Consequently, the freelance Creative Professional has to learn to handle various aspects, all of them important if he wants to succeed at his chosen profession.
Unless you are famous and well connected, the starting point for a freelance work is the proposal.
What to include and omit in a proposal is critical as it influences the potential customer to click the link to your website to learn more about you.
Images might be what first captures the attention of an editor, but words are the assurance, and they have to be compelling. This balance between pictures and words is crucial even to the visual artist. Unless you are extraordinarily talented, enough to overrule the standard procedures, most freelance Creative Professionals have to communicate with the editor and art director by writing, and communication is expected to be uncluttered and to the point. Otherwise, they soon find a less troublesome replacement.

Having experienced a freelance Creative Professional life for more than two decades, I decided to make myself available to those who wish to better prepare themselves for the reality of a freelance career, or simply want to learn the craft more earnestly, like the serious hobbyist for example.

My approach is simple, but planned and structured to help you grow by building your skills on solid foundations.
The photography classes, for example, extend from basic camera functions to advanced image manipulation. By clicking the buttons below you can find examples of photographic related classes I offer.

The examples used on his web portfolio illustrates some of the basic skills the Freelance Creative Professional needs to possess. If one captures your fancy, please don't hesitate in contacting Manuel Bruges.

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    In here an ordinary horizontal framed image is turned into a larger vertical movie poster.
    In this class, the student starts with a simple portrait and gradually turns it into a billboard.
    To ease the learning process, I dived this class into various distinct steps.
    At first, the students learn the basic technical aspects of image manipulation by completing a project using the class assets and following the teachers' instructions. Afterwards, as the students become more familiar with the manipulation process, the class turns to the practical aspects of planning and gathering one's original assets, often photographs taken by the students.
    Back at the class, the students learn how to compose and manipulate their assets to produce the movie poster they envisioned.

    This class is particularly useful to photographers who want to pursue a commercial career, but often excuse themselves by lacking the budget needed to build their portfolio.
    Photo manipulation decreases the need of costly models or expensive settings.
    In this class, the student will learn that to produce compelling commercial images, using some basic technical skills and a fertile imagination.

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  • Santa_ManuelBruges_D

    I took this image while on an editorial assignment; NYC at Christmas time.
    NYC has various Christmas icons; one of them is the Santa Claus at the department stores.
    This particular one was at the Bloomingdale, who unexpectedly gave the magazine I was working for the permission to shoot during pick hours.
    The Santa's room if often dark and I was given 15 minutes, from setting to clean up, and the result is what you see.
    Unlike many of NYC Santa Claus, which are actors and love the camera, this one was a story teller and camera shy. After setting up my strobe-lights and positioning the Santa, I started to shoot and realize that the Santa had no clue of what to do, without time to explain, I just grabbed the nearest stuffed animal and told him to hold it.
    Current digital cameras provide good-quality images at high ISOs, but the need to recreate a setting using artificial lighting when requested is an important skill the freelance photographer has to master. There is no time for trails; no Polaroid backs on the analogue cameras and no time to check back-screen on today's digital cameras. When you have just a couple of minutes of actual shooting time, there are no second chances.
    In this particular case, I used a Hasselblad, and I took five frames, three of them with the stuffed animal.

    This class you can learn how to be quick setting up lights to recreate a new environment on location.
    NYC Santa Claus location light


    I took this image while on an editorial assignment; NYC at Christmas time.
    NYC has various Christmas icons; one of them is the Santa Claus at the department stores.
    This particular one was at the Bloomingdale, who unexpectedly gave the magazine I was working for the permission to shoot during pick hours.
    The Santa's room if often dark and I was given 15 minutes, from setting to clean up, and the result is what you see.
    Unlike many of NYC Santa Claus, which are actors and love the camera, this one was a story teller and camera shy. After setting up my strobe-lights and positioning the Santa, I started to shoot and realize that the Santa had no clue of what to do, without time to explain, I just grabbed the nearest stuffed animal and told him to hold it.
    Current digital cameras provide good-quality images at high ISOs, but the need to recreate a setting using artificial lighting when requested is an important skill the freelance photographer has to master. There is no time for trails; no Polaroid backs on the analogue cameras and no time to check back-screen on today's digital cameras. When you have just a couple of minutes of actual shooting time, there are no second chances.
    In this particular case, I used a Hasselblad, and I took five frames, three of them with the stuffed animal.


    This class you can learn how to be quick setting up lights to recreate a new environment on location.

    Close

  • Kirin_ManuelBruges_L

    The studio is the perfect place to study how light creates mood and helps in shaping the model's features.
    The freelancer studio does not need to be a movie set. Any quiet place can effortlessly be turned into a photographic studio, just grab a backdrop and point some lights into it, and you got a studio.

    I chose this particular image because it serves as an example of a home-made studio, the family approach that can easily be recreated by anyone.
    One day, while resting at home after an assignment, my daughter told me that she needed a picture of herself. Rather than wait to meet her at the studio, I took the chance that I had my gear home and decided to do it right there and then.
    I placed a backdrop on the wall of my very messy living room, and using a couple of lights came up with this image within minutes.

    In the studio light classes, I teach how to take advantage of whatever space you might have by turning it into a portrait or product studio. After that, the student learns how to use light to mould particular features of the model or shapes of an object.
    Bottom line, I want the freelancer to understand that pleasant images are independent of the size and sophistication of the studio and that any family member or friend can easily be turned into a top model.
    Maiko Kirin Bruges Studio Light


    The studio is the perfect place to study how light creates mood and helps in shaping the model's features.
    The freelancer studio does not need to be a movie set. Any quiet place can effortlessly be turned into a photographic studio, just grab a backdrop and point some lights into it, and you got a studio.

    I chose this particular image because it serves as an example of a home-made studio, the family approach that can easily be recreated by anyone.
    One day, while resting at home after an assignment, my daughter told me that she needed a picture of herself. Rather than wait to meet her at the studio, I took the chance that I had my gear home and decided to do it right there and then.
    I placed a backdrop on the wall of my very messy living room, and using a couple of lights came up with this image within minutes.

    In the studio light classes, I teach how to take advantage of whatever space you might have by turning it into a portrait or product studio. After that, the student learns how to use light to mould particular features of the model or shapes of an object.
    Bottom line, I want the freelancer to understand that pleasant images are independent of the size and sophistication of the studio and that any family member or friend can easily be turned into a top model.

    Close
  • analogue_BW

    The time-tested traditions of film photography are more than a nostalgic or fashionable necessity to many photographers.
    It is not easy to reproduce the ‘film’ look in a computer and for that reason, many photographers are going back to analogue photography. Magazines dedicated to analogue photography are, likewise, sprouting everywhere inspiring those who entered photography via the digital realm and never experienced the film to give it a try.

    This class is mostly about B&W film photography, and while I start with camera basics, I gradually delve into advanced topics such as how to choose the right film for the task and how to manipulate film curves during development.
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  • Owl svg vector by Mauel Bruges

    Unlike pixel-based images, vector graphics are not made of a specific number of dots. Therefore, vector-based images can be scaled to a larger size without losing image quality.
    Because vector graphics use mathematic equations and geometric primitives (points, lines and shapes), their appearance is clean and crispy, impossible to reproduce using pixel based applications.
    Photoshop out o the box already possesses a few vector tools that with each version become more refined. There is a reason for adding vector tools to a predominantly pixel based application.

    In this class, I teach the importance of vector images and introduce Adobe Illustrator to photographers.

    Close
  • Street photography portrait of painter

    This image was taken in Venice for the Fujifilm technical data for professionals. It was used to advertise the Fujifilm Rembrandt B&W printing paper.
    I find this picture to be a perfect example of street photography along the lines of a photographer I highly admire, Henri Cartier-Bresson.
    While walking around town, I saw this scene and capture two frames without been noticed, even the dog was unaware of my presence. Only afterward did I approach the group to introduce myself and learn a little about them.
    As you might already realize, street photography is one of my favorite topics.
    To walk around town documenting life as we see it, is a photographic practice and mental exercise demanding a well-balanced blend of introspection and camera skills.
    It does not matter if you use a large analogue camera or a modern smartphone, the process and what you are trying to achieve don't change, only the tools.

    In this class, I introduce documentary photography with a particular emphasis on street-photography.

    Close
  • Illustration using vector graphics

    The line dividing photography from design is a thin, but a well-defined line, that is getting blurred with every passing year.
    Presently, the need for a designer to know how to manipulate a pixel based image is as important as the necessity the photographer has to incorporate their pictures in the larger context of presentations and page layout in particular.
    Especially those photographers interested in product photography and advertisement can significantly benefit from familiarizing themselves with vector based applications.
    To learn how to blend both, vector and raster, images to achieve a final composition that conveys one's vision is an exciting challenge that can open the photographer to new possibilities.
    You do not need to be a detail maniac to submit your ideas to a commercial agency, has they often welcome proposals from outsiders with basic skills but fertile imagination.
    Those looking for a chance in the advertisement field should keep in mind that commercial agencies have the know how, but at times need outside refreshing ideas.

    In this class, the student will learn how to create and blend pixel and vector images to create a product campaign for a fictitious company.

    Close
  • 3D Logo made in Photoshop

    Photoshop is not a 3d application, but with every upgrade, Adobe is gradually incorporating and expanding its 3d capabilities.
    If you want to deviate into the 3d realm, I recommend application such as 3d Max or Maya, but if your interest and needs are basic, Photoshop already offers enough power to produce 3d logos such as this one, which was made entirely in Photoshop.
    The possibility to rotate and enlarge the 3d model to better fit a particular design, or to change the intensity as well as the color of the light is very useful and expands the photographic horizons.

    In this class, I teach the basics of 3d using Photoshop, by turning flat 2d images into 3d models. Then, we will advance into logo creation and text manipulation.

    Close
Logo made in Illustrator

Email marketing

Email marketing enriches business communications by targeting specific markets, and it is both, cost-effective and environment-friendly.
An effective email campaign begins with a well-elaborated mailing list that is easily segmented based on customers' preferences. Only this manner can the campaign be beneficial by promoting trust and loyalty while at the same time increase sales.
This class is particularly helpful to business that want to harness the power of the Internet for marketing purposes.

Portfolio

The portfolio is a collection of work and unlike most people believe, does not necessarily need to represent one's best work.
It is important that the freelancer understands that the portfolio serves various functions.
The portfolio used in a job interview has to display a variety of skills and techniques, whereas one used to get an exhibition, requires a single but unifying theme, or style, fitting the gallery we have in mind.
In this class, you will learn how to create a portfolio that delivers positive results.

Practical Advice

As you already suspect the Creative Professional is a busy person. However, don't fool yourself, because any individual that wants to succeed in his chosen profession has, likewise, to master a variety of different tasks.
It is unwise to believe that the Creative Professional, or any professional, can succeed on a lazy personality and working ethics. Nevertheless, we need to be smart and ease, or even automatize, our mundane tasks to save time for the creative process needed in our profession.
The use of plugins is not cheating, and I encourage the Creative Professional to explore the possibilities. Plugins facilitate mundane tasks, and the Creative Professional should learn, which better fit their workflow.
I cannot stress enough, too, the benefits of periodically online learning. To keep abreast with software updates as well as to learn new techniques used by professionals at The Gnomon Workshop or Pluralsight should be regarded as inspiring and the Creative Professional should not shy from it. To prove my point I included on this page two images that were created using Digital Tutors assets.

In this class, I will introduce plugins that I find useful for a variety of tasks and will review the various online learning possibilities.

SEO

To understand the limitations and capabilities of search engines is crucial to better build, format, and annotate web content.
By including clues that engines understand, we increase our web visibility. However, search engines are growing in sophistication and constantly changing their reading priorities.

In this class, you will learn how to implement SEO best practices and apply them to your website.

Logo made in Illustrator

Email marketing

Email marketing enriches business communications by targeting specific markets, and it is both, cost-effective and environment-friendly.
An effective email campaign begins with a well-elaborated mailing list that is easily segmented based on customers' preferences. Only this manner can the campaign be beneficial by promoting trust and loyalty while at the same time increase sales.
This class is particularly helpful to business that want to harness the power of the Internet for marketing purposes.

Portfolio

The portfolio is a collection of work and unlike most people believe, does not necessarily need to represent one's best work.
It is important that the freelancer understands that the portfolio serves various functions.
The portfolio used in a job interview has to display a variety of skills and techniques, whereas one used to get an exhibition, requires a single but unifying theme, or style, fitting the gallery we have in mind.
In this class, you will learn how to create a portfolio that delivers positive results.

Practical Advice

As you already suspect the Creative Professional is a busy person. However, don't fool yourself, because any individual that wants to succeed in his chosen profession has, likewise, to master a variety of different tasks.
It is unwise to believe that the Creative Professional, or any professional, can succeed on a lazy personality and working ethics. Nevertheless, we need to be smart and ease, or even automatize, our mundane tasks to save time for the creative process needed in our profession.
The use of plugins is not cheating, and I encourage the Creative Professional to explore the possibilities. Plugins facilitate mundane tasks, and the Creative Professional should learn, which better fit their workflow.
I cannot stress enough, too, the benefits of periodically online learning. To keep abreast with software updates as well as to learn new techniques used by professionals at The Gnomon Workshop or Pluralsight should be regarded as inspiring and the Creative Professional should not shy from it. To prove my point I included on this page two images that were created using Digital Tutors assets.

In this class, I will introduce plugins that I find useful for a variety of tasks and will review the various online learning possibilities.

SEO

To understand the limitations and capabilities of search engines is crucial to better build, format, and annotate web content.
By including clues that engines understand, we increase our web visibility. However, search engines are growing in sophistication and constantly changing their reading priorities.

In this class, you will learn how to implement SEO best practices and apply them to your website.