Home of the 10-Channel Workflow for Digital Photography

I’m Lee Varis, photographer, educator and digital imaging artist. I have maintained a website at this domain for over 15 years. I have divided my 40 years of experience almost equally  between traditional film-based  and digital imaging photography. This gives me a unique perspective on the evolution of photographic technology grounded in the tradition of old school craft.

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I am a photo-illustrator now working in the Boston area. I have been involved in commercial photography for over 45 years, and started working with computer imaging over 25 years ago. I currently work with photography in conjunction with computer graphics to create images for use in print advertising.

My work has been featured on movie posters, video box covers, CD covers, numerous brochures and catalogs. I was 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, my 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. 

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Up Coming Workshops and Travel Tours

Hollywood Lighting in the Hurrell Style

Start date: February 1, 2020

End date: February 2, 2020

Time: 9:00 - 18:00

Location: Hunt’s Photo, Melrose


This weekend workshop provides a hands-on experience learning Hollywood style lighting, posing and studio workflow. Work in the studio with male and female models to re-create the classic glamour photography of the 1930’s and 40’s under the expert guidance of Bobbi and Lee. The famous Hollywood photographer George Hurrell rented Bobbi Lane’s studio for the last 10 years of his life, and this provided Bobbi with an unprecedented opportunity to learn from the master himself—Bobbi shares this first hand knowledge with participants in two fun-filled days. Learn to work with modern studio lights to get the highly stylized look of the classic Hollywood glamour without requiring the use of old fashioned clumsy “hot lights” The afternoon of the 2nd day will be used for post-processing instruction by Lee Varis. Lee demonstrates how to use Lightroom and Photoshop to create the classic B&W glamour imagery, including various retouching techniques for enhancing portraits.

Venice Carnival Photo Tour – 2020

Start date: February 18, 2020

End date: February 23, 2020

Time: 8:00 - 18:00

Location: Venice, Italy


Join us in Venice to capture the colour and pageantry of Carnival, during our five-day, six-night Venice Carnival Photo Tour!

Carnival, is one of the most colourful and visually exciting festivals in the world. Dating back to the twelfth century it is characterised by the elaborate masks and costumes worn by the thousands of participants who attend this annual event in the days leading up to Fat Tuesday.

In February 2020, we will be running our ninth Venice Carnival Photo Tour. This is an incredible opportunity to photograph a truly unique event, and we will provide you with a wealth of individual instruction and attention during this visually stunning event, and we will teach you everything you need to know to create dramatic and compelling travel images.

Classic Hollywood Glamour Photography in the Style of George Hurrell

Date: February 29, 2020

Time: 14:00 - 18:30

Location: Hotel 1620 in Plymouth

Hollywood Lighting Workshop 2018

Start-to-finish photography techniques for lighting, posing, shooting and retouching for classic Hollywood glamour photography.

Lee Varis, renowned author and Hollywood photographer, will demonstrate the techniques of classic Hollywood lighting, posing, and post-processing in a complete, start-to-finish session. See and learn the lighting techniques of the master Hollywood photographer of the 30’s and 40’s using modern studio flash equipment. Lee will do a live photo shoot with a model delivered via digital projector and follow the shoot with Photoshop techniques for advanced retouching and B&W conversion to simulate the look of the classic 8×10 studio stills. His retouching techniques will allow you to replicate Hurrell’s classic creamy B&W tones and smooth skin, without the hours of tedious re-illustration that George was famous for. If you’re a photographer who photographs people, you need to be able to light, shoot, and retouch skin. Join Lee as he shows you how!

Hollywood Lighting in the Hurrell Style with Bobbi Lane & Lee Varis (Weekend-Intensive)

Start date: March 27, 2020

End date: March 29, 2020

Time: Fri 19:00 - 21:00 • Sat & Sun 10:00 - 18:00

Location: Los Angeles Center of Photography, 5566 W. Washington Blvd. Los Angeles, CA 90016


Join the dynamic duo of Bobbi Lane and Lee Varis to explore the world of Hollywood glamour, and learn the photographic style of George Hurrell. Bobbi & Lee will teach you how to achieve the look of the classic Hollywood glamour images of the 1930’s & 40’s using modern lighting tools and digital retouching techniques.

George Hurrell spent the last 12 years of his life shooting in Bobbi’s studio, during which he experienced a revival of popularity for his classic style. You will be learning from her first-hand experience with George’s creative approach to lighting, styling, and posing! After hands-on shooting, Lee Varis will teach Lightroom and Photoshop retouching techniques that allow you to replicate Hurrell’s classic creamy B&W tones and smooth skin, without the hours of tedious re-illustration that George was famous for. In addition, we will have special guest, Richard Settle, George Hurrell’s personal photographic assistant for the last 10 years of his life. Richard will share his insights into George’s creative process at our Friday evening introduction. Don’t miss this exclusive opportunity to learn from the masters!

Upon successful completion of this workshop, you will leave with a foundation of technical and artistic skills necessary to achieve the look of classic Hollywood glamour photography. Topics covered include:

– Basics of studio photo workflow
– Lighting theory and electronic flash basics
– Basic lighting setups
– Advanced lighting concepts
– Styling and posing for glamour
– Post processing considerations
– Skin retouching techniques
– B&W conversion techniques
– Special digital glamour effects

Florida Birding & Photo Festival

Start date: April 22, 2020

End date: April 26, 2020

Location: Saint Augustine, Florida

Florida Birding & Photo Festival 2018

Join Bobbi and Lee for a wide range of workshops at this fun festival in picturesque St. Augustine, Florida. Enjoy bird photography at the Alligator Farm, capture exciting images of “Horses-on-the-Beach”, and participate in the many different workshops, ranging from “Portraits Unplugged” to “Flash Lighting on Location”, and “Still Life Light Painting” stay tuned for updated info on the website!