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The Photoshop Blog offers the latest Photoshop news and software updates, Photoshop tips and tutorials, and random thoughts from graphic artist and Photoshop expert Jennifer Apple.
MONDAY - FEBRUARY 27 2006
John Ulliman On 'Total Training For Macromedia Flash Professional 8' DVD Set & Free Sample Clips
Total Training recently launched a new series "Total Training For Macromedia Flash Professional 8" that includes 24 hours of indexed tutorials on using Flash Pro 8 for creating interactive websites. The training is led by John Ulliman, an authorized instructor for Macromedia's studio of products and principal of his own project development company. We'll be posting a review of this training series shortly, but in the meantime we asked John a few quick questions about the DVD set...
How would you describe the Flash learning curve for a total beginner?
The learning curve isn't really bad most students assume that its worse than it is, simply because it's a program unlike others that they are used to. Most people are coming at flash from a static graphics experience and the timeline can be a bit intimidating at first. Once we get a little into using keyframes and staging things on the timeline the "curve" flattens out quite a bit.
Is the Total Training series a complete program that starts you from zero, or does one need some knowledge of Flash beforehand?
I've designed the training series to start completely from zero so you don't have to worry about knowing anything to get started. We take everything step by step, from the drawing to the animating so you don't have to have any experience with the tool at all to get going.
Do you suggest using a training book as well, or is video training enough?
You shouldn't need any books to accompany this training most should find that with the dvd you can stop, pause and rewind, it should be much faster seeing the processes than reading about them. We show exactly where the controls are and what happens when they are used so there is no guesswork.
Do you believe that more of the web will feature pure Flash sites, or that sites will be a combination of Flash and HTML?
We are seeing a lot of our clients go for the full pure flash sites now even though it is still a mix, especially now that we are moving flash on to other platforms like cell phones and PDAs. I would say that video projects are the largest use in combination sites with all the advantages that flash video has over other playback formats.
What are your favorite new features in Flash Pro 8?
I'd have to say that the new video and text rendering features are getting the most use in our new flash projects, and I know the clients are very excited when they see the quality of the video and size of the movie files but my favorite feature by far is the custom easing control for animation. I have worked with a lot of animation software, and this one control is a huge leap forward for all animators in terms of control and ease of use not to mention the professional motion results you can get with it.
That's it for now. Thanks John!
To give you an idea of what the training is like, here are some High Definition sample tutorials from the series that we are hosting, courtesy of Total Training.
How To Add Frames In The Timeline Window
In this tutorial you will learn how to add frames to individual elements in Flash, how to insert a frame using the menu in Flash, and how to manoeuver through the timeline window.
How To Prepare, Test And Publish A Movie
In this tutorial you will learn how to prepare items in the timeline window before publishing a movie in Flash, how to test a completed movie in Flash, and how to preview a Flash movie in a browser for final testing.
How To Set A Mute Sound Button
In this tutorial you will learn how to set a mute sound button in Flash, how to use the Behaviors Window to set common actions in Flash, and how to attach an action script to stop all sounds in Flash.
How To Create & Add A Simple Mask
In this tutorial you will learn how to create and use a fill shape as a mask in Flash, how to preview a mask in Flash, and how to use the timeline window to animate the mask.
How To Make New Layers - Flash Video Tutorial
In this tutorial you will learn how to make a new layer in Flash, how to rename and position a new layer in Flash, and how to work with the layers menu.
How To Import And Add Sound To A Movie
In this tutorial you will learn how to import sounds and place them in the timeline in Flash, how to preview a new imported sound in Flash, and how to add sound to a movie using the timeline window in Flash.
How To Work With The Size Report
In this tutorial you will learn how to work with the Generate Size Report in Flash, how to interpret the information generated in the Size Report in Flash, and how to double-check for certain elements that may create large files.
Photoshop Resource At Squidoo
Seth Godin is a marketing guru who's last book, All Marketers Are Liars, serves morsels of marketing wisdom sprinkled among some fluff and filler, but Seth's morsels are pretty good, and so are some of his crazy ideas, like Squidoo.
Recently at Squidoo a new lens was launched called Photoshop Resource, which is an extensive links page created by Jonathan Gabriel that provides one-click access to some of the best Photoshop resources on the net. I asked Gabriel to tell me a little more about his lens. "I created the Photoshop Resource as a way to help Photoshop enthusiasts find the best techniques and tutorials (especially video tutorials) on the web, all in one place. I have noticed that a lot of times, because of my enthusiasm for learning (or temporary insanity, take your pick), I find myself jumping all around the web, often finding some PS diamonds in the rough after extensive search."
I also asked him what he had in store for his lens. "In the near future my blog will contain links to tutorials and techniques, as well as my own take on the world of PS, things that have improved my workflow, that sort of thing. Overall, building my lens on Squidoo has been a good experience for me. I would invite others to start a Squidoo lens, sure... it's pretty painless (and free) to set up and update. Plus Squidoo places Google ads along the side of the page and the revenue generated can go straight to the lensmaster, or to a charity of his or her choosing."
One thing Gabriel's lens has that really intrigued me was a list of job offers for Photoshop experts. I wondered how he was getting those and he told me that the job listings appear from an RSS feed he tagged from Indeed.com. You can find them at the very end of his lens page. So head on over and check out Gabriel's Photoshop Resource.
Photoshop Tip: Using the Lasso - Don't Stop to Navigate
If you're using the Lasso tool (L), you have a surprising amount of navigation control, even while you're dragging out your selection. For example, if you're drawing a selection and you need to scroll over a bit, just press-and-hold the Spacebar, and right where your cursor is, the Hand tool will appear. Then you can move the image while you're still selecting (try it once and you'll see what we mean). When you let go of the Spacebar, you're right where you left off, and you can continue your selection.
Here's another Lasso tip: If you're drawing a selection and reach the edge of your document window and need to scroll over, hold the Option key (PC: Alt key), let go of the mouse button, move your mouse to the edge of your image window, and you can nudge the screen over (again, this is one you have to try once to understand it). It's like you're using the Lasso tool to slide the image over. When you're done sliding, press the mouse button and release Option/Alt to continue selecting. Incidentally, while selecting, you can also use the zoom in/out tricks: Command+ (Plus Sign) (PC: Control+) and Command- (Minus Sign) (PC: Control-).
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Adobe Creative Suite 5 Design Premium
Adobe Creative Suite 5 Design Premium software gives you fresh new creative tools, along with the ability to deliver ideas faster in print and create interactive content without writing code. Plus Design Premium integrates with Adobe CS Live online services to maximize your design time by streamlining critical nondesign tasks.
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Photoshop CS5 Tutorials & CS5 Resources
See our Photoshop CS5 Resource Center for Free Photoshop CS5 Tutorials, and the Free Photoshop CS5 Trial Download. See our Photoshop CS4 Resource Center for Free Photoshop CS4 Tutorials.
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Enter our exclusive discount coupon code - PSSPPT06 - during the checkout process at onOne Software for an instant 15% discount on any onOne product. This includes Genuine Fractals and their amazing Photoshop Plug-In Suite.
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Genuine Fractals Pro is renowned by both photographers and printers for its finesse at increasing images to more than ten times their original size while maintaining the sharpness and detail you started with. Think of this as the industry standard for image resizing.
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Color Efex Pro
52 photographic filters with over 250 effects for professional quality images. Completely Original. Completely Indispensable.
Nik Software Color Efex Pro filters are the leading photographic filters for digital photography. The award-winning Color Efex Pro filters are widely used by many of today's professional photographers around the world to save time and get professional level results. Whether you choose the Complete Edition, Select Edition, or Standard Edition, you’ll get traditional and stylizing filters that offer virtually endless possibilities to enhance and transform images quickly and easily.
Patented U Point technology provides the ultimate control to selectively apply enhancements without the need for any complicated masks, layers or selections. Control color, light and tonality in your images and create unique enhancements with professional results. With 52 filters and over 250 effects found in Color Efex Pro, you can perform high quality retouching, color correction, and endless creative enhancements to your photographs. Download a free Trial version.
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Silver Efex Pro
Complete power and control to create professional quality black and white images in one convenient tool.
Silver Efex Pro from Nik Software is the most powerful tool for creating professional quality black and white images from your photographs. For the first time, all the advanced power and control required for professional results have been brought together in one convenient tool.
Featuring Nik Software’s patented U Point technology to selectively control the tonality and contrast of the image, Silver Efex Pro includes advanced imaging algorithms to protect against unwanted artifacts, a comprehensive collection of emulated black and white film types, a variable toning selector for adding traditional toning techniques, over 20 one-click preset styles, and a state-of-the-art grain reproduction engine that help produce the highest quality black and white images possible from your color images while providing more freedom to experiment. Download a free Trial version to use Silver Efex Pro.
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Deliver stunning and dynamic images with this uniquely powerful plug-in that features HDR-like abilities and enhances exposure, color and detail.
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Provides creative simplification, art effects, and line accentuation for easy one-of-a-kind art.
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The 4 1/2 out of 5 star review of Fluid Mask at MacWorld begins by saying that this "Photoshop plug-in takes the pain out of extracting backgrounds," and goes on to recommend the latest version, stating that "Fluid Mask is a very effective tool for separating objects from their backgrounds. It offers a variety of useful features for tackling almost any difficult image, from wispy hair to complex foliage. Online video tutorials and live training sessions help ease the learning curve."
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Fluid Mask is designed for photographers, image editors, graphic designers and all those who take digital image editing seriously. In a streamlined interface and workflow, Fluid Mask instantly shows key edges in the image and provides comprehensive easy to use tools that work with difficult-to-see edges and tricky areas like trees & lattices. Fluid Mask will also preserve all-important edge information for a professional quality cut out. Go to our Fluid Mask page for more info.
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Did You Know You Could Create An Entire Website In Photoshop?
SiteGrinder Photoshop Plugin - Create Websites Instantly
There often seems to be a strict division of labor within the world of web design and development. Creative professionals tend to stick to the Photoshop domain, while those well-versed in scripting are left to the task of implementing their work. Indeed, the two realms are quite different from each other, to which any of us even vaguely familiar with either can easily attest.
Essentially, Photoshop is a no-holds-barred design studio, offering the artist a seemingly endless array of creative options. On the other hand, HTML, CSS, Java and the like follow strict rules of engagement, requiring the developer to take any number of esoteric concerns into consideration in order to ensure that designs are properly displayed on the web.
Turn Photoshop Into A Complete Web Design Tool
SiteGrinder seeks to bridge this gap between design and development. Basically, SiteGrinder turns Photoshop into an easy-to-use and fully functional web design tool. With SiteGrinder, designers will now have the freedom to totally let their creativity loose and then, without skipping a beat, transfer their designs to the web. Bringing esthetic concerns together with more practical considerations, SiteGrinder is an amazingly powerful tool that would make a fantastic addition to any web designer's bag of tricks. Mac OS X and Windows versions of the SiteGrinder unlockable demo are available now via download.
Photoshop CS4 Essential Skills - By Mark Galer And Philip Andrews
Brimming with beautiful pictures, Photoshop CS4 Essential Skills guides you through a project-based, progressive curriculum so that you can build all the essential skills to enhance photographs creatively and professionally with Photoshop CS4. If you are an aspiring professional or a student learning photography, digital imaging, or design graphics, you'll be amazed at the stunning results you can achieve. A DVD is included free.
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Read 2 free sample chapters:
Skin Retouching Tips In Photoshop CS4
Transforming Smart Objects In Photoshop CS4
Find more Photoshop CS4 tutorials on our Photoshop CS4 Tutorials Page.
Read 2 free sample chapters from the Adobe Photoshop CS3 version:
Adjusting Exposure in Adobe Camera Raw CS3
Photoshop CS3 Tutorial High Dynamic Range
Find More Adobe Photoshop Books at Amazon.com
Find all the latest bestselling Photoshop books at discount prices at Amazon.com.