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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.
Photoshop, Bridge And Lightroom Tips And Tricks From Jay Nelson
Here's another collection of Photoshop, Bridge and Lightroom tips and tricks by Jay Nelson, the editor-in-chief of Design Tools Monthly.
Photoshop Portrait Popper
Photoshop can add a soft, darkened edge around any photo in mere seconds -- an effect known as Vignette. Choose Filter> Distort> Lens Correction, then drag the Vignette slider all the way to the left. To darken the edge color even more, grab the Midpoint slider and drag it slightly to the left.
Use Help Menu to Find Menu Items
Today's design applications have lengthy menus filled with options. And some of them move around with each new version. (Thanks, Adobe!) If you don't use them every day, you can forget what's where. Mac OS X 10.5 Leopard comes to the rescue with its Help menu, available in every application at the far right end of the application's menus. Click on Help, then type part of the name of your menu item into its search field. The menu item containing your term will appear at the top of the list, and if you mouse over it, that menu will open and a gyrating arrow will point to the item you need. Clever!
Bridge's Carousel View
Bridge CS4 has a new view that helps quickly weed out the bad photos from the keepers. Just select the folder you want to work with, then press Command-B. Use your right- and left-arrow keys to navigate. Press down-arrow to remove an image from the set. When you're satisfied with what's left, click the Make Collection icon in the lower right corner of Review Mode. The photos will be gathered into a virtual collection that you can name.
The Magic Button in Lightroom
In Library Grid view in Photoshop Lightroom, there's a tiny badge (icon) in the bottom right corner of your photos that has a +/– on it. This tells you that the image has been edited in Lightroom. The Pencil badge tells you that a keyword has been applied. If you double-click either badge, it takes you to the panel where the adjustment was made, so you can re-edit it.
Click-drag Lightness, Hue and Saturation
Photoshop CS4 has a powerful new Targeted Adjustment tool hidden in the Curves and Hue/Saturation areas of the Adjustments panel -- it looks like a finger. When you click it, you can then click and drag on your image to change either the saturation or the hue of the pixels similar to where you clicked. For example, click and drag left or right on an object in your image to increase or decrease that object's saturation. You might want to try it on some lips. You can also click and drag up or down to change the object's hue -- try it on a shirt.
To use the Targeted Adjustment tool in the Curves Adjustments panel, click and drag up or down on your image to lighten and darken tones in an object.
The tool affects all similar pixels in the image, so you may want to first drag a rough selection around the area you want to affect.
Adjust Multiple Images in Camera Raw
In Adobe's Camera Raw application, you can adjust multiple images at the same time by selecting their thumbnails, then applying a change to the active image. Try it with the Crop tool, exposure or color temperature. To adjust just one of the images, click its thumbnail before making changes.
Quick Color Boost in Photoshop CS4
Photoshop CS4 has a quick new way to make the colors in your image pop without harming your original image. It's called the Vibrance Adjustment layer and you can find it in the new Adjustments panel, or by clicking the half black/half white circle at the bottom of the Layers panel. Once you've created the Vibrance adjustment layer, drag the Vibrance slider all the way to the right and it'll intensify the colors in your image. Happily, it has less of an effect on bright colors (because they're already highly saturated) than on lighter tones, and it somehow manages to leave skin tones relatively unchanged.
Photoshop Adjustment Dialog Tricks
When in a Photoshop Image Adjustment dialog box such as Levels or Curves, many people think they don't have access to things outside the box. Here are not-so-obvious things you can do while Adjusting your images:
Hold the Spacebar any time you want to use the Hand tool to scroll around your image. And if you add the Command key, you'll get the Zoom tool and you'll be able to click, or click and drag to zoom in on your image. Add the Option key and you can zoom out with each click of the mouse button. For efficiency, type one of the following keyboard commands to zoom in and out on my images:
Command Plus (+) = Zoom In
Command Minus (-) = Zoom Out
Command Zero (0) = Fit on Screen
Option Command Zero (0) = 100% View
You can add Option to the top two commands to prevent the window that contains your image from changing size when you zoom.
You can also type Command-H to hide any guides or selection edges and use Command-; to hide guides but not selection edges. Type Command-R to show or hide the Rulers. You can open or close any palettes (like the Info Palette) by choosing its name from the Window menu. You can even change the measurement system the Info palette uses (RGB, HSB, CMYK, etc.) by clicking on the eyedropper icon within that palette.
If you turn on the Caps Lock key, your cursor will look like a crosshair whenever it's on top of your image. You can add a Color Sampler (with corresponding readout in the Info Palette) by holding Shift and clicking within your image, or Shift-Option-click to remove a Color Sampler that's already on your image.
If you're working on an image that is in RGB mode, but you plan on converting it to CMYK mode in the end, you can type Command-Y to turn on the Proof Colors feature. With default settings, that feature will show what your image would look like if it were converted into CMYK mode. And if you can't quite tell which areas of the image are shifting when you toggle Proof Colors on and off, try typing Shift-Command-Y to tell Photoshop to cover all the areas that will shift with gray.
Here are some things you can do inside an Adjustment dialog box. If there's a number active, you can use the Up and Down Arrow Keys to change that number. Adding Shift will change the number in larger increments. The Tab key will allow you to cycle through the different numbers you can change within a dialog box. Once you are finished with an adjustment, you can press Return or Enter to apply the adjustment, or to abort the adjustment, type Command-period. The Escape key does the same thing. Or, if you've completely screwed things up, you can type Option-Command-Period to reset the dialog box back to its default settings. If you've only half screwed up, type Command-Z to undo the last step you performed within the adjustment as a whole (before you click OK to apply the whole thing).
Tricks to Control New Document Sizes in Photoshop
• If you need a new Photoshop document the same size as a document you already have open, do this: start to create a new document (File> New), and then select the name of any open document from the Window menu on Photoshop's menu bar -- which is still miraculously available.
• If you create a new document in Photoshop while you have something on the Clipboard (for example, if you have copied something from an existing document), your new document will be sized to fit the pixels on the Clipboard.
• To make a new document the same size as the last new document you created, hold down the Option key while you choose File> New.
Search Everywhere At Once
Google Quick Search Box combines all Google search features with the Spotlight feature on your Mac. Type in a term, and find it anywhere on your Mac, or on Google Images, News, Products, Wikipedia, or YouTube! It's free!
Photo Calculator for Your iPhone
Photographers: there's an iPhone app called PhotoCalc ($2.99) that provides depth of field (DoF) and hyper-focal distance calculations, exposure reciprocation, and flash exposure calculations. It also includes Sunrise, a sunrise/sunset/solar noon calculator for your current location.
Buy Photoshop Directly From Adobe
Find upgrade options and Creative Suite deals at the Adobe USA Store. UK customers can see pricing in UK currency at the Adobe United Kingdom Store. Visit the Adobe Special Offers Page to find the latest bundle and upgrade offers. Teachers and students receive special pricing at the Adobe Education Store. Download the Free Photoshop CS4 Trial Download at the Adobe site.
Photoshop CS4 Tutorials and Resources
See our Photoshop CS4 Resource Center for Free Photoshop CS4 Tutorials, the Free Photoshop CS4 Trial Download, Free Photoshop CS4 Training, and Photoshop CS4 News.
Photoshop CS5 & Photoshop CS5 Extended - Best Deals From Adobe
Adobe Photoshop CS5 delivers breakthrough capabilities to help you create images with impact. Refine your images with reengineered photography tools for removing noise, adding grain, and creating high dynamic range (HDR) images. Get precise results when making complex selections. Remove any image element and see the space fill in almost magically. Paint with naturally textured brushstrokes and realistic color blends. Learn more about Photoshop CS5.
Adobe Photoshop CS5 Extended software helps you create the ultimate images for print, the web, and video. Enjoy all the state-of-the-art editing, compositing, and painting capabilities in industry-standard Photoshop CS5, and experience fast performance thanks to cross-platform 64-bit support. Also create 3D extrusions for logos, artwork, and motion graphics; edit 3D objects with advanced tools; and create and enhance motion-based content. Learn more about Photoshop CS5 Extended.
Find CS5 upgrade options and Creative Suite 5 deals at the Adobe Store. See CS5 pricing in UK currency at the Adobe UK Store. Visit the Adobe Special Offers page to find the latest deals. Save 80% on Adobe Student Editions. Try before you buy — download a free Photoshop CS5 trial.
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.
Adobe Creative Suite 5 Design Premium combines Adobe InDesign CS5, Photoshop CS5 Extended, Illustrator CS5, Flash CS5 Professional, Dreamweaver CS5, Fireworks CS5, and Acrobat Pro with additional tools and services. Download a free CS5 Design Premium 30 day trial.
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.
Exclusive onOne Software 15% Instant Discount Coupon
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.
OnOne’s new Plug-In Suite solves six of the most frequent problems photographers will encounter in Photoshop. This suite has been granted American Photos Magazine’s Editor’s Choice award for Top Image Editing Software. The Plugin Suite includes:
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.
Mask Pro is used to remove the tough stuff — such as hair, smoke and glass — while retaining the fine detail. You choose what colors to keep, then paint away what you don’t need.
PhotoTools Pro packs hundreds of high-calibre photographic effects into one user-friendly plug-in. It’s fast and easy to use. Gives your photos that pro quality look.
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FocalPoint helps to control focus and minimize visual noise. Draw the eye to specific points in your images by using selective focus, depth-of-field and vignette effects.
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Nik Software 15% Instant Discount - Exclusive 15% Coupon
Enter our exclusive discount coupon code - NIKPSS - during the checkout process at Nik Software for an instant 15% discount on any Nik Software product. This exclusive discount coupon code can be applied to all the latest Nik Software Photoshop plugins, including Silver Efex Pro, Color Efex Pro, Viveza, Sharpener Pro, and Dfine.
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.
The most powerful tool to selectively control color and light in photographic images without the need for complicated selections or layer masks.
Two of the most important factors in creating great photography are color and light. Mastering the art of selectively correcting or enhancing each of these is now possible for every photographer without the need for complicated masks or selections, or expert-level knowledge of Photoshop. Integrating award-winning U Point technology, Viveza is the most powerful and precise tool available to control light and color in photographic images.
U Point powered Color Control Points, placed directly on colors or objects in an image (such as sky, skin, grass, etc.), reveal easy-to-use controls that photographers can use to quickly adjust brightness, contrast or color in a fraction of the time needed by other tools. With Viveza you’ll spend more time shooting photographs and save hours of image editing. Download a free Trial version.
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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Enter our exclusive discount coupon code PHOTOSHOPSUPPORT during the checkout process at Topaz Labs for an instant 15% discount on any Topaz product, including bundles and upgrades.
Topaz Labs Photoshop plug-ins are specifically designed to expand a photographer's creative toolbox by harnessing powerful image technology developments. Photographers everywhere are now taking advantage of the creative exposure effects, artistic simplification, unique edge manipulation, and top-of-the-line noise reduction offered in Topaz products. The Topaz Photoshop Plugins Bundle is a super powerful Photoshop plugins package that includes the following Topaz products:
Deliver stunning and dynamic images with this uniquely powerful plug-in that features HDR-like abilities and enhances exposure, color and detail.
A three-level detail adjustment plug-in that specializes in micro-contrast enhancements and sharpening with no artifacts.
The fastest and most effective masking and extraction program with one-click mask refining.
Highest-quality noise reduction plug-in that removes the most noise and color noise while preserving the most image detail.
Provides creative simplification, art effects, and line accentuation for easy one-of-a-kind art.
Take control of the detail depth of your images with extensive smoothing, texture control and edge enhancement tools.
Drastically improves the quality of web images and other compressed photos.
Learn more about the Topaz Photoshop Plugins Bundle. Download a free trial version.
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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."
Our friends at Vertus, the makers of Fluid Mask Photoshop Plugin, have set up a special exclusive discount for PhotoshopSupport.com. Go to our Fluid Mask page for a special, exclusive discount link.
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.
The Essential Skills Photography Series from Focal Press uniquely offers a structured learning experience for photographers of all ages, with both the underlying theory and loads of invaluable 'how to' and real-life practice projects - all from the most talented photography practitioners/educators in the world.
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.