Common Problems and Their Cures

Perfecting portraits of people Hushing the noise in your images Editing your digital landscape Sometimes you take perfect photos of imperfect people, and sometimes you take imperfect photos of, well, imperfect people. (Even the top models benefit from a little Photoshopping.) Although capturing absolute reality is the goal of some artists and most photojournalists, the people in your photos probably prefer to look as good as you (and Photoshop) can make them look. In this chapter, I present you...

Browsing the Brushes Palette

Photoshop's Brushes palette provides a bewildering array of options, sure to confuse even the most diligent explorer. Thankfully, unless you intend to create fine art paintings digitally, you can safely ignore a whole bunch of options. You must have a brush-using tool active to access the Brushes palette. If the active tool doesn't use brushes, the entire palette is grayed out and unavailable. If that's the case, simply press B on the keyboard to activate the Brush tool. The Brushes palette,...

When Good Programs Go Bad: Fixing Photoshop

Tools don't work right. Simple commands take ages to execute. Photoshop (gasp ) crashes Don't give up, and please don't toss the machine through the window. (Hey, I might be walking past at the time.) Start with the easy fixes and work your way up as necessary. l Check the palettes and selection. If a tool isn't working as expected or is not working at all, check whether you're inadvertently preventing it from doing its job. See whether you have an active...

Filters: The Fun Side of Photoshop

Being productive with fix it filters Getting artsy with creative filters Adding wackiness (and precise correction) with Liquify Taking a quick look at the specialized filters 7he Photoshop CS2 Filter menu includes over 100 commands that you can use to fix, flatter, finesse, and freak out your photos. You can use most of the filters on most of your artwork and some of the filters on some of your artwork, and you probably won't ever use a number of the filters. In this chapter, I start you off...

Welcome to Photoshop!

What Photoshop does very well, kind of well, and just sort of, well . . . Taking a look at what you need to know to work with Photoshop J dobe Photoshop is, without question, the leading image editing program in the world. Photoshop has even become somewhat of a cultural icon. It's not uncommon to hear Photoshop used as a verb (That picture is obviously Photoshopped ), and you'll even see references to Photoshop in the daily comics and cartoon strips. And now you're part of this whole gigantic...

Your platter full of palettes

Photoshop (and the other programs of the Adobe Creative Suite) uses floating palettes. The palettes, many of which you see along the right edge of your screen, always appear on top of (float over) your image window. The image window will never hide your palettes. (Palettes, however, can hide other palettes.) The Options bar (across the top of the work area) and the Toolbox (or toolbar) along the left edge of the screen are also palettes. Palettes contain Photoshop features that you might need...

Using Photoshop's Auto Corrections

Adjusting the tonality of your image can be as simple as selecting one of the Auto commands from Photoshop's ImageOAdjustments menu. With many photos, the tonality (and even the color) jump to just the right look for your image. No muss, no fuss just a great-looking picture with a single command. If you need to do something special with the image (for example, create an unusual effect), or if the image is in bad shape to begin with, the Auto commands might not be your best bet. But remember...

The Fitters You Realty Need

Photoshop has a number of filters that you can use on just about any image to improve or finesse it. Most photos, for example, benefit from at least a little bit of sharpening to improve the detail in the image. In some cases, you want to decrease the visible detail in an image in areas to hide defects, or perhaps you blur a background to draw more attention to the subject of your shot. And Photoshop CS2 has a couple of new filters that you'll find handy for correcting lens distortion and...

Discovering Photoshop's Painting Tools

Nothing in Photoshop gives you more precise control of color in your image than using the Pencil tool with a 1-pixel brush. Remember that your image consists of a whole lot of little colored squares (pixels) and that the color of those individual squares is what produces the appearance of a tree or a sunset or even good ol' Uncle Bob. If you zoom in really close on an image, you can paint pixel by pixel you could even create an entire image, one pixel at a time Whether you're using a tiny brush...

Using Shadow/Highlight

The Shadow Highlight adjustment is designed to rescue two specific sorts of images you've seen them (and maybe taken them) The background is perfectly exposed, and the person in the foreground is in horrible shadow. Or, equally bad, the background looks great, but the subject is washed out by a strong flash. (See both examples in Figure 5-15.) By controlling the shadows and highlights separately from the rest of the image, this feature helps you restore more balance to the image. Figure 5-15...

Sugar and spice, shortcuts are nice

Photoshop's keyboard shortcuts can save a bunch of time. Rather than mousing to the Toolbox to select the Brush tool, just press B on the keyboard. To open the Levels dialog box, press +L Ctrl+L instead of mousing to the Image menu, down to the Adjustments submenu, and then over and down to Levels. Photoshop CS2 has customizable keyboard shortcuts. Because the default set of shortcuts is pretty standard not only throughout the Adobe Creative Suite but also with other major programs you're...

The Detail tab

You have three sliders on the Detail tab to control sharpness and noise in your image. I suggest that as soon as you click the Detail tab, you zoom in to 200 (or even 400 ) on an area of shadow in your image and drag the three sliders all the way to the left, setting them to 0 (zero). Leave the Sharpness slider at 0 do your sharpening in Photoshop's Smart Sharpen (or Unsharp Mask) filter, where you have a Radius slider to control how the sharpening is applied to the image. Drag the Color Noise...

Part I: Breezing through Basic Training

The first set of chapters presents the basic operation of Photoshop, what you need to know to get around in the program, and the core process of getting images into Photoshop and back out again. If you're new to digital imaging, and particularly unfamiliar with Photoshop, make sure to read Chapter 1 through Chapter 3. If you've worked with Photoshop or another image editing program and aren't quite sure about the concept of resolution or which file formats are best for which purposes, don't...

What Photoshop is designed to do

Adobe Photoshop is an image editing program. It is designed to help you edit images, digital or digitized images, photographs, and otherwise. This is the core purpose of Photoshop. Over the years, Photoshop has grown and developed, adding features that supplement its basic operations. But at its heart, Photoshop is an image editor. At its most basic, Photoshop's workflow goes something like this You take a picture, you edit the picture, and you print the picture (as illustrated in Figure 1-1)....

Photoshop's incredible selective Undo

Here is one major difference between Photoshop and other programs you use. Almost all programs have some form of Undo, enabling you to reverse the most recent command or action (or mistake). Like many programs, Photoshop uses the +Z Ctrl+Z shortcut for Undo Redo (but remember that you can change the shortcut, as described in Chapter 3). Photoshop also has, however, a couple of great features that let you partially undo. Painting to undo with the History Brush You can use the Photoshop History...

What 1s Color in Photoshop?

Photoshop works with digital images (including digital photos, images that have been digitized with a scanner, and artwork that you create from scratch in Photoshop). The digits are the computer code used to record the image's information. The number of pixels, the color of each pixel, and any associated information are all recorded in a series of zeros and ones on your hard drive. Color, therefore, is nothing more than numbers at least as far as Photoshop is concerned. For you and me, however,...

Resolving image resolution

Image resolution is nothing more than an instruction to a printing device about how large to reproduce each pixel. Onscreen, when working in Photoshop, your image has no resolution at all. An image that's 3000 pixels wide and 2000 pixels tall looks and acts exactly the same in Photoshop whether you've got the image resolution at 300 ppi or 72 ppi. Same number of pixels, right You can always check or change a picture's resolution by using the Photoshop ImageOImage Size command. The Image Size...

Histograms Simplified

In most photographs of general subject matter, your eye sees the darkest neutral (gray) tone as black and the lightest neutral as white. (If the darkest color is obviously purple and the lightest a bright yellow, you probably wouldn't classify the photo's subject as general.) In a given image, the shadow under the shoe might be just a dark gray, and the shirt looks like it might need some bleach, but your eye (in cooperation with your mind) compensates to some degree and lets you see black and...

Installing Photoshop: Need to know

If you haven't yet installed Photoshop CS2 (or the Adobe Creative Suite), here are a few points to keep in mind l Install only into the default location. Photoshop is a resource-intensive program. Installing it into the default location (Applications on a Mac Program Files for Windows, as shown in Figure 1-13) ensures that it has access to the operating system and hardware as necessary. Installing into any other location or attempting to run Photoshop across a network can lead to frustrating...

Vanishing Point!

Perpendicular Planes

When combining images to create a scene, you might find a need to add texture or a pattern along what is supposed to be a three-dimensional object. You might, for example, add a product box to a photo of a kitchen and need to add a logo to the front of the box. Or maybe you will create a room, perhaps in a castle high on a hill, and you'll need to add a realistic stone texture to the walls. Use the new Photoshop CS2 Vanishing Point feature to map a pattern to angled surfaces, such as walls,...

Standing orders: Setting the Preferences

Photoshop's Preferences file stores a whole lot of information about how you use the program. Whether you prefer to measure in inches or pixels, how you like the grid and guides displayed, what size thumbnails you prefer in your palettes, which font you used last all sorts of data is maintained in the Prefs. Much of the info in the Preferences is picked up automatically as you work such as the size and color mode of the last new document you created, whether the Character palette was visible...

Posterize

The Posterize command forces your image's broad range of colors into a few selected colors as shown in Figure 6-18 . You automatically get black and white, and then a limited number of additional colors, based on the content of the original. You pick the number of colors that you want to use, and Photoshop picks which colors to use. You can use as few as two colors plus black and white or as many as 255 which pretty much gives you your original image . Posterize can create a rather pleasing...

Photo Fitter

Photoshop's Photo Filter is indeed an image adjustment rather than a filter. The filter in the name refers to those actual photographic filters that you screw onto the end of a lens. This adjustment is a great way to correct problems with temperature in an image that perceived warmth or coldness of an image. When the camera takes a picture under unexpected lighting conditions, a color problem is apparent. Say, for example, that the camera is set to Daylight when shooting indoors. When an image...