Downloading from your digital camera

You can use the software that comes with your digital camera to transfer photographs from it to your computer's hard drive. Or, if you have the hardware, you can remove your camera's memory card, memory stick, or other media from the camera and use a card reader, which is a small device designed to read camera storage media. Transferring via the Mac Finder or Windows Explorer is generally much faster and usually just as reliable as transferring using the camera manufacturer's software.

Never open an image into Photoshop directly from a camera, Flash card, or CD/DVD. Doing so can slow down your work, and you also risk losing your work if Photoshop isn't able to immediately and efficiently read the original file while you work. And, of course, you can't save from Photoshop back to most removable media, so you need to create a new file (on a writable drive), anyway. Open images from a network drive only when working with Adobe's Version Cue, the Adobe Creative Suite's project management software.

After the images are safely stored on your local hard drive (or a high-speed external hard drive), you open them in Photoshop using one of the three methods that I describe earlier in the chapter. Depending on your color settings, you might see a warning that the image's color profile and the profile that you selected as your RGB working space don't match. Photoshop asks you what you want to do (see Figure 4-2). Generally speaking, you want to convert to your working space so that you see the most accurate color on your monitor. You might want to preserve the embedded profile if you'll be returning the image to the originating computer after looking at or working on it. The third option disregards all color profiles and works with uncorrected color. This is a good choice when working with images that you will later use with a noncolor-managed program, such as a Web browser or presentation pro- Figure 4-2: When color Profiles don'* match gram. (Without color management, V°u have to make a choice-you see the image as it will appear in the other program.) You can disable the color mismatch warnings in Photoshop's Color Settings dialog box.

When opening an image that includes text, you might also get a message warning you that the type layers need to be updated. Generally speaking, you do want to update unless the image contains fonts not available on your computer.

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Purchasing commercial images

Some projects require images that you can't run out and shoot yourself. Say, for example, that you're preparing a poster or brochure about a ski trip to Japan. In your office or studio. In the United States. In July. Pretty tough to shoot what you need, eh? Turn to stock photography. You can purchase or license stock images (photos, illustrations, video, even audio) from a wide variety of sources, including Internet-based services and collections on CD/DVD. In fact, you'll see images from in a variety of places in this book. Through Adobe Bridge (you can read about this elsewhere in this chapter), you can access over 300,000 stock images from a number of major suppliers.

When you consider using stock images, keep in mind the difference between royalty-free and rights-managed. Royalty-free images are yours to use as you see fit (within the terms of your agreement — no resale as stock photos, no defamatory or pornographic use, and so on). You can use the images when you need them, as often as you need them. Rights-managed photos, on the other hand, are licensed for a specific use, in specific media, for a specified time. Rights-managed artwork does have one advantage over royalty free. Because usage is controlled, you can license exclusive rights to the image for that period of time — the image you use won't appear in some competitor's advertising at the same time. Royalty-free photos, on the other hand, are available to anyone who pays for them, and usage is not controlled.

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