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In Photoshop Elements 9 Essential Training, Jan Kabili highlights the key features of this comprehensive image organization and photo enhancement application. She shows how to correct and enhance photographs, and how to organize a growing collection of digital photos. The course also explains how to use photos in creative projects like photo books, calendars, and greeting cards, and how to share work online and in print. Exercise files accompany the course.
To save time when you're scanning, you can scan several photos at once on a flatbed scanner and let Elements automatically divide them into separate images for you. Here is a composite scan that I made by placing three of my old baby photos on my flatbed scanner with some white space between them. I didn't worry about getting them straight on the scanner bed as you can see, because I knew that Elements would straighten them up for me when it divides them into separate images. Right now I'm in Elements' Organizer, but the Divide Scanned Images command is in the Editor not the Organizer.
So I want to open this composite scan into the Editor as you can if you're following along with the course files. I will right-click on this thumbnail preview or Ctrl+Click on a one button mouse. I will choose Edit with Photoshop Elements. That launches Elements' Editor and opens the composite scan ready for me to work on it here in Full Edit mode. I will go up to the Image menu and I'm going to choose Divide Scanned Photos. Right away I can see that Elements is creating separate photos from each of those in the composite scan.
Down in the Project Bin I can see that I now have four open files, the original composite scan and these three separated images that Elements just made for me. In the document window I can see that I have four tabs. The first tab is the composite image and then there are three separate tabs, one for each of the separated images. By the way a quick way to cycle through these tabs is to press Ctrl+Tab on your keyboard and either Mac or Windows.
Now this image looks a bit pixilated and that's because it's been displayed on my screen at more than 100% as I can see here in the tab. I would like to view it at 100% .So with this tab selected I will get the Zoom tool in the toolbox and I'll go to the options bar and I will click 1:1. Now I have a better idea of what this image really looks like. If I want to set all the other open images to 100% view, I can go up to the Window menu and choose Images>Match Zoom.
Now all of the images are at 100%. As you can see, Elements did a pretty good job of straightening up these images when it divided them, but around the edges of some of these images there is a little bit of white space and I could use the Crop tool to crop that way. I'll show you how to use the Crop tool in another movie later. But for now I want to do something very important and that is to save all of these images. Down in the Project Bin notice that there is an icon on the top right of each one of the separate images, but not on the composite scan.
That icon means that something has been done to the image and after that the image hasn't been saved. In fact, the separate photos have never been saved. So if I were to close them now without saving, they would be gone forever. The fastest way to save all of the images is to do all at once by going up to the File menu and choosing Close All. One by one Elements will ask if I want to save each of these separate photos. I will click Yes, and that opens the Save As dialog box.
Here I'm going to navigate to my desktop and to my projects folder which I created earlier. If you haven't made a projects folder on the desktop then click the Create New Folder icon and make one now. I'll go into the projects folder and then I fill out the rest of the fields. I could change the File name, but I will just leave it at its default. I could change the Format, but I would like to leave that at its default of JPEG. And I want to make sure that there is a check mark next to Include in the Elements Organizer so that my individual photo is included there as well.
I'll leave the color management settings as they are and I will click Save. In this JPEG options dialog box, I'll enter 8 in the Quality field and I will click OK. Before closing each of the other two separated images Elements is going to ask if I want to save it is well. So again I will click, Yes. I will save in the same place in my projects folder. I will include in the Elements Organizer and I'll Save As JPEG and click Save. Again, I will set the Quality to 8 and click OK.
I will do that one more time, Yes, check that all of the fields are as I want them. Click Save. Set the Quality to 8 and click OK. You may have noticed that composite scan closed without asking if I wanted to save it, and that's because I haven't made any changes to that image. When all the files are closed I will go back to the Organizer if Elements hasn't already taken me there by clicking the Organizer button at the top of the screen. Here, I can see my original composite scan.
But if I scroll down in the Organizer and I click on the projects folder that's on my desktop, I will see the individual images that Elements created for me. Now if you don't see all three of your individual images here, give Elements a little nudge by going up to the Display menu and switching to Thumbnail view and then switching it back to Folder Location view. That seems to be a little bit of the bug in Folder Location view on my system. Now the technique that I showed you here for automatically dividing a composite scan into separate images can be a real timesaver when you're trying to scan lots of photos.
Here's an extra tip. If Elements has trouble separating your composite scan into the right individual images, try resetting of the photos on your flatbed scanner with a little more white space between them and perhaps add a dark piece of paper on top of the photos on the scanner bed to increase contrast to their edges and then try scanning again.
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