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Photoshop CS3 Channels and Masks: The Essentials

with Deke McClelland

Video: Welcome

Breaks down complex techniques for using alpha channels to maximize results in Photoshop.
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  1. 17m 31s
    1. Welcome
      2m 46s
    2. Setting a few key preferences
      3m 42s
    3. Loading the dekeKeys shortcuts
      3m 43s
    4. Loading color settings into Photoshop
      3m 52s
    5. Synchronizing color settings across CS3
      3m 28s
  2. 1h 17m
    1. Channels are everything
      1m 35s
    2. The Channels palette
      6m 29s
    3. Channels in color
      3m 56s
    4. RGB color
      4m 42s
    5. Single-channel grayscale
      5m 56s
    6. Lab color
      8m 56s
    7. CMYK plates
      7m 8s
    8. Introducing multichannel
      4m 40s
    9. RGB to multichannel to CMYK (and back)
      6m 26s
    10. CMYK to multichannel to RGB
      3m 57s
    11. Duotones, tritones, and quadtones
      6m 1s
    12. Editing a quadtone
      3m 49s
    13. Separating a composite quadtone
      6m 13s
    14. 16-bit advantages
      7m 36s
  3. 1h 12m
    1. The non-color-bearing channel
    2. The alpha channel
      3m 35s
    3. The anatomy of a mask
      5m 19s
    4. Making an alpha channel
      4m 27s
    5. Using the new channel icons
      5m 18s
    6. Saving an image with an alpha channel
      4m 38s
    7. Loading an alpha channel
      4m 6s
    8. Putting a mask into play
      3m 13s
    9. Using additional masks
      3m 12s
    10. Loading a mask from one image into another
      5m 22s
    11. Viewing a mask as a rubylith overlay
      4m 13s
    12. Changing a mask's overlay color
      4m 21s
    13. Modifying a mask
      6m 33s
    14. Combining masks
      4m 12s
    15. Blending image elements
      4m 55s
    16. The lossless translation
      6m 49s
    17. The goodness of masks
      1m 56s
  4. 56m 35s
    1. The selections is key, your understanding is core
      1m 28s
    2. The marquee tools
      5m 12s
    3. The lasso tools
      4m 38s
    4. The automation tools
      3m 58s
    5. Modifying a selection outline
      3m 59s
    6. Moving and cloning selected pixels
      3m 28s
    7. The floating selection
      4m 22s
    8. Promoting a floater to a layer
      3m 28s
    9. Nudging and aligning
      6m 49s
    10. The Anti-alias check box
      3m 59s
    11. How antialiasing works
      5m 5s
    12. Partially selecting pixels
      3m 42s
    13. Blurring a selection with Feather
      6m 27s
  5. 1h 27m
    1. Magic, quick, and magnetic
      1m 44s
    2. The Magic Wand revealed
      5m 45s
    3. Contiguous and Sample All Layers
      4m 23s
    4. Changing the sample size
      5m 39s
    5. Selecting with the Wand
      4m 26s
    6. The Wand's fake antialiasing
      3m 11s
    7. Dragging, dropping, and registering
      4m 40s
    8. Perfecting your composition
      6m 45s
    9. Meet the Quick Selection tool
      6m 0s
    10. Using the Quick Selection tool
      6m 47s
    11. Meet the Magnetic Lasso tool
      6m 29s
    12. Using the Magnetic Lasso tool
      5m 50s
    13. The new Refine Edge command
      6m 49s
    14. The five Refine Edge slider bars
      6m 54s
    15. Testing a refined selection outline
      5m 18s
    16. QS + ML + RE = success
      7m 4s
  6. 56m 56s
    1. I'm trapped! Marching ants on the loose!
      1m 45s
    2. Add, subtract, and intersect
      3m 46s
    3. Single-tool calculations
      6m 58s
    4. Networking selection tools
      8m 57s
    5. The Polygonal Lasso trick
      7m 13s
    6. Finessing your selection outline
      6m 37s
    7. Transforming and warping a selection outline
      5m 20s
    8. Pasting an image inside a selection
      6m 21s
    9. Shading and intersecting
      6m 10s
    10. Combining a selection with a mask
      3m 49s
  7. 1h 19m
    1. The best selection tool is a command
      1m 27s
    2. Meet the Color Range command
      8m 18s
    3. Working in the Color Range dialog box
      4m 49s
    4. Primary colors and luminance ranges
      5m 49s
    5. Sample all visible layers all the time
      2m 52s
    6. Using the Color Range command
      5m 11s
    7. Smoothing away auto-sharpened edges
      6m 4s
    8. Remaking corners with the Magnetic Lasso
      4m 56s
    9. Now for something a bit more complicated
      4m 52s
    10. Meet the Quick Mask mode
      3m 55s
    11. Editing in the Quick Mask mode
      2m 43s
    12. Quick Mask and Quick Selection
      7m 5s
    13. Making fine-tuned adjustments
      7m 47s
    14. Hand-painting refinements
      7m 34s
    15. Pasting an image in back of a selection
      3m 18s
    16. Neutralizing a color cast
      3m 14s
  8. 1h 14m
    1. Extraction erases pixels for good (or ill)
      1m 21s
    2. Meet the Magic Eraser tool
      4m 20s
    3. The Magic Eraser in action
      5m 0s
    4. Using the Background Eraser
      9m 15s
    5. The Background Eraser's shameful secret
      6m 16s
    6. The power of partial extractions
      5m 47s
    7. Why the Extract command erases pixels
      4m 20s
    8. Masking a tiger (or another colorful animal)
      8m 49s
    9. Using the Extract command
      7m 43s
    10. Smoothing edges with Textured Image
      4m 17s
    11. Extracting with an alpha channel
      6m 0s
    12. Shading an extracted image
      6m 47s
    13. Cleaning up the rough edges
      4m 59s
  9. 1h 51m
    1. It's time to select some hair
      1m 11s
    2. Trompe l'oeil with hair
      3m 48s
    3. Choosing a base channel
      7m 3s
    4. Levels or Curves
      8m 0s
    5. Overlay painting pt. 1: The highlights
      8m 1s
    6. Overlay painting pt. 2: The shadows
      3m 57s
    7. Cleaning up with the Lasso
      6m 4s
    8. Re-aliasing a selection outline
      8m 26s
    9. Fixing the rough patches
      9m 43s
    10. Testing your mask
      7m 52s
    11. Creating a detailed silhouette
      4m 38s
    12. Adding an underlighting effect
      7m 13s
    13. Previewing the blended composition
      2m 54s
    14. Blending hair and sky
      7m 11s
    15. Select menu equivalents
      5m 59s
    16. Toasting the edges
      7m 50s
    17. Further toasting with Inner Glow
      8m 11s
    18. Setting the image in a $3000 frame
      3m 26s
  10. 1h 52m
    1. The world of parametric editing
      1m 9s
    2. Bringing in a scanned logo
      8m 53s
    3. The power of Multiply
      6m 27s
    4. Resizing a Smart Object
      7m 24s
    5. Invert and Screen
      7m 39s
    6. Coloring the logo
      8m 28s
    7. The amazing Difference logo
      9m 24s
    8. The 25 standard CS3 blend modes
      6m 52s
    9. Cycling from one blend mode to the next
      5m 26s
    10. Lighten, Darken, and their composite offspring
      7m 36s
    11. Screen, Multiply, Dodge, and Burn
      7m 28s
    12. Why Multiply darkens (blend mode math)
      5m 4s
    13. The seven contrast modes
      8m 33s
    14. The two inversion modes
      7m 26s
    15. Unearthing JPEG details with the Difference blend mode
      4m 52s
    16. The four HSL modes
      5m 21s
    17. Combining the effects of two blend modes
      4m 27s
  11. 1m 38s
    1. Bye for now!
      1m 38s

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Photoshop CS3 Channels and Masks: The Essentials
Video duration: 0s 12h 29m Intermediate


Alpha channels are collections of luminance data that control the transparency of images, and they influence just about everything in Photoshop. Coming to terms with alpha channels, also known as masks, is a surefire way to maximize results. Omni Award-winning Photoshop expert Deke McClelland leaves no pixel unturned as he explores Refine Edge, Color Range, the Channels palette, the Quick Mask mode, channel masking, blend modes, and more. After watching Photoshop CS3 Channel and Masks: The Essentials, even the most complex techniques will seem like child's play. Exercise files accompany the tutorials.

Download Deke's customized keyboard layouts for Channels and Masks from the Exercise Files tab."

Design Photography


Hi, I'm Deke McClelland, best-selling author of books and videos on computer graphics, digital imaging and electronic design. I'm here at the swank new offices in Ventura, California, and I'd like to welcome you to my two-part intensive series on Photoshop CS3 Channels and Masks. I love channels and masks for two reasons. First the permit you to merge different images into a seamless composition. For example, we've all seen advertisements that make our mouthes water, that make you really believe you are witnessing the most amazing, gotta-have-it product you have ever seen.

You know what you're seeing isn't entirely real or possibly not real at all but it makes a promise and the better the composition, the more credible, the more palpable, the more seductive the promise. Properly executed you buy into that promise hook, line and sinker. Well my willing fish, if it was a still graphic in a magazine or on a billboard, that bait you saw was likely 100% the results of channels and masks in Photoshop. If it was a TV ad, or involved some sort of motion then it was 49.99% the result of channels and masks in Photoshop.

That is to say, other programs were part of the process but Photoshop was still a big player. So rest assured the theory and execution conveyed in this ambitious, comprehensive, hands-on series will serve you well, no matter where your journey takes you. Second-- and remember there are two reasons I love channels and masks-- masking has yet to be successfully automated. Now that might seem like a weird reason, but think about it. If there's no automation, then companies need creative professionals to get the job done. Because it involves seeing photographs and other imagery in a way that people can see them but computers can't, masking relies on the pluck and talent of the compositor. By which I mean, not to put too fine a point on it, you.

And it's fun work too. As you're about to find out time and time again, no two jobs are the same. I'd like to start things off by walking you through a few key preference settings. Set your preferences according to my recommendations and you and I will be on the same page so that you can better follow along with my instructions throughout the training. Besides, these are some great preference settings in general, the kind that will make for a beautiful working relationship between you and Photoshop CS3. Let's get started.

(Music playing.)

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