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Photoshop CS5 for Photographers provides comprehensive Photoshop training targeting the needs of photographers. In this course, author Chris Orwig demonstrates the fundamental skills used to enhance digital photos, including managing and correcting color, sharpening, making selections and adjustments, retouching, and printing from Photoshop. In addition to teaching the techniques that enable photographers to refine and publish their photos, the course includes live-action segments that encourage thinking photographically and shooting with Photoshop’s capabilities in mind. Exercise files are included with the course.
The next set of preferences have to do with how we work with cursors. Now, for the most part the default settings here are going to work fine. Typically, by default, you will see that Normal Brush Tip is selected. Let me go ahead and click OK in order to exit out of this and show you how a normal brush tip works. We will go ahead and select our Brush tool, and what I am going to do is increase my brush size. I will do so by clicking in the Options bar and increasing the Size here and I am also going to decrease the Hardness so I have a soft edged brush, and then I will click out of that dialog.
Well, now, if I go ahead and click once, one of the things that you are going to see is that what's happening is I am actually painting outside of the circle of this brush. Watch as I click multiple times. This grows and grows and grows. So the circle actually isn't showing me the full extent or the full size of the brush. If we want to change that, what we can do is go back to our preferences. Press Command+K on the Mac, Ctrl+K on the PC. Choose Cursors and if we select Full Size Brush Tip and click OK, we will see that the edge is much more jagged.
And now when I click once, and twice, and three times, what's going to happen is as I continue to click to add this brush stroke, it's going to only extend to this size. Now, in my own experience, I find this particular brush tip a little bit distracting, almost a little bit overkill. On the other hand, the brush tip on the left over here, this one works well, because it shows me initially what's going to happen and then I can build that up as needed. Well, let's go back and reset that Preference, and let's do that by pressing Command+K on the Mac, Ctrl+K on the PC, go back to Cursors there, and let's choose Normal Brush Tip.
Now, the other options are pretty self-explanatory. We can see a preview of them, crosshair in the brush tip or only show that crosshair when we are painting. Typically, I find that's distracting, so I turn that off. Now, the last thing that I want to say about Cursors is this. There is a cursor which is called Precise, and it gives us a crosshair. While that is precise, it's actually really difficult to work with and typically it's best to choose Normal Brush Tip and then if you want Precise, what you can do is select your brush, and you can change to Precise at any time by pressing the Caps Lock key.
Now you can see I have the crosshairs, the Precise brush, which really isn't that precise. For example, when I paint, I have no idea how big my brush is. Press Caps Lock one more time, and it will go back to the Normal Brush Tip. So just keep that in mind that you can always change that option. And I also point that out, because many of my students, they are working with their brushes and they can't figure out what happened with their brush, and what happened is is they accidentally pressed Caps Lock so they can't see their brush size. So if that happens to you, all you need to do is to press Caps Lock to turn everything back to Normal.
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