Photoshop CS5 New Features Overview
Illustration by John Hersey

It's all about the small things


Photoshop CS5 New Features Overview

with Rufus Deuchler

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Video: It's all about the small things

In Photoshop CS5 there's a whole bunch of stuff that may not deserve it's own video, because they are small things. But all put together, they become very, very important. Let's start with the Lens tool here. And it is now possible to simply click and drag left or right, to actually zoom into specific areas of the image. So I would zoom into that area and then shift my mouse back to the left and to the right to zoom in.
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Watch the Online Video Course Photoshop CS5 New Features Overview
1h 36m Intermediate Oct 04, 2010

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There are so many new features in Adobe Photoshop CS5 that you can easily get overwhelmed. In this course, Rufus Deuchler is at your disposal. Want to learn about the new Workspace Switcher? Mini Bridge? Content-Aware Fill, Puppet Warp, Bristle Brushes? Rufus's productivity-focused, no-nonsense approach will help you quickly learn what you need to know to get the most out of the new and enhanced features in Adobe Photoshop CS5.

Topics include:
  • Photoshop CS5 workspace improvements
  • Content-Aware Fill
  • Complex selections
  • Bristle Brushes and the new Mixer Brush
  • Adobe Camera Raw 6
  • CS Review online commenting
  • Adobe Repouss√©
  • Working with 3D
Design Photography video2brain
Rufus Deuchler

It's all about the small things

In Photoshop CS5 there's a whole bunch of stuff that may not deserve it's own video, because they are small things. But all put together, they become very, very important. Let's start with the Lens tool here. And it is now possible to simply click and drag left or right, to actually zoom into specific areas of the image. So I would zoom into that area and then shift my mouse back to the left and to the right to zoom in.

To the left. To the right. So very quickly I can navigate that image now. So, this is called the scrubby zoom tool. We can also crop images with the rule of thirds here. So by using the crop tool, you will notice that we have new guidelines in this crop area here. And these guidelines in this case are the rule of thirds. So typically you would place the crop area so that the point of focus in the image actually matches one of those cross points.

And in this case I would like to concentrate my viewers on the bridge itself. So by putting this cross area here right over the bridge, and then I could press the Enter key and crop the image this way. But there's also other things that we can do. We can choose to view the grid inside of the crop tool. And this allows me to very, very quickly adjust the horizon, for example, to straighten it. But now the bridge isn't so straight anymore so we have to find a way inbetween.

Okay? So all of this information is now part of the crop tool. There's also improved Preferences control for GPU features. This is, for example, a GPU feature. So if we go into the Preferences of Photoshop, under Performance, you will see that You can set the GPU settings. If you go into the advanced settings, they actually became much simpler than they used to be in Photoshop CS4. And you can choose between various modes. Basic, normal and advanced, and as you go along these modes, so basic will be the one that uses the lease amount of GPU memory.

If you go to advanced. This is the most GPU intensive, of course, and it may cause visual defects on some GPUs, okay, but you can choose the speed you want to use in Photoshop right here, inside of the GPU Settings inside of the Preferences. And then, you can also choose a Vertical Synchronization, synchronize drawings with the display. Or anti-alias to the anti-alias on the guides and the paths. This also something that of course will take memory away from you.

But if you don't need that, you can check it off right here. So let's say cancel out of this and cancel out of this, again. There's one other interesting thing. Let's go here to this RAW picture, this used to be a RAW picture and if we go into the Mode here we see that this is a 16 bit channel picture and many users in the past have been working on 16 bit channel pictures and then wanted to save them as JPEGs, and JPEG did not come into this File Save As or Save menu. Under the formats it was simply not available.

Photoshop, now made it available, as jpeg, and jpeg2000, and will do the conversion from 16-bit, to 8-bit for you, when you actually save as a jpeg. So lets cancel out of this, and move on, to the next little thing. But as you can already see, they seem little things, but they will make your life much, much easier. Also, let's go to this image here. It's become much, much easier to straighten photographs. So if we go here under the eyedropper tool and click on it, we're going to take the ruler tool and with the ruler tool, I can now define that this is in fact my horizon and this is what I want to straighten so I can place my rule tool here and then click the straighten button.

And my photograph is now straightened and cropped to leave out all the blank areas around it. So this is making it much, much easier to align pictures so that they are really straight. The other thing you can do also and I'm going to command z out of that. Actually, let's move back in the steps, okay. I can use the same exact thing with the Ruler tool, and like this, and then, if I hold down the Alt or Option key, and then press Straighten, Photoshop will keep the blank areas around it. And then maybe I could go in it with my magic want tool, select all of these areas and fill them with a content-aware fill to fill in all of these areas which is really, really cool.

So I don't have to give up any of the information on the side, because Photoshop will lose some of the information when cropping it. For those of you who use a track ad or on a Macbook Pro or on any computer that has a track pad, it can become very difficult to work with Photoshop. For example, images would rotate automatically or you would zoom in or zoom out just by using your trackpad. Well, for Photoshop CS4 there was an optional plugin that you could download to disable that. Now, if we go to the preferences, and go into interface.

We see that, now, we have the possibility right there from the preferences to enable or disable gestures. Let's cancel out of this, and move to something else. Let's go to this picture here, for example, and look at my adjustment panel. One of the things that users use a lot is this. If I turn on my curves here, for example, I would like to use this tool. This is the tool I prefer to be using all the time in my images because it allows me to go into the lighter areas and manually pump up the light.

And maybe go into the darker areas and click and drag down and make the darker areas. Darker, and therefore automatically creating my curve in that histogram here. Now, this tool usually is not selected by default. But inside of the flyout menu of the appearance panel I can now decide to auto select the targeted adjustment tool. Okay, which makes it much, much easier to select. Perfect. Let's move on to another panel here, the adjustment panel for example, and you can see that there are a lot of fields that take numerical text input and the user would normally have to click in one of those fields and change the values. Well in the flyout menu, we can also tell Photoshop to auto select a parameter so that next time I open the panel.

And let's open it again the levels panel, the cursor is already in one of those fields and then if I go on and change some values here and maybe put that to two hundered and forty I can then go back to the first field simply by pressing Shift Enter okay and this will bring me back to the first field and then I can tab through the fields again and enter my values. By hand, so this is also very, very handy. So as you can see little adjustments in the adjustment panel, that make your life much, much easier. Let's move onto another image, for example, this one here. And if we go into the layers panel we see that this image is simply an image with transparency.

With no alpha channel that I can use or that I can work on, so we've made it much, much easier now to go under layer, layer mask, and create a layer from transparency. Simply by selecting that, I now have a mask inside of my layers panel. Another thing that people use very frequently is this on their image adjustments, shadow highlights. Okay? This is something that automatically makes your images slightly lighter and more contrasted. Let's cancel out of this one because this is a night picture. So, let's go back into my Panorama image here, and use it again. You will see the difference immediately.

Image, Adjustment, and Shadow Highlights. Okay? You can see that the image is a bit lighter and the shadows have been contrasted. So this is something that has been changed. In previous versions of Photoshop, the shadow was at 50% so let's put it to 50% to see how it looked like. Okay. So, it was much, much lighter, alright? So this preference has now been changed to 35 to give a little bit more contrast in the shadows. So with one click, you can make your pictures better.

And of course, we can always show more options inside of that shadow highlight window. Okay, so let's cancel out of this one and move on to something completely different, the print window, for example. If I go into file, print, this is my print window. And as you can see, this is the default print window. Where, maybe I will then have to change the scale fit to fit media, change the print settings, choose whether, which color management to use, and all of these things that I would normally do before I print my images. Well, all of these things are now saved inside of the image. So, when I click done.

And send the image to another user. When that user will open the image, the Print window will be exactly the same because the print settings will be saved within the image, okay? Which allows for one button printing Well, with the values that I have selected. So if we go back to Command P, you see that everything is ready, and I can simply print, without having to go through all of that information again. So let's do, say done to that, and move on to something else.

Another thing that usually happens when we create layers inside of our Layers panel by duplicating them that Photoshop automatically adds the word Copy to it. Well, if we go into the flyout menu of the Layers panel, and into the Panel Options, we now have the option to actually tell Photoshop not to add the word copy to copied layers, okay, because many, many times we spend a lot of time then taking away these words. But I say okay to this and do another copy of the background layer, and you will see that now this layer is called Only Background, and then I can rename it exactly like I want.

So this is a little time saver, because I'm sure that pretty many of you would actually change that word Copy to something else. I mean I would. Okay. Another thing is when you save your files, file, save as, for example and I'm going to put that on my desktop and save it. Photoshop asks me if I want to maximize compatibility. Okay. Turning off maximize compatibility, it may interfere with the use of PSD or PSD files in other applications or with other versions of Photoshop. So of course I want to maximize my compatibility.

So new in Photoshop CS5 is the option now to not show that window again. Okay? So you can decide, no, I want to maximize all the time, so don't show me that window again. And to finish my little presentation of all these little features, I'm going to do a one last thing and that is Command H. On the Mac, Command H hides the application. All other applications except Photoshop, okay? So let's see what happens now. I'm doing it on my keyboard right now.

Command H. Photoshop would now ask me what I want command h to do. Do I want to hide Photoshop, which is the Mac standard, or to hide and show selections, guides, etc., which is the tradtional shortcut for Photoshop. Okay? So I can choose which one I want to apply. Now that's pretty cool. So as you can see, there have been, like, tons of little improvements. The Photoshop team calls them JDI, Just Do It. Little projects that the engineers would take on, and simply do it. Okay? And this whole collection of little things makes for a very, very big new version of PhotoShop. PhotoShop CS5 is really full of these little JDI projects and makes it much, much easier to work with.

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