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Photoshop CS4 offers an abundance of helpful shortcuts and hidden tricks that allow designers and photographers to get more done in less time. In Photoshop CS4 Power Shortcuts, Michael Ninness reveals hundreds of tips to boost productivity, including the top 20 power shortcuts every Photoshop user must know. He covers strategies for better document and panel management, and offers techniques for becoming quicker and more nimble when using layers, adjustment layers, and layer masks. Exercise files accompany the course.
Download the keyboard shortcut guide from the Exercise Files tab.
So, here's another bonus tip for you and that's getting a better algorithm for when you resample your images. Hmm. Kind of a geeky sounding thing so let's get this started. I'm going to begin by duplicating this image so that we can do a comparison side-by-side. I'm going to hold down the Option or Alt key and choose Image > Duplicate and that will just duplicate the image without bringing up a dialog box for warning me. So, here I have these two images that are in one window tab. So, let's tile these by using the Arrange Documents widget. We'll just tile them side-by-side, like so. The one on the left, we'll go to Image Size, Command+Option+I or Ctrl+Alt+I to bring up the Image Size. This is what I'm talking about, this algorithm down here, the Bicubic, which is the default, and finally, Photoshop has actually added some descriptive text about what these algorithms do. For years, they were just Nearest Neighbor, Bilinear, Bicubic, Bicubic Smoother, Bicubic Sharper.
They didn't actually have these helpful descriptions in parentheses, so nobody knew what they did. They just figured they would stay with the default, because hey, Adobe knows what they're doing, we'll go with the default, right? So, we're going to make this smaller using Bicubic, the default choice. Resample is turned on. Let's just change the width to say 500 pixels and I'll go ahead and click OK. Then we'll zoom that image up to 100%, Command+Plus, Command+Plus, Ctrl+Plus, Ctrl+Plus and there it is. 100%. The image on the right, we're going to go to Image > Image Size, choose 500 pixels wide and again for our algorithm, we're going to change it from Bicubic to Bicubic Sharper and look at there. It says Best for reduction.
If you're making your image larger, you'd choose Bicubic Smoother. If you're making your image smaller, you choose Bicubic Sharper. I'm going to go ahead and click OK and again we'll zoom up to 100%, Command+Plus, and then just take a look at the difference between the image on the right and the image on the left. Now hopefully, over the video here, you're actually seeing a noticeable difference, but the one on the right should look crisper and sharper. It has more detail. So, by enlarge, nine out of ten times you're probably working with images that are larger than you would tend to use them at, especially if you're using a high-end digital camera with gazillions of mega-pixels. If you're just doing a 4x6, you certainly don't need all those extra pixels for that particular image.
So, you should change your default algorithm to Bicubic Sharper, because that's the one you're going to be using most of the time. So, if I undo, Command+Z or Ctrl+Z and I go back to the full size image, if I go to my Preferences, Command+K or Ctrl+K, right in the General category right at the top here, it says Image Interpolation. You can change the default to Bicubic Sharper and click OK. So now, the next time I go to Image Size, Command+Option+I, Ctrl+Alt+I, it will already be set for Bicubic Sharper and then that once or twice in the long time, when you need to go up, you just switch it to Bicubic Smoother for that one time. But every time you open the dialog, it will be set to Bicubic Sharper, which is what you're going to want most of the time.
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