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Photoshop CS4 for Photographers is an essential course for any digital photographer who wants to master the software's vast array of image enhancement techniques. Professional photographer and instructor Chris Orwig uses his own compelling images to demonstrate how the power of Photoshop can make photographers more passionate about their work. He covers many aspects of the application, such as working with RAW images, using curves and levels, making images snap, and enhancing bland photographs by converting them to black and white. Exercise files accompany this course.
In the next few movies, I want to share with you a few strategies that will help you get the most out of learning Photoshop. I want to do that because the art and craft of digital photography requires equal amounts of creativity and technical expertise. We are going to become technical in Photoshop in order to become more creative. Now, I have spent a lot of time teaching Photoshop and what I want to do is share with you a few tips from the trenches that I picked up while teaching in the digital lab. Now, if you already familiar with these strategies feel free to skip ahead, otherwise enjoy a few tips.
Now, here's the first one. Let's say we are working in Photoshop and we have this beautiful photograph; this is the photograph that I captured in Baja, California, on a surf trip. What I want to do is convert this to black and white. So I'll show you this really interesting technique that helps you get the most out of black and white conversion. You think, gosh, I really need to take some notes on this technique. So of course you scribble down some notes. Yet, what I find is also helpful, almost even more helpful, is to take a Screen Grabber; take a picture of those settings, because there is no way I'm going to be able to write down all the different settings or all the different things that I have done in this particular tutorial, so I take a Screen Grab.
On a Mac I do that by pressing Shift+ Command+4, I then click and drag, and the Screen Grab will be saved to the desktop. On a PC, you press the good old Print Screen button and then you open a new document in Photoshop, paste that Screen Grab right into that document, and then you can save it or print it. What I find is that, yes, I take handwritten notes, but I also have these Screen Grabs, and these Screen Grabs go with my handwritten notes, and that helps me learn even more about Photoshop. All right. Well, there are other situations where I use Screen Grabs as well. Here I'm showing you a slide that we will be looking at later, and it has to do with this new panel called the Adjustments panel. It's one of the more interesting new features inside of Photoshop CS4. Because this panel is new, I really need to deconstruct this panel and figure out how it works. So I take a picture of it and then I print that out and then I draw some notes on it.
Now, all your Screen Grabs don't need to look this pretty, yet what you may do is simply take a Screen Grab, draw a couple of lines, and try to deconstruct, how dos this Adjustment panel work? Okay, I see, these Top adjustments all have to do with Tone, the Middle ones all have to do with Color, and then these Bottom ones down here I'm just calling Specialty Adjustments, because they help you make some unique and specialized adjustments. All right. Well, with the Quick Screen Grab I have deconstructed that panel, I now understand it, and I can then access the tools that I need to use most frequently. So as you can see in my own educational workflow, when I'm learning more about Photoshop, I take Screen Grabs and those Screen Grabs help me become more technical so that I can be more creative and create more compelling photographs.
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