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Photoshop has become an indispensible tool for photographers, designers, and all other creative professionals, as well as students. Photoshop CS4 Essential Training teaches a broad spectrum of core skills that are common to many creative fields: working with layers and selections; adjusting, manipulating, and retouching photos; painting; adding text; automating; preparing files for output; and more. Instructor Jan Kabili demonstrates established techniques as well as those made possible by some of the new features unique to Photoshop CS4. This course is indispensable to those who are new to the application, just learning this version, or expanding their skills. Example files accompany the course.
In the old days you didn't get very many chances to undo a mistake in Photoshop. Things have changed, and now there are some great features that will help you to move back in time or even forward in time to fix your mistakes. One of those is the Multiple Undo command. I'm going to come in and select my Brush tool here and just make a few random strokes on the image. Now, obviously I don't want to keep those. So to get rid of them, I'm going to go to the Edit menu at the top of the screen and choose Undo, and it even tells you what the command is that you are going to undo.
And you can see to the right of that command the shortcut for Undo, which is Command+Z on a Mac or Ctrl+Z on a PC. So I'll actually use the shortcut. I'm pressing Command+Z and then I'll press Command+Z again, and it will toggle that second line back on. So with Command+Z, you can undo and then the second time around, redo. Now, what if you wanted to step backward and take away both of these strokes? Then you would press Command+Z, and for the second stroke to go back even further, hold down the Option key on a Mac, or the Alt key on a PC, and Command+Z again.
The Undo commands are useful, but if you're undoing very far back in time, it can be a bit confusing as to exactly where you are. So I'd like to use the History panel instead. This is the History panel over here on the right. I opened it from the Window menu here, and then I docked it into this column of panels. The History panel keeps a running list of all the actions that you take in image. So for example, I'm going to go over to the toolbox again and I'm going to select from underneath the Dodge tool here, the Sponge tool. Then I'm going to go to the tool Options Bar and I'm going to tell the Sponge tool to Saturate rather than Desaturate, so that I can use the tool to increase the color intensity of a small area of this photo.
Then I am going to come into the photo and click-and-drag a few times and every time I release my mouse in the History panel you see another state. Each one of these is a stroke with the Sponge tool. Now I'll do something else. I am going to get my Eyedropper tool in the toolbox. I'm going to use it to select a color, this gold color around the GG sign on the post, and then I am going to get my Paintbrush tool, I'll move into the image and I'll make my tool bigger by pressing the Right Bracket key.
I'll give myself a preview of where this is going to paint by holding down the Ctrl key and the Option key, that's right-click and the Alt key on a PC, then I'll drag to see where I'm going to paint. Now, what I wanted to show you is that none of that showed up here in the History panel, because I wasn't actually taking actions on the photo. I was just getting things set up. But now if I come in and I start clicking on that area of the photo to fill it in with the color in the foreground color box, each click is a separate state here in the History panel.
The beauty of the History panel is that I can now go back in time and click on any state to return the photo to its appearance at that time. So if I want to go back before I was making any of these gold brush marks, I would come back just before the first Brush tool state, click on the Sponge tool state there, and in my image I lose all my brush marks. Not only that. If I change my mind again, I can walk forward and bring any of those Brush tool marks back. Now let's say I go back, click on the last Sponge tool state again to get rid of my brush marks, and I am going to do something else now.
I'm going to come in and from behind the Saturate tool, I'm going to choose the Burn tool. The purpose of the Burn tool is to help you burn in, or make darker small areas of an image. So let's say I wanted to make these clouds darker up here. I could come in with this Burn tool and drag, and notice in the History panel, each time I drag I get another state with the Burn tool, but, and here is the point to take home, all of the strokes that I've made with the regular Brush tool are now gone forever, because once you back up and start down another path, you change the linear history in the History panel.
The other nice thing about the History panel is that you can always go back to square one, because at the very top of the panel, there is a snapshot of the way your image looked at the beginning when you first opened it. Sometimes I'll use this to compare the way my photo was at the beginning to the way it is at the end. So if click there, I can see the original photo, and then if I go back to my very last state, I can see the photo with the changes I've added. And if I like the way the photo is right now, I can take a snapshot of it by going to the Camera symbol at the bottom of the History panel, clicking, and there is my snapshot.
So I might double-click on the word Snapshot to give this a meaningful name. I'll name it saturated and burned. So that's how you can use the History panel to preserve your image at any state in time and to move back and forward in time to give you the flexibility you need when you're editing your photos in Photoshop CS4.
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