lunes, 19 de junio de 2017

Become a Photoshop Expert

After working with Photoshop since version 4 in 1999, I realize that nobody really knows every thing that Photoshop can do. This makes it a great toy and tool, because there's always something new to discover. But you can learn most of it and keep learning. I recommend the following habits if you want to become a Photoshop Expert.

For this article, I'm defining expertise as being able to:

imitate something from real life (e.g. how shadows and light really work, how glass and water bend light).
guess with reasonable accuracy how a particular effect was created by someone else in Photoshop.
troubleshoot your own errors as well as someone else's.
manipulate pixels non-destructively.
work efficiently through the proper use of shortcuts, panels, actions, and tools.
know how and when to use most of the features in Photoshop.
Here are the 10 things I recommend you do if you want to be a Photoshop expert.

#1: Own the latest version of Photoshop
It's pretty hard to really experiment with Photoshop if you don't have your own copy at home. Having the latest version is important too. Particularly with the last two versions, CS3 and CS4, new features are added all the time. These features usually either make your job easier (like the Adjustments panel), or give you tools that didn't even exist in prior versions (like some of CS4's 3D capabilities).

I do recommend you purchase your own copy. Please don't used pirated stuff. If you are a teacher or student who is not using Photoshop for commercial purposes, you are allowed by Adobe to purchase the educational version at about half-price. It is as fully-featured as the non-educational version. You can usually buy this version at college book stores, or online at sites such as creationengine.com.

You are allowed to run your Photoshop software on two machines. I have one copy on my desktop PC and one on my laptop for travel.

#2: Play and Make Mistakes
Experimentation and play is the key to learning something beyond the basics. Try out all kinds of tools and filters, and see what they do with different settings. You can't really ruin Photoshop. And if you do, you can reset all the defaults by closing Photoshop, then pressing and holding the Shift+Ctrl+Alt keys (Mac: Shift+Cmd+Opt) while Photoshop restarts.

Take a bunch of photos from your camera (or online) and throw them together. See how blend modes change an overall image as layers are moved around. Try all of the layer adjustments, and every filter combined with another filter. Don't worry if it's ugly. You're learning. And there's always the History panel to allow you to back up several steps and try something else.

#3: Take a Class
To be honest, I had an awful Photoshop teacher. He did little beyond schedule what we were supposed to complete in the textbook. I stopped going at one point. I had learned how not to teach, and four years later I was teaching Photoshop. What a good teacher can do is give you assignments you never dreamed you could do (and enjoy!) More importantly, a good instructor can give you personal guidance when you don't even realize you made a mistake, or there's a typo in the textbook, or you accidentally skipped something, and something goes wrong.

Finally, a good instructor will give you projects to do that give you real-world scenarios and specifications. This prepares you for making real money with Photoshop.

#4: Go to Seminars
Kelby Training provides absolutely fantastic seminars all over the United States. I have had teachers such as the amazing Bert Monroy and Dave Cross. These seminars have increased my creativity and efficiency in Photoshop beyond belief. The day-long seminar is always fun and very inspiring. Go to one of these seminars if you can, or find something comparable in your area.

#5: Read Photoshop Magazines
Photoshop User Magazine from NAPP is the undisputed master when it comes to American Photoshop publications. You can find it for $10 at book stores, or you get an automatic subscription when you become a NAPP member. You will need that NAPP membership to access the tutorial files online. Each issue has a bunch of tutorials at all levels, plus reviews of products and news about the industry. The magazine caters to photographers, designers and hobbyists alike.

Layers Magazine is great too, but does not cater just to Photoshop users. It addresses almost all of the Adobe design products. It only has a couple of Photoshop tutorials per issue. If you work with Illustrator, InDesign, Flash, and Dreamweaver as well, this mag's for you.

I also like to buy those really expensive ($15) imports from the U.K., such as Advanced Photoshop and Photoshop Creative. These can be found at book stores too. Unlike Photoshop User, they include a CD-Rom with every issue that provides all the resources for the tutorials, plus brushes, textures, and the like. These magazines sound like an awfully big expense at first, but they are so worth it. The tutorials are always very well done, and gorgeous to boot.

#6: Read Photoshop Books
Some Photoshop books out there are not so great, but most of them are really top-drawer. When considering a Photoshop book for purchase, look for three things:

Are the images really beautiful or interesting? I have a book here I taught from before I really evaluated the images. They are bordering on ugly. Find a book that makes you feel like you can't wait to create those images.
Is the book written to your level? It can be really frustrating if the instructions are too easy or too hard for your experience level.
Does the book match your learning style? Some books use blocks of text and others make each step into a bullet point. Some have more step-by-step images than others. Decide what works best for you and look for books written that way.
I do have three specific book recommendations. Each of the books below contains wonderful tutorials, and is written very well.

"Layers: The Complete Guide to Photoshop's Most Powerful Feature" by Matt Kloskowski
"Photoshop Fine Art Effects Cookbook: 62 Easy-to-Follow Recipes for Creating the Classic Styles of Great Artists and Photographers" by John Beardsworth
"Adobe Photoshop CS4 One-on-One" by Deke McClelland

#7: Do Online Tutorials
I love doing online tutorials. Some good places to find Photoshop tutorials are psd.tutsplus.com, good-tutorials.com, and tutorialized.com. If you work with online tutorials enough, you find some favorite writers. Look for tutorials writers who provide enough images, proofread their work, and don't leave steps out. You should be able to create a result that looks much like the one promised by following exactly what they have written. As with books, look for tutorials written to your skill level. But push yourself to do more challenging stuff than you're used to.

#8: Be a Community Member
This can take many forms. Sometimes I like to check out online Photoshop forums and see if anybody needs a question answered. I often find cool ideas for myself as well. I also hang out on Twitter, and follow a large number of fellow graphic and Web designers. They are always feeding me new links to incredible online resources. I have RSS feeds I read from my favorite design blogs, and I comment on all of the articles that move me. I read everything by smashingmagazine.com and minervity.com.

There are design communities in the offline world too, of course. I am a member of the local group called ADAC. When I had more time a few years ago, I was even a board member. Real-world design clubs are a great opportunity to learn all about design in addition to some of the business aspects of freelancing (ADAC once had a great talk from an intellectual property attorney about copyright law for artists.) More importantly, you can come away inspired with fresh ideas by looking at the works of others.

#9: Learn Other Adobe Programs Too
Photoshop rarely works in a vacuum for most designers. There are many times when a Photoshop project is enhanced by the contributions of artwork done in Illustrator, for example.

Learn how to save your work for the press using Acrobat. Learn how to create vector artwork in Illustrator and import the paths into Photoshop. Learn how to place your Photoshop files into InDesign. Learn how various Photoshop plugins can expand your design horizons or make your work easier. These are but a few examples. A thorough understanding of Photoshop must include an understanding of how well it plays with others.

#10: Teach Photoshop
I wasn't a Photoshop expert when I started teaching Photoshop. I am now, thanks in part to having taught it. Teaching Photoshop helped me develop my expertise in ways that no other experience can. When you have to communicate how to do something to someone else, you come to understand it in a way that sets it in concrete in your brain.

I often get my students to find something new to learn, and then have them turn around and teach it to another student. And when both students make mistakes during this teaching process, they both learn more. Writing tutorials - and finding out if someone can follow them - takes this concept step further.

Dawn Pedersen
Blue Lobster Art and Design
Web Design, Graphic Design, and Design Tutorials
BluLob.com

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Photoshop the Tutorials

Free Photoshop video tutorials are a great way to learn how to use the Photoshop program. They say that if you listen you forget, if you see you remember and if you do you understand. Well, by listening and watching video tutorials about Photoshop, and following along in your own program, you are doing all three together.

By watching an expert operate the Photoshop program you have the best chance of learning, and also remembering and understanding what you have learnt than by any other learning method.

And Photoshop video tutorials are nothing else but movies of the expert operating the Photoshop program. You are effectively 'looking over the shoulder' of the expert and watching every click of his mouse.

You can read instructions, manuals, books by other authors, and Internet websites about Photoshop. But to learn quickly and clearly nothing beats learning from Photoshop video tutorials.

With Photoshop video tutorials, you can see how buttons, collages or even paintings and indeed complete websites - yes websites - are created. Instead of laboriously reading through books describing what needs to be selected, activated and clicked, you can simply imitate the mouse movement and clicks performed in the video knowing that you are actually doing exactly the right thing.

The learning curve is easier to climb and the results are easier to compare.

Not only that, you can watch how it is done from the very beginning to the very end and sometimes you can even have explained why it is done in that particular way.

Sean Dodge wrote on his blog and article called "5 Important Criteria that Make a Great Photoshop Tutorial". But Sean is writing about screenshot-and-text step-by-step tutorials, not video tutorials. In fact, I haven't yet found an article discussing the format of Photoshop video tutorials.

Did you ever make a Photoshop mock-up of a website design before getting down and dirty with the code? Then consider the the SiteGrinder program.

Basically, the SiteGrinder program turns Photoshop into an easy-to-use and fully functional web design tool. With SiteGrinder, designers will now have the freedom to totally let their creativity loose and then, without skipping a beat, transfer their designs to the web.

SiteGrinder lets you design web pages with dynamic text, e.g. served from a database and 'poured' into a web page containing code. Examples are weblogs and Content Management Systems content. It is hard to believe that a Photoshop plug-in should be capable of doing so, but it can be done and quite easily.

There is a collection of free video tutorials showing the proper use of various SiteGrinder techniques to build web pages from Photoshop documents.

There is no way that the same information could be imparted so effectively except through the medium of video tutorials.

A PSDTUTS tutorial from Fabio shows how your can recreate a realistic-looking watercolor effect with Photoshop brushes. Fabio demonstrates how the hair can be re-made with the popular watercolor brushes from Bittbox. This tutorial is static screenshots and written text. I think it would be much more interesting and beneficial if it had been a Photoshop video tutorial instead.

Another Photoshop tutorial from Fabio shows how to "Create a Spectacular Flaming Meteor Effect on Text". But again, it is a screenshot and text tutorial not a Photoshop video tutorial.

With Photoshop Video Tutorials you can learn how to get more consistent color with the videos on color management as it relates to Photoshop. Resources include detailed information on color calibration, using ICC profiles, and how to get consistent color results from Photoshop.

This means that you can prerecord actions or processes in Photoshop that you can then save and turn into a button that you can then simply click and Photoshop will do the whole action for you. It's mainly used as a timesaving device and saves the hassle of doing menial work like basic Photography fixing or cleaning your scans so you don't have to do it over and over again because you can just click a button you created.

The procedure to do this is explained in the Photoshop video tutorials.

If you execute a huge zoom you can make Photoshop pause a moment while it figures out what to draw. Photoshop CS4 has none of this: zooming in from 3% to 1600% is so fast and smooth it's like you're falling into the image.

The File Browser was introduced as a major update to Photoshop 7 and was later improved in Photoshop CS. When a directory is viewed for the first time, the File Browser or Bridge will build a cache of the image previews.

Plugins can be opened from within Photoshop and act like mini-editors that modify the image.

As to storing your Photoshop images, RAID 0 is very useful for temporary data such as page files and Photoshop scratch disk placement. It is not recommended for files you need to keep.

There are many websites about various aspects of Photoshop, but to find them all and to learn what is on each one can be very time consuming. Luckily there is one website that has done a lot of the searching for you. That particular website hosts hundreds of Photoshop video tutorials and they are all free to watch.

The tutorials have been pre-selected for their relevance and quality by the website owner and arranged in logical groups depending upon the subject covered so that it is easy for the user to quickly find the best Photoshop video tutorial that answers his questions.

Free Photoshop Video Tutorials [http://www.FreePhotoshopVideoTutorials.net]

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Photo Shop the Easy way

If you are a beginner at digital photography and want to learn how to manipulate your images, I recommend you learn Photoshop. Now, there are plenty of inexpensive Photoshop clone programs available for download, but that's not what you should be learning. If you are serious about digital photography on any level, you should be learning Photoshop.
It is the industry standard and one of the most powerful image editing applications known to the industry. Aside from just editing digital photos, Photoshop can be used to create logos, design affiliate websites, design eBook covers, design CD covers, convert photos into paintings and much much more. If you are not sure about spending $800 on Photoshop, keep reading this article, you might change your mind.
Back in December of 1982, Adobe Systems Inc. was founded, but probably had no idea of how quickly Photoshop would become such a popular application. Finally in 1989 when Adobe Photoshop was launched on the Macintosh, the beginning of a whole new generation of photography was born. Photoshop has come a long way since version 1.0, and is still being developed and improved every year. It seems that when Photoshop has reached it's perfection, yet another version is released.
Some of the world's best photographers and digital artists use Photoshop for every master piece they create. Some artists have used Photoshop to make a living, creating stunning pieces of art and selling them for thousands of dollars. Now, you don't have to be an artistic genius to make money with Photoshop. The good news is, you can use Photoshop for some of the most basic digital edits and still generate money. It's just a matter of being creative. If you are a Photographer like me, it is essential to use Photoshop.
Without Photoshop, you'd never be able to fix an imperfect smile, or correct bad lighting, or swap out heads in a photo. (my favorite thing). Seriously, you can do that! Once I was shooting some infant photos and I had shot several dozen photos of infant twins. I could never get both of them to look perfect at the same moment, so I just got their best expressions from all the photos I shot and then merged them into one photo to make the perfect shot.
Adobe has drastically improved the features and usability in Photoshop over the years, but for a complete beginner, it can seem overwhelming. So how do you learn Photoshop? Well, there are dozens of ways to tackle the application, but there is only one way to truly learn anything. Patience and time are the two key elements. Unfortunately, there is no magic method to learning Photoshop, so it will take time. You can't just plug information into your brain, it's not that simple.
To really learn Photoshop, you need a step-by-step video course that will help you every step of the way. Similar to learning in a classroom environment, you'll need an instructor to walk you through the most essential features. Without knowing the most essential features, it's like walking through the dessert with no water and no shelter. You will be lost and completely hopeless. After some time, you will probably give up and quit. Photoshop is not hard to learn, but you will need instruction and video seems to be the method of choice when it comes to learning Photoshop.
The main thing to realize is that you CAN learn Photoshop It is not so difficult once you learn the basics. Without the basics, you'll be searching the internet for ever trying to find the perfect tutorial. YouTube and the video sharing sites are loaded with Photoshop tutorials. Yes, I agree, there are some fabulous tutorials out there, but they are just tidbits of information.
You can watch tutorials all day long and learn small bits of Photoshop, but you'll still be frustrated at the end of the day because you still don't know where half of the tools and functions are. Doing tutorials are great for experienced users or others who just want to freshen up their skills. To become a Photoshop Master, you must first learn the basics; such as the menus, tools, layer styles, layer adjustments, filters, adobe bridge and more. Without the basic understanding, you'll only continue to get frustrated. Once you learn everything you need to know about the basics, then you can start watching more free video tutorials. This will help you expand your ability to apply amazing effects and begin to compete with the Pros.
As mentioned previously Digital Photography Pros use Photoshop, as well as many other programs, but Photoshop is always the program of choice. If you want to make money with your photos, design beautiful websites and graphics, or create stunning artwork, Photoshop should be your #1 program of choice.
With patience and good step-by-step instruction, you will learn the application quickly. If you are interested in learning Photoshop, we recommend you start with a Photoshop CS3 Tutorial.
Aaron Cox is a web designer, photoshop artist and photographer. He currently teaches photoshop classes online and runs a free blog filled with free photoshop tutorials


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