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The first book to discuss Adobe's answer to a lower-priced option for creating Web graphics—ImageStyler. Adobe has offered full support during the development and writing of this book and has even bundled the book with select copies of ImageStyler. Author has over a quarter of a million books in print and is on the ImageStyler development team. Author's Web site provides updated information and additional ImageStyler tricks for users. Includes a vibrant, rich, full-color Color Studio that illustrates project results and designer capabilities.
Demo version of ImageStyler for Mac and PC platforms. Demos of additional Adobe products, such as Illustrator, Photoshop, Premiere, and ImageReady. Includes approximately 5,000 seamless JPEG and GIF textures, more than 100 handy shapes, and over 50 ImageStyler styles. Original illustrations for the Web — including backgrounds, buttons, bullets, and navigational elements. Various 3rd party plug-ins.
Thank you for picking up Adobe ImageStyler In Depth. This book is will provide you with the shortest (and most enjoyable) route to mastering Adobe's new Web graphics software. Adobe ImageStyler is a truly innovative, exciting, and cost-effective Web graphics program. I'll help you understand how ImageStyler will make the time you spend on Web production more effectiveand pleasant, to boot!
What's So Special About Adobe ImageStyler?
In the bad old days of Web design, designers had to cobble graphics together with a hodgepodge of tools. Their workflow was more than a little convoluted. Adobe ImageStyler changes all that. ImageStyler is one of the new breed of Web graphics applications. Like Macromedia Fireworks (which I'll touch on briefly in Chapter 11), Adobe ImageStyler was written from the ground up. As a result, it takes an object-oriented approach to building bitmap Web graphics.
Who Needs This Book
Adobe ImageStyler In Depth is intended for the full range of ImageStyler users. It's designed to get new users up and running in nothing flat, and to raise the productivity level of more experienced users. The potential audience for this book includes:
Advertising agency folks
Technical documentation specialists
Webmasters (fledgling and otherwise)
...and even hobbyists!
What's "In Depth" About This Book?
Because Adobe ImageStyler is a brand-new program, I wrote this book to serve the broadest audiencefrom beginners through advanced users. The book explores each tool and nearly every topic in depth. As such, you can use this book as both a reference and a program tutorial. At less than 150 pages, the printed documentation that accompanies ImageStyler is terse. Adobe ImageStyler In Depth isn't intended to replace the original manualthis book is intended to supplement it.
What's In The Book?
Adobe ImageStyler In Depth is divided into 12 chapters and 4 appendixes. Here's a brief description of each element:
Chapter 1, "What's On The Menu?"Provides an overview of ImageStyler's user interface (UI). This menu-by-menu, palette-by-palette rundown serves as a reference piece. You won't see any beefy hands-on tutorials in this chapter, but you'll find plenty of clues as to how each palette and dialog box works.
Chapter 2, "ImageStyler's Mojo Methodology"Gets hands-on with ImageStyler's powerful features. This chapter starts you rolling with a comprehensive look at color, shapes, text, layers, and image maps. It also covers alignment and the combine functions and touches on export basics.
Chapter 3, "3D And TextureGet Bumpy!"A definitive piece on working with ImageStyler's 3D effects. The chapter also discusses using, creating, and locating textures. You'll learn about cutouts, embosses, bevels, and ripples. Once you get into the more than 5,000 original textures (and demonstrations of Xaos Tools Terrazzo) included on the accompanying CD-ROM, you'll be in texture nirvana.
Chapter 4, "Background Check"Expands on Chapter 3 by talking about how you create and use background images with ImageStyler. The chapter lays out an array of background types and shows you how to create more than a dozen background designs.
Chapter 5, "The Magic Of Styles"Delivers the goods on creating, altering, and managing styles in ImageStyler. The chapter covers style basics, distortion effects, filters, and opacity controls. The iStyler Depot showcases a range of original styles, complete with directions worthy of a digital cookbook.
Chapter 6, "Cooking Up A Batch"Discusses batch HTML replacement. Batch image creation is one of ImageStyler's most notable features. This chapter shows you how to jazz up your Web site in a flash with decorative headings and buttons. The Batch Button Depot provides a host of tasty design recipes.
Chapter 8, "It Slices, It Dices, It Builds HTML Layouts!"Goes full-bore into ImageStyler's AutoSlice and AutoLayout controls. These two powerful features make it simple to slice your images and create precise HTML layouts. This chapter explains how to build and export compositions that exploit ImageStyler's full potential.
Chapter 9, "Web Interface In Your Face"Looks at user interfaces and navigational systems. You'll learn how to create Web site interfaces and navigational systems that are easy to use and engaging, while avoiding the dreaded pushbuttonitis syndrome. The Nav Structure Depot provides 10 designs you can alter.
Chapter 10, "Working With Other Applications"Covers working with other popular graphics and Web-page software. The chapter discusses vector-drawing applications (such as Adobe Illustrator, Macromedia FreeHand, and CorelDRAW) as well as bitmap paint applications (including Adobe Photoshop and Corel PHOTO-PAINT). You'll also see how ImageStyler integrates with popular Web-page applications like Adobe PageMill and GoLive CyberStudio.
Chapter 11, "Adobe ImageReadyHi-Perf Pixel Processor"Provides an overview of Adobe's popular Web-graphics optimization software. You'll find a demo version of ImageReady on the original Adobe ImageStyler CD-ROM (not the CD-ROM that accompanies this book).
Chapter 12, "Creating Animation With ImageStyler"Shows you how to create animated GIF files. Although ImageStyler doesn't support animation, you can use it in conjunction with an animation program. This chapter covers the use of ImageStyler with BoxTop Software's GIFmation. A demo version of GIFmation is included on the Adobe ImageStyler In Depth companion CD-ROM (for both Macintosh and Windows).
Appendix A, "ImageStyler Keyboard Shortcuts"Handy keyboard shortcuts for Macintosh and Windows versions, suitable for copying for quick reference.
Appendix B, "The Fonts"A convenient guide to the fonts that come with Adobe ImageStyler, including specimens of each typeface.
Appendix C, "Image Mattes And Shapes"A visual guide to the more than 100 original image mattes and shapes that come on the Adobe ImageStyler In Depth companion CD-ROM.
Appendix D, "Seamless Textures"A visual guide to a portion of the more than 5,000 original seamless textures that come on the Adobe ImageStyler In Depth companion CD-ROM.
What's On The CD-ROM?
Over the years, I've come to abhor CD-ROMs filled with shovelware. When I compile a companion CD-ROM, I strive to fill it with truly valuable stuff. Take a look at the CD-ROM that accompanies this bookyou'll find it's a wonderful addition to the printed text. Here's a rundown of what's on the CD-ROM:
5,000-plus original seamless GIF and JPEG textures
100-plus original image mattes
100-plus original shapes
50-plus original styles
Adobe ImageStyler, Illustrator, and Photoshop demos (Macintosh/Windows)
BoxTop Software GIFmation demo (Macintosh/Windows)
Micro Fox Software Screen Ruler demo (Macintosh/Windows)
iView Multimedia demo (Macintosh)
Total XaosTerrazzo, Paint Alchemy, and TypeCaster demos (Macintosh/Windows)
Ulead PhotoImpact Album (Windows)
Dan's Philosophy On Geekbooks In General
I'm not a professor, nor a high-priced designer. I'm not some pompous windbag with an agenda. I work in the trenches. It's my goal to provide a premium experience for my readers. I want each book I write to be the best book on the subject, and I strive to provide maximum value. Fun is at the core of my game planI have fun writing books, and I hope you'll have fun learning from them.
The computer graphics field is constantly changing. Often, right after I put a book to bed, an important new development crops up. To compensate for these rapid changes, I'm committed to providing online updates to this book via my personal Web site: www.geekbooks.com. The next time you're out clicking around, please stop by my little corner of the Web.
I have the good fortune to participate in the official Adobe ImageStyler Web site, as well. If you dig the textures, styles, and shapes that come with this book, you'll want to check out the latest, tastiest goodies online at www.imagestyler.com.
Although you might think about carrying this book into the kitchen or out to the living-room couch, you should use it at the computer for maximum impact. Try out the examples and put the principles to work. Take your time, enjoy ImageStyler, and don't attempt more than you feel comfortable with in one sitting. ImageStyler creeps up on youjust go with the flow. You'll be an ImageStylin' Jedi knight before you know it!