Gift Guide

Adobe Photoshop CS Studio Techniques


If you're ready to go from Photoshop competent to Photoshop enlightened, this is the place to turn. In these pages, revered Photoshop instructor Ben Willmore explains the whys behind the how's so that you can unleash Photoshop CS' full creative potential. In a friendly, easy-going style that's long on information and short on techno-babble, Ben explains the concepts, features, and techniques that promise to make a real difference in the way you use Photoshop CS. Complex concepts like curves and channels are made ...

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If you're ready to go from Photoshop competent to Photoshop enlightened, this is the place to turn. In these pages, revered Photoshop instructor Ben Willmore explains the whys behind the how's so that you can unleash Photoshop CS' full creative potential. In a friendly, easy-going style that's long on information and short on techno-babble, Ben explains the concepts, features, and techniques that promise to make a real difference in the way you use Photoshop CS. Complex concepts like curves and channels are made crystal clear, and features new to Photoshop CS—like the very cool PhotoMerge function for creating panoramic composite images, support for nested layers, and more—are covered in the depth they deserve. After a quick grounding in the tools, palettes, layers, and masks at the program's core, Ben gets into the real-world production techniques that make up the heart of this volume: sharpening scans, correcting and optimizing images, and more.

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Editorial Reviews

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The Barnes & Noble Review
You’ll love how Ben Willmore teaches Photoshop: in plain language, using stories and metaphors, not jargon. It’s so crazy, it just might work!

Willmore has organized Photoshop CS into three human-focused sections: working foundations, production essentials, and creative explorations. Throughout, he presents an immense amount of new coverage. Crop and Straighten Photos. Layer Comps. Nonsquare pixels. The new Histogram palette. Shadow/Highlight.

There’s a whole new chapter on Camera Raw, and another on color manipulation (including cool new Color Replacement and Match Color tools). Don’t miss Willmore’s superb new discussion of using masking to isolate complex objects.

If you’re interested in mastery, not just recipes, this full-color book stands way above the crowd. Bill Camarda

Bill Camarda is a consultant, writer, and web/multimedia content developer. His 15 books include Special Edition Using Word 2003 and Upgrading & Fixing Networks for Dummies, Second Edition.

Library Journal
Scores of devoted Photoshop users and recent converts have generated demand for more titles on the latest version of Photoshop CS (see also Computer Media, LJ 4/1/04). A basic, step-by-step guide, QuickSteps uses full-color examples, screen shots, short tips, and notes to illustrate features; "How to" lists summarize each chapter; and "Quick Steps" sidebars show how to accomplish common tasks. Appropriate for libraries serving new users, but supplement with more thorough guides. Artistry will accommodate intermediate to advanced photographers and digital artists, including an annotated table of contents as well as "Must Reads" and images where appropriate. Although the text encompasses a lot of information, the pages are cluttered, the font size is too small, and typos abound. The CD contains project images and extra image files, plus links to demo software. Only for large libraries. Digital Photographers lives up to its title, focusing on various techniques for modifying digital photos. Step-by-step instructions, full-color examples, and screen shots demonstrate techniques, from reducing red-eye to adding special effects; explanations tell why and when to use particular tools. Its CD contains a Photoshop CS trial version, project images, tutorials, video examples, and demo third-party plugins. For medium and larger libraries. As with Digital Photographers, Real World is full color but includes fewer examples and screen shots in favor of more text and explanation, attempting to give readers the background to understand how Photoshop works and when its various features are needed. It generally assumes a finished print project and discusses optimizing for print, although the final chapter addresses multimedia and the web. Particularly helpful are explanations of different techniques for achieving similar results and examples of when to use each, as well as tips from the authors' real-world experience. For medium and larger libraries. Studio Techniques also attempts to provide background on when and why to use techniques, though in a more step-by-step fashion. It emphasizes nontechnical language and explanations and employs full-color examples throughout, with a CD of practice images. Straightforward prose and a sense of humor recommend this for medium and larger libraries. Also full-color, One-on-One includes two hours of training video on CD-ROM that corresponds with the exercises and chapter lessons in the book; this helps replicate a classroom experience and provides multiple learning methods. Quizzes and "Extra Credit" exercises aid in self-study; step-by-step discussions and illustrations let readers see if they are completing lessons correctly. A useful beginning to intermediate teach-yourself guide for all libraries. For intermediate users, Special Edition provides two thorough guides for the price of one, showing how to use Photoshop and Illustrator CS together--a useful approach given Adobe's new focus on the CS products as a cohesive suite. Unfortunately, it is not full color, though a color insert is included. The CD contains images, bonus chapters, and demo plugins and tools. For medium and larger libraries. Copyright 2004 Reed Business Information.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780321213525
  • Publisher: Adobe Press
  • Publication date: 2/11/2004
  • Series: Studio Techniques Series
  • Pages: 700
  • Product dimensions: 7.38 (w) x 9.18 (h) x 1.37 (d)

Meet the Author

Ben Willmore is the founder of Digital Mastery, a Boulder, Colorado-based training and consulting firm that specializes in Photoshop. Ben has always been known to be a little nutty about all things technical, even as a child. Not long after he traded in his tricycle for training wheels, he started building cameras out of do-it-yourself kits. In 1981, at the tender age of 14, he made his official debut into computer nerd-dom when he attended CompuCamp. That's where he discovered his first two loves, computers and graphic design, and where he learned how to use a graphics tablet to produce art on an Apple computer-three full years before the Macintosh said its first, "Hello."

Not surprisingly, he went on to become a graphic designer. In those days that meant knowing all about such primitive things as typesetting, keylining, and stat cameras. When the first tools of electronic publishing started showing up, Ben began his trend as an aggressive early adopter of new technologies. While most people in the business were holding back in a wait-and-see attitude, Ben was charging ahead and embracing the new tools like long-lost friends. His first serious push into the new arena was when he helped convert his college's daily newspaper from traditional techniques to electronic tools in the late 1980s.

Ben became known as someone who likes to push his tools to the limit, causing many printing companies and service bureaus to ask "How'd you do that?" His obsession with the nuts and bolts of electronic publishing turned him into an unwitting one-man customer support center for all his friends and coworkers. It was this, he discovered, that was his third love-helping others truly understand graphics software. And so he decided to go out on his own and teach his favorite program (Photoshop) full time.

In 1994 he created what has become the hugely successful seminar, Photoshop Mastery. Since then he has taught over 30,000 Photoshop users, and travels around the world presenting his seminars and speaking at publishing events such as Photoshop World. He writes a monthly column for Photoshop User Magazine. Ben can be reached at

Mark Clarkson-self-described writer, artist, and dilettante-was a great help in reviewing and adding selected Photoshop CS updates and screenshots to five chapters of this edition of Adobe Photoshop CS Studio Techniques. Mark lives in Kansas. He is the author of Photoshop Secrets of the Pros, The Photoshop Tennis Book, BattleBots: The Official Guide, Flash 5 Cartooning, The Guide to Cartooning with Macromedia Flash, and Windows Hothouse. As Mark puts it, "I'm a book author, magazine writer, 3D animator, and Flash cartoonist. Yes, it's sad, but at 42 I still haven't decided what I want to do when I grow up." There's more about Mark at

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Table of Contents

Pt. I Working Foundations
Ch. 1 Tool and Palette Primer 6
Ch. 2 Selection Primer 64
Ch. 3 Layers Primer 104
Pt. II Production Essentials
Ch. 4 Resolution Solutions 144
Ch. 5 Line Art Scanning 170
Ch. 6 Optimizing Grayscale Images 186
Ch. 7 Understanding Curves 206
Ch. 8 Color Management 244
Ch. 9 Color Correction 282
Ch. 10 Using Camera Raw 304
Ch. 11 Color Manipulation 334
Ch. 12 Channels 372
Pt. III Creative Explorations
Ch. 13 Advanced Masking 406
Ch. 14 Sharpening 442
Ch. 15 Shadows 470
Ch. 16 Collage 492
Ch. 17 Enhancement 542
Ch. 18 Retouching 590
Ch. 19 Type and Background Effects 640
Index 677
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