Photoshop CS All-in-One Desk Reference for Dummies


  • The complete For Dummies Photoshop resource-ten minibooks with more than 800 pages of tips, techniques, and plain-English explanations
  • Covers Photoshop fundamentals, image essentials, selections, painting, drawing and typing, working with layers, channels and masks, filters and distortions, retouching and restoration, Photoshop and the Web, and Photoshop and print
  • Explains how to create and manage layers, use...
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  • The complete For Dummies Photoshop resource-ten minibooks with more than 800 pages of tips, techniques, and plain-English explanations
  • Covers Photoshop fundamentals, image essentials, selections, painting, drawing and typing, working with layers, channels and masks, filters and distortions, retouching and restoration, Photoshop and the Web, and Photoshop and print
  • Explains how to create and manage layers, use channels and masks, make corrections with filters, fix flaws and imperfections, and much more
  • Updated and revised throughout for Photoshop "X," which Adobe expects to release in Fall 2003
  • Features sixteen pages of full-color examples
  • Written by veteran For Dummies author Barbara Obermeier, a leading design and graphics author
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Editorial Reviews

From Barnes & Noble
The Barnes & Noble Review
Photoshop CS is enormous. It can be very difficult to know where to start -- or where to go next. Maybe you’d like an easy, accessible guide to Photoshop CS, one that’s especially well organized, so it’s simple to find the answer you need right this minute. Maybe you’d like a book that’s readable enough so you’ll use it to explore corners of Photoshop you’ve never worked with. Either way, Photoshop CS All-in-One Desk Reference for Dummies delivers the goods.

Barbara Obermeier owns her own graphic design studio, so she knows what it’s like to need answers on deadline. She also teaches computer graphics at Ventura College and UC Santa Barbara, so she’s learned exactly how to “un-befuddle” Photoshop novices. (Maybe that’s why the legendary Deke McClelland turned to her when he needed a coauthor for his Photoshop for Dummies books.)

In Photoshop CS All-in-One Desk Reference for Dummies, Obermeier organizes Photoshop into ten “mini-books.” In Book 1, Photoshop Fundamentals, you’ll get thoroughly comfortable with Photoshop CS’s challenging user interface. Image Essentials covers the “nitpicky but critical” details of image size, resolution, pixel dimension, image mode, file format, cropping, and more. (There’s even a little basic color theory, in case you missed that in college.)

There’s a full mini-book on Selections, in which Obermeier covers every Photoshop CS selection tool -- as well as the “powerful, albeit sometimes unruly” Pen tool and Paths palette. She then turns to painting, drawing, and typing, covering everything from vector shapes to filling and stroking, creating type to masking, shaping, and warping it.

In her mini-book on layers, Obermeier walks you through creating a multilayered composite image and offers practical guidance on managing layers for maximum efficiency (including a full chapter on layer styles and clipping groups).

You’ll find mini-books on channels and masks, and on retouching/restoration -- as well as detailed coverage of filters and distortions. The latter includes a look at Photoshop CS’s handy new Filter Gallery, which consolidates multiple categories of filters into one editing window. (About time!)

Last but not least: separate mini-books on Photoshop for the Web, and for print. (Especially helpful, the Print book’s coverage of contact sheets, picture packages, and Photoshop CS’ new Photomerge and PDF Presentations features.)

As Obermeier observes, “Sometimes, knowing how to use a tool doesn’t necessarily mean that you know what to do with it.” That’s where this book’s “Putting It Together” sections come in. So you’ll find step-by-step procedures that pull together all the features you need to perform a wide range of essential tasks.

For instance: making a photo gradually fade from color to grayscale. Masking hair or fur. Creating that angelic “glow” around your subjects’ heads. Sprucing up scanned halftones. Making your own background textures. Creating snow, rain, and wet effects. Correcting tinted, faded photos, cleaning up line art scans...or, conversely, making new photos look old. Fixing underexposed foregrounds in photos -- or resurfacing wrinkles. With all these projects, this book’s as practical as it is readable. Bill Camarda

Bill Camarda is a consultant, writer, and web/multimedia content developer. His 15 books include Special Edition Using Word 2000 and Upgrading & Fixing Networks for Dummies, Second Edition.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780764542398
  • Publisher: Wiley
  • Publication date: 11/24/2003
  • Series: For Dummies Series
  • Edition description: 10 Books in 1
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 856
  • Product dimensions: 7.40 (w) x 9.18 (h) x 1.68 (d)

Meet the Author

Barbara Obermeier (Ventura, CA) is principal of Obermeier Design, a graphic design studio in California. The author of Photoshop 7 All-in-One Desk Reference For Dummies and Adobe Master Class: Illustrator Illuminated (Peachpit) and co-author of several Dummies books including Photoshop 7 For Dummies, Illustrator 10 For Dummies, and CorelDRAW 9 For Dummies. She has contributed as a writer, technical editor, or layout designer for 16 books. Barb also teaches computer graphics at Ventura College and the University of California, Santa Barbara.

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Table of Contents

Introduction 1
Bk. I Photoshop Fundamentals 7
Ch. 1 Examining the Photoshop Environment 9
Ch. 2 Getting to Know the Tools Palette 31
Ch. 3 Getting Started and Finishing Up 51
Ch. 4 Getting It on Paper 65
Ch. 5 Viewing and Navigating Images 73
Ch. 6 Customizing Your Workspace and Preferences 99
Bk. II Image Essentials 117
Ch. 1 Specifying Size and Resolution 119
Ch. 2 Choosing Color Modes and File Formats 139
Ch. 3 Using and Managing Color 161
Ch. 4 Time Travel - Undoing in Photoshop 187
Ch. 5 Applying Annotations and Notes 199
Ch. 6 Creating Actions for Productivity and Fun 203
Bk. III Selections 217
Ch. 1 Making Selections 219
Ch. 2 Creating and Working with Paths 237
Ch. 3 Modifying and Transforming Selections and Paths 261
Bk. IV Painting, Drawing, and Typing 283
Ch. 1 Exploring with the Painting Tools 285
Ch. 2 Creating Vector Shapes 307
Ch. 3 Filling and Stroking 319
Ch. 4 Creating and Editing Type 339
Ch. 5 Masking, Shaping, and Warping Type 355
Bk. V Working with Layers 369
Ch. 1 Creating Layers 371
Ch. 2 Managing Layers 393
Ch. 3 Playing with Opacity and Blend Modes 417
Ch. 4 Getting Jazzy with Layer Styles and Clipping Groups 433
Bk. VI Channels and Masks 457
Ch. 1 Using Channels 459
Ch. 2 Quick and Dirty Masking 479
Ch. 3 Getting Exact with Advanced Masking Techniques 497
Bk. VII Filters and Distortions 513
Ch. 1 Making Corrections with Daily Filters 515
Ch. 2 Applying Filters for Special Occasions 533
Ch. 3 Distorting with the Liquify Command 567
Bk. VIII Retouching and Restoration 579
Ch. 1 Enhancing Images with Adjustments 581
Ch. 2 Repairing with the Focus and Toning Tools 619
Ch. 3 Fixing Flaws and Imperfections 631
Bk. IX Photoshop and the Web 643
Ch. 1 Prepping Web Graphics 645
Ch. 2 Optimizing Images with Save for Web 661
Ch. 3 Slicing Your Image 675
Ch. 4 Creating a Web Photo Gallery 691
Ch. 5 Looking to ImageReady 697
Bk. X Photoshop and Print 705
Ch. 1 Working with Other Programs 707
Ch. 2 Prepping Graphics for Print 721
Ch. 3 Creating Contact Sheets, Picture Packages, and More 737
App. A Working with Digital Cameras and Scanners 749
App. B A Visual Reference of Photoshop Tools 759
Index 775
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First Chapter

Photoshop CS All-in-One Desk Reference For Dummies

By Barbara Obermeier

John Wiley & Sons

ISBN: 0-7645-4239-7

Chapter One

Examining the Photoshop Environment

In This Chapter

  •   Starting Photoshop
  •   Exploring the anatomy of dialog boxes
  •   Working with palettes
  •   Examining the Photoshop desktop
  •   Investigating the menu bar
  •   Discovering the Options bar

As environments go, the Photoshop working environment is pretty cool: as inviting as a landscaped backyard and not nearly as likely to work you into a sweat. Each of the many tools in Photoshop is custom-designed for a specific chore and chock-full of more options than a Swiss Army knife. When you're familiar with your surroundings, you'll be eager to make like Monet in his garden, surrounded by palettes, brushes, buckets of paint, and swatches of color, ready to tackle the canvas in front of you.

Getting a Warm Welcome

When you launch Photoshop CS for the first time, you're greeted by Photoshop's rendition of the friendly neighborhood welcome wagon. The handy Welcome Screen, shown in Figure 1-1, provides a virtual plethora of goodies for everyone from the beginner to the advanced user. New feature descriptions, tutorials, tips, tricks, and help with setting up color management are all at your fingertips. Don't worry about exploring every item when you first launch Photoshop. You can call up the Welcome Screen anytime bychoosing Help [right arrow] Welcome Screen. Some of the information provided is in PDF (Portable Document Format) format, which can be read in Adobe Acrobat Reader (a free download from Other information is available through links to the Adobe Web site. There's even a movie that details all the new features. So grab some popcorn and enjoy.

If you prefer to access the Welcome Screen at your own leisure and don't want it to appear every time you launch Photoshop, deselect the Show This Dialog at Startup option in the bottom-left corner of the Welcome Screen window.

Launching Photoshop and Customizing the Desktop

You start Photoshop just as you launch any other program under Windows or the Mac OS. As with other programs, you can choose the method you find the easiest and most convenient. Here's a quick summary of your options:

  •   Launch from the Windows Start menu. Windows PCs have a handy pop-up Programs menu that includes your most frequently used applications. Just locate the program on the menu and select it.
  •   Launch from the Windows taskbar or Macintosh OS X Dock. You may have inserted icons for your really mission-critical programs in these readily accessible launching bars, usually found at the bottom (or sometimes sides) of your screen. Click the Photoshop icon to start.
  •   Launch Photoshop by double-clicking a shortcut or alias icon placed on your desktop.
  •   Double-click an image file associated with Photoshop. When you installed Photoshop, the setup program let you specify which type of common image file types (.TIF, .PSD, .PCX, and so forth) you wanted to be associated with (or linked to, for launching purposes) Photoshop, ImageReady, or neither (Windows only). Double-clicking an icon, shortcut, or alias representing the file type you chose launches Photoshop.

When you launch Photoshop, the desktop workspace, shown in Figure 1-2, appears. Like the real-world desktop where your keyboard and monitor reside, the Photoshop desktop is a place for you to put all the documents you're working with.

The desktop consists of a main window, called the application window if you're using Windows (and called the document window if you're using the Mac OS), which takes up the majority of your screen by default. Within the main window, you see a variety of other windows and boxes, such as the image document window that enables you to view and edit images.

The main window contains the stuff you're probably used to seeing in other programs - a title bar at the top of the window, a status bar at the bottom (unless you have it turned off) if you're a Windows user, and menus to help you execute commands and get important information about your image files. But the arrangement of controls may be a little unfamiliar to you. Photoshop arranges controls into groups called palettes.

In Windows, borders mark the left and right edges of the Photoshop window - even if the main application window's contents fill up more than your screen can show.

Your virtual desktop can become as cluttered as the real thing, but Adobe has built in some special features (located on the Options bar, which I discuss later in this chapter) that let you keep stuff close at hand but tuck things away so they're not constantly underfoot (or under-mouse, so to speak). After you've arranged your Photoshop desktop just as you like it for a specific project, you can even save the desktop and reuse it whenever you work on that project.

Every document you ever work on appears within the confines of this window and can't leave its borders. You can move around some other components, such as the various palettes and the Options bar, both inside and outside the Photoshop application window.

Windows users can close, minimize, and restore the main Photoshop window, just as you can with most windows in other programs. Mac users can choose Photoshop [right arrow] Hide Photoshop. To display Photoshop again, simply click the icon in the Dock.

The Photoshop window hides one cool secret for Windows users: If you double-click anywhere in the gray empty area, the Open dialog box pops up, so you can navigate to a file you want to work on without wandering up to the File menu, using the Ctrl+O keyboard shortcut, or using File Browser.

The following sections show you how to customize the main working area so that you can get to work.

Setting display settings with the Window menu

The Window menu, shown in Figure 1-3, controls the display of palettes and some other elements of the Photoshop working area. (Find out more about maneuvering palettes later in this chapter.)

The top two entries on the Window menu enable you to control the display arrangement of your open documents and manage your workspaces. In the Window [right arrow] Arrange submenu, you can tell Photoshop to cascade (stack) or tile (butt them edge to edge) all open documents. Here is the lowdown on the other options found on the Window [right arrow] Arrange submenu:

The new Match Zoom command takes all your open documents and matches the magnification percentage of your currently active document.

  •   The new Match Location command takes all your open documents and matches the location of your currently active document. In other words, if you are viewing the lower-left corner of your active document and choose Match location, all your open documents will also be displayed from the lower-left corner.
  •   And of course, Match Zoom and Location employs both commands simultaneously.
  •   Choose New Window to open another view of the same image, allowing you to work on a close-up of part of the image while viewing results on the entire image.
  •   The Arrange Icons command (Windows only) takes minimized files and arranges the title bar icons in a neat row directly above the status bar.
  •   Minimize (Mac only) hides the image while placing the image's thumbnail in the Dock. Click the thumbnail to restore the image in Photoshop.
  •   If you have multiple applications launched and document windows open, the Bring All to Front command (Mac only) will enable all Photoshop documents to come to the front, ahead of any open document windows from other applications.

On the Window [right arrow] Workspace submenu, you can save your current desktop arrangement, load or delete a stored arrangement, or reset your palette locations. For step-by-step instructions, see Book I, Chapter 6. The remaining bulk of the Window menu contains a list of palettes in alphabetical order.

Photoshop CS has eliminated the Window [right arrow] Documents menu. Consequently, you don't have to open a submenu to see a list of open documents. The list of all open documents is once again shown at the bottom of the Window menu. Hallelujah!

Setting up the status bar

By default, the status bar appears at the bottom of the Photoshop working area in Windows, as shown in Figure 1-4. If you're using the Mac OS, each document window has its own status bar.

On a PC, you can turn the status bar on or off by selecting it or deselecting it on the Window menu.

Many people tend to associate status with wealth, so I don't really think there's a reason not to accept the free wealth of information that the status bar offers:

  •   At the far left is a box that displays an active image's current zoom level (such as 66.67 percent). Incidentally, the title bar of the document itself also shows the zoom level.

If you installed Photoshop to a networked computer and you've activated the workgroup features, which enable file sharing and other perks, you see the icon for the Workgroup Services pop-up menu just to the right of the zoom info box.

  •   Next is the file and image information display area, which, by default, shows the document size information. You can customize this area to display other information. Click the size value to display a preview of how your image fits on your selected paper size.
  •   Because the good people at Adobe know just how complex a program Photoshop is, next to the file and info display area of the status bar is a description of the currently selected tool's functions, as well as information on how to select additional options for that tool. This extra tidbit will only be found on Windows machines, however.

Although each Macintosh document includes its own status bar, all the bars for all the open documents show the same category of information. That is, if you change the status bar of one image to display scratch sizes (defined a little later in this chapter), all the status bars of the other document images switch to display scratch sizes, as well.

Because Photoshop files can get pretty hefty in size, your status bar shows the file size of the active image by default. To display other types of information, click the right-pointing arrow in the status bar and select one of the following options from the menu that pops up:

  •   Document Size: When you select this option, Photoshop displays two numbers to approximate the size of the image. The first number shows you the size of the file if you were to flatten (combine) all the layers into one and save it to your hard drive. The number on the right shows the full size of the image - including all the individual layers, channels, and other components of the image. You'll want this option active when you need to keep track of how large your image is.
  •   Document Profile: When you select this option, the status bar displays the name of the color profile that the image uses. You probably won't use this option unless you need to know the profiles of all the open documents while making complex color corrections. You can find more information about profiles in Book II, Chapter 3.
  •   Document Dimensions: When you select this option, the status bar shows you the size of the image by using the default measurement increment you've set in Photoshop's Preferences (pixels, inches, picas, and so on). You might need this for instant reference to the physical dimensions of your open files. For information on setting preferences in Photoshop, see Book I, Chapter 6.
  •   Scratch Sizes: Scratch space is the virtual memory set aside on your hard drive to simulate RAM and make editing large files easier. Enabling this option shows two measurements for an active image. On the left, you see the amount of real memory and virtual memory that all open images are using. On the right, you see the total amount of RAM available for working with images. Photoshop needs a lot more memory and disk space to work on an image while it's open, and that's what's shown by the Scratch Sizes display, as opposed to the Document Size display that shows only the file size of the document itself.
  •   Efficiency: This indicator helps you gauge whether you really have enough RAM to perform a task. It shows the percentage of time Photoshop spends actually working on an operation, compared to the time it must spend reading or writing image information to or from your hard disk. If the value dips below 100 percent most of the time, you need to allocate more memory to Photoshop (if you're using a PC). For more information on parceling out RAM, see Book I, Chapter 6.
  •   Timing: This number shows you how long it took you to complete your last incredible feat.
  •   Current Tool: This option shows you the name of the tool currently in use.

Dissecting Dialog Box Jargon

In many respects, the Photoshop dialog boxes are very much like the dialog boxes you find in all other Windows and Mac applications. You'll find text boxes with space to type in information (such as the name of a new layer, or the width or height you want to apply to a new document), pop-up menus of parameters you can choose from (such as whether you want the width and height expressed in pixels, inches, millimeters, picas, or some other unit of measurement), and controls like sliders that you use to specify amounts (in percentages, pixels, or degrees) over a continuous range.

Some dialog boxes are very complex and perform multiple tasks. However, even though Photoshop's dialog boxes perform a variety of functions, the controls in them are standardized and familiar enough that, after you know how to use a few dialog boxes, you can use them all.

Photoshop dialog boxes, particularly filter dialog boxes, include preview windows so that you can check out the effects of your settings before clicking the OK button. The Photoshop Variations dialog box is one of the most complex of these. It includes a whole clutch of thumbnail images that show you the current image, plus several different renditions.

Dialog boxes generally appear when you choose a menu item followed by an ellipsis, such as Load Selection....


Excerpted from Photoshop CS All-in-One Desk Reference For Dummies by Barbara Obermeier Excerpted by permission.
All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.
Excerpts are provided by Dial-A-Book Inc. solely for the personal use of visitors to this web site.

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