Photoshop CS2 for Dummies

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If you’re a photography hobbyist, would you like to brighten up that gloomy island vacation photo? Slim down without going on a diet? See whether white or green shutters look best on the house? Expunge the ex-boyfriend from family photos?

If you’re a pro or semi-pro photographer, would you like to make it snow in that ski resort photo?  Replace the old logo in the glamour shot of the corporate headquarters with the new one?  Grow hair...

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If you’re a photography hobbyist, would you like to brighten up that gloomy island vacation photo? Slim down without going on a diet? See whether white or green shutters look best on the house? Expunge the ex-boyfriend from family photos?

If you’re a pro or semi-pro photographer, would you like to make it snow in that ski resort photo?  Replace the old logo in the glamour shot of the corporate headquarters with the new one?  Grow hair in the CEO’s glaring bald spot?  Freshen up the lettuce in that food shot?

You’ve come to the right place. With Photoshop CS2, you have the tools. With Photoshop CS2 For Dummies, you’ll have the know-how.  In full color, with all kinds of examples, screen shots, step-by-step explanations, tips, and techniques, this guide takes you from the fundamentals to special power-user tricks! Cross-platform Mac-PC coverage includes:

  • The basics of getting around in Photoshop, getting images into and out of Photoshop, choosing the right file formats, and setting your preferences
  • Working with Adobe Bridge to organize and manage your images
  • Working with tonality, including making easy Auto Repairs, making adjustments with Levels and Curves (and the eyedroppers), and using Shadow/Highlight and the toning tools, Burn and Dodge
  • Making color look natural using the color adjustment commands
  • Taking advantage of the RAW format for maximum flexibility, including using the Adjust, Detail, Lens, Curve, and Calibrate tabs and the Camera Raw buttons
  • Fine-tuning your fixes, including making your selections with tools (four marquee tools, three lasso tools, and the Magic Wand tool) 
  • Masking for both layer visibility and for protecting parts of your images
  • The most common problems in digital photos—red-eye, wrinkles, unwanted objects and people, and noise—and what to do about them

With Photoshop CS2, you can go beyond enhancing your images to create “art.” You have a very powerful painting engine, an extremely complex Brushes palette, and all kinds of painting tools. Photoshop CS2 For Dummies walks you though:

  • Compositing (combining images into a piece of artwork) and working with layers, including choosing from the almost two dozen blending modes
  • Selecting with Extract which is great for making tough selections, such as flyaway hair and various types of fringe
  • Using Vanishing Point to “map” a pattern to angled surfaces
  • Creating panoramas with Photomerge
  • Creating precision edges with vector paths, including using shape layers and the Custom Shape tool, choosing from more than 300 ready-to-use shapes with the Custom Shape Picker, and using the Pen tool to create paths
  • Where to find dozens, or even hundreds, of custom shapes already on your computer – absolutely free
  • Dressing up images with layer styles, including using the Styles palette and creating custom layer styles
  • Adding text messages and tweaking your text
  • Using the extensive painting tools and the Brushes palette
  • Using filters, including sharpening to focus the eye using blur filters or the Unsharp Mask and the new Smart Sharpen filter that give incredible control
  • Getting fun effects with the Liquify filter

In a special Power Photoshop section, you’ll learn about streamlining your work, including creating a PDF for both onscreen presentation and for printing. You’ll discover how to spiff up your online images by working with Image Ready to slice, optimize, and otherwise juice up your images for the Web and how to create fancy rollover buttons and fun animations, 

From basic cropping to complex techniques that can turn good photos into great ones, Photoshop CS2 For Dummies is your guide to exploring all the possibilities that await you in Photoshop CS2.

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Editorial Reviews

From Barnes & Noble
The Barnes & Noble Review
Want to learn Photoshop CS2 the easy way? What if one book combined the proven For Dummies style -- simple, readable, fun -- with full, vibrant color that’s a pleasure to learn from? What if it was authored by a world-renowned Photoshop instructor? And it cost less than you expected?

You’d check it out. And you’d be glad you did. This book’s been crafted from the ground up for Photoshop CS2: new author, text, images, layout, format, and loads of new features. (For instance: the super-handy Adobe Bridge file manager, and the nifty Vanishing Point, which lets you paint or paste elements that automatically match the surrounding perspective.)

Peter Bauer’s “Basic Training” section will get you running fast. But Bauer will take you further than you might expect: all the way to smoothing skin and automating workflow. Bill Camarda, from the August 2005 Read Only

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780764595714
  • Publisher: Wiley
  • Publication date: 5/27/2005
  • Series: For Dummies Series
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 416
  • Sales rank: 1,069,070
  • Product dimensions: 7.38 (w) x 9.16 (h) x 0.84 (d)

Meet the Author

Peter Bauer: Best known as the Help Desk Director for the National Association of Photoshop Professionals (NAPP), Pete is also the author of a half-dozen books on Adobe Photoshop and Illustrator, a contributing writer for Photoshop User and Mac Design magazines, featured columnist for, and software documentation writer for a variety of Photoshop- and Illustrator-related products. An Adobe Certified Expert, he also appears regularly as a member of the Photoshop World Instructor Dream Team. As NAPP Help Desk Director, Pete personally answers tens of thousands of e-mail questions annually about Photoshop and computer graphics. He has contributed to and assisted on such projects as feature film special effects, major book and magazine publications, award-winning Web sites, and fine art exhibitions. He has taught computer graphics at the university level and serves as a computer graphics efficiency consultant for a select corporate clientele.
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Read an Excerpt

Photoshop CS2 From Dummies

By Peter Bauer

John Wiley & Sons

ISBN: 0-7645-9571-7

Chapter One

Welcome to Photoshop!

In This Chapter

  •   What Photoshop does very well, kind of well, and just sort of, well ...
  •   Taking a look at what you need to know to work with Photoshop

Adobe Photoshop is, without question, the leading image editing program in the world. Photoshop has even become somewhat of a cultural icon. It's not uncommon to hear Photoshop used as a verb ("That picture is obviously Photoshopped!"), and you'll even see references to Photoshop in the daily comics and cartoon strips. And now you're part of this whole gigantic phenomenon called Photoshop.

You might have purchased Photoshop as a new full version, as an upgrade, or as part of the Adobe Creative Suite. The Creative Suite (that's where the CS comes from) comes in two versions. The Standard Edition includes Photoshop, Adobe Illustrator (for creating vector-based artwork), and Adobe InDesign (for page layout work). The Premium Edition also includes Adobe GoLive (for Web design) and Adobe Acrobat (to create PDF documents).

Whether you're new to Photoshop, upgrading from Photoshop CS or earlier, or transitioning from Elements to the full version of Photoshop, you're in for some treats. Photoshop CS2 has some intriguing new capabilities that enable you to do more, and more easily, than ever. Before I take you on this journey through the intricacies of Photoshop, I want to introduce you to Photoshop in a more general way. In this chapter, I tell you what Photoshop is designed to do, what it can do (although not as capably as job-specific software), and what you can get it to do if you try really, really hard. I also review some basic computer operation concepts, and point out a couple of places where Photoshop is a little different than most other programs. At the end of the chapter, I have a few tips for you on installing Photoshop to ensure it runs properly.

Exploring Adobe Photoshop

Photoshop is used for an incredible range of projects, ranging from editing and correcting digital photos to preparing images for magazines and newspapers to creating graphics for the Web. You'll also find Photoshop in the forensics departments of law enforcement agencies, scientific labs and research facilities, and dental and medical offices, as well as in classrooms, offices, studios, and homes around the world. As the Help Desk Director for the National Association of Photoshop Professionals (NAPP), I solve problems and provide solutions for Photoshop users from every corner of the computer graphics field and from every corner of the world. People are doing some pretty amazing things with Photoshop, many of which are so far from the program's original roots that it boggles the mind!

What Photoshop is designed to do

Adobe Photoshop is an image editing program. It is designed to help you edit images, digital or digitized images, photographs, and otherwise. This is the core purpose of Photoshop. Over the years, Photoshop has grown and developed, adding features that supplement its basic operations. But at its heart, Photoshop is an image editor. At its most basic, Photoshop's workflow goes something like this: You take a picture, you edit the picture, and you print the picture (as illustrated in Figure 1-1).

Whether captured with a digital camera, scanned into the computer, or created from scratch in Photoshop, your artwork consists of tiny squares of color, which are picture elements called pixels. (Pixels and the nature of digital imaging are explored in depth in Chapter 2.) Photoshop is all about changing and adjusting the colors of those pixels - collectively, in groups, or one at a time - in order to make your artwork look precisely how you want it to look. (Photoshop, by the way, has no Good Taste or Quality Art filter. It's up to you to decide what suits your artistic or personal vision and what meets your professional requirements.) Some very common Photoshop image editing tasks are shown in Figure 1-2: namely, correcting red-eye and minimizing wrinkles (both discussed in Chapter 9); and compositing images (see Chapter 10).

Over the past few updates, Photoshop has developed some rather powerful illustration capabilities to go with its digital imaging power. Although Photoshop is still no substitute for Adobe Illustrator, Photoshop certainly can serve you well for smaller illustration projects. (Keep in mind that Photoshop is a raster art program - it works with pixels - and vector artwork is only simulated in Photoshop.) Photoshop also has a very capable brush engine, which makes it feasible to paint efficiently on your digital canvas. Figure 1-3 shows a comparison of raster artwork (the digital photo, left), vector artwork (the illustration, center), and digital painting (right). The three types of artwork can appear in a single image, too. (Simulating vector artwork with Photoshop's shape layers is presented in Chapter 11, and you can read about painting with Photoshop in Chapter 14.)

By using ImageReady, the partner program to Photoshop (installed with Photoshop into the same Photoshop folder), you can create advanced Web graphics, such as rollover buttons and animations (see Chapter 17). Photoshop even includes special features to help you create an entire Web site to display your artwork (Web Photo Gallery), and a feature to prepare onscreen presentations, complete with transition effects between slides (PDF Presentation). (Read about Web Photo Gallery in Chapter 4 and PDF Presentation in Chapter 16.)

Other things you can do with Photoshop

Although Photoshop is not a page layout or illustration program, you certainly can produce simple brochures, posters, greeting cards, and the like using only Photoshop. (See Figure 1-4.) One of the features that sets Photoshop apart from basic image editors is its powerful type engine, which can add, edit, format, and stylize text as capably as many word processing programs. Photoshop even has a spell check feature - not bad for a program that's designed to work with photos, eh?


Photoshop CS2 takes yet another giant step toward filling in for InDesign or Illustrator with the introduction of Smart Objects. Smart Objects can be created in Photoshop through the Layers palette or pasted into your artwork from Illustrator. A Smart Object is a designer's dream. You add the Smart Object to your project; then, you can edit the original file and have the Smart Object updated to match. For example, suppose you add a sponsor logo to a poster as a Smart Object, and then use that same Smart Object in a direct-mail piece, a flyer, a magazine ad, and a couple of other related projects. Just before the approval date for the project, however, the sponsor drops out and is replaced by a new sponsor. You simply change the original file from which you created the Smart Object and then update the various instances of the Smart Object in your various projects. Done! Not only is this approach faster than manually changing each instance of the logo, but it ensures accuracy. Each Smart Object retains any effects you've applied, but those effects are applied to the updated artwork.

On the subject of special effects, Photoshop CS2 also introduces object warping, which you use to bend and twist elements in your artwork. As Photoshop moves more toward an object-based interface, it provides you with more ways to work with the content of a layer as a single unit rather than as independent pixels. Sure, you can still work with pixels, but treating a layer as an object certainly can be convenient. Take a look at Figure 1-5. Using a warp mesh to manipulate the artwork makes short work of what would otherwise have been a difficult edit. Click and drag an intersection within the mesh to reform the shape.

You can certainly supplement your video editing program with Photoshop (even if Photoshop can't open and play movies you capture with your video camera). From Adobe Premiere (or other professional video programs), you can export a series of frames in the FilmStrip format, which you can open and edit in Photoshop. Photoshop even provides support for nonsquare pixels, just in case you find yourself developing a project for television. You can create new documents that use nonsquare pixels and, through Photoshop's View menu, work on them as if they were regular old square-pixel digital images. No more "guesstimating" distortion factors or trying to calculate what is round or square in the artwork.


When you install Photoshop CS2, you also install a separate program named Adobe Bridge. (Unlike ImageReady, Bridge isn't inside the Photoshop folder.) Bridge is a standalone version of the File Browser from the previous version of Photoshop. As an asset management tool, it's even more capable. And because it's a separate program, it can be used throughout the Adobe Creative Suite or even independently to organize your images and artwork. (Figure 1-6 shows Adobe Bridge.) See Chapter 4 for more on Adobe Bridge.

If you don't have specialized software

Admittedly, Photoshop CS2 just plain can't do some things. It won't make you a good cup of coffee. It can't press your trousers. It doesn't vacuum under the couch. It isn't even a substitute for iTunes, Microsoft Excel, or Netscape Navigator - it just doesn't do those things.

However, there are a number of things for which Photoshop isn't designed that you can do in a pinch. If you don't have InDesign, you can still lay out the pages of a newsletter, magazine, or even a book, one page at a time. (With PDF Presentation, you can even generate a multipage PDF document from your individual pages.) If you don't have GoLive, you can use Photoshop to create a Web site, again one page at a time, complete with rollover buttons, image maps for links, and animations. You also have tools that simulate 3-D in Photoshop.

Page layout in Photoshop isn't particularly difficult for a one-page piece or even a trifold brochure. Photoshop has a quite-capable type engine, considering the program is designed to push pixels rather than play with paragraphs. And, for the first time, Photoshop shows you a sample of each typeface in the Font menu - no more trying to remember which fonts are which! Choose from three sizes of preview in Photoshop's Preferences (as shown in Figure 1-7). However, you can't link Photoshop's type containers, so a substantial addition or subtraction at the top of the first column requires manually recomposing all following columns. After all, the biggest advantages of a dedicated page layout program are the continuity (using a master page or layout) and flow from page to page. If you work with layout regularly, use InDesign CS2.

Adobe GoLive CS2 is a state-of-the-art Web design tool, whose interoperability with Photoshop is exquisite. It's a piece of cake to use Photoshop and ImageReady to create complex Web graphics, including rollover buttons (buttons that change appearance when clicked) and animations, and then drop those PSD files right into a GoLive Web page. (Read about creating complex Web graphics in Chapter 17.) However, if you don't have GoLive and you desperately need to create a Web page, Photoshop comes to your rescue. After laying out your page and creating your slices, links, and rollovers in ImageReady, use the Save Optimized As command to generate an HTML document (your Web page) and a folder filled with the images that form the page (see Figure 1-8). One of the advantages to creating a Web page in GoLive rather than Photoshop is HTML text. (Using Photoshop and ImageReady, all the text on your Web pages is saved as graphic files. HTML text not only produces smaller Web pages for faster download, but it's resizable in the Web browser.)

Although Photoshop doesn't actually work in three dimensions (digital images have width and height, but not depth), you can use it in conjunction with your 3-D software. In addition to creating textures, Photoshop now includes the very powerful Vanishing Point feature, which lets you map artwork onto simulated 3-D surfaces. (Read about Vanishing Point in Chapter 10.) samples is definitely a plus.

Viewing Photoshop's Parts and Processes

In many respects, Photoshop CS2 is just another computer program - you launch the program, open files, save files, and quit the program quite normally. Many common functions have common keyboard shortcuts. You enlarge, shrink, minimize, and close windows as you do in other programs.

Reviewing basic computer operations

Chapter 3 looks at Photoshop-specific aspects of working with floating palettes, menus and submenus, and tools from the Options bar, but I want to take just a little time to review some fundamental computer concepts.

Launching Photoshop

You can launch Photoshop (start the program) by double-clicking an image file or through the Applications folder (Mac) or the Start menu (Windows) - and Mac users can drag the Photoshop program icon (the actual program itself) to the Dock to make it available for one-click startup. Figure 1-9 shows both the Dock and the Start menu. You'll find the file named Adobe Photoshop CS2 inside the Adobe Photoshop CS2 folder, inside the main Applications folder. You can open a file in ImageReady either by launching the program directly or by clicking the button at the bottom of the Toolbox in Photoshop. (Chapter 3 shows you the Photoshop interface and how to get around in the program.)


Never open an image into Photoshop from removable media (CD, DVD, your digital camera or its Flash card, Zip disks, jump drives, and the like) or from a network drive. Always copy the file to a local hard drive, open from that drive, save back to the drive, and then copy the file to its next destination. You can open from internal hard drives or external hard drives, but to avoid losing your work (or the entire image file) because of a problem reading from or writing to removable media, always copy to a local hard drive.

Working with images

Within Photoshop, you work with individual image files. Each image is recorded on the hard drive in a specific file format. Photoshop opens just about any image consisting of pixels as well as some file formats that do not. (File formats are discussed in Chapter 2.) Remember that to change a file's format, you open the file in Photoshop and use the Save As command to create a new file. And, although theoretically not always necessary on the Mac, I suggest that you always include the file extension at the end of the filename. If Photoshop won't open an image, it might be in a file format that Photoshop can't read. It cannot, for example, open an Excel spreadsheet or a Microsoft Word DOC file because those are not image formats - and Photoshop is, as you know, an image editing program. If you have a brand new digital camera and Photoshop won't open its Raw images, check for an update to the Adobe Camera Raw plug-in at

You will also find installation instructions for the update there.

Saving your files

You must use the Save or Save As command to preserve changes to your images. And after you save and close an image, those changes are irreversible. When working with an important image, consider these two tips:

  •   Work on a copy of the image file. Unless you're working with a digital photo in the Raw format (discussed in Chapter 7), make a copy of your image file as a backup before changing it in Photoshop. That ensures that should something go horribly wrong, you can start over. (You never actually change a Raw photo - Photoshop can't rewrite the original file - so you are always, in effect, working on a copy.)
  •   Save your work as PSD, too. Especially if your image has layers, save it in Photoshop's PSD file format (complete with all the layers) before using Save As to create a final copy in another format. If you don't save a copy with layers, going back to make one little change can cost hours of work.

If you attempt to close an image or quit Photoshop without saving your work first, you will get a gentle reminder asking whether you want to save, close without saving, or cancel the close/quit (as shown in Figure 1-10).

Keyboard shortcuts

Keyboard shortcuts are customizable in Photoshop (check out Chapter 3), but some of the basic shortcuts are the same as those you use in other programs. You open, copy, paste, save, close, and quit just as you do in Microsoft Word, your e-mail program, and just about any other software. I suggest that you keep these shortcuts unchanged, even if you do some other shortcut customization.


Excerpted from Photoshop CS2 From Dummies by Peter Bauer 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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Table of Contents


Part I: Breezing through Basic Training.

Chapter 1: Welcome to Photoshop!

Chapter 2: Knowing Just Enough about Digital Images.

Chapter 3: Taking the Chef’s Tour of Your Photoshop Kitchen.

Chapter 4: Getting Images into and out of Photoshop.

Part II: Easy Enhancements for Digital Images.

Chapter 5: Adding Dark Shadows and Sparkling Highlights.

Chapter 6: Making Color Look Natural.

Chapter 7: Hur-RAW for the Home Team!

Chapter 8: Fine-Tuning Your Fixes.

Chapter 9: Common Problems and Their Cures.

Part III: Creating “Art” in Photoshop.

Chapter 10: Combining Images.

Chapter 11: Precision Edges with Vector Paths.

Chapter 12: Dressing Up Images with Layer Styles.

Chapter 13: Giving Your Images a Text Message.

Chapter 14: Painting in Photoshop.

Chapter 15: Filters: The Fun Side of Photoshop.

Part IV: Power Photoshop.

Chapter 16: Streamlining Your Work in Photoshop.

Chapter 17: Spiffing Up Your Online Offerings.

Part V: The Part of Tens.

Chapter 18: Pete’s Top Ten Favorite Photoshop Tips and Tricks.

Chapter 19: Ten Extras You Should Consider.

Chapter 20: Ten Reasons to Own a Digital Camera.


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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 2, 2005

    Production Decisions Provide Varied Results

    If there was ever a Dummies book that cried out to be the first all-color book in the series, this was it. If there was ever one that could benefit from more illustrations, PS CS2 was it. And how many popular software programs have more features and are perfect for a Dummies book? It must have sounded like a fantastic idea, but the reality is less. Psychologically, the all-color production, combined with the huge number of PSCS2 features, make the book seem less clear and more like a regular PS book rather than a Dummies book. The large number of illustrations had to be printed, in many cases, too small to be useful (the book is already almost 400 pages). Bauer writes clearly enough, but for rank beginners the book is likely to be a bit overwhelming in places. The small pictures (What marching ants?) and, oddly, the full-color often don't help. It probably sounded like a great idea in production meetings and I would have gone for it in a New York minute, but a return to B/W and three color insert sections with fewer screen shots would probably have been a better choice. Still, if you're new to PS or don't have much experience with it, it's still better than the other introduction books. Bob McDonald

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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