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I often see people struggling with brushes in Photoshop. Brush control is essential for many tasks besides painting, you’ll need precise control for masking, retouching, and creating selections. With this in mind, here are my favorite shortcuts for getting things done. For more on Photoshop, check out the latest book: Understanding Adobe Photoshop CS4
There are lots of shopping deals this weekend.... Here are a few that I’ve already taken advantage of. Delkin Devices – 25% off and free shipping. This includes a Blu-ray burner, multiple types of card readers (I ordered a 4 card reader to load from 4 Compact Flash cards at once)! Use the code HOLIDAY during checkout.
equinox – Makers of useful software utilities like Coverscout (to get iTunes artwork) and several templates for OSX mail. I ordered the tube stick bundle for $99 that lets you record over-the-air digital TV signals to your Mac, then transcode them for use on iPod or iPhone. Several bundles that are 50% off.
Mophie – Get the JuicePack for iPhone and iPod Touch. Doubles your battery life and makes for a long day of web work on the device. Take 25% off this weekend. Use the code gobblegobble3G.
Hop you enjoy... I get nothing from links... this is just what I spent money on and thought the deals were good.
I’m a big fan of what’s possible with Adobe Bridge. The latest edition has added great web galleries and contact sheets. Adobe has tweaked Bridge CS4 and added headers and footers to PDF contact sheets and slideshows. The web galleries are also tweaked to offer smaller file sizes. You can download the update for Mac and Windows from Adobe.com. Additionally, Camera Raw for Photoshop CS4 (Mac|Win) adds some much-requested improvements
Targeted Adjustment Tool (TAT) for on-image adjustments
Output sharpening for print or screen output
"Snapshots" for saving multiple sets of settings per file
I am proud to announce that my new book, Understanding Adobe Photoshop CS4 is now shipping. This is the second edition of the book and it is fully updated for CS4 (even if you’re using CS3, you’ll find it a big help.) The book covers all sorts of great new features in Photoshop and I significantly revised it with nearly 100 new photos. The book is on sale at Amazon for 30% off, and adds some great new stuff. The book is on sale at Peachpit’s website for 35% off. If ordering from Peachpit, use the discount code UAPTWO at checkout.
We’ve made our podcast series totally interactive for our book readers (more in a few days).
You can access a free chapter on Automation here. You can view an excerpt from a chapter on color correction here.
We’ve partnered with the cool folks over at mDialog to bring you our Aperture show... now on Apple TV and the iPhone. To view our episodes on your phone, just download the free mDialog application from the iTunes App Store.
“The mDialog application is always available as a free download worldwide from Apple's App Store on iPhone and IPod Touch, or at www.itunes.com/appstore/ or click on the link on the mDialog site.”
Be sure to download and try it out.... it works great and is absolutely free.
I know some of you hate iPhone posts (sorry).... But here’s something I just had to gush about.... The mophie Juice Pack iPhone battery is shipping. I had the original battery pack, but with the new form-factor for the 3G phones, I had to upgrade. Here’s the specs:
Standby Time – Up to 350 hours
Talk Time – 6 additional hours on 3G | 12 hours on 2G
Internet Use – 6 additional hours on 3G | 7 hours on Wi-Fi
Audio Playback – 28 additional hours
Video Playback – 8 additional hours
This device is absolutely awesome and lets me get through a long day of business.
Noted author Scott Kelby has released his annual gift guide. What’s great about the list is that there are some really cool tools on there for photogs and even hobbyists. It’s nothing but the coolest photography and Photoshop gear. “Since many of you are new to the gear guide, I wanted to let you know how I make my picks each year, and why I think it’s different than most other guides you’ll find out there these days. Put simply, every item in here is stuff I actually use, it’s stuff I’m crazy about, and now it’s become stuff I can’t live without (which is sad, in a way), and it’s the same stuff I recommend to my friends (well, my friends with room on their Visa cards).”
I agree with several of his picks, already using things like the Hoodman Loupe and Boda Bag myself. Be sure to check it out.
Looking for a great article on mixing exposures? Then be sure to check out this great article by Sean Duggan.
“One classic technique that digital cameras make very easy is blending more than one exposure together for contrast control, increased dynamic range, or creative purposes. A variation on this technique is to apply different RAW-conversion settings to a single RAW file and then combine the files into a single image. Let’s explore both approaches and look at the proper camera technique behind the scenes.”
Besides repairing, the Retouch brush in Aperture offers the ability to clone within an image. This works well to copy pixels from one area of an image to another as a way to hide imperfections or repeat objects. The cloning option is fast because it doesn’t attempt to blend pixels.
1 Press X to select the Retouch tool. 2 Select the Retouch HUD and click the Clone button. 3 In the Retouch HUD, adjust the brush Radius and the Softness. 4 Hold down the Option key and click the area you want to sample.
Tip It’s often better to take a few strokes to build up the texture. Be careful as you clone so you don’t introduce stray strokes.
5 Brush over the area you want to clone. 6 Repeat brushstrokes as needed.
Tip If you get an unintended stroke, you can choose Undo. If you return to a retouched image you can also delete a Retouch brush stroke at any time by clicking the Delete button in the Retouch area of the Adjustments pane. Note that brush strokes can be deleted only in reverse order because they’re recorded sequentially.