Adobe

/Adobe

How to Create a Watermark in Photoshop

2019-03-04T12:21:19-04:00

Creating a watermark, whether for use in company stationery, or websites, or wherever, has become fairly important recently. It’s part of what is known as product branding. I won’t go into the discussion of designing logos, as it’s a very involved process. But many companies want their official colors, fonts, and logos to be visible in any facet of their business, especially those the public sees. The watermark is very helpful in the subtle-advertising mode. They’re visible, but unobtrusive. For this example, I’ll use our own company logo (which I happen to like). We first open it in Photoshop, and make [...]

How to Create a Watermark in Photoshop2019-03-04T12:21:19-04:00

How to (Better) Convert to Grayscale in Photoshop

2019-02-25T17:23:23-04:00

When we convert a color image to grayscale in Photoshop, we  obviously toss out color. But sometimes this makes the image look a little flat. Color can make an image look vivid, and not just because color is there. It also allows subtle contrasts, enhancements, and other things which are harder in a grayscale image. But grayscale images can be enhanced, and there are one or two tricks we can pull before the actual conversion. One is based on the color or colors which form the majority of the image. We can use a Color Balance adjustment layer to make colors [...]

How to (Better) Convert to Grayscale in Photoshop2019-02-25T17:23:23-04:00

Using Bitmap Mode in Photoshop with Text

2019-02-08T11:56:05-04:00

Someone had a question about working with text in Photoshop using Bitmap mode: “Between 50% threshold, pattern dither, diffusion dither and halftone screen, which one is more suitable for text use?” This is the image mode which converts to strictly black-and-white pixels. We want to be aware that even Grayscale mode, often thought of as “black-and-white”, isn’t really. Bitmap is the only mode which natively uses just those two colors. But even Bitmap mode has a few variations, as mentioned above. So if one is scanning text in from somewhere, which should we use? The answer depends partially on whether there’s [...]

Using Bitmap Mode in Photoshop with Text2019-02-08T11:56:05-04:00

How to Reduce Image Glare in Photoshop

2019-02-08T16:25:10-04:00

Got a real-life question from someone this time, regarding how to fix glare. It’s a fairly typical problem in some images. Reflections off shiny surfaces, lights accidentally pointing toward the camera, even some kinds of glossy fabric, or curved glass acting as a lens can distract, if not irritate, the viewer (and the subject, and the photographer). Here’s a wedding picture with just this kind of problem. Just above the bride’s head, we’re getting a spot of unusual brightness. (The lady asked, “Can you adjust my halo?” ? ) Obviously, we want to tone the glare spot down as much as [...]

How to Reduce Image Glare in Photoshop2019-02-08T16:25:10-04:00

Using Master Pages in Adobe InDesign—Basics

2019-01-29T15:56:20-04:00

The concept of master pages in Adobe InDesign is closely related to headers and footers in many other programs. Microsoft Word, Corel WordPerfect, or even Excel or Access all have a similar feature. So if you’ve used headers and footers, you won’t be on totally unfamiliar ground. Masters are essentially the “background” behind any pages they’re applied to. Think of paper behind glass, with stuff drawn on the glass, and you’ve got the basic concept. Once we open a document, we usually set the number of pages first. This makes it easier to figure out what goes on a given master [...]

Using Master Pages in Adobe InDesign—Basics2019-01-29T15:56:20-04:00

Using Guides for Line-Up in Adobe InDesign

2019-01-28T16:07:37-04:00

Although some people don’t think it’s vital, lining page elements up neatly—for which guides are very helpful—in Adobe InDesign can make a big difference in the final product. The eye is a better instrument than some people think. And visual neatness can greatly reduce perceived “clutter” in a document. Luckily, the process is very easy, and the program gives us a couple of simple but powerful tools to help. Once we have our page elements in place, we can drag guides right out of the rulers. You can place as many as you like, anywhere, on any page. They don’t print [...]

Using Guides for Line-Up in Adobe InDesign2019-01-28T16:07:37-04:00

How to Create a Preflight Profile for Adobe InDesign

2019-01-28T12:21:59-04:00

When working with InDesign, we need to “preflight” files we intend to print. A pilot will inspect an airplane before flying it, which is where the term comes from. Similarly, we check a file for various potential problems before we print it. And if it’s going to a commercial printing business, this is even more important. A LOT of time and money could be wasted if we don’t. A preflight profile is how we deal with it. A profile is a set of rules we need the document to follow. You can think of it as rather like your mental checklist [...]

How to Create a Preflight Profile for Adobe InDesign2019-01-28T12:21:59-04:00

How to Create or Import a Table in Adobe InDesign

2019-01-25T15:19:29-04:00

The table is just too useful to keep out of many business documents these days. It’s too good at organizing data. Luckily, even a desktop publishing program like InDesign has the feature handy. And we can even import an existing one pretty much as-is, to save some time. To create it from scratch, with a document to hold it, we have to create or select a text frame. Even if we’re going to put graphics in the table, it’s one of those things the program “just does”. Then we go to the Table menu and click the Insert Table… command. We [...]

How to Create or Import a Table in Adobe InDesign2019-01-25T15:19:29-04:00

Using the Symbol Sprayer and Shifter in Adobe Illustrator

2019-01-24T17:46:46-04:00

The Symbol tools in Illustrator give the program some true artistic ability. Many people, even now, think this is lacking, and that Illustrator is more "tech" where Photoshop is “arty”. But if properly used, Illustrator can do some very arty things. Two of the Symbol tools, in particular, are rather easy to use, and can produce some striking results. One is the Sprayer. It allows us to select a symbol and “scatter” a bunch of repeats in a given area. (A symbol, in Illustrator-ese, is an object we add to the Symbols panel for spraying, shifting, etc. Think of spray paint [...]

Using the Symbol Sprayer and Shifter in Adobe Illustrator2019-01-24T17:46:46-04:00

How to Use the Transform Features in Adobe Illustrator

2019-01-24T14:57:25-04:00

When we want to transform, or make specific changes to, an object in Illustrator, we can use the Transform panel. We can also use a couple of the tools in the Tools panel, depending on our preference. For certain kinds of diagrams and precise illustrations,  we may need an accurate angle, or exact amount of change. So knowing how to use the various transform abilities can be critical. (Note: It’s a good idea to make a copy of the object, layer, or document you’re working on, for practice.) The Transform panel can handle several basic kinds of change—size, rotation, and shear. [...]

How to Use the Transform Features in Adobe Illustrator2019-01-24T14:57:25-04:00

How to Fix the Moiré Effect in Photoshop

2019-01-09T16:25:18-04:00

One of the more subtle problems in digital photography is something called moiré. It looks rather like a slight mesh of light and dark lines, sometimes curved, sometimes straight. Certain kinds of fabric produce this effect when one takes pictures of, say, people in suits. Silks are among the biggest culprits, and wedding images can abound with it. Luckily, there’s a bit of work we can do in Photoshop to greatly reduce the visibility of moiré. We start by opening the picture and selecting the area with the moiré effect. We want to use a couple of pixels of feather, so [...]

How to Fix the Moiré Effect in Photoshop2019-01-09T16:25:18-04:00

How to Use Warp Type in Adobe Illustrator

2019-04-12T17:48:03-04:00

Illustrator is capable of treating text as a graphic element much as anything we draw with any of the tools, so the ability to warp type shouldn’t come as a surprise. Type on a path is another feature in the same ballpark (check my previous post). The basic starting point is the same. We use the Type tool, usually, to create the piece of text we need. We then have to tell the program to treat it as a graphic element rather than a text box per se. (This allows the Warp Type control to show.) We do this by switching [...]

How to Use Warp Type in Adobe Illustrator2019-04-12T17:48:03-04:00

Use Type on a Path in Adobe Illustrator

2018-12-31T20:29:22-04:00

The use of type on a path is an interesting cross between text and graphics, and allows text to be more than just a means of conveying information in Illustrator. But in order to use the feature correctly, one has to understand a couple of things about how it behaves. First, we usually need to create the shape which we’ll use as a baseline, in the sense that typography uses the term—the line on which the text sits. Then, we select the Type on a Path tool (in the same flyout as the regular Type tool). Position the cursor on the [...]

Use Type on a Path in Adobe Illustrator2018-12-31T20:29:22-04:00

Working with Image Size and Canvas Size in Photoshop

2018-12-28T15:24:56-04:00

The Photoshop features called Image Size and Canvas Size can be a little confusing. The names are similar, and at first glance what they do will seem to be also. And both are on the Image menu. But the two controls do something quite different from each other, and understanding how can be helpful. Once we open a sample document, we can try using each one. First, Image Size. This feature can change two main things—(a) the size, in height and width, of the printed image, and (b) its resolution, or level of detail in pixels per inch. Since it can [...]

Working with Image Size and Canvas Size in Photoshop2018-12-28T15:24:56-04:00

How to Adjust Resolution in Adobe Photoshop

2018-12-28T11:25:35-04:00

Resolution, in the graphics world, refers to detail. Usually, in a Photoshop document, it means the number of dots or pixels per inch. And this number tells you how detailed, sharp, or clear the image will be. Generally, the higher, the better. But there are a couple of points we need to know to use this to the fullest. Changing the resolution of an image is very simple. Having opened the image, we go to the Image menu, click Image Size, and change the number as needed. The number of pixels per inch is usually figured according to the purpose of [...]

How to Adjust Resolution in Adobe Photoshop2018-12-28T11:25:35-04:00

How to Create an Action in Adobe Photoshop

2018-12-07T13:18:31-04:00

An Action is the Photoshop equivalent of a macro in programs like Word and Access. It allows consistent repetition of a sequence of steps. So it’s easier to do the same thing in different files, if one wants. As usual, the thing which helps most is rehearsal—practice a little to avoid frustration when you record the real thing. (I’ll apply a layer effect here, the Drop Shadow, for demonstration.) After opening your file and setting up whatever elements we want to affect, we bring up the Actions panel and click the New Action button. We enter a name, a keyboard shortcut [...]

How to Create an Action in Adobe Photoshop2018-12-07T13:18:31-04:00

How to Use Quick Mask Mode in Photoshop

2018-12-06T16:29:48-04:00

Of all the “beyond-the-basics” tools in Photoshop, the Quick Mask feature is probably one of the most nitpicky to understand. But it can provide the user with a fairly easy method of doing something complex, namely, making selections. So it’s worth the time. It’s normally easiest to start by making a partial selection of the area. Using a conventional method such as clicking with the Magic Wand will work fine. Then, going over to the Tools panel/Toolbox, we simply click the button near the bottom for Quick Mask mode. Now, the trick here is knowing what Quick Mask mode does, and [...]

How to Use Quick Mask Mode in Photoshop2018-12-06T16:29:48-04:00

Using the Gradients in Photoshop—Additional Info

2018-12-06T13:15:17-04:00

In an earlier post, I went through the basics of creating gradients in Photoshop. In this one, I want to mention a couple more details which might be helpful in their use. There are five patterns, or appearances, which gradients can follow, shown to the right of the Gradient Editor in the Options panel. The one we use most, Linear, makes the color pattern appear as bars, or bands, in the selected area. But the others are potentially quite useful, and not just for decor. One selects the gradient and pattern, and drags from point A to point B, just as [...]

Using the Gradients in Photoshop—Additional Info2018-12-06T13:15:17-04:00

How to Create an Adobe Photoshop Gradient

2018-11-26T16:36:23-04:00

Setting up a Photoshop gradient works a little differently from its cousin, Illustrator. The concept is the same, but the tool involved, and how we create and fine-tune a gradient, changes. The first thing to do is select the Gradient tool in the Tools panel/Toolbox. Looking up at the Options panel, we find the dropdown with the choice of gradients on the left. Usually there are a dozen to sixteen presets; clicking one will select it. But if we want to create one, we can click the gradient already visible to bring up the Gradient Editor. The next thing we frequently [...]

How to Create an Adobe Photoshop Gradient2018-11-26T16:36:23-04:00

How to Create a Gradient in Adobe Illustrator

2018-11-21T16:12:06-04:00

The recent post on meshes in Illustrator kind of leads into a related subject, namely the gradient. Sometimes meshes aren’t necessary, or a little too complicated to set up, but there’s still a need for (at least simulated) shading, and gradients can provide some of this. They take a few steps, but they’re worth it. (I will mention before I start that the process is a little different than in Photoshop; the nature of the use of gradients is different in each program.) Once the file is open, we select the shape we want to put the gradient in, bring up [...]

How to Create a Gradient in Adobe Illustrator2018-11-21T16:12:06-04:00

How to Use Dodge and Burn in Photoshop

2018-10-26T16:32:13-04:00

Of all the tools in the last few versions of Photoshop, the Dodge and Burn tools seem to be among the least used, possibly since digital photography has reduced the need for them. But once in a while, especially in restoring scanned-in prints, one might still try them out. Dodging and burning, in photography, are lightening and darkening parts of an image that show some detail but not quite enough; if dark parts can be lightened a little, or vice versa, visible detail might be improved. Once we have a decent scan, we can decide which parts are a little too [...]

How to Use Dodge and Burn in Photoshop2018-10-26T16:32:13-04:00

Using the Mesh Tool in Illustrator-Basics

2018-10-26T13:01:10-04:00

The Mesh tool gives the Illustrator artist a capability that some people think doesn’t exist in this program—the ability to shade an object, for example if one wants to make something look three-dimensional, solid, curved, etc. This is fairly easy in Photoshop; what a lot of people don’t know is it’s only a little more work in Illustrator, and has easier adjustability to boot. ? The first thing is to create the outline of the object. I’ve laid out a simple vase-ish kind of shape for demonstration. It’s supposed to narrow down at the neck and bulge out a bit near [...]

Using the Mesh Tool in Illustrator-Basics2018-10-26T13:01:10-04:00

Using Layer Masks in Photoshop – Basics

2018-10-26T10:22:21-04:00

When we put together a composite image in Photoshop, built from pieces of other images, using layer masks is a very helpful trick. Masking allows us to experiment with the appearance of the composite by letting us show or hide very specific bits of the layers in the image, and adjust what shows without editing or deleting any of the actual images in the layers. First, we assemble the pieces of the composite. The number of layers is entirely up to the user, of course. (Recently found out the actual max number you can have is 8000. Wow.) Then, of course, [...]

Using Layer Masks in Photoshop – Basics2018-10-26T10:22:21-04:00

How to Select Precise Colors with Pickers and Libraries

2018-10-24T18:07:36-04:00

More than ever in today’s business world, having one’s company stand out from the competition is important; product branding, and the use of color in particular, is integral to this. Product branding is the term we normally use to describe a distinctive scheme of color choices, font choices, logo, etc. which give a company a unique “look”. Coca-Cola, John Deere, Five Guys (a burger chain), Panera—any company at all. So how can a company select—and use consistently—any of these, particularly color?      There are at least two methods we can use, at least in a majority of programs. One, which is [...]

How to Select Precise Colors with Pickers and Libraries2018-10-24T18:07:36-04:00

Using the Direct Selection Tool in Adobe Illustrator

2018-10-24T13:36:47-04:00

Of all the tools in Illustrator, among the most critical are the selection tools. And even though the Group Selection tool is a little more complicated in its function, the Direct Selection tool is used more frequently. So understanding its use is at least as important. The Direct Selection tool’s job is to allow the user to work with individual anchor points and control handles, as opposed to the “main” Selection tool, which works with an object as a whole. The basic technique is simple enough. Once an object is created, one can switch to the Direct Selection tool, click, on [...]

Using the Direct Selection Tool in Adobe Illustrator2018-10-24T13:36:47-04:00

How to Restore Pictures in Photoshop—Easy Fixes

2018-10-17T11:32:20-04:00

Although the restore and cleanup business is not quite as much a boom thing as it was when Photoshop first came out, it still comes up pretty regularly. Even though detailed restorations take time, there are a few things you can do to get the most obvious problems solved without too much trouble. The most common problems with most older photos have to do with age. Images yellow or fade with time, in which case doing a restore implies color correction or improving saturation. Others involve fading of contrast, or having areas too light or dark to see detail in. Recognizing [...]

How to Restore Pictures in Photoshop—Easy Fixes2018-10-17T11:32:20-04:00

How to Colorize a Black and White Photo in Photoshop

2018-07-17T13:58:55-04:00

In this tutorial, you will learn how to colorize a black and white photo in Photoshop. Want to learn more about Photoshop? Visit our Photoshop Training Classes page to enroll in one of our live, instructor-led Photoshop classes. You'll learn about Photoshop from an experienced instructor while being able to ask questions and discuss projects you are working on. https://youtu.be/Obg_WkmwH4o

How to Colorize a Black and White Photo in Photoshop2018-07-17T13:58:55-04:00

Using Photoshop — More Tips, Tricks, and Hints

2018-06-07T00:38:27-04:00

Figured I’d mention a few other techniques which might be of use. Photoshop is almost a gold mine of cool tip after cool tip; I’d never deny it takes some practice to become comfortable with the program, so here’re some more. Tip 4. Always be aware of the Layers panel if the image has more than one layer (not all images do). Particularly, which layer is selected. Whatever kind of edit you’re about to do, with whichever kind of tool, the layer selected is the one that’ll show the change. If it’s the “wrong” layer, you can undo, but it’s irritating. [...]

Using Photoshop — More Tips, Tricks, and Hints2018-06-07T00:38:27-04:00

Using Photoshop — Tips, Tricks, and Hints

2018-05-23T13:31:06-04:00

Photoshop has been around for a while, and it’s a fairly sophisticated program, but there are some tips one can learn to work a little more efficiently no matter what your level of expertise. 1. A lot of the work we do depends on selection. Refining selections takes time; actually doing things with the selected area usually takes less. But when done working with a selection, don’t forget to DE-select it! Kind of like turning the oven off when finished cooking. (Ctrl- or Cmd-D is quickest.) Otherwise you might end up doing the right thing to the wrong part of the [...]

Using Photoshop — Tips, Tricks, and Hints2018-05-23T13:31:06-04:00

How to Use Color Libraries in Photoshop

2018-03-26T12:10:12-04:00

For some reason, a few people I’ve talked to seem a little uneasy about the Color Libraries. Either they don’t know what these are, or they don’t know how to use them. But they’re easy to bring into play, they’re very useful, and sometimes even necessary. They’re standardized sets of colors anyone can use to make sure the viewer sees precisely the color which was intended. Many companies have what are called “product branding” standards: Official fonts, official colors, logos, and so on. If I mention Coca-Cola, or John Deere, you can probably see the right shade of red or green [...]

How to Use Color Libraries in Photoshop2018-03-26T12:10:12-04:00