Photoshop CS3

For all the manip artists out there, you’re probably aware that Adobe recently released Photoshop CS3. But what you might not know is that Adobe has set up a video workshop site highlighting some of the impressive new features for CS3. While some of the vids are purely to show off Photoshop’s shiny new toys, a number really focus on techniques that every manip artist could benefit from learning. I think great manips start with great images. And whether you need to replace a model’s head so that her perfect facial expression can match the most ideal pose, or simply create a bit more drama within a manip by increasing the contrast and darkening it up a bit: almost every photo could benefit from a little retouching. And that’s where this series of videos can really benefit you.

I think one of the best lessons one could take away from these vids is the extensive use of non-destructive techniques when doing any kind of work in Photoshop. Time and again, you’ll see the authors using layer masks instead of the eraser tool, adjustment layers instead of image operators. Non-destructive editing allows you to polish and refine your images without ever having to choose between accepting a flaw and starting over to fix it.

While not all of you may be willing to fork out the money for CS3 (or jump through the necessary hoops to obtain a copy), just watching these vids can make you a better manip artist if you implement the same workflow and habits employed by the authors at the Design Center. From basic use of curves to improve contrast and clarity, to the use of adjustment layers and gradient masks to correcting lighting, there are some very useful lessons to be learned in these video tutorials. Some are more beneficial than others and some won’t really do you any good without a copy of CS3. But, if you want to learn some techniques that can really add polish to your work and help take your manips to the next level, then check them out.

From the “Select a Product” box in the upper left, select Photoshop CS3 or Photoshop CS Extended, then select a vid to view.

Some of my favs are:
-Making Tonal Corrections
-Making Lighting Corrections
-Using Blend Modes for Photographers

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