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Library: Inside Photoshop

Browse through Inside Photoshop library to enhance your creativity

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Inside Photoshop, March 2015
 Inside Photoshop, March 2015 Issue


Create some genuine effects with Faux Finish Brushes

Added on Wednesday 18th of March 2015 05:27 am EST

If your challenge is to enhance a photo or create an illustration, don’t overlook the series of Faux Finish Brushes presets that come with Photoshop. They offer the potential to achieve rich textures and add dimension to your next piece, as illustrated in Figure A. Whether you paint with a mouse or stylus, you can achieve great results with these brushes. In fact, the faux finish brushes lend themselves to looser strokes, and therefore, are very forgiving for mouse painters. So put on your creative hat and let’s get painting!

Figure A:
Article figure image

Faux Finish Brushes

The Faux Finish Brushes presets are accessible through the Brushes panel and the Brush tool options bar. We’ll load them through the Brushes panel, but it works the same either way. You may or may not have them loaded, so we’ll load them in and take a quick peek at them.

To load the Faux Finish brush presets:

  1. Choose the Brush tool from the Tools panel.
  2. Select Window > Brushes to display the Brushes panel.
  3. Choose Faux Finish Brushes from the Brushes panel’s pop-up menu.
  4. Click OK in the resulting Adobe Photoshop dialog box, asking if you want to “Replace current brushes with the brushes from Faux Finish Brushes.abr?” This way we have only the Faux Finish brushes in our panel, as shown in Figure B.

Figure B:
Article figure image

If you want to display the name of your brushes rather than a thumbnail, simply choose Text Only from the Brushes panel’s pop-up menu. Alternatively, you can select Large list to show a large icon of the brushstroke, alongside the name of the brush. You can also hover over the icon of the brushstroke to display the brush name.

Faux Finish techniques

The preset Faux Finish brushes are simulated from the materials used in creating designer finishes for wall painting. Some faux finishing painting techniques include, but are not limited to:

  • Sponging. Paint is layered from dark to light, with the second and sometimes third layer applied with a textured sponge, and often a glaze mixture instead of full strength paint.
  • Marbeling. A dark layer of paint is often layered with a dark layer of glaze, then the marbleized veins are painted in loosely with variable strokes to achieve t


Turn to the Creative Cloud Market for free assets to enhance your designs

Added on Wednesday 18th of March 2015 05:38 am EST

When Adobe made the decision to switch to subscription-based software, it created quite a stir in the design community. While the concept of leasing software may not thrill everyone, the Creative Cloud certainly comes with a few perks! For example, the Creative Cloud Market offers free, royalty-free assets, available to single app or complete Creative Cloud subscribers. We’ll show you how it works!

The Creative Cloud Market

Your subscription to the Creative Cloud comes with free access to the Creative Cloud Market. Here you have access to hundreds of royalty-free assets—that is, pre-built design elements, including vector graphics, icons, patterns, UI Kits, brushes, patterns, and other elements you can use in your designs.

Your membership allows you to download 500 unique assets each month, and you can use these assets in any of your design projects. If that sounds great, it gets even better—you access and download these assets right from the Creative Cloud Desktop app. Simply launch the Creative Cloud Desktop app, click on Assets at th



Turn one photo into many with this creative collage technique

Added on Wednesday 18th of March 2015 05:39 am EST

Sometimes your photos will have an amazing composition and other times they’ll lack any concrete focal point. But that doesn’t render your photo unusable. On the contrary, a single image containing a variety of focal points is just what you need to create an interesting collage, like the one shown in Figure A.

Figure A:
Article figure image

Select the best shots

To begin, you’ll need a somewhat busy photo. To follow along with our example, download the file from the URL given at the beginning of this article, extract the file venice.psd, launch Photoshop and open the file shown in Figure B. (Images provided by PhotoSpin. Some images modified for educational purposes.)

Figure B:
Article figure image

Analyze your photo and decide which sections you’d like to pull out for your collage. You’ll copy these sections and paste them to new layers.

To copy and paste different sections:

  1. Select the Rectangular Marquee tool from the Tools panel.
  2. Marquee a selection around an area you wish to create a mini photo from, as shown


Correct or enhance your color images with a photo filter

Added on Wednesday 18th of March 2015 05:41 am EST

You’re probably well aware by now that practically anything you can do in Photoshop, you can do a number of different ways. Some methods are simply easier than others. Consider the Photo Filter command, for example. Of all the various ways you can remove a colorcast or adjust the color hue in an image, using the Photo Filter command is probably the quickest and easiest method to do either. In this article, we’ll show you how to use this feature to do both.

Using a photo filter

The Photo Filter command works much like colored filters you can attach to camera lenses. The filter color blends with the existing color in your image to create a new color balance. This technique enables you to do things like remove a colorcast from an image or enhance color in an image with a cool or warm hue.

To remove a colorcast

You can remove a colorcast, like the yellow colorcast in the image shown in Figure A1, by simply neutralizing it with a color filter, as shown in Figure A2. To do this, choose Image > Adjustments > Photo Filter. This opens the Photo Filter dialog box, as shown in Figure B. In the Use pane of this dialog box, there are several preset filters listed in the Filter pop-up menu



The do's and don'ts of successful digital photo copying

Added on Wednesday 18th of March 2015 05:42 am EST

Photographers and photo technicians have always needed to make copies. They’ve copied everything from documents, artifacts, and evidence, to antique photos, as shown in Figure A. But though the kinds of items they copied may have varied, the objective has always been the same: to create a photo that’s as visually true to the original as possible. Nowadays, most people use a digital scanner for copy work. They usually do a fine job, mostly thanks to software that allows the user to adjust the image-capture properties.

But, there are times when you just can’t use a scanner, especially to copy large or very heavy objects. For those times, the tried-and-true copy method is still a very practical technique to use. Though you may now use a digital camera instead of a traditional camera for copy work, the mechanics have remained the same. Let’s now take a look at a few copying do’s and don’ts you should follow to aid you with your work.

Figure A:
Article figure image

Copy setup techniques

Before digital scanners, there were two fixed-type copy setups, which still are widely used: reproduction cameras and copy stands. Reproduction cameras, a.k.a. repro cameras, are mainly used by the commercial printing industry to make halftones and copy large negatives of two-dimensional subjects.

On the other hand, copy stands, as shown in Figure B, are used to make smaller copy negatives and copy slides of both two- and three-dimensional pieces. Repro cameras are large, expensive, built-in affairs, and are utilized by businesses for doing large-volume copy work. Copy stands are much smaller, and are used typically



Don't lose edge detail when you blur - use the Surface Blur filter

Added on Wednesday 18th of March 2015 05:43 am EST

Part of the filter lineup since Photoshop version CS2, the Surface Blur filter’s claim to fame is that it’s great for blurring images while preserving edge details. For example, Figure A shows the same image filtered with the Surface Blur filter and with the Gaussian Blur filter, each with maxed out settings. As you can see in the Surface Blur example, you can still recognize the image whereas the Gaussian blur looks like a blob. Keep in mind that this is just an extreme example of the differences in the two blur filters; you probably wouldn’t use the filter in this manner.

Article figure image

When you’re usi



Standardize your RGB color space for all output methods

Added on Wednesday 18th of March 2015 05:45 am EST

Because your output relies both on RGB screen viewing and RGB inkjet printing, you should standardize on a larger comprehensive color space. The Adobe RGB working space would be your best bet over the narrower color range of the sRGB color space. Here’s how to combine all of your images into this space.

To set



Freeze the motion of your subjects

Added on Wednesday 18th of March 2015 05:45 am EST

Getting great action shots depends on a number of things: the speed of the subject, the direction it’s traveling, and the distance from