“Join Julieanne Kost as she walks you through her creative thought process and explains how she transforms concepts and raw images into entirely new works of art using Adobe Photoshop. Discover how to select the images you need to create a whole that is greater than the sum of its parts. Master the tools used in compositing, including adjustment layers, masking, blending, and Smart Objects, so that the technology doesn’t get in the way of expressing your creative vision. Learn how to adjust scale and perspective and manipulate texture and focus to help viewers temporarily suspend their disbelief long enough to enter your world.”
What makes a good composite?
Refining your story
Composing using the basic principles of design
Customizing your Photoshop workspace
Preparing elements from your source images
Adjusting color, tone, balance, and perspective
Mastering the Pen tool
Unifying with texture, focus, leading lines, and structure
In Photoshop CC, you can use the Path Selection or Direct Selection tool to drag in the image area and select more than one path – even if they are on different layers. In previous versions, all of the shapes would have had to have been on the same layer to select them.
If you click and hold to set down an anchor point using the Pen tool in Photoshop CC, and then need to reposition it, holding the spacebar allows you to reposition that anchor point – as long as you have not released the mouse after clicking to set the point.
In addition to my top 5 favorite features (see video below), these little gems certainly help my workflow.
1) Load Swatch Files from HTML, CSS or SVG Document – use the flyout menu on the Swatches panel to choose Load Swatches. Then, navigate to any HTML, CSS or SVG document and Photoshop will find all of the colors used in that document and load them as swatches.
2) Support for Larger JPEG files – now save JPEG files up to 60,000 x 60,000 pixels.
3) Reposition Paths While Drawing – this one is subtle, but also really powerful. When drawing with the pen tool, pressing the spacebar will allow you to reposition the anchor point – while drawing. The key is that you have to still have the mouse-down for the spacebar to work. Otherwise you get the Hand tool (as expected).
3) Recent Files List – up the limit the “Recent Files” to 100.
4) Smarter Selecting of Layer Names- Photoshop has gotten smarter about the way it names layers when merging them. Instead of always taking the top layer’s name (in the group of layers to be merged), if any of the layers that are going to be merged have been manually renamed (i.e.you renamed them), Photoshop will keep that custom layer name and use it as the new merged layer name. As you can see in the screen shots below, when merging the three layers on the left, Photoshop 13.1 used the custom renamed “Rock” layer as the new merged layer’s name. In previous versions the merged layer would have been named Hue/Saturation 1. Note: if you have created custom names for multiple layers that are all being merged together, then Photoshop will take the top-most custom named layer.
In order to simulate pressure sensitivity when stroking a path, select the path in the paths panel, choose Stroke Path from the fly out menu and check Simulate Pressure. Note, it is important to set up your brush (or whatever tool you want to use), as well as its attributes BEFORE you stroke the path.
In this illustration, the first path was stroked with a brush with the Simulate Pressure option unchecked. The second and third paths both had the Simulate Pressure option checked; the middle illustration demonstrating the brushes Opacity (under Transfer on the Brush Panel) set to Pen Pressure , the right illustration demonstrating Size (under Shape Dynamics on the Brush Panel) and Opacity set to Pen Pressure.
Using the Path Selection tool will select an entire path. However, clicking on a path using the Direct Selection tool will select an anchor point, a direction line or path segment (depending on what part of the path is clicked on). Shift-click to select multiple anchor points, or add the Option (Mac)/ Alt (Win) with the Direct Selection tool to select an entire path.
When using either the magnetic Lasso or the Magnetic Pen, the following shortcuts can help to quickly change tool options:
[ or ] decreases/increases the lasso width
[ or ] + Shift goes to the minimum/maximum lasso width
‘,’ (comma) or ‘.’ (period) decreases/increases the edge contrast
‘,’ (comma) or ‘.’ (period) + Shift goes to the minimum/maximum edge contrast
‘;’ (semicolon) or ”’ (apostrophe) decreases/increases the frequency
‘;’ (semicolon) or ”’ (apostrophe) + Shift goes to the minimum/maximum frequency
In order to create a more even stroke of paint than you might be able to accomplish when painting “freehand”, first create a path in the shape of the stroke (with the Pen tool). Next, select the desired options for the Brush (to be used to paint the path), and, from the Paths panel fly-out menu, select Stroke Path. Choose Brush from the drop down menu and Voila, your path is strokes perfectly! You can even choose to check the Simulate Pressure option to simulate pressure sensitivity of the tool.
You can see from the tools listed in the Stroke Path dialog that you can use this technique to stroke with a variety of painting tools making this technique equally useful for dodging and burning, cloning objects etc.
When recording actions, this method enables a workaround for painting as brush strokes can’t be recorded, but stroking paths can be.