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Thread: Learning CS5

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Feb 2010
    Coffs Harbour
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    Yes, with details

    Default Learning CS5

    I think I have made some positive headway in learning CS5 and appreciate that all images are different, but I am sure there are some basic Do's and Do nots in CS5 that would help us new user's, would some of you proficient user's please share some of your knowledge with us. Andy.

  2. #2
    Tony Hansford Guest

    Default Re: Learning CS5

    Do a google search for "7 point system for camera raw." That is probably the single most useful video I have found, lays everthing out in easy to understand terms. Also try searching places like or for photoshop, photography, camera raw, lightroom etc. There are hundreds of useful titles in pdf and video formats.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jul 2009
    Central Coast, NSW.
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    Default Re: Learning CS5

    I would recommend deve1oping a non-destructive process flow that allows you to save a file that can be reopened and adjusted at anytime in the future. This takes full advantage of the power of PS without touching the original pixels. A summary of the steps I use are:
    Open the image in Adobe Raw
    1. Make global adjustments These will affect the whole image), pay particular attention to the recovery slider for blown highlights and the black point for lack of detail in the dark areas. Where possible I crop at this stage. As with all the steps outlined in this process you can go back at a later stage and readjust the crop..
    2. When you have made your adjustments, open your image as a ‘smart object’ in Photoshop.
    3. If you need use the shadow and highlights do it now. `Open as a "smart filter". Do not over do it as this will introduce a halo.
    4. Now if you want to clean-up the image such as cloning etc. Add a new layer. Dust removal could also be done with ACR.
    5. This is when you apply tonal adjustments. These include Levels, curves, Dodge & Burn adjustment layers. For most of these adjustments you are better off applying them selectively to different parts of the image using masks.
    6. Now you can make colour adjustment such as “vibrance” “photo filters” etc. Again use masks to restrict the area affected.
    7. Save as either as a Tiff or a PSD file with all the layers intact. This becomes your "Master File".
    9. Flatten the image, resize and sharpen for your intended use. Sharpening is a whole new subject, many photographers get stuck using "unsharp mask" when there are other options such as "smart sharpen" that offer some additional flexibility and powerful functions. Convert the layer to a "smart object" before sharpening . You can then restrict the shapening to the subject.
    10. Asssuming you want a file for feathersandphotos, save for web.

    Typically it takes 5-10mins for me to process and image, sometimes and image will only need a few of the above steps to be completed.

    This process assumes that you shoot raw, understand layers, masks and can navigate around the various menus/options.

    I also use some "actions" one of which allows me to create separate adjustment layers for dodging and burning. There are some great books out there that should help. When I get the latest version of photoshop I pay for a month's subscription to a site that provides video tutorials covering every aspect of using the software.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jul 2009
    SurfCoast, Victoria
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    Default Re: Learning CS5

    I always utilise the power of Smart Objects and I use a very similar workflow as Gerard's above.

    reposts welcome

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Oct 2009
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    Please ask

    Default Re: Learning CS5

    Some do nots:

    Do not use brightness and contrast adjustments, they are generally destructive. Use levels and curves instead.
    Do not reduce to 8 bit (if you indeed want to do that) until all tonal adjustments are done.

    Consider using the image itself to create you masks, this gets away from edge effects and creating haloes with selections. The image will create a mask suitable for confining the effect to highlights, an inverted version of the image will confine the effects more to the shadows. You can adjust the effect with levels/curves to change the contrast of the mask to vary how the effect is distributed over the image.

    I generally clone dust specks first up, before diving into tonal adjustments. I don't use the shadows/highlights tool, I use highlight/shadow masks with curves layers adjusted through those masks. I generally don't crop the master image, only cropping when printing or preparing for the web, you may want that area later on if for instance you sell the image and they want to use the area you cropped out for text.

    When sharpening I pretty much always confine the sharpening using masks to avoid bringing up noise in the BG.
    Chris Ross
    Helensburgh NSW
    Instagram: @ausnaturalimages

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