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T H E A D O B E® P H O T O S H O P ® “ H O W -T 0 ” M A G A Z I N E ›

New feature tutorial: Photoshop CC 2014 Path Blur



Perfectly Clear: Autocorrection plug-in for Lightroom





emotion in motion Creating motion graphics in Photoshop

The Official Publication of

Visit our website at



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Surfer Image: © CPJ Photography / Dollar Photo Club

Layout Design: Taffy Clifford


On the Move The tools in Photoshop go far beyond just editing static images; you can also work with video, 3D, and animation. Join Corey Barker as he shows you how easy it is to animate text, styles, and 3D images using only Photoshop. You’ll soon be adding keyframes to your images to get them on the move. Corey Barker



From the Editor

6 44

Contributing Writers

10 48


14 64



20 116


About Photoshop User Magazine

21 122


24 70


KelbyOne Community


Site Improvements

Creating a Twitter Design That Looks Good No Matter the Screen

Five Tips for Photographing Places with Water

How-To DOWN & DIRTY TRICKS Atmospheric and Lighting Effects

Sin City Poster Effect


Dust Effect


BEGINNERS’ WORKSHOP Creating an Animated GIF


62 104

Wine Light


BEYOND PHOTOSHOP Creating a 3D Book Cover

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Lightroom STORY OF AN IMAGE Through the Window

Reviews 76 106 107


Everything You Need to Know About Your Lightroom Catalog


Perfectly Clear


82 108



111 112

ArcSoft Portrait +3 Nikon COOLPIX P600 Lenovo ThinkPad W540 Ninja Blade Acer K272HUL Display Olloclip 4-in-1 Photo Lens HP DreamColor Z27x Professional Display Ray Flash 2 Intensify Pro Nikon COOLPIX AW120 Manfrotto X Pro 3-Way Head Rocket Travel Slider Photoshop Book Reviews

Moon Over My Yosemite Adding a moon to a landscape image in Photoshop takes a little more work than just cutting-and-pasting a picture of the moon from one image to another. You need to consider everything from the phase of the moon to its color and lighting to the lenses that were used to capture both images. Sean Arbabi



109 110

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But Wait—There’s More KEY CONCEPTS

These icons at the beginning of columns indicate there’s a short video on a tool or function used in that tutorial at the Key Concepts KelbyOne member webpage at Dodge & Burn tools

Lasso tool


Whenever you see this symbol at the end of an article, it means there are either downloadable practice files or additional content for KelbyOne members at

Layer masks

All lighting diagrams courtesy of Sylights Pen tool

Smart objects

Quick Selection tool


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From the Editor there is always something new at kelbyone

Before we launch into what’s in this issue, there are a few quick but really cool things happening for you at KelbyOne. The first is our library of online classes, which is growing by leaps and bounds. Our goal was to release one brand-new class a week (so around 50 new classes a year); however, we’ve already blown past that number, and we’re on track to release a staggering 177 or so classes in 2014, which I think is amazing. We’ve been releasing a lot of classes on Adobe Creative Cloud applications (everything from Premiere Pro to InDesign to Muse); business and inspirational interviews, which have been a huge hit with our members; photography techniques, including studio lighting, off-camera flash, etc.; and of course, Lightroom and Photoshop, too. But it’s not just the number of classes—this is some of the best training we’ve ever created, and we’re really excited about how this year is shaping up education-wise. We’re also readying the launch of a new online experience for our members, along with a new blog where we’ll share a ton of new daily content—everything from short tutorials and articles to news and reviews (and some of your favorite features from the old NAPP website). The blog is called “BlogOne,” and you’ll find me and the Photoshop Guys in there all week long with lots of fresh, new stuff. I can’t wait for it to kick off (and hats off to RC who has been spearheading this awesome new blog—I think you’re gonna be super-diggin’ it!). Just a couple of other quickies: Our online Apple Store is back with discounts for KelbyOne members. It’s a duplicate of Apple’s regular online store, but with special discount pricing. (I recently had to replace my daughter’s broken laptop, and I saved more than a $100 by using the KelbyOne Apple Store versus the regular Apple Store.) If you’re buying a Mac of any sort, you’ll save a bundle; if you’re buying an iPhone or iPad, well, not so much (they’re tight on those discounts), but hey, it all adds up. Also, we’ve done a big update to our KelbyOne app (now available for Android), and we’ve greatly improved our Offline Course feature in this latest update for the iOS version (plus, you can take up to two classes offline so you can watch them on a flight, on a train commute, etc.). Well, I’m running out of room, so I’d better get to the mag because it’s another great issue. Our own Corey Barker has the cover story and he shows how easy it is to animate text, styles, and 3D graphics in Photoshop. If you read that and you’re thinking, “There are 3D features in Photoshop?” you have to read his article (it starts on page 54). In our “Photoshop Workbench” column, Scott Valentine takes us on a detailed tour of the new Path Blur feature in Photoshop CC 2014 with lots of great tips and tricks (p. 100). Our “Photography Secrets” column is on “5 Tips for Photographing Places with Water” where Photoshop Guy Matt Kloskowski gives us some amazing advice on capturing different types of water and how to create water effects in camera (p. 64). In our “Light It” column, Kevin Ames shows us a lighting setup for capturing a dark wine bottle, from lighting the label to controlling the specular highlights (p. 70). For you Lightroom users (like me), it’s “Everything You Need to Know About Your Lightroom Catalog” so you can properly manage your catalog files to keep you out of trouble (p. 82). Plus, as always, all your favorite columns, › › p h ot o s h o p u s e r › s e p t e m b e r 2 0 1 4

reviews, and news are here, too!


One last thing: Thanks to everyone who participated in our online reader poll; it’s a huge help to us in our quest to bring you more of the best tutorials, articles, and content that you need to stay on top. It really made a difference, so thanks. That’s it from me. Now turn the page and let’s start learning. All my best,

Scott Kelby KelbyOne President & CEO Editor & Publisher, Photoshop User

Introducing Blackmagic URSA, the world’s first user upgradeable 4K digital film camera! Blackmagic URSA is the world’s first high end digital film camera designed to revolutionize workflow on set. Built to handle the ergonomics of large film crews as well as single person use, URSA has everything built in, including a massive 10 inch fold out on set monitor, large user upgradeable Super 35 global shutter 4K image sensor, 12G-SDI and internal dual RAW and ProRes recorders. Super 35 Size Sensor URSA is a true professional digital film camera with a 4K sensor, global shutter and an incredible 12 stops of dynamic range. The wide dynamic range blows away regular video cameras or even high end broadcast cameras, so you get dramatically better images that look like true digital film. The extra large Super 35 size allows for creative shallow depth of field shooting plus RAW and ProRes means you get incredible quality! Dual Recorders Blackmagic URSA features dual recorders so you never need to stop recording to change media. That’s critical if you are shooting an historical event, important interview or where you just cannot stop shooting! Simply load an empty CFast card into the second recorder and when the current card is full, the recording will continue onto the second card, allowing you to change out the full card and keep shooting!

User Upgradeable Sensor Blackmagic URSA features a modular camera turret that can be removed by unscrewing 4 simple bolts! The camera turret includes the sensor, lens mount and lens control connections and can be upgraded in the future when new types of sensors are developed. This means your next camera will be a fraction of the cost of buying a whole new camera! Choose professional PL mount, popular EF mount and more! Built in On Set Monitoring! Say goodbye to bulky on set monitors because you get a massive fold out 10 inch screen built into Blackmagic URSA, making it the world’s biggest viewfinder! The screen is super bright and features an ultra wide viewing angle. URSA also includes two extra 5” touch screens on both sides of the camera showing settings such as format, frame rate, shutter angle plus scopes for checking levels, audio and focus!

Blackmagic URSA EF



Blackmagic URSA PL



The official publication of KelbyOne SEPTEMBER 2014 • Volume 17 • Number 7 • Printed in USA


Gold Fiber 310

Scott Kelby, Editor-in-Chief Chris Main, Managing Editor Mike Mackenzie, Senior Editor

Contributing Writers Kevin Ames • Sean Arbabi • Steve Baczewski • Corey Barker • Peter Bauer • Bruce Bicknell • Pete Collins • Michael Corsentino • Seán Duggan • Daniel East • Rod Harlan • Matt Kloskowski • Brian Matiash Sean McCormack • Scott Onstott • Heather Shortt • Colin Smith Lesa Snider • Rob Sylvan • Scott Valentine • Erik Vlietinck • Janine Warner • Jake Widman

GRAPHICS: Felix Nelson, Creative Director Dave Damstra, Production Manager Taffy Clifford, Senior Associate Designer Dave Korman, Senior Premedia Specialist Margie Rosenstein, Senior Graphic Designer Eduardo Lowe • Jessica Maldonado • Angela Naymick


Bruce Porter, V.P., Marketing Ajna Adams • Stephen Bell • Audra Carpenter • Tracy Cook Heather Shortt


Karey Johnson, Director of Web Development Melissa Cozart • Christopher Reed • Will Stickles • Aaron Westgate


This paper is a 100% direct replacement for Ilford Galerie Prestige Gold Fibre Silk product. Gold Fiber 310 produces stunning photographic images that emulate the unique, high-value look of traditional silver halide prints.

HIGH Quality

LOW Price

Scott Kelby, Publisher David Moser, Executive Publisher Kalebra Kelby, Executive V.P. Jean A. Kendra, Business Manager

ADVERTISING: Kevin Agren, V.P., Sales 813-433-2370 Jeanne Jilleba, Advertising Coordinator 800-738-8513 ext. 215 Veronica (Ronni) O’Neil, Director of Circulation/Distribution 800-738-8513 ext. 235

HOW TO CONTACT KELBYONE: U.S. Mail: 333 Douglas Road East • Oldsmar, FL 34677-2922 Voice: 813-433-5005 • Fax: 813-433-5015 Customer Service: Letters to the Editor: Membership Info: World Wide Web Including the Photoshop Help Desk, Photo Gear Desk, and Advice Desk:

COLOPHON: Photoshop User was produced using Adobe Photoshop CC and Adobe InDesign CC. Roboto was used for headlines and subheads. Frutiger LT Std for text.

This seal indicates that all content provided herein is produced by KelbyOne, LLC and follows the most stringent standards for educational resources. KelbyOne is the premier source for instructional books, DVDs, online classes, and live seminars for creative professionals.

All contents ©COPYRIGHT 2014 KelbyOne, LLC. All rights reserved. Any use of the contents of this publication without the written permission of the publisher is strictly prohibited. Photoshop User is an independent journal, not affiliated in any way with Adobe Systems, Inc. Adobe, the Adobe logo, Acrobat, Illustrator, InDesign, Lightroom, and Photoshop are registered trademarks or trademarks of Adobe Systems, Inc. in the United States and/or other countries. All other trademarks mentioned belong to their respective owners. Some of the views expressed by contributors may not be the representative views of the publisher. ISSN 1535-4687


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Contributing Writers KEVIN AMES creates photographs for clients such as Westin Hotels, AT&T, and Coca-Cola. He has authored four books, including a Dummies book, and his photos have appeared in Time, Newsweek, and The Wall Street Journal. Visit

SEAN ARBABI is a commercial photographer and author of The Complete Guide to Nature Photography and The BetterPhoto Guide to Exposure. Published worldwide, he teaches workshops, licenses stock, and sells fine art prints. For more info, visit

STEVE BACZEWSKI is a freelance writer, professional photographer, graphic designer, and consultant. He also teaches classes in traditional and digital fine arts photography. His company, Sore Tooth Productions, is based in Albany, California.

PETER BAUER is an Adobe Certified Expert that does computer graphics consulting for a select group of corporate clients. His latest book is Photoshop CC for Dummies. He was inducted into the Photoshop Hall of Fame in 2010.

BRUCE BICKNELL is the founder of Digital Blue Productions. He has been an instructor on Adobe’s in-box training, and is an instructor at His clients include Time Inc., NFSTC, DTCC, and magazines that include People and National Geographic.

PETE COLLINS is an education and curriculum developer and website overseer for KelbyOne. He is one of the Photoshop Guys and co-hosts Photoshop User TV. With a fine arts background, Pete is well versed in photography, graphic design, and illustration.

MICHAEL CORSENTINO is an award-winning wedding and portrait photographer, Photoshop and Lightroom expert, author, columnist for Shutter Magazine and Resource Magazine, and speaker and international workshop leader. Learn more at


› › p h ot o s h o p u s e r › s e p t e m b e r 2 0 1 4

is the co-author of Photoshop Masking & Compositing, Real World Digital Photography, and The Creative Digital Darkroom. He leads workshops on digital photography, Photoshop, and Lightroom (


DANIEL EAST is an author, freelance writer, presenter/trainer, and consultant with more than 20 years’ experience in photography, pro-audio, and marketing. Daniel is also founder and president of The Apple Groups Team support network for user groups.

ROD HARLAN is an industry veteran with 25 years’ experience as an author, educator, photographer, multimedia artist, and Photoshop addict! He shares content at RodHarlan .com and is a trainer for Adobe, NAB, FMC, WEVA, and KelbyOne, among others.

MATT KLOSKOWSKI is a full-time education director for Kelby Media Group and a Tampa-based photographer. He’s a best-selling author, and teaches Photoshop and Lightroom seminars around the world.

BRIAN MATIASH is a published photographer, writer, and Googler. When not out photographing, he leverages his industry experience to help grow the Google+ Photos platform and community.

SEAN McCORMACK is the author of Essential Development: 20 Great Techniques for Lightroom 5. Based in Galway, Ireland, he shoots subjects from musicians, models, and actors to landscapes and architecture. Learn more at

SCOTT ONSTOTT is the author of Photoshop CS6 Essentials, Enhancing Architectural Drawings and Models with Photoshop, and many other books and videos. You can see what he’s up to at

COLIN SMITH is an award-winning digital artist, photographer, and lecturer who has authored 18 books and has created a series of training videos. Colin is also the founder of the online resource and president of

LESA SNIDER is the author of Photoshop CC: The Missing Manual and several training videos (lesa .in/clvideos), and co-author of iPhoto ’11: The Missing Manual. She’s on the Photoshop World Dream Team, a columnist for Macworld, and founder of

ROB SYLVAN is the Lightroom Help Desk Specialist for KelbyOne, on staff at the Digital Photo Workshops, and the author of Lightroom 5: Streamlining Your Digital Photography Process. You can learn more at

SCOTT VALENTINE is an Adobe Community Professional and Photoshop author. His latest book is The Hidden Power of Adjustment Layers (Adobe Press). Keep up with him at

ERIK VLIETINCK founded IT Enquirer in 1999 ( A J.D. by education, Erik has been a freelance technology editor for more than 20 years. He has written for Macworld, Computer Arts, Windows NT Magazine, and many others.

JANINE WARNER is the author of more than 25 books, including Social Media Design for Dummies and Web Sites for Dummies, and she’s the host of more than 100 hours of training videos. Learn more at

JAKE WIDMAN is a writer and editor who lives in San Francisco. He’s been covering the intersection of computers and graphic design for about 25 years now—since back when it was called “desktop publishing” and Photoshop was just a piece of scanning software.

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KelbyOne Community › ›

Inspiration, information, and member musings to fuel your creative think tank BY HEATHER SHORTT

Everything Is new again This summer, Adobe launched a wave of new enhancements, features, and updates to Creative Cloud (CC) that had the industry buzzing. All of your favorite CC applications, from Photoshop to After Effects, have something new to explore. With so many new features, we knew there was work to be done in helping the community navigate the new and improved Creative Cloud. So like good little creative soldiers, we made our way through the trenches and created a completely free Adobe Creative Cloud Resource Center. (We really make that sound like work, but we can’t deny it was pretty fun discovering all the cool things going on now with CC.) The Adobe Creative Cloud Resource Center is available online 24/7 and is dedicated to helping you navigate, learn, and use Adobe Creative Cloud. Packed full of classes, this tool delivers simple, concise, informative lessons that help make adjusting to any change easy and effortless. The Resource Center is really easy to explore. Just jump right into whatever application you want to learn more about and voilà! Instant information, tips, and easy-to-follow tutorials are available to you whenever you need it. You can check out this free resource at

Making the Switch from aperture to lightroom Surely, by now you’ve heard the news about Apple pulling the plug on Aperture (and iPhoto, too). While we were kind of stunned, as well, we knew that we could make a world of difference for people looking to transition from Aperture to Lightroom. Considering that we’re kind of adept in all things Lightroom and we’re armed with experts like Scott Kelby and Matt Kloskowski, we knew we could make this switch fun, fast, and easy for everyone to jump on board. There’s really no end to the Lightroom support and resources we offer, but to start, check out the free webcast we launched at the time of the big announcement. This will help you ease into the transition and make a seamless switch from Aperture to Lightroom. You can watch it online anytime by visiting

The Red Carpet Expo List at photoshop world vegas Photoshop World Conference & Expo is back in Vegas (insert obligatory “baby” here) September 3–5, 2014, at Mandalay Bay. There’s a ton of fun, exciting, can’t-miss stuff happening for this event, and a lot of it starts › › p h ot o s h o p u s e r › s e p t e m b e r 2 0 1 4

right on the expo floor. This setup is shaping up to be one of our biggest


showrooms yet! While we welcome a number of returning favorites, joining our Las Vegas event this year is none other than DJI (, the global leader in developing and manufacturing high-performance, reliable, and easy-two-use small unmanned aerial systems. In other words, they’re the guys that have all the really cool quadcopters that make aerial photographers and videographers feel like kids again. Rumor has it a flycage will be featured on the floor, demonstrating the Phantom 2 Vision+ and how easy it is now for anybody to do aerial photography. There are also plans to partner with Epson Glasses to allow spectators to watch the flight during the demos. The DJI booth at Photoshop World is sure to be crowd favorite. DJI is just one of many of the industry’s hottest exhibitors scheduled to set up shop on the Photoshop World expo floor. The three-day expo experience is completely free to the public, so if you’re local to the Vegas area (or not, who doesn’t want to take a trip to Vegas!), stop on by. You won’t want to miss this incredible chance to explore, learn, and discover all your favorite industry leaders under one roof. Learn more at


› › w w w. K E L BYO N E . c o m



alexandra giamanco






Fresh New Classes released at

Print, Pack, and Ship Your Photos Like a Pro In today’s world, photo show­and­tell lives primarily on our

Here’s a roundup of our latest classes and tutorials that you

smartphones, tablets, and laptops, giving the printed photo

won’t want to miss. Log into your member account at Kelby­

a greater significance and value. While we live in an elec­ or check out these new releases on our app. Not a

tronic age, at some point every photographer will be asked

member? You can try KelbyOne for free! Visit

to produce a print. Join RC Concepcion and Dan “Dano”

freetrial to view these classes and more.

Steinhardt from Epson as they expertly walk through every step of bringing a photo from capture to print to boxing it up

The Art of Digital Photography: The Inspirational Series with

for maximum impact.

Greg Heisler Join Mia McCormick as she sits down with award­winning

The Business Side of Tamara Lackey

portraitist, Greg Heisler. You’ll spend an hour hearing inspiring

Mia McCormick catches up with Tamara Lackey on location for

stories of how Greg got started in photography and some of

an inspiring conversation about her journey to becoming a

the many lessons he has learned along the way. Together, Mia

successful portrait photographer. Together, they take a look

and Greg will discuss key moments in his career as a portrait

back at how Tamara got started in photography, giving an

photographer that will surely give you a new appreciation for

insightful look into how she turned her passion into a sus­

his thoughtful approach to his work.

tainable business.

DSLR Filmmaking: Video Basics

On Location Photography: South Beach Edition, with

Join Mia McCormick on location in Las Vegas for a fantastic

Jeremy Cowart

primer on video basics for DSLR filmmaking. Mia expertly guides

Jet away to South Beach, Miami, Florida, and meet up with

you through all of the fundamental concepts required for taking

Scott Kelby and Jeremy Cowart. You’ll get a behind­the­

your DSLR video to the next level. Learn about the key camera

scenes view as Jeremy creates unique and dynamic setups in

settings needed for video, how to choose the right lens for cap­

the most unlikely locations, with Scott at his side asking all the

turing motion, the important role your memory card can play,

questions you want answered. You’ll be amazed at what can

how the pros keep their subjects in focus, and so much more.

be accomplished with minimal gear and a creative mindset.

Who's Who in the kelbyone community Check out Mike Ricciardi, a four-year KelbyOne member who

ration came from drummer and teacher Gary Chester. His mes-

may be the perfect balance of left and right brain. He’s a CPA

sage to me was that I could do anything I was willing to work

by day, a musician and artist by, well, every moment he can

for and that my reach was far greater than I perceived it to be.

get. His spirited and quirky image “Toast” caught the eye of

It has served me well.

Pete Collins as an Image of the Week pick in our member community. Read on to learn more about what keeps this

How did KelbyOne online training help you?

number-crunching creative inspired.

There’s a lot more than meets the eye in the creation of this image, and most others I create. Just about everything I learned came from the magazine, online tutorials, or books I purchased through KelbyOne. As I was working through this image, I would come across something I needed to do but had no idea how to achieve it. KelbyOne was the first place I looked for the solution. What’s the most helpful tip you’ve received as an artist? The most effective way to communicate your idea is to use only elements that contribute to or enhance the message you want to present to your audience. I’m definitely guilty of providing more than necessary at times, but by the time I’m finished I’m at the bare minimum, at least by my standards. If you had a secret power, what would it be? I’d like to be able to teleport anywhere. I’m not a fan of flying. Are there any other fun facts we should know about? I’m the current drummer for Joey Molland’s Badfinger (he’s the sole surviving member). They were signed by the Beatles’ Apple label in 1968 and had four consecuMIKE RICCIARDI

Was “Toast” for work or play ? This image was created for the cover of a record by Nashville songwriter Billy Davis. The approach was developed in › › p h ot o s h o p u s e r › s e p t e m b e r 2 0 1 4

the spirit of album artwork presentation in the years before


compact discs and online downloads became the preferred method of music distribution. What got you in the mood for “Toast”? I had taken a shot of Billy with his toaster collection and we discussed how this theme could be integrated into the packaging. While discussing the title for the record, Toast! came up and this image popped into my head incorporating multiple definitions of “toast.”

tive worldwide hits from 1970 to 1972: “Come and

Get It” (written and produced by Paul McCartney), “No Matter What,” “Day After Day,” and “Baby Blue.” Last year, “Baby Blue” made a resurgence onto the Billboard Hot Rock Songs chart at No. 14, due to its featuring at the end of the series finale of the hit TV show, Breaking Bad. How does it feel to be able to do the work you love? I feel really fortunate that those who come to me for photography, design, and artwork do so because they feel a connection with my work. It’s not lost on me how important that is, particularly with bands and songwriters that entrust me with their vision. Our rockin’, creative CPA, Mike, definitely took toast from

Is there anybody in particular who keeps you inspired?

bland to brilliant with this piece. You can see more of Mike’s

Other artists, photographers, and musicians. My greatest life inspi-

work on our member site or at ■


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Exp sed: Industry News › ›

The latest news about photography gear, software, and services BY MIKE MACKENZIE AND CHRIS MAIN

Booq Releases new camera backpack The Python slimpack by booq is a compact backpack designed to give photographers maximum carrying ability in a small pack. The Python slimpack can hold one or two DSLRs, up to four midsize lenses, a large zoom lens, a 10" tablet or iPad, and a tripod. The Python slimpack is made from 1680 denier ballistic nylon with a water-repellant coating; has a tough rubberized bottom that fortifies the bag, allowing it to stand on its own; and comes with a removable rain poncho. The back padding and ergonomic shoulder straps are designed for maximum comfort. Inside, the Python slimpack features densely padded dividers that can be reconfigured to accommodate your gear, as well as a place to keep your iPad or tablet. There are multiple pockets to store notepads and office materials, camera and lens hardware, and memory cards. It’s antitheft compatible with a dual-zipper system that works with luggage locks. The Python slimpack is also equipped with a Terralinq serial number, which is a service operated by booq that allows you to recover your lost bag. The Python slimpack is available now from booq for $145. Visit for more information.

Adobe Makes Announcement about lightroom and creative cloud In a move to allay photographers’ fears about not being able to access their photos should their Creative Cloud (CC) account expire, Adobe quietly announced that CC customers with Lightroom 5.5 will be able to access their photos and edits, as well as continue to use the Library module, once a license has ended. If a subscription lapses, the desktop application will launch and the user can still access the catalog and any Slideshow, Book, Print, and Web module creations, as well as export photos, but won’t have access to the Develop or Map modules. The perpetual standalone app is still available to those who would rather not join


Sculpteo’s 3D Printing gains photoshop cc support The creative community now has fast, easy access to Sculpteo’s 3D printing capabilities via Adobe Photoshop CC support. Creative Cloud members can now take advantage of the 3D printing abilities of Photoshop to easily build, refine, preview, prepare, and print 3D designs. Users simply download Sculpteo printer profiles into a folder, much like using ICC profiles. Designs can be printed to a desktop 3D printer or to online 3D print services. Prints can be made from ceramics, metals, and other materials to create prototypes or models for architecture, jewelry, film, and animation. For more information about Sculpteo and 3D printing services, visit ■


› › p h ot o s h o p u s e r › s e p t e m b e r 2 0 1 4

the CC for $149 ($79 upgrade). Visit for details.

› ›


© Air / Dollar Photo Club, © Buchachon / Dollar Photo Club

Photoshop User Magazine Photoshop User magazine is the official publication of KelbyOne. It is for members and is not available to the public by subscription. As a KelbyOne member, you automatically receive Photoshop User delivered right to your door (or digitally) ten times a year. Each issue features in-depth Photoshop, Lightroom, and photography tutorials written by the most talented designers, photographers, and leading authors in the industry.

About KelbyOne KELBYONE

is the world’s leading resource for Adobe® Photoshop®, Lightroom®, and photography training, news, and education. Founded in 1998 as the National Association of Photoshop Professionals (NAPP), KelbyOne has evolved from NAPP and KelbyTraining to create a singular hub for creative people to learn, grow, and inspire. From photographers to graphic designers, beginners to professionals, KelbyOne is open to everyone. There’s no faster, easier, and more affordable way to get really good at Photoshop and photography. You can join for only $25 per month or $249 U.S. for a full year of training. To learn more, visit


Save anywhere from 2–4 times your membership cost by using our many industry-related discounts.


Fast, friendly Photoshop, Lightroom, and photo gear help; equipment advice; and more from certified experts.


KelbyOne members range from beginners to pros and love to lend each other a hand. Together, we have built the friendliest, most knowledgeable Photoshop and photography community on the Web.



Ten issues of the best Photoshop tutorial-based magazine in the industry.


Our extensive website features time- and money-saving content.


Thousands of Photoshop and photography tutorials, full online classes, and quick-tip videos.


The Drift is your weekly connection to everything KelbyOne. It’s produced exclusively for members to keep you informed of everything new in the industry and at KelbyOne headquarters.


The semiannual KelbyOne convention and the largest Photoshop and photography learning experience on the planet. It’s an amazing event.

FIND KELBYONE MEMBERSHIP DETAILS AT or call 800-738-8513 Monday–Friday, 9:00 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. EST.

› › k e l b yo n e . c o m

Member Benefits

Unbiased coverage on the latest equipment, plug-ins, and programs in the marketplace.


HOW TO › ›

Down &Dirty Tricks

atmospheric and lighting effects BY COREY BARKER

This is one of those techniques I was playing around with just for fun at first, but then it became very interesting because there are so many cool little tips contained in this one exercise. In this tutorial, you’ll see how simple atmospheric and lighting effects can really affect the tone of an image.


Step One: Open the first exercise image to follow along. KelbyOne members may download the practice files at You can use your own images if you like but I suggest using the provided images, and then experiment with your own images once you’re familiar with the technique. [KelbyOne members may download the files used in this tutorial at All files are for personal use only.] © Alexmina / Fotolia

Step Two: Create a new document (File>New) measuring 600x800 px at 150 ppi. Press Command-I (PC: Ctrl-I) to invert the Background layer from white to black. Using the Move tool (V), drag-and-drop the image you opened in Step One into the new document. Arrange the image in the composition where it fits

Step One

Step Three

best. Go to Image>Duplicate and click OK to make a duplicate of the new document.

Step Three: Flatten the duplicated document by choosing Layer>Flatten Image. Go to Image>Adjustments>HDR Toning. Start by setting the Saturation at the bottom to –100% to remove all the color. In the Tone and Detail section, increase the Detail and then adjust the Exposure and Gamma to compensate for the increased Detail. Then, just tweak the Radius and Strength in the Edge Glow section until you have a nice, sharp, grungy look. Also, check on Smooth Edges. Click OK when done.

Step Four: Go to the Image>Adjustments menu again and

Step Five

select Hue/Saturation. Check on Colorize, set the Hue to around 31, the Saturation to around 29, and click OK. This will give the image a subtle yellow color cast.

Step Five: Using the Move tool, hold the Shift key, and dragand-drop this newly processed version back into the original document. The Shift key will center and align it with the original image. Change the layer blend mode near the top left of the Layers panel to Multiply. This immediately has a very dramatic result but we’re hardly done.

Step Six: Choose the Quick Selection tool (W) in the Toolbox,

Step Six

and make sure the original layer of the man (Layer 1) is active in the Layers panel. Click-and-drag to select his head and upper body area only. Each time you click with the Quick Selection tool, it will add to the selection. If areas get selected that you didn’t › › k e l b yo n e . c o m

intend, then hold down the Option (PC: Alt) key and paint those selected areas to deselect them.

Step Seven: Click the Refine Edge button in the Options Bar at the top. Using the Refine Radius tool (E) in the Refine Edge dialog, paint around the head of the subject. This will fine-tune the selection around his hair and ears. Click OK when done.

Step Seven



Step Eight: With the selection adjusted, choose the Gradient tool (G) in the Toolbox. Click on the gradient thumbnail in the Options Bar to open the Gradient Editor, choose the Foreground to Transparent preset, and click OK. Press D to set black as the Foreground color. Click the Create a New Layer icon at the bottom of the Layers panel, and drag this Step Eight

new layer (Layer 3) to the top of the layer stack. Drag the Gradient tool from the top of his forehead down to his right elbow. This will add a dark, mysterious shadow on the subject’s face. Press Command-D (PC: Ctrl-D) to deselect.

Step Nine: Add another new blank layer (Layer 4) at the top of the layer stack. Draw another gradient from the bottom of the image to the bottom of his tunic to add a black fade at the bottom of the image.

Step Ten: Because we’ve enhanced the lighting in the overall scene, it stands to reason that the sword should be casting a much stronger shadow on the leather, right? Using the Quick Selec-

Step Nine

tion tool, make the subject layer (Layer 1) active, and select the sword. Create a new blank layer (Layer 5) directly above Layer 1 and press Option-Delete (PC: Alt-Backspace) to fill the selection with black. Then, drag Layer 5 to the Create New Layer icon to duplicate the black sword layer (Layer 5 copy). Press Command-D (PC: Ctrl-D) to deselect.

Step Eleven: Switch to the Move tool and use the Arrow keys on your keyboard to nudge this duplicate shape down and to the left in a position that’s fairly consistent with the direction of light in the scene. Then, hold down the Command (PC: Ctrl) key and click on the layer thumbnail of the original black sword shape

› › p h ot o s h o p u s e r › s e p t e m b e r 2 0 1 4

(Layer 5) in the Layers panel. This should create a selection in the


Step Ten

same place as the original sword. Drag this layer (Layer 5) to the Delete Layer icon (trash can) at the bottom of the Layers panel to delete it once the selection is made. With the duplicate layer still active, press Delete (PC: Backspace) to remove the area inside the selection, leaving only the shadow. Drop the layer Opacity to 75%, and then run a Filter>Blur>Gaussian Blur to soften the edge slightly. On a high-res image, try 3 pixels for the Radius; on the low-res practice files, try 1.5 pixels, and click OK. Deselect.

Step Twelve: It’s texture time. I’m always using textures in my composite work, and since this image has a pretty gritty feel to it,

Step Eleven

let’s add a texture that will enhance that. Here we have a rather interesting texture from an impressive PhotoArt Textures collection.

Step Twelve


Step Thirteen: I like the texture but not necessarily the color, so let’s do a simple Image>Adjustments>Hue/Saturation to change it to something subtler. Check on Colorize and then use the settings shown here. Notice Lightness was adjusted, as well. Click OK when done.

Step Fourteen: Using the Move tool, hold the Shift key and

Step Fifteen

Step Fourteen

bring the newly colored texture over to the working document. Place this layer (Layer 5) at the top of the layer stack and change the layer blend mode to Overlay. Bam!

Step Fifteen: Go back to the original subject layer (Layer 1) and drop the layer Opacity to 75% to darken the overall image.

Step Sixteen: It’s time for some atmospheric effects. Let’s start with smoke. Here we have a simple stock image of some smoke that will work. This is also available for download. Once opened,

Step Sixteen

go into the Channels panel (Window>Channels), hold down the Command (PC: Ctrl) key, and click the RGB channel thumbnail to load the luminosity as a selection.

Step Seventeen: Back in the layers panel, press Command-J (PC: Ctrl-J) to copy the selected area to a new layer. Bring this extracted smoke over to the main document at the top of the layer stack, then position it at the bottom of the canvas area. If the smoke seems too much, then drop the layer Opacity to around 75%. Click the Add Layer Mask icon (circle in a square) at the bottom of the Layers panel. Using the Gradient tool with the same settings we used earlier, press X to set the Foreground

Step Seventeen

color to black. Now draw a black-to-transparent gradient from his stomach to the bottom of his tunic. This adds a linear fade along the top of the smoke layer, hiding its hard edge.

Step Eighteen: Next we have a collection of fire elements to hold down the Command (PC: Ctrl) key, and click on the Red channel thumbnail this time. Then, press Command-J (PC: Ctrl-J) to copy the selected fire elements to a new layer. Click the Eye © Kesu / Fotolia

icon for the Background layer to hide it. This method ends up picking up some of the black background, but all you need to do is go to Layer>Matting>Remove Black Matte. This will leave the fire flawlessly extracted.

Step Eighteen

› › k e l b yo n e . c o m

choose from. To extract them, go to the Channels panel again,



Step Nineteen: Use the Lasso tool (L) to make a selection around the row of fire second from the bottom, and then use the Move tool to bring it over to the main file. Place it at the bottom like we did with the smoke. Drag the fire layer (Layer 7) below the smoke layer (Layer 6). You can help the fire bond a little better by using the Blend If feature in the Blending Options section of the Layer Style dialog. Just double-click to the right of the layer’s name in the Layers panel to open the Layer Style dialog. The Blending Options should automatically be selected at the top of the list of Styles on the left.

Step Nineteen

Toward the bottom you’ll see the Blend If sliders. Hold the Option (PC: Alt) key and click on the white slider under the Underlying Layer gradient ramp. This will split the slider. Drag the left half to the left to allow some of the lighter smoke areas behind the fire to show through. This makes the blend more realistic. Click OK when done.

Step Twenty

Step Twenty: Now just a couple little things. Add a new blank layer (Layer 8) and once again place it at the top of the layer stack. Set the layer blend mode to Overlay and then select the Gradient tool. Use the same Foreground to Transparent gradient we used before but this time select the Radial Gradient icon in the Options Bar and set the Foreground color to white by pressing D then X. Add a couple circular gradients on the existing highlighted areas of the sky to enhance the glow. Remember, you can adjust the layer Opacity if it seems too intense.

Step Twenty-One

Step Twenty-One: The finishing flare is simply a brush that we’ve also provided as part of the downloads. Simply doubleclick its file icon to load it into Photoshop. Add a new layer at › › p h ot o s h o p u s e r › s e p t e m b e r 2 0 1 4

the top of the layer stack. Switch to the Brush tool (B), and open


the Brush Presets panel (Window>Brush Presets). You’ll find the Cinematic_Flare_3 brush that you just loaded at the bottom of the list. With the Foreground color still set to white, click once on the highlighted sky area on the right. We’re going to enhance the flare with an Outer Glow layer style. Click on the Add a Layer Style icon (ƒx) at the bottom of the Layers panel and select Outer Glow. Notice the settings we have here. For the color, sample the orange in the existing sky to keep things consistent. Click on the color swatch, and when the Color Picker appears, click on the desired color in the image to sample it. Click OK twice. If painting one instance of the flare isn’t enough, add another. Each click of the Brush tool will pick up the layer style on that layer. ■


HOW TO › ›

Down &Dirty Tricks

sin city poster effect BY FELIX NELSON

This issue, Photoshop User’s managing editor, Chris Main, asked if I would re-create the new Sin City promotional poster for this column. I immediately said, “Hell no, go away and stop bothering me.” Okay, I didn't really say that, but it makes for good reading. Anyway, it was a good idea with good techniques. So you can thank Chris for that, unless you really love it, then it’s all me. If you hate it, send all comments, nastygrams, and emails to Chris Main.


Step One: You’ll need two images for this tutorial: a 3/4 body image and the SpinCity_background.jpg. First, find and open a 3/4 body image wearing a fedora from Dollar Photo Club). Go to Image> Adjustments>HDR Toning. In the Edge Glow section, enter 25 px for Radius and 1.67 for Strength. In the Tone and Detail

© ysbrandcosijn / Dollar Photo Club

(in our example, a young man

section, enter 1.04 for Gamma, 0 for Exposure, and +78% for Detail. In the Advanced section, enter –50% for Shadow, –32% for Highlight, –60% for Vibrance, and +23% for Saturation. Don’t click OK yet. [KelbyOne members may download the SpinCity_background. jpg used in this tutorial at september-2014. All files are for personal use only.]

Step Two: Click on the rightfacing arrow next to the Toning Curve and Histogram section to reveal the Curves grid. Click on the center of the diagonal line to add an adjustment point. Enter 51% in the Input field and 18% in the Output field, and click OK. Go to Filter>Noise>Add Noise. Enter 3% for Amount, choose Gaussian for Distribution, turn on the Monochromatic option, and click OK. Now, go to File>Save As. Save the file with a slightly different name (maybe include “HDR edited” to the original file name).

Step Three: Open SpinCity_background.jpg. Switch to the Move tool (V), and while holding down the Shift key, clickand-drag the 3/4 body image you saved in Step Two into the SpinCity_background.jpg (Layer 1). Press Command-T (PC: Ctrl-T) to bring up the Free Transform Bounding box. Resize and reposition as needed until your subject fills the majority of Layer 1 (Layer 1 copy) by dragging it onto the Create a New Layer icon at the bottom of the Layers panel. Click on the Eye icon next to Layer 1 to hide it from view.

› › k e l b yo n e . c o m

the image. Press Enter to apply the transformation. Duplicate



Step Four: Click on Layer 1 copy to make it the active layer. Using the selection tool of your choice, make a selection of the face and hands. Click on the Add Layer Mask icon (circle in a square) at the bottom of the Layers panel to mask away the background (yes, it’s a floating head and hands). Now, click on the Eye icon next to Layer 1 to reveal the layer. With Layer 1 as the active layer, press Command-Shift-U (PC: Ctrl-Shift-U) to desaturate the color. Using the selection tool of your choice, select the clothing and hat. Click on the Add Layer mask icon at the bottom of the Layers panel to mask away the background.

Step Five: Click on the layer thumbnail for Layer 1 to make it active instead of the layer mask. Press Command-L (PC: Ctrl-L) to bring up the Levels dialog. Enter 16 in the shadow Input Levels field (on the far left) and click OK. Click on the Add a Layer Style icon (ƒx) at the bottom of the Layers panel, and choose Gradient Overlay. Choose Multiply as the Blend Mode, and enter 54% for Scale. Choose Outer Glow from the Styles list on the left side of the Layer Style dialog. Choose Screen as the Blend Mode, and enter 20% for Opacity and 32 px for Size. Click OK to apply the layer styles.

Step Six: Create a new layer (Layer 2) by clicking on the Create a New Layer icon at the bottom of the Layers panel. Move Layer 2 below Layer 1 in the layer stack. Change the layer blend mode to Screen near the top left of the Layers panel. Press D to set the Foreground color to black. Click on the Background color swatch, choose a light-gray color (R:184, G:184, B:184), and click OK to close the Color Picker. Go to

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Step Seven: Choose the Brush tool (B) from the Toolbox. Click the Add Layer Mask icon at the bottom of the Layers panel. Using a large, soft-edged brush, paint away some of the cloudy areas surrounding the person. Go to Filter>Noise>Add Noise. Enter 3% and click OK.


Step Eight: Create a new layer (Layer 3) and move it to the top of the stack in the Layers panel. Press D then X to set the Foreground color to white. With the Brush tool still selected, go to the Brush panel (Window>Brush), and raise the Spacing to 413%. Click on Scattering and set Scatter to 1,000% and Count Jitter to 100%. Using a soft-edged brush (approximately 15 pixels), paint some large snowflakes on Layer 3.

Step Nine: Go to Filter>Blur>Motion Blur. Enter –74° for Angle and 10 pixels for Distance. Click OK. Create another new layer (Layer 4). Reduce your Brush size (to around 10 pixels) and paint some smaller snowflakes. Press Command-F (PC: Ctrl-F) to apply the last filter used.

Step Ten: Create a new layer (Layer 5). Paint more random snowflakes on this layer. This time press Command-F (PC: Ctrl-F) four to six times to get an even more blurred effect.

Step Eleven: Create another new layer (Layer 6). Lower your brush size to around 5 pixels. Go to the Brush panel and raise the Spacing to 1,000%. Paint lots of smaller snowflakes. This don’t want to completely blur out the smaller flakes).

› › k e l b yo n e . c o m

time only press Command-F (PC: Ctrl-F) a couple times (you



Step Twelve: Create another new layer (Layer 7). Lower your brush size to around 3 pixels. Paint lots of smaller snowflakes, and press Command-F (PC: Ctrl-F) once.

Step Thirteen: Create another new layer (Layer 8) but this time change the layer blend mode to Overlay. Go to the Brush panel and lower the Spacing to 300%. Using the same size brush (3 pixels) as you did in the previous step, paint lots of smaller snowflakes around the outer edges of the person. Press Command-F (PC: Ctrl-F) once to slightly blur the snowflakes and that’s it. Now, you can add some text to complete the effect. ■

› › p h ot o s h o p u s e r › s e p t e m b e r 2 0 1 4



© Karolina Henke

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HOW TO › ›

Down &Dirty Tricks

dust effect BY PETE COLLINS

These days, you’ll see a lot of imagery with different elements interacting with a person to create a dynamic portrait. This tutorial will show you a surprisingly simple way to give your images that extra dynamic feature that will grab the viewer’s attention and leave others in the dust.


Step One: The hardest and most time-consuming part of this technique is deciding what images to use for the background, hero, and elements because choosing wisely will make a big difference in the final image. We found the images for this tutorial on [KelbyOne members may download the files used in this tutorial at All © Maksym Yemelyanov / Fotolia

files are for personal use only.]

Step Two: In Photoshop, go to Photoshop (PC: Edit)>Preferences> Camera Raw. In the JPEG and TIFF Handling section at the bottom of the Camera Raw Preferences dialog, choose Automatically Open All Supported JPEGs and Automatically Open All Supported TIFFs from the respective menus. Click OK then open your

Step One

background image in Camera Raw.

Step Three: In Camera Raw, click the HSL/Grayscale tab (fourth from the left) and check the Convert to Grayscale box. Use the sliders in this panel to adjust the background to your liking, then click the Basic panel tab to further adjust it, especially Contrast and Clarity. When you have it looking the way you like, click Open Image at the bottom right.

Step Three

Step Four: In Photoshop, duplicate the layer by pressing Command-J (PC: Ctrl-J). Now click on the bottom Background layer and press Shift-Delete (PC: Shift-Backspace) to bring up the Fill dialog. Set the Use drop-down menu to White and click OK. This will allow you to lower the Opacity of the textured background if you need to make it lighter if it’s too dark once you bring in the other elements.

Step Five: Choosing a model on a white background will speed up the process tremendously. Open the file in Photoshop and press Command-Shift-U (PC: Ctrl-Shift-U) to desaturate the

Step Five

› › k e l b yo n e . c o m

© Poulsons Photography / Fotolia

image to match the look of the background image.



Step Six: Choose the Move tool (V) and clickand-drag your subject onto the textured background file. Drag this layer to the top of the layer stack. Press Command-T (PC: Ctrl-T) to bring up Free Transform, resize the photo to fit the layout, and press Enter to commit the transformation. Change the blend mode to Multiply.

Step Six

This will knock out the white background and let some of the texture show through. Press Command-J (PC: Ctrl-J) to duplicate the layer. The reason for the redundant layers is so you have more control of how dark the hero looks by adjusting each layer’s Opacity. You have the added bonus of being able to mask out parts from each layer for more variety of looks. We set the Opacity of both layers to 66%. The background texture is a little too dark, so lower its Opacity to around 60%.

Step Seven: Now choose the type of elements you want to interact with the hero. While not necessary, it’s a lot easier if you find elements isolated on a white or black background. This dust cloud was chosen because of its sense of motion exploding out© Jag_cz / Fotolia

ward. We need to turn the element into a brush, but right now the white powder is on a black background, which will give us a square brush with a dust cloud hole in the middle because the brush is only made up of black and gray pixels. Step Seven

Step Eight: Press Command-I (PC: Ctrl-I) to invert the image. As long as the size of the image isn’t greater than 5,000 pixels, you

› › p h ot o s h o p u s e r › s e p t e m b e r 2 0 1 4

can simply choose Edit>Define Brush Preset. In the Brush Name


dialog that appears, you can see a preview of what the brush tip looks like. Rename the brush to whatever you like and click OK. Now you have a large dust brush ready to go at the bottom of the Brush Presets panel.

Step Eight


Step Nine: The great thing about using an image like the dust cloud is the different levels of shading in the cloud translate into different levels of opacity, which helps give the feeling of depth. Go back to the working document and click the Create a New Layer icon at the bottom of the Layers panel to create a new blank

Step Nine

layer below the hero layers. Switch to the Brush tool (B) and select your new brush at the bottom of the Brush Presets panel (Window>Brush Presets). Press D to make the Foreground color black, use the Bracket keys on your keyboard to resize the brush so that it covers most of the hero, and click once. This leaves a big, dark cloud that doesn’t look that impressive.

Step Ten: Click the Add Layer Mask icon (circle in a square) at the bottom of the Layers panel. Press the Left Bracket key several times to decrease the size of your brush, then click a few times inside the dust cloud with the brush set to black and it will mask out parts of the cloud with a nice, organic feel because of the levels of opacity in the cloud. This step is where your creativity can really come into play. How large

Step Ten

› › k e l b yo n e . c o m

or small you keep the brush will give you different looks.



Step Eleven: Go to the Brush panel (Window>Brush) to add even more creative options. Drag the Spacing slider to the right until you see a couple of individual brush tips with a space between them. Now rotate the Angle of the brush by grabbing the arrow in the widget in the middle of the panel. Rotate the brush around to have the dust explode in different directions around the hero. Change the shape of the brush by dragging one of the dots on the circle and dragging inward to reduce the Roundness and give it an even more dynamic look. The whole technique comes down to how well you add dust clouds and mask out other parts. Add layers and use the brush to paint in both white and black clouds of various shapes and sizes. Add layer masks and use a black brush to mask out areas. If you mess up, press Command-Z (PC: Ctrl-D) to undo or press X to swap the brush color to white, paint again, then press X to return the brush back to black.

Step Eleven

Step Twelve: Continue adding additional layers and use different blend modes to create layers of depth and interaction with the hero. Experiment by adjusting the Opacity of the different layers, then step back from your monitor to see how the interaction is working. This will take a little playing around, but once you get the hang of it, the results will be worth it. In this example, we only added four layers, but depending on how intricate you want to get, you could have a plethora of

Step Twelve

layers. On a side note, you’ll want to keep the face fairly clean, so make sure to use your brush to mask out most of the dust that gets on his face. Leaving a little

› › p h ot o s h o p u s e r › s e p t e m b e r 2 0 1 4

will look good, but leaving a lot will distract.


Step Thirteen: All that’s left to do is add text that’s vaguely reminiscent of the image you may have been inspired by and you can call it a day.

The key to this technique is choosing the elements and then getting comfortable using the brush to creatively mask out the right areas of the image. This example used only one brush, but there’s nothing stopping you from using lots of different dust brushes, or mixing it up with splash brushes or any other type of brush that plays well together. Get in there, play, and have fun. Remember, all we are is dust in the wind. Okay, that was bad. I’m sorry to leave you with that one. ■


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› ›

DesignMakeover JAKE WIDMAN


Okanogan County Noxious Weed Control Board

site improvements before

Wayne Carpenter lives in rural Okanogan County, Washington. In his spare time, he acts as the volunteer webmaster for the county’s Noxious Weed Control Board. Carpenter’s connection with the office started with his intention to spray restricted herbicides on his mother’s property. To do that, he first needed to be licensed by the state, which led to taking certification classes through the Noxious Weed Office. The Office maintains a website for educating residents about the noxious plants they might encounter. The county is a rural, primarily agricultural area, producing fruit (apples, cherries, and peaches) and grain, with some cattle production, as well. “There are lots of weeds,” says Carpenter. Residents find their ways to the website through direct searching, through links on the main county website or the state Noxious Weed Control Board website, or by following the URL given out during the Board’s Weekly Weed Report on the radio. While talking with the Noxious Weed Board Manager, Carpenter learned that “they had problems with updating their website.” He had a background in electronics and had completed one introductory HTML class, so he offered to help. Starting about three years ago, he basically took over the website and set about tidying it up. The Board

“ It was created in Microsoft

SharePoint Designer 2007 by the county’s IT department… they just used a free template.”

gives him a lot of leeway, but the site itself is technically restrictive. It was created in Microsoft SharePoint Designer 2007 by the county’s IT department; it was a rush job, so they just used a free template. Carpenter’s been able to change some of the labels, but it’s difficult or impossible to actually modify the menus, buttons, and so on. Carpenter appreciates that the current site puts the information front and center, appropriately for its educational mission, but he wishes it looked more up to date, maybe with a photo. He also is

› › p h ot o s h o p u s e r › s e p t e m b e r 2 0 1 4

frustrated that the navigation menu “doesn’t look good and doesn’t


expand”—without drop-down or slide-out menus, it’s hard for a visitor to drill down quickly to where they want to go. We asked three designers to give the Weed Control Board a well-groomed site.

makeover submissions


› ›



Sean Gillan


The main objective of this website is to communicate information, so the focus of the design was to provide a clear information hierarchy in a structure that’s well organized and easy to navigate. The current site is bound by the layout of a stock template, and displays little contrast to emphasize the importance of each section. Also, large blocks of text and the lack of images make the site uninviting. The first task was to identify the elements and create a new layout for the page. This is a text-heavy page, so the challenge was to separate each section while maintaining a clean, cohesive layout. This was achieved by creating subtle changes in background color and type styles to provide different levels of emphasis for each element. The navigation was placed horizontally at the top of the page, so the user can easily see the options available, and rollovers can be added for submenus. The text was broken up into columns for readability, and images were added to reinforce the subject matter and create a more visually interesting layout. The typefaces chosen for this site are Caslon and Avenir. The classic serif typeface Caslon provides a sense of formality, while the light geometric Avenir is easy to read and creates a refined appearance. The typefaces used together create excellent contrast and a look

“ Color is used sparingly to call

attention to the latest news and contact information.”

of sophistication. Color is used sparingly to call attention to the latest news and contact information. The neutral background colors, along with the cool muted hues, create a harmonious color scheme that delivers a calm and polished look. Overall, the new design presents the information in a more effective way that improves communication, and the tone created by the type, color, and rigid format create a sense of professionalism that’s required by a municipality.

about the designer Sean Gillan is a freelance graphic and Web designer in Las Vegas. He has always been intrigued with graphic design, especially product packaging. He’s fascinated by how something as simple as color or type can have a dramatic impact on consumer behavior. Everything from a politician’s lawn sign to the label on a jar of pickles needs to be thoroughly researched and planned to maximize its effectiveness. Sean enjoys design not only because it’s creative and challenging, but also because your work can have a direct impact on others and help them achieve their goals. His goals are to continuously develop his design skills and produce quality work. There are many topics to explore in this field: typography, color, layout, etc. He finds that with each project, his understanding of these disciplines and ability to apply them improves, allowing him to create more professional design pieces.

APPLICATIONS USED: Adobe Photoshop CS5 and Adobe InDesign CS5

› › k e l b yo n e . c o m




› ›


Chuck Smith


My main goal—besides the client’s requests—was to present the site’s information in a more engaging and clear way. As part of that effort, I created a large weed lineup graphic to be the focal point of the page. The image displays a series of different noxious weeds on a police lineup-like background, suggesting how dangerous they can be. Asking whether visitors can identify the weeds challenges their knowledge and consequently encourages a desire for more information. Clicking on one of the weeds displays a box with the harm it causes. The aim of this graphic is to show that getting involved can be lighthearted and fun, but at the same time, the weeds that need to be eradicated are a serious threat. In addition to the images, I’ve added a video. The staff interacts with the public in a variety of ways, including programs and events. The goal of the video is to introduce visitors to the staff and encourage them to connect. The information is displayed in a clearer way through consolidation and strategic design, such as the relocation of the Staff link and the mission statement under a new About Us link. I replaced the mission statement with a couple of quick-to-read paragraphs about the site and the office. An example of design creating clarity is the

“ The image displays a

› › p h ot o s h o p u s e r › s e p t e m b e r 2 0 1 4

series of different noxious weeds on a police lineup-like background, suggesting how dangerous they can be.”


yellow logo. The color is appropriate not only because it subtly suggests caution, but also because it doesn’t compete with the greens of the weed photos. It establishes a starting point on the page for the visitor’s eye. I chose the fonts Droid Sans and Droid Serif, which are designed for comfortable reading on the screen. A search bar was added for the ultimate ease of finding information anywhere on the site.

about the designer CHUCK SMITH Chuck Smith is a graphic designer from Indianapolis, Indiana. From as early as he can remember, he’s had a fascination with art. His grandfather is an artist, and he remembers as a young boy asking him to sketch characters while he sat and watched. Seeing the lines leaving the tip of his grandfather’s pencil to create forms and then figures seemed nothing short of magic. It was also the beginning of a lifelong thirst to create and feel inspired by the creations of others. Chuck graduated from the Art Institute of Indianapolis with a Bachelor of Science in Graphic Design. He now works as a senior designer at the Indiana State Museum. In his free time, he enjoys being with his family, listening to live music, traveling, and freelancing. Chuck is always looking for new and interesting design opportunities. For contact info and samples of his work, view his portfolio at ■

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by Janine Warner

CREATING A TWITTER DESIGN THAT LOOKS GOOD NO MATTER THE SCREEN When most people think of Twitter, they think of 140 characters—as in letters, numbers, words—not images. But Twitter has clearly been influenced by some of its newer social competitors, including Pinterest, Instagram, and Vine,


and is trying to change its text-driven reputation by encouraging more photos and videos.

The new Twitter profile design makes it possible to pin a special

In this article, you’ll find examples of designs that work

tweet to the top of your page, and add bigger photos. While this

(and don’t work), as well as suggestions for the best size and

new emphasis on visual design sounds great in theory, there’s a

placement of your images so they’ll look good on small and

catch: that new design displays radically different when viewed on

large screens.

mobile devices.


Mobile version

UPDATING YOUR TWITTER PROFILE IS NO LONGER OPTIONAL When Twitter first starting rolling out the new design, it was optional. As of May 28, 2014, all Twitter users were migrated to the new design, whether they were ready for it or not.

Desktop version

yourself. The new aspect ratio is dramatically different

Twitter profile. This change in profile positioning makes

and your old images will now be displayed at much

it easy to create a design that looks good on a desktop,

larger sizes.This often leaves photos optimized for the old,

but when viewed on a smartphone or tablet, it looks,

smaller design looking pixelated, or worse.

well, wrong.

The biggest challenge is getting your design to look

With his permission, you’ll find on this page an early

good on mobile phones and modern widescreen desk-

design created by David LaFontaine. He uses a similar

top monitors. Not only are the desktop and mobile

design in his Facebook profile, and it looks pretty good on

images totally different sizes with different cropping,

a desktop, but on a smartphone his profile overlaps the

but the profile image moves from the bottom left of the

top middle of his design, which means his profile is cov-

header image on the desktop to the center on mobile

ering his face in the larger photo used in his cover design.

devices. This causes different parts of the image to be

To fix this common problem, use one big image (or

covered up, depending on what you’re using to view the

a montage of smaller images) that looks good whether

› › k e l b yo n e . c o m

If you haven’t updated your profile in a while, brace



the profile photo overlaps the top center or the bottom left. Be

ple of years. It looked great in the old design and it still looks

aware that the left and right sides of your header image will

great in the new one, even with all of the different display

also get cropped on small screens.

options. Tip: If you want to use Twitter to showcase a series of

To see a great example that’s supereasy to create, check out the Twitter profile of Scott Kelby, CEO of KelbyOne. When you visit Scott’s profile on a large screen or a smartphone screen, you’ll see that the photo he chose looks good on any size

images, change your cover image every week or every month.


screen, and that no matter where his profile image appears, it

Because it’s safe to assume that Twitter will change their design

doesn’t obscure the photo too badly.

again in the next few months or years, choosing one great photo

When you view a Twitter Profile Summary (which is all many

where critical elements are not located in the lower left or top cen-

people will ever see of your profile design) on a mobile device,

ter may be the best long-term option, especially if you just want to

the profile image is positioned in the center. Your name and

choose one and be done.

Twitter handle text are displayed over your cover image, and

If you want to be a bit more creative with your Twitter

your Twitter bio appears on a second page that you scroll to in

design, the most important considerations are the aspect ratio,

the cover image.

size of your images, and making sure your header image looks

What impressed me most about Scott’s profile is that he’s

good, even when covered in different places by your profile image and text.

› › p h ot o s h o p u s e r › s e p t e m b e r 2 0 1 4


been using the same header photo on Twitter for the last cou-


Desktop version

Profile summary Mobile version


Here’s a Twitter Design Specs file I created to help you appreciate the differences, but you should note that the


position of the header and the text varies slightly at different

In the old days, Twitter was all about cool background images.

resolutions, so use this as a guideline, not a specific template.

Over the years, I’ve collected dozens of great examples of Twitter backgrounds designed to overcome the design challenges of


different-sized screens, but Twitter’s latest design changes leave

Twitter recommends that your header photo be sized to

little room for a background image.

1500x500 pixels. On smaller screens, your header image may be

Although it’s still possible to upload a background image,

cropped as small as 1000x400 pixels. Your profile photo should

most of your visitors will never see it because most of the dis-

be 400x400 pixels. Note: I’ve had better results using profile

play options no longer include a background image. To add or

images that are 500x500 pixels, and you can upload an even

change a background image:

larger image. Your profile image must be square and will display

1. Log into your Twitter account.

at different sizes on different screen resolutions.

2. Click on the gear icon at the top right of the browser win-

Changing your header and profile images is easy: 1. Log into your Twitter account. 2. Click on the link that says “Me” at the top of the browser window to open your profile. 3. Just below and to the right of the main header image, click the button that says Edit Profile. 4. Click the camera icon over the header or profile image, and choose Upload Photo from the list.

dow and choose Edit Profile (shown highlighted in blue in the figure). 3. Choose Design from the Account options on the left. 4. Choose one of the backgrounds provided by Twitter or click the Change Background button to upload your own image. 5. Specify if you want the background Left, Right, or Centered behind your design. 6. Click Save Changes.

5. Select an image from your hard drive and click Open to upload it to Twitter. 6. Reposition and rescale the photo, if necessary, then click Apply.

› › k e l b yo n e . c o m

7. Click Save Changes and you’re done.




are only visible only when you view my entire profile on a large

The new Twitter design makes it almost impossible to use text

desktop monitor.

profile, I decided to add two smaller images to the sides that

effectively in your profile designs. The differing positions of your

When viewed using the larger screen, you see the two

profile photo and the associated text means there are really only

photos that appear to the right and left of the bookshelf;

two places you can use text where it won’t be covered: the top

however, on an iPhone, those images are cropped out.

right and left areas of the header. To manage this challenge, don’t put crucial text in the


far-left or -right margins (remember, those get cropped on

If you want to take full advantage of the space and create a

mobile devices). Also, I recommend against having text in the

design that works well on large and small screens, you need

top-middle area because that gets covered by your profile

to choose or create an image for your header that looks good

image on mobile devices.

when the sides, top, and bottom are cropped. That image


also has to look good when your profile photo is centered at the top middle of your design, on an iPhone, iPad, or Android device. The simplest solution is to use one big, beautiful image and a good profile photo that works well against the backdrop of the larger image. ■


Even if you follow my guidelines, it’s a good idea to test how your design will look by viewing it on different devices. For my own

› › p h ot o s h o p u s e r › s e p t e m b e r 2 0 1 4

Desktop version


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› › photoshop user › september 2014

Barker By Corey


You could certainly make the argument that there really isn’t much you can’t do in Photoshop, which is why it’s perhaps the most popular imaging software in the world. Not because it’s good at one or two things, but because it’s so versatile across numerous industries such as photography, design, illustration, and more recently video and animation. Surfer Image: © CPJ Photography / Dollar Photo Club Layout Design: Taffy Clifford

Photoshop has long been the standard for static image processing, but in this day of social media and smartphones we need it to do more. Because cameras and phones are shooting better images and video, as a designer, I want to be able to work with this media in a program I already know. A couple of versions back, there were some video features introduced into Photoshop. These allowed you to do some simple video effects and basic editing, but Adobe also added the ability to do keyframe-based animation right in the same timeline, allowing you to produce full motion graphics completely in Photoshop. While these features aren’t as extensive as you would find in a program such as After Effects, they’re enough to get the job done and not intimidate the user with a lot of superfluous features. Just like 3D, these features were designed for Photoshop and offer only what you need; they’re not designed for heavyduty editing and rendering. In fact, you’ll want to keep your animations and clips no longer than a minute because Photoshop doesn’t have the same render engine that After Effects does, so longer clips will show some frame skipping and other artifacts. Even though these features are designed for you to do quick edits and animations, that doesn’t mean you can’t make something cool. Let’s break it down and see what Photoshop has to offer for creating graphics in motion.

Did you know that you can open and edit a video file right in Photoshop? The last few versions have made giant leaps in video and animation capabilities. Think about what Photoshop is at its core; it’s an image-manipulation program designed to correct or alter images. Video clips are merely a large collection of still images that illustrate a progression of time. But why would you want to bring a video clip into Photoshop? It all depends on what you’re trying to do. For example, as a designer, I’ll open an HD video clip in Photoshop and use the timeline to scroll to a particular frame and then extract that frame as a static element for a composite. I’ve done this with clips of skies and other abstract elements. It’s like having a collection of high-res images contained in a single clip. You can use your own videos or search stock image sites such as Fotolia that offer video clips in addition to photos and graphics.

You can open a video file the same way you open any other file in Photoshop. When it opens, it will look like a regular image, but in the Layers panel you’ll see a filmstrip icon on the thumbnail indicating that it’s a video layer. Go to Window>Timeline to reveal the timeline editor. Click the Play icon or grab the playhead, which is the blue tab with the red vertical line, and move it left to right to scrub through the video. Now you have a video clip in Photoshop. You can edit in other clips to make a short movie, extract frames for static composites, intercut still images to create a slide show, and even add audio. The great thing about video clips in Photoshop is that you can design with them. You can actually take a video layer in Photoshop and convert it to a smart object (Layer>Smart Objects>Convert to Smart Object), which allows you to edit the video clip like any other layer: transform it, scale it, and even fade it with a layer mask—the only difference is that it has movement.

› › k e l b yo n e . c o m

© Schroptschop / iStock

Video in Photoshop


© fergregory / Fotolia

Keyframe Animation in Photoshop CC

In addition to being able to import and edit video clips in Photoshop, you can also create custom animations through the use of keyframes. Keyframe animation is essentially creating a point in time where a change of some kind begins and continues until it reaches the next keyframe in which another change will occur. The speed at which these changes occur depends on the distance between each keyframe on the timeline. For instance, let’s assume we have a word that we want to sweep into view, pause for a beat or two, and then sweep out of frame on the opposite side. Sounds simple, right? Let’s have a closer look so we can better understand keyframes.

Start by creating a new document (File>New) measuring 1080x590 pixels at 240 ppi. You can also download the start.psd file at to follow along. [KelbyOne members may download the files used in this tutorial at september-2014. All files are for personal use only.] You’ll see we have a text layer already created in the download file. If you’re using your own file, simply grab the Type tool (T) and add whatever text you like. Either way, make sure you have the Layers panel visible (Window>Layers) then go to Window>Timeline. When the Timeline panel appears, click on the button that says “Create Video Timeline.” You’ll notice the list that appears in the Timeline mirrors the list in the Layers panel (except for the Background layer). If the text layer is active in the Layers panel, it will be active in the Timeline panel, as well.

› › photoshop user › september 2014

Step One:


Click the disclosure triangle to the left of the text layer’s name in the Timeline panel to reveal its animation options: Transform, Opacity, Style, and Text Warp. When you see Transform, it means you can animate both position and rotation; if you see Position instead, then you can’t rotate. (Note: You can convert a layer into a smart object and that will change that property from Position to Transform, allowing you to animate both position and rotation.) You can also animate Opacity over time, as well as Style, meaning you can change the appearance of a layer style. Text Warp allows you to apply a warp to the text layer, which will also change over time. This is only available on a text layer.

Step Two:

Step Three: To animate the position of the text in this

exercise, let’s first use the Move tool (V) to place the text where we want it to start from, which is just out of view on the left side of the document. Once in place, go to the Timeline panel and click on the small stopwatch icon to the left of the Transform property to set the first keyframe, which appears as a small yellow diamond on the timeline.

Drag the playhead to about the 2-second mark (02:00f). Click on the Add or Remove Keyframe icon (diamond) located between the left- and rightfacing arrows to the left of the stopwatch icon. This will set another keyframe at this point in the timeline with the same properties as the previous keyframe, meaning there’s no change between them. The text will stay put during this time.

Step Five:

Now move the playhead over just a few frames like we did before because we want the exit motion to be quick. Use the Move tool with the Shift Step Four: Drag the playhead to around the 10–15f key held down to slide the text out of view to the right. (frame) mark. With the Move tool still selected, click- Now the text should sweep in from the left, hold for and-drag the text object to the right until it comes into a beat or two, then sweep out to the right. Move the frame and position it where you want it to stop. To playhead back to the beginning and click the Play icon keep it in a straight path, simply hold down the Shift to test it. Let it make the first pass to render the frames, key as you drag. When you release the mouse button, then play it again to see what you get in full motion. you’ll see a new keyframe automatically appear on the timeline. This is because the position of the object has changed, and this indicates the new position. To test, drag the playhead back to the beginning. You should see the text sweep back out of view. Click the Play icon and you’ll see the animation. The speed at which this occurs is determined by the distance between the keyframes: the closer together they are, the faster the object moves. If you drag the second keyframe further down the timeline, then the animation will be slower. Make sense?

Now that you have a basic idea of keyframe animation, experiment with the keyframes by moving them closer to each other for faster movement or further apart for slower movement. This is the essence of keyframe animation: establish a point in time for an event to start, then establish another point where you want the event to finish. Keep this idea in mind as you experiment with other animation properties.

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Step Six:


Animate Photoshop Effects In addition to animating things such as object position and opacity, you can also animate specific Photoshop features such as layer styles. That allows you to change the appearance of a layer style over time. As an example, you could add a Drop Shadow layer style to an object or text with the shadow Angle and Opacity all set a certain way. Once you have the style applied, go to the timeline and click on the stopwatch next to Style to establish a keyframe, then move the playhead down the timeline a little ways. Go back into the layer style by double-clicking its name in the Layers panel, and change the shadow settings to something different. Change the Angle, the Opacity, or even the color of the shadow to get a different result.

managed by one line of keyframes. Embrace the simplicity of these features as it can allow you to be more creative with fewer technical hurdles.

Animate 3D in Photoshop

› › photoshop user › march 2013

I taught a 3D in Photoshop session at the last Photoshop World in Atlanta, and after the class a number of people asked if it was possible to bring the 3D you create in Photoshop over to After Effects as a 3D layer. Well, once upon a time you could; however, it was clunky and wasn’t really what people were expecting since it wasn’t truly 3D in After Effects. Now After Effects employs Cinema 4D Lite, which allows you to incorporate 3D, but this still leaves a lot to be desired for hardcore Photoshop users. I also told those same people that you can actually animate your Photoshop 3D objects in Photoshop. Yes, you can animate 3D! Though this capability is limited both in efficiency and feature set, you can achieve some pretty impressive 3D animations nonetheless. When you have a 3D layer selected, look in the When you click OK after making the changes, Timeline panel and click the disclosure triangle to you’ll see another keyframe appear in the location reveal its properties. You’ll notice there are considof the playhead. This indicates the style has changed erably more options than before because Photoshop and will gradually transition to this state from the detects the layer as 3D. In addition to Position, Opacstate in the previous keyframe as it plays through. ity, and Style, you can animate the 3D Camera PosiAre you seeing the possibilities here? tion, Render Settings, and Cross Sections. You can You can add as many styles as you want and have even animate specific lights, materials, and meshes on them all change over time based on this one Style prop- 3D objects. As a caveat, 3D in Photoshop is already erty. In other words, you can have a symphony of cool processor intensive, so animating 3D is exponentially layer effects animating in your window that are only more so, so keep your animations short and simple.


I also told those same people that you can actually animate your Photoshop 3D objects in Photoshop. Yes, you can animate 3D! © stryjek / Fotolia

In addition to the various 3D properties you can animate, there’s another aspect of 3D in Photoshop that’s also quite interesting. The Vanishing Point filter is designed to allow you to edit images in accurate perspective; however, it has a hidden gem, as well. Let’s take a look. If you have the right kind of image, such Step Three: When your wireframe is complete, go as a hallway or tunnel, you can open the image in under the drop-down menu near the top left of the Filter>Vanishing Point, then use the Create Plane tool Vanishing Point dialog and choose Return 3D Layer to (C) to create wireframe grids over the walls, floor, and Photoshop. Click OK in the Vanishing Point dialog. ceiling to establish the 3D scene. To start the wireframe, click were the four corner points for one of the walls should be. If the frame turns into a red outline, that means the plane is out of perspective. Just drag its control points until it changes back to a blue grid.

Step One:

Hold the Command (PC: Ctrl) key and drag one of the center points of the wireframe that’s adjacent to another surface in the image that you want to include in the frame, say the back wall. This will extend the current wireframe with the proper perspective for that surface. Continue Command-dragging (PC: Ctrl-dragging) center points of the various wireframes Step Four: When you return to Photoshop, make until the grid covers all the surfaces. If one of the grids sure the 3D layer is active in the Layers panel, and in the doesn’t exactly follow or cover the surface it’s outlining, 3D panel, select Current View. Switch to the Move tool (V), click on that grid to select it, then drag a center point to and select the Pan the 3D Camera tool in the 3D Mode section of the Options Bar. Click-and-drag in the image adjust the grid. until you’re looking down the 3D hallway.

Step Two:

Switch to the Slide the 3D Camera tool in the Options Bar, click on the image, and drag up or down. The room has been magically converted into a 3D space. Step Five:

Step Six: Now you can click the Create Video Timeline

› › k e l b yo n e . c o m

© Badmanproduction / Fotolia

button in the Timeline panel, and animate the 3D Camera Position to make it seem as though you’re traveling through the hallway in 3D. All that just in Photoshop!


Cinemagraph: The Fancy Animated GIF

› › photoshop user › september 2014

The cinemagraph is a relatively new development in the world of motion graphics. You have no doubt seen one on social media or used in an online advertisement. Essentially, they’re animated GIFs that are considerably more stylish than the ones you might remember from the past. [For more on creating basic animated GIFs, see “Beginners’ Workshop” on p. 62.—Ed.] A cinemagraph is merely an image that has a hint of subtle movement in an otherwise completely static image; for example, a barbershop storefront Now that you have a where the only thing moving is the spinning barber pole, or an image of a model where her hair is blowing and the rest of the image is frozen. It creates better understanding a surreal and in some cases eerie effect. The trick is to loop the movement seamlessly without seeing the jump, so it needs to be a repetitive movement of how video and animalike the blowing hair, the spinning barber pole, dripping water, or anything tion work in Photoshop, that has a natural loop so that it appears to have perpetual movement. There are basically two ways to create a cinemagraph: you can add movement take the time to experito an already static image either by animating part of it or importing a looping video element, or you can import a video clip and isolate the movement to a ment with these features. particular area by extracting static elements around it. I’ve had interesting results using both methods. The method you choose depends on your goal. I encourage Though they may seem you to try both ways and see which one works for you. I have even combined limited, the creative uses both methods and ended up with interesting results. While the popularity of these has given way to specialized apps, I feel you have are practically limitless. It much better control and more options using Photoshop. The great thing is that cinemagraphs are not that processor intensive and the looping event is usually all depends on what you pretty short, so you can experiment in a lot of different ways. For a tutorial on creating cinemagraphs in Photoshop, visit want to create! ■ This video tutorial also includes the three examples mentioned above, so you can see them in action.


This was a static image in which I created some flashes from scratch and then animated them with keyframes—no videos clips in this one at all.

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This cinemagraph was created from a video file where I extracted a frame of the model to a new layer, then masked away areas where I wanted to see the hair blowing.

This cinemagraph was created using a combination of still images and video clips.

Welder: © GlenJ / iStock; Welding sparks: © sima / Fotolia


HOW TO › ›

Beginners' Workshop


creating an animated gif

Creating an animation isn’t as complicated as it sounds, and the technique comes in handy when you’re making Web ads, where space is at a premium. In this column, you’ll learn to make an animated GIF that cycles through several images—including those with text—to create a slide show that plays automatically on the Web.

Step One: The GIF format uses the sRGB color space, so it’s helpful to design in that color space, too (this avoids color shifting when saving the GIF). Choose Edit>Color Settings and from the Settings drop-down menu, pick North America Web/Internet. Click OK. (When you’re finished with the animation, you can change this back to your normal color space.)

Step One

Step Two: Choose File>New and enter the size of your animation into the Width and Height fields (300x250 pixels was used here). Enter 72 for Resolution, set the Color Mode drop-down menu to RGB Color, and click OK.

› › p h ot o s h o p u s e r › s e p t e m b e r 2 0 1 4

Step Three: Choose File>Place Embedded (File>Place in earlier versions) to bring in one of your images. Use the transform handles to resize it if necessary, and press Enter. Repeat for the other images that you want to string together. To keep things organized, click on the top image layer in the Layers panel, Shift-click the bottom image layer to select them all, and choose New Group from Layers in the Layers panel flyout menu. Name the group and click OK.


Step Four: The Layers panel here shows all the images used in this animation, along with some branding text and a “call to action.” The latter gives your audience something to do, and lets you gauge the success of your ad. To add your text layers, click the Eye icon next to the group layer to hide your images, click on the Background layer to make it active, and then use the Type tool (T) to add your company name. Notice we only have one text layer for the company name. We can use that same layer for both the branding slide and the call-to-action slide. Create another text layer for your company description. Press Command-J (PC: Ctrl-J) to duplicate that layer, then hide it by clicking the Eye icon next to it in the Layers panel. Highlight the text in the duplicate layer with the Type tool, and then type your call to action. We placed our text layers in a layer group, as well. The ad background was made using the Rectangle tool (U) set to Shape layer mode in the Options Bar, with a white Fill and pink Stroke. Step Five: Choose Window>Timeline. In the resulting panel, click the triangle to the right of the Create Video Timeline button and choose Create Frame Animation. Click the Create Frame Animation button and Photoshop creates one frame representing what’s currently visible in the Layers panel. Each frame serves as a placeholder for the imagery

Step Four

Step Five


you want to show onscreen, which you control using layer visibility. In the first frame, only the background, company name, and company description layers are visible.

Step Six: Click the Duplicates Selected Frames icon (circled) to add a new frame. Since what you see is determined by current layer visibility, the new frame looks just like the first one. In the Layers panel, use the visibility Eye icons to display only the layer containing the next image in your animation (say, one of the costume photo layers). Keep adding frames and adjusting layer visibility until you’ve made all the frames of your animation. Here, the call-to-action frame appears after the final costume photo, followed by a blank frame containing just the background (a similar blank frame between two text frames helps keep text readable once the animation loops during playback).

Step Six

Step Seven: Use tweening to add a fade transition between some of the frames. Activate the frame you want to fade into another (say, the call-to-action frame) and then click the tween icon (it looks like a diagonal row of squares and is next to the Duplicates Selected Frames icon). In the resulting dialog, tell Photoshop which frame to tween the active one with (Next Frame was used here) and enter how many frames of fading you want in the Frames to Add field. The more frames you add, the bigger your file size. Click OK and Photoshop adds the new frames (circled). Step Eight: Adjust the length of time each frame is visible using the frame delay menu beneath each frame. You can set the delay for each frame individually, or en masse by Shift- or Command-clicking (PC: Ctrl-clicking) to activate frames and then changing the duration of one of them. Your options include No Delay up to 10 seconds (you can choose Other and enter whatever you want in the resulting Set Frame Delay dialog). Keep your branding and call to action frames onscreen long enough to be read (say, 2 seconds) and speed up tweened frames (0.5 seconds). Next, click the looping options menu (circled) and choose 3 Times, so the animation repeats itself 3 times. Click the play icon (also circled) to preview your handiwork.

Step Nine: When you’re finished, choose Optimize Animation from the Timeline panel’s flyout menu (circled). In the resulting dialog, leave both options turned on: Bounding Box closely crops each frame to its content and Redundant Pixel Removal makes unchanged pixels transparent in subsequent frames. Click OK. Now choose File>Save As and pick Photoshop from the Format menu to preserve your layers so you can edit them again later.

Step Seven

Step Eight

Step Nine

Step Ten: Choose File>Save for Web and choose GIF from the format

Now pat yourself on the back and exclaim with gusto, “I’m an animator!” Until next time, may the creative force be with you all. ■

› › k e l b yo n e . c o m

drop-down menu at the upper right (circled). Pick Diffusion from the Dither menu so photos with gradients look a little better. (Tip: If your animation doesn’t include full-color photos, try lowering the Colors field to reduce your file size.) Use the Animation section at the lower right to change looping options and preview the piece one last time. Click Save and the resulting GIF will play in any Web browser (just drag-and-drop it onto a browser window).

Step Ten





For Photographing Places with Water

Ever feel like you’re drawn to something? For me, it’s water. I’ve lived near a beach for my entire life. And as much as I like mountains, snow sports, and many places away from the beach, I’m not sure

I could ever live more than 30 minutes away from the ocean. That’s why, when

the editors asked me, I jumped at the chance to write this article. I love the outdoors and I love photographing places with water. So I put together five tips or techniques (or whatever you want


to call them) that I’ve learned over the years to help create some great images.

› › photoshop user › september 2014

There’s No Magic Correct Shutter Speed for Photographing Water


Every body of water you encounter will be different. The water flow from one waterfall will be slower or faster than another. Beaches, tides, etc. will all change from one situation to the next. Let’s say that you find this magic setting of 1/2 second, and you think it’s the perfect setting for photographing water. Well, you may get to another location and that 1/2 second is either too slow or too fast. The water may look very different than before, so don’t tie yourself down to thinking that there’s a magic shutter speed for photographing water. Instead, change it up. The best help I’ve found is to bracket. Turn on the Exposure Bracketing feature on your camera (the same feature you’d turn on if you were shooting an HDR image). With this setting, the camera will automatically take several photos (I set mine to take five) with different exposures (some overexposed, and some underexposed). If you’re in Aperture Priority mode, the way it changes exposure is by varying the shutter speed, so some photos will have a very short shutter speed (the underexposed photos), and some will have a longer shutter speed (the overexposed photos).

Layout Design: Taffy Clifford

The reason you’re doing this is to give yourself options. (Rather than trying to figure out what that perfect shutter speed is, I’ve had much better success by shooting at different shutter speeds.) As you look through your photos later, you’ll have a ton of options in the patterns of the water on a beach or the texture and detail of any waterfalls, and the overall smooth, silky effect of the water. Sure, the exposures will most likely be off because some are overexposed and some under-, but you can easily regain 1–2 stops (or more) of exposure using the Exposure slider in Lightroom or Camera Raw. The point is you gave yourself lots of options in the hopes of finding that perfect photo, which you may not have taken had you settled on one shutter speed for the entire shoot.


Use a Neutral Density Filter to Smooth the Water Neutral density filters and long exposures are all the rage these days. Basically, a neutral density filter (also known as an ND filter) is a dark piece of glass or plastic that sits in front of your lens. It decreases the amount of light getting to the camera’s sensor so you can leave the shutter open longer without overexposing the photo. Neutral density filters are almost essential gear for photographing waterfalls because you have to slow your shutter speed. If you photograph moving water with a shutter speed that’s too fast, then the water looks frozen, as in this example. Not pretty, right? This frozen-water effect happens because there’s usually too much light to use a long shutter speed—to capture the movement in the water—and it will overexpose the photo. So you have to use a faster shutter speed, which, in turn, freezes the water and doesn’t give you that smooth, silky effect that makes waterfall photos so beautiful. That’s where your ND filter comes in handy. It lets you extend your shutter speeds, even in bright light, so you can get a good exposure, while also capturing the smooth water.

Before After

› › photoshop user › september 2014

Neutral density filters are also great for photographing water with ripples because you can leave the shutter open long enough to totally smooth out all the ripples. While it helps give the water a reflectve quality, it won’t totally reproduce a perfect reflection. It does, however, help ease the chaotic look of the rippled water, and it gives a much more soothing and smooth effect to the photo. Here’s an example of a photo I took before using a 10-stop ND filter. The pilings in the water are what drew me to the location. I thought they’d make a great foreground, and the sheer number of them made for a cool-looking photo. The water ripples make the photo look busy and almost chaotic, and it’s hard to concentrate on anything. Now compare that with the next photo. Here, I used a tripod, and all I changed was that I put a 10-stop ND filter on my camera, which let me use a much longer exposure of 60 seconds. Now that’s what I’m talkin’ about! See how the long exposure smoothed the water and calmed everything down in the photo. Now you don’t see the ripples. It’s not a perfect reflection, but I’m okay with that. It’s smooth and it really lets your eye concentrate on the star of the photo (the pilings). That’s not all ND filters are good for when it comes to photographing water, but we’ll come back to them in a minute.



Shoot Early or Late for the Best Reflections

I love reflections. Some of my favorite photos are where I capture a great backdrop reflected in the water in front of me. How do you get those reflections? Well, the key here is wind. Basically, you don’t want any (or at least very little), if possible. That’s not something you can predict or control, so this tip is all about giving you the best chance at getting a great reflection. First, your best chance is at sunrise. Ever notice that most hot-air balloons go up at sunrise? They need mostly stable air conditions to fly, and do better with little wind. The time around sunrise is generally the best time of day for that. The next best time is at the last hours of the day, near sunset. Again, generally, the winds tend to die down. If I had to pick one, I’d go with sunrise. That’s going to be your best shot at getting a great reflection. But sunset is a close second. (If you’re into photographing outdoors and landscapes, shooting at those times of day shouldn’t be very different for you.) Did you notice that I use “generally” a lot in this tip? That’s because, as much as you can try to predict this stuff, there’s no guarantee. I’ve been out at sunrise when it’s been very windy. I’ve been out in the middle of the afternoon and the water has been dead calm. It just depends. At least knowing that these two times of day are generally (see, there it is again) best, you’ll have a good chance at a better shot.


Ghostly Seascapes with Long Shutter Speeds

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If you’re looking for a dramatic water photo, then photographing seascapes, combined with the neutral density filters we covered earlier, work great. This tip is a little different than the first tip where I assumed you wanted to capture some amount of detail and movement in the water. For instance, if you use a slightly longer shutter speed, you’ll find the water still looks like water, and it happens to take on the patterns of any rocks or objects it’s moving around. But when someone looks at it, they still see water, for the most part. This fourth tip is all about the drama! With a seascape, try combining the ND filters we talked about earlier and some longer exposures. The rougher the waves, and the more rocks and places for the water to crash on, the better. Why? Because it produces a ghostly effect in the water. It almost looks like a mist or layer of fog: a very different look that will definitely add a dramatic effect to your photos.


› › photoshop user › september 2014


Foreground, Foreground,Foreground The last tip is more of a compositional one. Photographing water is great, but it’s hard to make it the star of the photo. We usually need to see something in the foreground. I’m a sucker for docks and old wooden pilings in the water. As you may have noticed earlier in Tips #1 and #2, anytime I can find them, I use them as great foreground elements to help draw people into the photo. If I’m at a beach, the first thing I look for is a tide pool of some sort. The reflections of water pooling around something make a great foreground. If I’m at a lake, I always look for rocks in the water to put in the foreground. I’ll get down low, and include as many rocks as I can with the water, while leaving the top one-third of the photo for the sky. By the way, have you ever heard of the Rule of 3 (not to be confused with the Rule of Thirds)? The Rule of 3 basically suggests that things look better in groups of three. It’s not the number one thing I follow, but I always keep it in mind. ■ ALL IMAGES BY MATT KLOSKOWSKI

Rescue the Details.


Š Gary Lamott


You don’t have to be a pro to get results like this. This image was enhanced using the proprietary technology found in the Topaz plug-ins. Tools such as adaptive exposure, selective saturation and advanced masking extend beyond what can be

found in Photoshop, saving time and most importantly producing extraordinary results.

See the steps taken to transform this image



LIGHT By Kevin Ames





light-toned label wrapped around a dark green glass bottle protecting fine red wine from light and air offers several challenges for a photographer to overcome. The bottle has to be completely outlined in light. The label has to be lit, as well. Then there’s the background. Where does the process begin? The first step I always do with any product is to understand what it is from a photographic point of view. Consider the bottle of red wine. What is it like? Glassware comes to mind as the obvious answer. While it is made of glass, it can’t be treated as glassware. It isn’t transparent or even translucent. It’s shiny, reflective, and for the most part, black. Shiny? Reflective? Okay, it’s a mirror in the shape of a cylinder that has a neck and a shoulder. The rule for lighting a mirror is to show it what you want the mirror to show the camera.


Use a narrow, tall strip light on each side of the bottle to get a long highlight that wraps the edges of the bottle from top to bottom.

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The next question is, “What kind of light will do the job?” A small light, such as an external flash, will leave a bright dot reflecting off the glass, so that won’t do. A long highlight that wraps the edges of the bottle from top to bottom is what we want. A narrow, tall strip light on each side of the bottle will do the job. My setup shows two 12x71" Rime Lite Strip Boxes mounted on identical Dynalite location heads on either side of the bottle. The height isn’t as important as the narrow width. Shorter modifiers can be used. Flags may be added to




While it is made of glass, it can’t be treated as glassware. It isn’t transparent or even translucent.


make them thinner if a wider box is used. Note that they’re very close to the bottle. If the lights are farther away, the highlight reflecting from the shoulder of the bottle will break, leaving a dark area instead of a continuous line. For the behind-the-scenes view on the previous page, I added lights on the cyc wall (cyclorama) to help reveal the light sources. These lights are off for the shoot.

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Any light on the label will also show up as a specular highlight in the bottle. Specular highlights are reflections of the sources of light mirrored in the subject. A small source will cause a small dot of light in the bottle. The trick is to use a light that will make a pleasing shape in the bottle. For this shot, a boom holds a 24x36" Rime Lite Softbox on a Dynalite studio head. This light is the source of illumination (a.k.a. the main light). It’s the one that sets the exposure for the photograph. Turning the side strip boxes off, I measured the overhead box’s output by pointing the incident dome of a Sekonic L-758DR DigitalMaster Flash Meter toward it from the middle of the label. The ColorChecker Passport is included for white balance and to perfect the exposure in Camera Raw or the Develop module in Lightroom.


With the strip lights on once again, move the overhead softbox until it’s parallel to the surface and centered side to side on the bottle. Now that reflection in the bottle’s shoulder forms a pleasing shape. Curious about what would happen if this specular highlight had a softer edge, I added a diffusion panel between the overhead softbox and the bottle. Which one do you like? The diffused version is on the right.


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It’s let’s-be-super-picky time. See the reflection curving along the bottom of the bottle? Some like it, some don’t. Those who don’t like it would probably say, “Just fix it in Photoshop.” Bad idea. Really. The glass is reflecting the wood the bottle sits on. That means the fix has to include that color, too. This reflection is from the white paper holding the wood block. Why not shoot it without the reflection instead? How? Add black cards in front of the block to cover the white. Poof! No more reflection.



BACKGROUND The bottle on a distressed wooden surface against black is kind of okay. The photo needs something to anchor it rather than having it float in the limbo of black. The solution is a beat-up piece of wooden paneling clamped to a light stand. It’s angled so the light from the strip banks falls off, providing a feeling of depth. A cork finishes the look.


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This look behind the scenes shows the two side, highlight-creating strip lights and the softbox that lights the label and the wood block. The whole set is raised so it’s easy to access all the parts. For small products like the wine bottle, a small set works best. The tethering setup is at the right. Note the Sekonic L-758DR DigitalMaster Flash Meter and a barber’s brush I use to dust off a product before making the final exposure. The strip lights are powered by the Dynalite MP800 Roadmax 800 Ws pack at the front of the set so it’s easy to adjust as needed. If I wanted the side highlights brighter, a quick move to half power would make them a full stop brighter. The pack has a variator to turn it down in 2/10-stop increments. The final shot was made with them at quarter power—100 Ws to each head. The overhead box is powered by another MP800 at quarter power. With only one head plugged into it, that head receives 200 Ws, making it twice as bright. The exposure set on the Canon EOS 1Ds Mark III is f/16 at 1/125, ISO 100. The lens is a Sigma 150mm f/2.8 Macro. ■


Story of an Image

through the window BY B R I A N M AT I A S H

There’s a philosophy that I tend to subscribe to when traveling, and that is it never hurts to ask. This is especially true when you first approach a hotel check-in desk after a rather long flight from California to Tokyo, Japan.

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Weary-eyed and stiff, I tried to summon my most cordial manners and asked the hotel clerk if she could possibly find a room as high up as possible. The higher the floor, the more likely my chances are of getting some cool vantage points for cityscape photos. In this case, I scored the jackpot with a sweet nineteenth-floor room in a hotel in Roppongi with a picturesque view of the famous Tokyo Tower. For anyone who has experienced trying to photograph through a hotel window (or any window for that matter), you probably know that it’s mostly going to be caked in grime and there will be a fiesta of reflections to deal with. Photographing around sunrise and sunset and on through the night will mitigate dealing with the grime, but reflections will always be a burden. You’ll absolutely want to snuff out any light sources coming from within your room and close all window blinds except for the one that you’ll be shooting through. My rudimentary solution was to simply drape my jacket over my camera, creating a hood of sorts. This drastically helped cut down on the reflections from inside the room. The rest boils down to experimenting with the time of day and the lighting conditions afforded to you.


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this shutter speed is that it’s too slow to prevent motion blur of the moon once it rises. I contemplated taking two exposures, one for the scene and one for the moon, and then masking it in post, but I have never really been happy with those sorts of results. I simply waited for the moon to rise to a good level and took my exposure.

While I was fortunate enough to get some pretty clean photos as the sun rose alongside the Tokyo Tower, I really wanted to capture the skyline at night, when all of the buildings would be dotted with their own lights. To cut down on extraneous distractions and reflections, I opted to use my longer 70–200mm lens. This allowed me to frame the shot tightly and introduce some much needed lens compression, which helps create the impression that the foreground, middleground, and background are closer together. You’ll want to begin testing compositions and exposure settings shortly before moonrise (or sunrise or sunset) to maximize your time actually creating cool photos. I found an exposure that gave me a good depth of field but at the expense of requiring a 6-second exposure. The problem with

As expected, when I zoomed in I could instantly see the motion of the moon. On top of that, the shutter speed was slow enough to totally blow it out. It’s during these types of situations where you’re really put to the test. Creative thinking is in order and knowing what tools you have at your disposal is critical in pushing past these obstacles. When studying this photo, I felt that it was a bit too flat—there wasn’t enough separation between the primary subject, the orange-

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lit Tokyo Tower, and the rest of the cityscape. Normally, you’d probably want to take care of your principal edits in the Basic panel in Lightroom, but in this case, let’s quickly jump right into Photoshop by going to Photo>Edit In>Edit in Adobe Photoshop [version].

create separation

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A great way to help create separation from your primary subject and the rest of your image is to create a shallow depth of field, and an easy way to do this is to apply a blur to your image and then mask in the areas you want to keep in focus. Before we begin, press Command-J (PC: Ctrl-J) to duplicate the Background layer. Next, apply a Gaussian Blur to your duplicate layer by going to Filter>Blur>Gaussian Blur. You can specify the amount, or strength, of the blur by using the


Radius slider. Experimentation is key here. Make sure you have the Preview checkbox selected so that you can see a real-time view of the filter in action. For this image, a Radius of 14 Pixels gave me the desired effect. Now it’s time to bring back focus to the subject area

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to make the Foreground color black. With a soft-edged brush, paint on the area where you want to restore focus. With this image, we painted on the tower while taking care not to reveal the surrounding buildings. If you accidentally paint a part of the image that you didn’t intend to, press X to switch your Foreground color to white and paint that area away. Make sure to switch back to black

(by pressing X again) to resume your masking. With the masking done, choose File>Save to save the file and return to Lightroom to stylize.

creative license The key to making this sort of image pop is to make all of those specular highlights of the blurred city lights pop. Doing so involves a combination of boosting highlights and contrast while also deepening the shadows.

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with a layer mask. With the duplicate layer selected, choose Layer>Layer Mask>Reveal All. With the mask selected, choose the Brush tool (B) and press D then X



either drag the Hue slider to the desired color and adjust the Saturation, or click the color swatch and select the color in the color picker.

By applying some quick, creative thinking, we’re often able to infuse a really cool style to an image, even if there were some obstacles along the way. You just need to know how to use the tools that you have at your disposal. ■

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I made the necessary edits in the Basic and Tone Curve panels, as shown here. Now, the real fun begins with the artistic editing. A great way to help you set your image apart is by applying some crossprocessing, where you specify a color value for your highlights and another one for your shadows in the Split Toning panel. For night scenes, especially ones that have a very warm primary subject, I prefer accentuating that by selecting an orange tint for the Highlights and counter it with a blue tint for the Shadows. To do this, you can


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Under the Loupe

everything you need to know about your lightroom catalog B Y R O B S Y LVA N

It’s in the best interests of every Lightroom user to understand the role of the catalog, to know where it’s located on your system, and to understand how to protect and manage it over the long term.

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The Lightroom catalog file is the database where all of the work

the same name as your catalog file, but just says Previews at the

you do in Lightroom is stored—from keywords to exposure

end and has the LRDATA file extension. This preview cache can

adjustments and everything in between. You can’t even open

get quite large over time as you import more and more photos

the Lightroom program without opening a catalog file. We’re

into your catalog.

going to take a deep dive into all of the catalog fundamentals,

If you view this folder while Lightroom is open and running

starting with how to find the catalog you have open when you

that catalog, you’ll also see an LRCAT-JOURNAL file and a LOCK

launch Lightroom.

file next to your catalog. These are catalog maintenance files

locating the catalog

that automatically appear when the catalog file is open and automatically vanish when the catalog is closed. If you’re using

Go to Lightroom (PC: Edit)>Catalog Settings to open the Cata-

the Lightroom mobile service, you’ll also see a Mobile Down-

log Settings dialog, and click the General tab. You can think of

loads.lrdata file, which is where the photos added from your

this tab as a sort of dashboard about your catalog. It shows you

mobile device are stored. Note that on Windows, the LRDATA

where the catalog is stored and the filename of the catalog that’s

files look like folders, but there’s no need to go into them and

open, along with when it was created, when it was last backed

noodle around.

up, when it was last optimized, and the file size of the catalog file. You can even click the Show button to open a new Finder (PC: Windows Explorer) window showing the actual folder that houses your catalog file. By default, Lightroom puts the catalog file in your Pictures folder, but you can choose to have your catalog reside in any folder on any locally connected drive (not on network drives).

renaming the catalog I often hear from people who are using the most up-to-date version of Lightroom but have a catalog file named with an older version of Lightroom, and it may also have some other numbers in it, Click the Show button so you can confirm the location of

and they want to know how to rename the catalog. First, it’s not

your catalog and see the associated files that exist alongside your

a problem at all. You can call your catalog file anything you want

catalog file. Let’s discuss each of these files briefly so you’ll know

to call it. Lightroom doesn’t care; however, if you want to rename

what they do in the bigger picture. You should note that the

it to something that makes more sense to you, here’s how:

existence of some of these files depends on if you use things like smart previews and Lightroom mobile, so if you don’t see all of

step one: With Lightroom closed, go to the folder where the

these files on your system, it’s okay.

catalog resides using Finder (PC: Windows Explorer).

The most important file in that folder is the catalog, which has an LRCAT file extension. By default, your catalog file may have the

step two: Using your file browser, you can rename the cata-

version number of Lightroom used to create that catalog (such as

log file, but keep the file extension the same (LRCAT). Then re-

Lightroom 5 Catalog.lrcat), but I’ll show you how to rename an

name the preview cache and smart preview cache (if applicable)

existing catalog file in a moment. This is the file we want to pro-

the same way, but retain the word Previews and Smart Previews

tect and back up regularly. If you use smart previews, you’ll also

in the name along with the original file extension.

see a cache file with the same name as your catalog, but with the

For example, if your catalog and preview cache were named

words Smart Previews at the end, and with an LRDATA file exten-

Lightroom 4 Catalog-2.lrcat and Lightroom 4 Catalog-2 Pre-

sion. This is where all smart previews are stored, and its size will

views.lrdata, respectively, and you want to change it to “Light-

vary with how many smart previews you’ve created. All of the

room Catalog,” you’d end up with Lightroom Catalog.lrcat and

regular preview files are stored in another cache file that also has

Lightroom Catalog Previews.lrdata.

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such as Lightroom 4 Catalog-2. They wonder if this is a problem,


step three: Double-click the catalog file to open it into Lightroom. Now you can give it a quick test drive to make sure all is well, and this writes the new catalog name into the Lightroom preference file.

changing the default catalog Speaking of the Lightroom preference file, here’s one of the most important things all Lightroom users can do to help them be in control of their Lightroom experience. Go to Lightroom (PC: Edit)>Preferences>General and change the Default Catalog setting to anything other than Load Most Recent Catalog. If you only use a single catalog file, then select that specific catalog file to be the default catalog. If you use multiple catalogs, then choose Prompt Me When Starting Lightroom. This way you’re choosing the specific catalog file you want to open when you launch Lightroom.

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I have seen a lot of confusion stem from the Load Most Recent choice because it puts Lightroom in charge of determin-


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it may be redundant, but it’s free, easy, and it may one day make you weep with gratitude.

ing which catalog to open, and that may not be the one you had in mind. The worst example of this is when someone curiously opens an old backup copy of a catalog to check it out, and then simply closes Lightroom. Guess which catalog opens automatically the next time Lightroom is launched? Yep, the old backup copy, and if the user doesn’t realize this it can create a huge time-wasting problem.

backup On the subject of backing up your catalog, there is a lot to say about backup strategies in general, but in the context of Lightroom catalogs I simply want to address the built-in functionality Lightroom provides. Back in the Catalog Settings dialog, there’s a place at the bottom where you can configure Lightroom to create a duplicate copy of the catalog at some interval of time.

I set mine to run every time I quit Lightroom, which makes Lightroom throw up this prompt every time I exit.

is to create an exact duplicate of your working catalog file in a location of your choosing. I assume you already have some sort of full-system backup running that regularly backs up all of your important files, and you may wonder if you really need this option running, too. Based on the experience of helping people with Lightroom problems over the years I feel that it’s in your best interest to take advantage of this built-in functionality. Sure,

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This is a set-it-and-forget-it type of feature, and its sole purpose


It’s only in this prompt that you can choose where you want the backup copy to be saved by clicking the Choose button

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and selecting a location. Take this opportunity to check the


step one: Close Lightroom and open the Lightroom folder containing your working catalog file in Finder (PC: Windows Explorer).

boxes for testing integrity and optimizing the catalog. Now,

step two: Move the “bad” catalog file out of that folder to another

just because it prompts you each time doesn’t mean you need

location for safekeeping.

to back up every time. There’s a Skip This Time button you can click when you’re in a hurry and want to quit. I try to create

step three: Move the “good” backup catalog copy into the

a backup at least once a week or after I’ve done a whole lot

Lightroom folder to replace the bad one. Double-click the catalog file

of work. Each time this function runs, it saves a copy of your

to open it into Lightroom and take it for a test drive.

catalog to the folder you chose. Lightroom doesn’t overwrite existing back up copies. As a result, you end up with a folder of

The only downside to running the catalog backup function (aside from

iterative copies of your catalog. This can be handy for recover-

the time it takes to run) is that Lightroom will keep putting new cop-

ing from self-inflicted problems or from the rare case of catalog

ies of the catalog into that folder until the drive is full. The manage-

file corruption.

ment of the backup folder falls on us. Since we only value the most

Because a backup copy of the catalog is an exact dupli-

recent versions of the backup copies, I periodically go into that folder

cate of your working catalog at the time the backup was

and delete all but the most recent two or three. Note that Lightroom

created, all you have to do to restore from the backup is

doesn’t back up the preview caches because those can automatically

the following:

be regenerated if lost. ■ ALL IMAGES BY ROB SYLVAN

us, we don’t think photos are “ Forphotos until they’re on paper. ” Floto+Warner, professional photographers

What you see through your lens truly becomes art when you see it on paper. This is why the right printer is an essential tool in your workflow. A Canon PIXMA PRO-1 professional inkjet printer provides a level of quality and accuracy true to your unique vision. Paired with Canon Print Studio Pro software, you can be sure that from the click of the shutter to when you hit “print,” your art will appear Exactly As You Envisioned.

Simulated images. © 2014 Canon U.S.A., Inc. Canon and PIXMA are registered trademarks of Canon Inc. in the United States and may be trademarks or registered trademarks in other countries. Apple is a trademark of Apple Inc., registered in the U.S. and other countries.

Maximum Workflow

perfectly clear BY SEAN McCORMACK

Perfectly Clear from Athentech (www.athentech .com) is quite new on my radar. It came up in conversation when a photographer friend was singing its praises. Anything that can speed up workflow is a product worth looking at.

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Perfectly Clear is an auto-correction plug-in. It’s like selecting

Whites. Instead, let’s open the file directly into Perfectly Clear.

Auto in the Basic panel of Lightroom, but with far more pleasing

In the Library or Develop modules, choose Photo>Edit In>

results and not so hit or miss. The Auto function has improved,


but it’s nowhere near what Perfectly Clear can do. While the

In the Edit Photo with PerfectlyClearLR dialog that appears,

promotional material and a lot of Athentech’s sample material

you have only one option—Edit a Copy with Lightroom Adjust-

is aimed at beginners getting better photos, the tool certainly

ments. Click the Copy File Options disclosure triangle and you can

applies to pros looking to get images out faster. In those cases

supersede the default file options found in the Lightroom (PC:

where you get paid by the image rather than by time, more

Edit)>Preferences>External Editing tab. Perfectly Clear will work

images in less time equals more money.

with TIFF or JPEG, but not PSD, so don’t choose that option. To

Normally, we would take one image through from start to

keep the file size smaller, change File Format to JPEG, Color Space to

finish, but with Perfectly Clear’s smaller-than-usual control set,

AdobeRGB (1998), and Bit Depth to 8 bits/component. For highest

I think a series of images working to the plug-in’s strength is

quality, choose TIFF in ProPhoto RGB at 16 bits/component. Click

better this time.

Edit to open.

getting started When you install Perfectly Clear, it automatically appears under Photo>Edit In>Edit in PerfectlyClear. The plug-in is always loaded when Lightroom launches, and skips the Plug-in Manager’s Add and Remove options. For our first photo, we’ll begin with a morning shot where the sun is starting to light the distant hills. The original photo has a full range of tones, but in general is flat and low in contrast.

Perfectly Clear launches, giving us our first look at the interface. On the left we have the preview and preview controls, on the right are the settings. On first opening the Default Preset is selected. Before we proceed to tweaking, let’s get a feel for the interface. [KelbyOne members may download the landscape image used in this tutorial at september-2014. All files are for personal use only.] Normally, I’d start working in Lightroom with the High-

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lights and Shadows sliders, then Exposure, Blacks, and finally



correction settings

At the top right of the preview area is the Screen Mode. It’s set to

At the top right of the interface is the Correction Settings panel,

the default preview showing the after view. Click on the preview

and at the top of that is Presets. Because our photo is a land-

to show the before view. The second Screen Mode option is a

scape, select Landscapes from the drop-down menu. The results

side-by-side view with the before on the left. The final Screen

are really good without any tweaking, but let’s put the controls

Mode is a top-and-bottom view, with the before on the top.

through their paces. The first slider is Tint Correction. Our photo is a little cold looking, so click the box next to Tint Correction to turn it on, and pull back the slider to about 30, or to your own taste. The default of 90 is too magenta for my taste. In the Tone section is the Exposure control. The Auto Correct buttons are tied to this. Medium looks good, but clicking High makes the photo look even better; this jumps the Exposure slider all the way to 150. The blacks are still a little dark, so pulling back the Contrast slider will bring back shadow detail. A quick click of the preview shows the dramatic (and pleasing) difference Perfectly Clear has made so far. Under the Color section is Vibrancy, which isn’t quite the same as Vibrance in Lightroom; it seems to control contrast as well as Vibrance. Start at 0 and set it to taste; 5 works for me. Fidelity is one of the more marketed parts of Perfectly Clear. What we see and what the camera captures are not exactly the same, especially with purple and blue tones. The Fidelity control maps colors back to what we see versus what the camera recorded. There are three settings: Off (via the checkbox), Standard, and Vivid. Vivid seems like the best choice for landscapes, but Standard looks better on this particular photo. The Clarity section controls the Sharpening and Noise in the photo. It’s more in keeping with the Detail panel in Lightroom than the Clarity slider from the Basic panel. It’s easy to go too far with Sharpening, as it needs a lot to make the preview look crisp. Zooming in shows the detail to be oversharpened at this point. Set it to taste (we used 40). Noise is next and gets selected automatically when digital noise is detected in the photo. It’s an automatic process based on the STOIK Imaging noise engine and does a good job of fixing luminance and color noise, as well as moiré and JPEG artifacts.

Of course a small preview isn’t always best, so there’s a Zoom

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slider below the preview. Combined with the red window in the


Navigator on the right, it’s easy to get a closer view of the processing in any part of the photo. Simply use the slider to get to the zoom level you want, and then drag the red window (the cursor becomes a hand tool) to the point you want to preview. The standard Lightroom and Photoshop zoom shortcuts of Command- – (PC: Ctrl- –) to zoom out and Command-+ (PC: Ctrl-+) to zoom in work here, as well. Also, click-and-drag any edge or corner of the interface to increase its size.

› › The final section is Portrait, so we’ll wait for our portrait


› ›

A second portrait shows the Auto Red-Eye in action.

for these controls. To finish editing and send the file back to Lightroom, click Save (or Cancel to quit without saving). A few final tweaks in Lightroom finish the look. We set Temp to +4 to warm the photo a little, Exposure to +0.20 and Shadows to +36 to open up some of the darker areas in the photo, and then Vibrance to taste (ours is +36). With regard to time, getting to this point was quicker than using Lightroom and I’m pleased with the result. Let’s take a quick look at the other Presets.

noise removal The Noise Removal preset is perfect for removing sensor noise, especially from high ISO images and nighttime camera phone photos (there’s even a dedicated Camera Phone setting in the Noise drop-down menu). Modern cameras have far better noise control, so here’s Perfectly Clear with a Canon D60 on ISO 1000—the highest it could go. The details in the face are being blurred, so Sharpening needs to be turned up to compensate, even with the Portrait setting selected from the Noise drop-down menu.

portrait For our portrait image, the first step is to select the Portrait preset. The difference is immediate and really good. The skin tone has been warmed and the contrast enhanced just enough. This photo was taken on a dull, rainy day, while trying to keep a shallow depth of field. A tweak of Sharpening is all that’s needed. The Portrait controls are on in this preset, so let’s look at what they’re doing. Skin Tone controls the redness in skin. Perfectly Clear’s info tab (visible when you hover over most conrecords, but that our eye can’t see. The skin here is reasonably natural, so it’s not doing a lot. A redder face would have a more

fix dark

obvious effect. Light Diffusion acts like reducing the Clarity in

Our example photo here is an underexposed, behind-the-scenes

Lightroom, but I find it more pleasing. It doesn’t have the fake

shot from a recent shoot. Selecting Fix Dark from the presets

glow you get in Lightroom.

boosts the Exposure, but it still needs tweaks. The photo is too

› › k e l b yo n e . c o m

trols) says it removes the infrared component that the camera


yellow, so tick Tint Correction under White Balance. The color

the Choose Folder dialog that appears, select a destination

cast is removed, but the photo now looks cold. Pulling back

folder and click Open.

the slider to about 40 tames the blue from the window and leaves a pleasing warmth in the room. The remaining settings look good, but ticking Skin Tone in the Portrait section improves the look of the model. Noise has been detected and removed. For a 10-second fix, it looks much better, good enough to add to a behind-the-scenes blog.

tint removal Tint Removal neutralizes color casts. This photo was shot using a 1/2 CTO (Color Temperature Orange) gel with the camera set to Tungsten white balance, so the face is still a little cold. Selecting Tint Removal warms the face beautifully, with the other settings giving a nice contrast to the image.

presets Every time a preset is tweaked, you could potentially save a new preset that can be used in exactly the same way as the defaults. You may find that the tweaks you make are similar each time. That calls for making your own preset, too. Click New under the Presets drop-down menu. Enter a new preset name and give it a description. These presets are available from the menu, and for

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batch image processing.



In addition to the normal settings you can control in Export, you also can choose which Perfectly Clear preset is applied to all the photos. You can bypass the Perfectly Clear interface by turning on Hide PerfectlyClear window, or open the photos in Perfectly Clear to review the results. Once opened, you can tweak a photo, and then use the navigation controls that appear at the bottom right of the preview to move from photo to photo.

the final curtain For a program that offers a small set of controls, Perfectly Clear

Perfectly Clear isn’t just a single image editor, it will work on

is surprisingly effective, producing really nice images with the

batches of photos, too. You can use it as an alternative to

smallest of effort. While some aspects are there to improve

the Edit In function because there’s also an Export Plug-in.

home snapshots, there’s plenty of control to help the pro power

In Lightroom, select the images you want to process, then

through photos, especially with a lot of similar shots (outdoor

click the Export button at the bottom of the left-side pan-

portraits, for example).

els area. In the Export dialog, click the Export To drop-down menu, choose Athentech PerfectlyClear, and click Export. In

Athentech offers 30-day trials of both the Lightroom and Photoshop plug-in at ■ ALL IMAGES BY SEAN McCORMACK


Lightroom Section › ›


TipsTricks The most common use for Publish Services in the Library module is to publish images to online destinations such as Behance, Facebook, Flickr, or SmugMug. You can also use this feature to keep track of a collection of images created on any hard drive. This can be useful for images that you publish to a website that doesn’t have a plug-in for the Publish Services, such as your personal website or blog. By using Publish Services to publish files to a specific folder hierarchy on your hard drive, you can easily keep those image collections up to date if you make any changes to the files in the Develop module. Let’s take a look at how you might set this up to keep track of images for your Web portfolio. For this example, I’ll create a nested gallery structure that will mirror the portfolio structure for a hypothetical website.

set up a hard drive publish service In the left-side panels area of the Library module, scroll down to Publish Services. Double-click the Hard Drive button to open the Lightroom Publishing Manager. Add a Description for the Publish Service (i.e., Web Site Portfolio), and choose an Export Location for the published photos. Give some thought to how you want to organize this folder and any future subfolders you create inside it because it cannot be changed later. Select the other settings you want to use for File Naming, File Settings, Image Sizing, Output Sharpening, Metadata, and Watermarking, and then click the Save button to create the publish connection.


because that’s what it is. The primary difference is that it’s a collection that’s synced to a specific folder location on your hard drive.

create a published folder Right-click on the newly created published collection set and choose Create Published Folder. Give the folder a name and make sure that the set you just created is listed in the Set drop-down menu. Click Create and you’ll see the new publish folder is now listed in the published collection set. Continue to add as many folder sets and folders as you need.

moving a published folder If you create a published folder but forget to target the collection set you want to place it in, you can click-and-drag the newly created published folder onto the set where it needs to be.

adding images to the published collections Once you’ve created your folder hierarchy in Lightroom, you can drag-and-drop images onto the appropriate folder. Click on the name of that published folder and you’ll see the images are grouped into a New Photos to Publish section. Click the Publish button in the upper-right corner above the thumbnails and Lightroom will export the images using the settings you configured in the Lightroom Publishing Manager, and it will create the necessary folders on your hard drive. As the images are exported into the target folder, they’re moved to the Published Photos section.

republishing modified photos

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Published collections will automatically keep track of any changes made to an image since it was last published. When a change is detected, the photo is placed in a Modified Photos to Re-Publish section. If you’ve only made minor changes to the metadata, such as adding a keyword, you may not want to republish the image. In that case, Right-click the image and select Mark As Up-To-Date. ■

create a published folder set Right-click on the newly created Hard Drive publish service and choose Create Published Folder Set. Give the set a name and click OK. As you can see from the icon, it looks like a Collection Set



› › p h ot o s h o p u s e r › s e p t e m b e r 2 0 1 4




By Sean Arbabi xperienced outdoor photographers who pride themselves in creating true-to-life scenes rarely add the moon into an image where it wasn’t present originally. As the idiom goes, there’s a place and time for everything; however, one big misconception photo buffs possess is the belief that adding a moon afterward always heightens the quality of their pictures, and it’s this postscript that often gets them in trouble.

If scenes can’t stand on their own merit without overprocessed effects like adding a moon, the images simply may not be strong enough. Nevertheless, Web surfing excursions often land us on sites where feeble moon-added attempts have us cringing. These image-makers may believe they’re killing it in the wow-factor department, but in reality, their poorly executed postcapture techniques produce bizarre and amateurish images, destroying any chance at quality and realism. Notwithstanding, there have been many instances in the field where the thought, “If only the moon were rising over that moun-

Images: Dollar Photo Club Layout Design: Taffy Clifford

tain” or “between those trees” or “above that building,” has come to mind. Before the digital age, an in-camera double exposure was one of the only options, but the digital revolution changed that, expanding an artist’s final vision. In this installment of the “Dynamic Range,” we’ll show you one way to add a realistic moon in Photoshop CC. We’ll not discuss specific in-camera exposure techniques, but rather the ability to amalgamate two images captured at separate times and locations in order to create a natural look.

ing a lifelike moon—is no different than most advanced exposure techniques. It requires the alignment of lighting, contrast, photographic equipment, weather conditions, as well as of the moon itself, from phases to times of day it rises and sets to its brightness and luminosity. Combining two scenes documented with drastically different lenses, such as the moon with a 400mm lens into a landscape captured with a 24mm wide, without any adjustments, just doesn’t fly. We’ll use these two images photographed years apart: the sunset ridge photo produced in Yosemite National Park and a properly exposed moon captured above the San Francisco Bay Area. Both were shot with long telephoto lenses adding to their potential to work well together. The next concern is the lighting, weather conditions, and phase of the moon. With a clear sky, the moon could be viewed, but to match the lighting scenario, some adjustments need to be made. As for the moon phase, creating a composite with a proper phase is key since certain phases appear at specific times of the day. Take the full moon, which rises from the east at sunset and sets to the west at sunrise, opposite from the sun due to our position in between on Earth. Therefore, placing a full moon above a western sunset may look odd, because no one on our planet has even seen this view. Here we have the waxing gibbous moon captured slightly after its first quarter phase. First quarter moons in this Northern California location rise around midday, with variances depending on the time of day and surrounding landscape, and set between 6 p.m. and 1 a.m., again with similar stipulations, including the time of year. This gives us a window to place the first quarter moon in a twilight scene, especially if our angle is from a lower valley looking up toward a high ridge with the moon low in the sky, but not necessarily rising or setting. [KelbyOne members may download the files used in this tutorial at All files are for personal use only.]

› › k e l b yo n e . c o m

STEP ONE: A critical step in envisioning the final image—add-


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STEP TWO: Instead of opening both images, selecting the

STEP THREE: To make the moon visible for placement, reduce

moon, and pasting it into a new layer in the landscape scene, you can simply go to File>Scripts>Load Files into Stack. Click the Browse button, navigate to both images, select them, and click Open. Click OK in the Load Layers dialog, and Photoshop will open and load both images into one layered file. Place the landscape image on top in the Layers panel.

the Opacity of the landscape layer in the Layers panel to 40%. Using the Move tool (V), make the moon layer active and drag it to the desired place within the scene. After I tested a few spots, I deposited the moon in the bottom-left area slightly touching the ridge to add believability, to fit the rule of thirds compositionally, to squeeze it into the small opening between two pines, and because it just felt right.

STEP FOUR: In this specific case, the moon could have remained at its original size for the sunset scene—a feasible scenario—but to match lens length a bit more, let’s reduce it. Go to Edit>Transform>Scale, turn on the Maintain Aspect Ratio icon (chain) in the Options Bar between the Width and Height fields, and then enter 65% in either field. Press Enter to confirm the transformation.

STEP FIVE: Make the landscape layer active, raise its Opacity back to 100%, and then click on the icon that looks like a circle inside a square at the bottom of the Layers panel to add a white layer mask. The beauty of a layer mask is you can change it as much as you’d like following our nondestructive workflow model. When using the Brush tool (B) set to black (press D then X), you can paint on the white layer mask to hide areas of the landscape scene to reveal the moon. Paint a rough mask for now; we’ll fine-tune it in the next couple of steps.

STEP SIX: Once most of the moon is revealed, lower the landscape layer to 70% Opacity to fine-tune the layer mask that’s revealing the moon. Use the Zoom tool (Z) to get in roughly 200–300%. In the Options Bar, set the size of the Brush tool to around 20–30 pixels with a Hardness of approximately 40–50%. Paint on the layer mask to give the moon a smooth edge, but not too sharp. Adjust your brush size depending on sections you need to fine-tune. Tip: To quickly change the size of your brush, use the Bracket keys on your keyboard.

STEP EIGHT: Resize the brush to 200–300 pixels and set the

Layers panel, press X to switch the Foreground and Background colors so your brush is set to white. When it comes to layer masks, we always say black conceals and white reveals the layer that the mask is attached to. Use the brush to hide the part of the moon overlapping the landscape, revealing the rocks and tree in front of it. This matches the look of photographing the moon through our atmosphere and with a long telephoto lens. Take your time to perfect the subtle blend and connecting the moon with the landscape. If you remove too much of the moon, especially when your moon is touching part of a landscape or cityscape, you can press X to change the brush back to black and paint those areas of the moon back in. If you see any of the original black sky around the moon, set your brush to white to remove those areas. Check your progress by returning the landscape layer to 100% from time to time. Set it to 100% when you’re finished.

Hardness to 0% to soften the line of delineation from the lit side to the dark side of the moon. For an extra touch, you can add a layer mask to the moon image and draw a black-to-white gradient on it. Before drawing the gradient, duplicate the landscape layer (Command-J [PC: Ctrl-J]), delete the layer mask from the copied layer, and drag it below the moon layer in the Layers panel. To create the gradient, first add a layer mask to the moon layer, select the Gradient tool (G), and set the Foreground color to white and the Background to black. Click on the gradient thumbnail in the Options Bar, select the Foreground to Background preset, and click OK. Select the Linear Gradient icon in the Options Bar, and draw a line from the right side of the moon to the left to create a gradient. This will add to the fading to the dark side of the moon.

STEP NINE: The moon’s placement is complete, but it still looks unrealistic; it’s too bright and clear. In real images of the moon around these times of day, it often appears translucent, as if part of the sky is appearing through it. Think of the moon on a blue-sky day and how parts of the moon appear blue. It’s an atmospheric illusion, but it’s the way we see the moon during brighter times of the day. To mimic this, reduce the moon’s layer Opacity to 75% to reveal some of the landscape layer that we copied in the previous step. This will create the color of the sky on the moon, giving that translucent appearance. Finally, go to Layer>New Adjustment Layer>Levels and click OK. In the Properties panel, use the Increase Contrast 3 preset, then drag the black Output Levels slider to the right to reduce the black levels, adding to the realism of the Earth’s satellite at sunset or dusk.

STEP TEN: Because the moon appears a bit flat, apply a Brightness/Contrast adjustment layer (Layer>New Adjustment Layer>Brightness/Contrast) and drag both the Brightness and Contrast sliders to the desired levels in the Properties panel. This, along with some creative dodging and burning using the Dodge and Burn tools (O), gives the moon some directional light, fitting the context in this particular scene (the sun behind the horizon to the right). Consider that an in-camera image of an eye-catching moon at sunrise, sunset, dusk, or dawn can only be documented within a tight timeframe. The contrast between the moon and ambient light on the landscape must closely match in exposure. After this small window of balanced light, you often get a well-exposed moon and an underexposed landscape, or an overexposed white moon with a correctly exposed landscape. Therefore, if you place a perfectly exposed moon in a long-exposure night scene, or a bright full moon in a bright sunset scene, it will most likely not look realistic. Every scene is unique, so some play and experimentation in this step should be expected.

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STEP SEVEN: With the layer mask icon thumbnail active in the


STEP ELEVEN: The image is almost complete, but the sky’s tone

STEP TWELVE: Jumping back to the bottom landscape layer,

doesn’t match the time of day, as well as direction of the first quarter moon since it sets after sunset. In the top landscape layer, alter the color through Image>Adjustments>Hue/Saturation, giving it a twilight deep-blue tone to add to the dramatic mood.

make a similar adjustment and shift the Hue toward the blue to remove some of the warm tones in the moon, color balancing it with the landscape. The result is subtle, adding to the overall true-to-life feel.

STEP THIRTEEN: Our image file is complete. The final result of this composite retains the essential detail, color, and contrast while providing a natural look to a first quarter moon touching a high alpine ridge at twilight. It’s appropriate to caption the file as a digitally altered photograph, divulging the alterations made (whether in camera or in postcapture editing techniques) to maintain the trust of your clients and the public with your art.

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STEP FOURTEEN: Another option is


to convert the final file into a black-andwhite version, saving the second file with the suffix _bw. Once again, each image is unique and may not transfer well, but this monochromatic scene with its contrast, defining tones, and dramatic content does convert into black and white nicely. ■



In his highly anticipated second volume, Corey Barker reveals a brand new collection of the most mind-blowing Photoshop effects you’ve ever seen in one place. Photoshop’s most powerful features are unlocked, exposing an even bigger world of insane effects, making this book a Designer essential.

ORDER NOW or call 800.201.7323

Copyright 2014 KelbyOne – all rights reserved. All content in the above mentioned title is produced by KelbyOne. 333 Douglas Road East, Oldsmar, FL 34677. Adobe and Photoshop are registered trademarks of Adobe Systems, Incorporated.

HOW TO › ›

Photoshop Workbench the power of path blur


A long-wished-for capability in Photoshop is being able to control blur characteristics to better simulate real-world movement. New in Photoshop CC 2014 is a fantastic addition called Path Blur, part of the revamped Blur Gallery. As the name implies, this lets you use a path to define the look of blurs. That path can be bent and controlled in various ways, and even better is that you can use multiple paths to get tons of control over the final effect.

The image shown here was accomplished in just a few minutes using a mask and two Motion Paths. Thanks to help from Gregg Wilensky, Senior Principal Scientist in Adobe’s Imagination Lab, I can bring you all the details. Time to set up our workbench and see what this baby can do! Note: Due to space constraints, I’m sticking to the on-canvas tool, the Motion Path. There’s a Bonus Content PDF with more information, examples, and keyboard shortcuts included with the download files for this tutorial at the KelbyOne member site. [KelbyOne members may download the files used in this tutorial at All files are for personal use only.]

Let the Test Begin Our basic test image is a layer filled with 50% gray with added noise (Filter>Noise>Add Noise, then choose Gaussian, Monochromatic, and 40% for Amount). You can create your own file or use the one in the demo files.

Step One: With the noise layer active, go to Filter>Blur Gallery> Path Blur. The Blur Gallery will open and you’ll be presented with

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new Path Blur controls in the Blur Tools panel and a Motion Path



in the center of the canvas. The

Note: In more technical terms, setting the magnitude, direc-

noise has been blurred horizon-

tion, and curve of the Blur Shape vector defines a kernel. The

tally, much as you’d expect with

Motion Path applies constraints on blending the two end point

a basic Motion Blur effect. Ini-

kernels together. Each pixel is convoluted by averaging the

tially, the path is very compact,

effects of all kernels on the canvas, weighted by proximity and

but I show it here expanded so

constraints from the Motion Path. The end result of all of this

you can see the controls.

looks like a vector field, if you’re mathematically inclined.

Step Two: Start by clicking in

Step Six: Very quickly you’ll see that you can develop some

the larger circle on the right and

interesting effects with almost no effort. The Motion Path itself

then dragging. The Motion Path

doesn’t blur anything. Instead, it’s there to give you flexibility in

stretches, but only the direction

blending the two Blur Shapes. You can add midpoints (nodes)

of the blur changes (if you drag

to the Motion Path to create more curves by clicking on it. And

up or down), not the length.

by clicking on an open area of the canvas you can create more Motion Paths. Clicking multiple times gives you a Motion Path

Step Three: To change the shape and size of the blur, we’ll

with several nodes (press Enter one time to stop adding points),

use the Blur Shape control. Each Motion Path has exactly two

or you can click-and-drag to create a straight Motion Path with

Blur Shapes: one on each end. To see them, make sure that Edit

only one midpoint. When you have a pattern you like, click OK at

Blur Shapes is checked on in the Path Blur controls. Click-and-

the top of the workspace to commit and save the effect.

drag the rightmost small circle to stretch out the magenta Blur Shape vector. What changes do you notice across the canvas? Try dragging the midpoint of the Blur Shape vector to create a curve. Here’s what’s happening: Blur Shapes affect the apparent movement in their region. Dragging out the Blur Shape end point increases its speed and changes its angle, but doesn’t change the curve itself. The more speed you add, the more pronounced the effect of that Blur Shape.

Step Four: Try this: select the left end point (the large circle) Speed slider in the Path Blur controls to 0 px. You’ll see that the

Path Blur in Action

0 side has a small region that is unaffected, and the Blur Shape

Let’s take a quick look at the opening image, which is included

on the right end dominates, fading as it gets close to the 0 end

in the demo files for this article (PathBlur_Clouds.psd). I started

point. We’ll use this capability in the sample image at the end of

by duplicating the Background layer and masking out the fore-

the article.

ground. I then converted the copy to a smart object (Filter>Convert for Smart Filters) to retain flexibility. The sky is isolated in the smart

Step Five: Each Blur Shape can have different characteristics

object, so the blur will only apply there.

(speed, rotation angle, and curve). The Motion Path defines how the two Blur Shapes are blended together. Click-and-drag on the

Step One: Apply the filter as noted earlier (Filter>Blur Gallery>Path

Motion Path midpoint to see how the relationship between the

Blur) to the sky smart object layer. Curve the path to approximate

Blur Shapes affects the overall pattern.

the perspective curve, in this case the result of using a 14mm

› › k e l b yo n e . c o m

of the Motion Path so it has a dot in it, and drag the End Point



lens. Before adjusting the Blur Shapes, the blur looks like a simple

and-dragging it downward. Finish it by selecting each end point

left-to-right curve.

of the bottom Motion Path and moving the End Point Speed slider to 6 px. By setting these so low, you’re putting up a bound-

Step Two: To give a sense of the clouds moving toward the

ary to the effect from the top Motion Path.

viewer, drag out the Blur Shape end points and aim them at the focal point of the image—just below the horizon under the

Whew! That’s a lot of information, and I could have gone on lon-

central hill.

ger (in fact, I did!). The demo files have several examples as smart objects so you can see the paths in use several different ways. In

Step Three: It’s getting better, but adding a slight outward

actual use, this tool is pretty simple despite all the heavy-hitting

curve to each Blur Shape gives an even greater sense of motion.

code going on under the hood. The first thing I did with Path Blur

By having each Blur Shape curve differently, there’s more texture.

was to create bump maps for 3D cloth, so you’re absolutely not

Notice the wispy clouds in the upper right against blue sky.

limited to photographic effects.

Step Four: To sell the perspective, duplicate the first Motion

ment. I’m excited to see what you come up with. Be sure to share

Path by holding Option-Command (PC: Alt-Ctrl) then clicking-

your results on ■

Try this tool out anywhere you want to add a sense of move-

Step Two

Step Three

Step Four

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Step One




t u n e t u n e

i n i n

a t a t

k e l b y o n e . c o m / w e b c a s t s k e l b y o n e . c o m / w e b c a s t s

HOW TO › ›

Beyond Photoshop


creating a 3d book cover

I recently self-published a book and want to show you how I created a 3D cover for its product page. There are many who charge for 3D book cover services but you can create your own with a little knowledge of the 3D feature set in Photoshop.

Step One: Choose File>New. Select Pixels from the Width dropdown and type 1000 for Width and 1000 for Height. Type “3D Book” in the Name field and click OK. Choose 3D>New Mesh from Layer>Mesh Preset>Cube. Note: Cube Wrap is another mesh preset that wraps a single texture map around all six surfaces of a cube. That’s not what we want here in our 3D book project because we want to have separate texture maps on each surface—so select (normal) Cube. The background becomes transparent and it might not be obvious that the document window now displays the front surface of a 3D cube, but that is the case.

Step One

Step Two: Switch to the 3D workspace by selecting it from the drop-down menu on the extreme right side of the Options Bar if this hasn’t already happened automatically. In the 3D panel, verify that the Current View node is highlighted. This is necessary or you would be rotating the 3D object (changing the relationship between the object and its coordinate system). Instead, we want to rotate the 3D camera that we’re viewing the cube through so that the cube object stays on the grid. Press V to select the Move tool and select the first icon in the Options Bar in the 3D Mode set of icons. Drag down and to the left to reposition the camera up and to the right as shown.

Step Two

› › p h ot o s h o p u s e r › s e p t e m b e r 2 0 1 4

Step Three: Open Cover.png. This is my book cover but in


your own projects you would design your own and perhaps use File>Place to place it in the 3D Book document window instead to retain editability. Choose Image>Image Size. At 1000x1000 px this book cover has a square aspect ratio, and at 72 pages the book isn’t too thick, so we want to keep these two facts in mind when designing the 3D book cover for this project. [KelbyOne members may download the file used in this tutorial at All files are for personal use only.]

Step Four: Go back to the 3D Book file, open the Layers panel, and double-click Front_Material – Default Texture to open its PSB document window. Select the document window for Cover.png, and while holding Shift, drag the cover into Layer 0.psb. Save and close Layer 0.psb.

Step Three

Step Four


Step Five: In the 3D Book file, select the Cube folder in the 3D panel. Then, in the Properties panel, observe that the scale in each dimension (X, Y, and Z) is 500%. (Note: If the Scale values aren’t listed in percentages, click the Scale icon above the column and choose Scale from the menu.) Try varying the X scale by positioning the cursor over the letter X in the Properties panel and clicking-and-dragging to the left or right. Press Command-Z (PC: Ctrl-Z) to undo. Try this again for the Y scale and Z scale. For this square aspect ratio cover, we’ll leave X and Y with equal scale percentages. Book thickness is in the Z dimension. Set Z scale to 33.3% to approximate a book of 72 pages.

Step Five

Step Six: In the Layers panel, double-click Right_Material – Default Texture to open its PSB document window. To simulate the variation in the stack of paper in the book’s interior, choose Layer>New Fill Layer>Gradient. Type “Paper” in the Name field of the New Layer dialog and click OK. Set Angle to 0° in the Gradient Fill dialog and click the gradient swatch. Change Gradient Type to Noise in the Gradient Editor. If the colors in the gradient ramp are uniform, click the Randomize button at the bottom right of the dialog until you see a bunch of colors. Click OK and OK again.

Step Six

Step Seven: Choose Layer>New Adjustment Layer>Black & White, and click OK. Choose Layer>New Adjustment Layer>Brightness/Contrast, and click OK. In the Properties panel, drag Brightness to 122 and Contrast all the way to 100. Reselect Black & White 1 in the Layers panel and vary the color sliders in the Properties panel so that you have a set of dark streaks simulating paper. Select Brightness/Contrast 1 in the Layers panel, choose Layer>New Adjustment Layer>Hue/Saturation, and click OK. In the Properties panel, check Colorize and set Hue to 40, Saturation to 40, and Lightness to –10. Save the PSB document window but don’t close it yet. Step Seven

Step Eight: In the 3D Book file, double-click Top_Material – Default Texture in the Layers panel. Reselect the Right_Material document window and Shift-select all four of its layers. Drag these into the Top_Material document window. In the Layers panel, double-click the Paper layer thumbnail, change Angle to 90° in the Gradient Fill dialog, and click OK. Save and close both PSB document windows.

Step Nine

Step Nine: Return to your working file and in the 3D panel,

Step Ten: Click the Render icon at the bottom of the 3D panel— the 3D book is complete. ■

› › k e l b yo n e . c o m

select Infinite Light 1. Press V to select the Move tool and drag the light to control the position of its shadow on the ground so that it appears on the right of the book and fits within the document window. Open the Add New Light to Scene menu (light bulb icon) at the bottom of the 3D panel and choose New Infinite Light. In the Properties panel, uncheck Shadow and decrease its Intensity to 80%. Drag this light to illuminate the right and top surfaces’ texture maps.

Step Ten


Product Reviews ArcSoft Portrait+ 3 Easy Automatic Retouching for Portraits Review by Daniel M. East

There’s so much software that chases Photoshop with regard to correcting and retouching photographs. The fine line between images that have been corrected almost undetectably and those that seem like unrealistic plastic surgery is often crossed. When it comes to faces, however, there’s an easy way to retouch with just a few clicks. Portrait+ does the job that used to take a lot more time with the on-board tools of Adobe Photoshop. ArcSoft’s automatic facial-feature detection is surprisingly accurate. Portrait+ works best with head-on portraits; with some side shots, you may not be able to use the detection feature. The results from corrections to almost any portrait are quite good, though. Simply select from the presets, or manually adjust each type of correction to get the look you want. For eye clarity, color, skin smoothing, smile correction, blemish removal, and more, ease of use is the key to Portrait+. Instead of manually correcting images, or using action sets that are the more sought-after fixes to many types of portraiture, Portrait+ can save you time.

Portrait+ is available as a standalone version for $179.99, which includes the Photoshop plug-in. The Photoshop plugin by itself is $79.99; however, only the standalone app can batch-process your images. (According to the website, the Windows plug-in can create action sets to batch process.) The Mac standalone app supports more file types (including RAW images), whereas the Windows version supports only JPEG, TIFF, PNG, and BMP with 24-bits per pixel. The plug-in versions support any Photoshop 8-bit images. If you want an easy way to get great results from retouching faces, from single subjects to family portraits, go straight for the Portrait+ software. ■ Company: ArcSoft

Price: $179.99


Rating: ◆ ◆ ◆ ◆

Hot: Easy; effective; accurate Not: Side-view facial detection

Nikon COOLPIX P600 Zoom, Zoom, Zoom

› › p h ot o s h o p u s e r › s e p t e m b e r 2 0 1 4


If you’re looking for a camera that shoots faraway objects (birds, the moon, or your kid on stage from the back of the auditorium when you arrive late for her recital), then I have the compact camera for you: the Nikon COOLPIX P600. At 60x optical zoom, it’s the only camera in its category that zooms to 1,440mm. If you want more zoom, you can use Nikon’s Dynamic Fine Zoom to digitally increase the focal length. I found the results very usable when shot from a tripod. Other parts I like on the P600 are the 3" Vari-angle LCD and the array of manual and auto shooting modes. The LCD flips out to the left side of the camera, and can be flipped all the way around for selfies or monitoring your video recording from the front. It also has an electronic viewfinder, but if you’ve ever used a quality viewfinder on a DSLR, you’ll know why I’m not a real fan. The manual and auto shooting modes are excellent and recently allowed me to capture a great handheld image of the Blood Moon. My number one request to improve or add to this camera is to include RAW format in picture mode—it’s JPEG only. The


Review by Rod Harlan

autofocus is also slower than most of its contemporaries, which can cost you to miss a shot. Finally, as a guy who’s shot a lot of video, I found that the lens makes a good bit of noise when moving, which can ruin a nice video when recording. Overall, Nikon COOLPIX P600 is about one thing: providing you with one of the most impressive zoom mechanisms on a lightweight compact camera. On that fact, it can’t be beat. ■ Company: Nikon Inc.

Price: $499.95


Rating: ◆ ◆ ◆ ◆

Hot: Amazing 60x long lens zoom Not: No RAW support; autofocus a little slow

Lenovo ThinkPad W540 Thin, Light, Mobile Workstation Review by Bruce Bicknell

More and more, laptops are replacing desktops in the workplace and at home. Creative professionals are no exception, as we want to take our power on the go without having to work from a network or external drive. The ThinkPad W540 from Lenovo is bringing us to that point. In a laptop, I need two things: horsepower and resolution. Horsepower’s no problem, as the ThinkPad W540 that I tested came with an Intel Core i7-4800MQ (6 MB, up to 3.7 GHz) and 8GB RAM (upgradeable to 16 GB), and it ran effortlessly in all of the Adobe Creative Cloud programs. As far as screen resolution, I haven’t found many laptops that can compete with the MacBook Pro; but I found it here with the ThinkPad’s 15.5", 3K (2880x1620), impressive display with integrated color calibrator. Couple that with the NVIDIA Quadro K2100M (2-GB GDDR5 VRAM), a 256-GB SSD drive, and we’re cooking with gas! I imported an entire catalog from a shoot into Lightroom in the same time it took on my powerful desktop, and editing photos was a pleasure, as the display provided all the pixels I needed. It also rendered a video project quickly, and ran After Effects without bringing the laptop to its knees.

It also has a few bells and whistles: a modern Thunderbolt port (for data, displays, and multiple devices in a chain); two USB 2 and two USB 3 ports; and a card reader. An HDMI port would be nice, but you can use an adapter with the Thunderbolt connection—cumbersome, but not a deal breaker. At 5.5 lbs, the Lenovo ThinkPad W540 is easy to carry, and for the money, it’s definitely worth consideration as a viable option for a desktop replacement, or for a user who needs portable power. ■ Company: Lenovo

Price: $2,260.05 (as tested)


Rating: ◆ ◆ ◆ ◆

Hot: Display; NVIDIA card; Thunderbolt; USB ports Not: Design is a bit dated; no HDMI port

Ninja Blade Portable HDMI Recorder, Monitor, and Playback Deck Review by Erik Vlietinck

and color adjustments when lighting conditions change. The vectorscope functionality allows you to white balance and color match across clips. Unique to the Ninja Blade is that you can actually colorcalibrate its panel with an optional, portable colorimeter. This results in a monitor image that you can visually trust to render colors accurately over time. The Ninja Blade also has SmartLog capabilities, allowing you to approve or reject clips and export this metadata as a Final Cut Pro X XML file. ■ Company: Atomos

Price: $995


Rating: ◆ ◆ ◆ ◆ ◆

Hot: Color management; screen quality; dynamic range; price Not:

› › k e l b yo n e . c o m

The Ninja Blade is the latest 10-bit HDMI video recorder, monitor, and player from Atomos. With its gorgeous SuperAtom IPS touchscreen, the Ninja Blade has the ability to overlay waveform monitors and a vectorscope, plus it has a plethora of other features that make it a must-have for DSLR videographers. The Ninja Blade records 10-bit 4:2:2 video at a maximum resolution of 1920x1080 to Apple ProRes 422 or Avid DNxHD onto inexpensive 2.5" hard disks or solid-state drives. The monitor and player part of the offering sets the Ninja Blade apart. The 16:9, 5" reflective screen with a resolution of 1280x720 has been factory-calibrated to the REC 709 HDTV color specification. Its native frame-rate playback is autoswitchable between 48, 50, and 60 Hz. The 325-ppi screen has a maximum viewing angle of 179° at 400nit brightness. The screen provides especially accurate color evaluation. A resizable Luma overlay, RGB parade, and vectorscope complete the package. Activating the RGB parade across the lower third of the screen is a boon for applying real-time exposure



› ›

Acer K272HUL Display Budget Widescreen Monitor Review by Steve Baczewski

The Acer 27" widescreen K272HUL display offers lots of room with an impressive, sharp, native resolution of 2560x1440 in a 16:9 aspect ratio. It has abundant connectivity, built-in speakers, and a great price for people on a budget; however, a few conventional ergonomic features are missing. A 3/4" shiny black bezel frames the 27" display. It has a fivebutton control panel at the bottom right, which is difficult to see because the black buttons are indistinguishable from the rest of the frame. The screen has a sturdy base; however, it only tilts back and forth. There’s no swivel, no height adjustment, or ability to change orientation from landscape to portrait. The control panel has some good basic features, such as sliders for adjusting brightness, contrast, and individual colors by saturation and hue; but none for adjusting color temperature. Instead, factory presets allow standard viewing of graphics and movies. Using DataColor’s Spyder4 to calibrate the display, I got a decent response, but could only achieve 80% of the Adobe RGB color space. (This might be a deal breaker for demanding photographers and graphic artists who need a wider color space.)

Still, its large, LED backlit, nonglare screen has an impressive viewing angle of approximately 170°, making it ideal for viewing multiple documents or movies with friends. Its modest 60-Hz refresh rate should be fast enough for economic-minded gamers, as well. The display has most of the ports you’ll need: two HDMI ports, two DisplayPorts, a DVI port, and audio jack. The Acer K272HUL might not be ideal for photo editing but it’s a terrific display for all-around use. ■ Company: Acer Inc.

Price: $399.99


Rating: ◆ ◆ ◆

Hot: Inexpensive; wide screen Not: Tilt-only screen; narrow color space; no USB ports

Olloclip 4-in-1 Photo Lens Fisheye, Wide-Angle, and Macro Lens for the iPhone

› › p h ot o s h o p u s e r › s e p t e m b e r 2 0 1 4

Review by Steve Baczewski


Olloclip’s impressive, compact, 4-in-1 Photo Lens takes Apple iPhone 5 and 5s picture-taking capability to another level. This quick-connect lens straddles the iPhone’s built-in lens, and on one side is a wide angle; the other a fisheye. Simply remove the 4-in-1 and flip it over to change lenses. The outer elements unscrew to access a 10x and 15x macro lens. The 4-in-1 lens, made of glass and housed in a solidly built aluminum casing, measures 1.5", weighs less than 1 oz, and slips on with a reassuring, snug fit. Before using the lens, you have to remove your phone’s case; however, Olloclip sells the Quick-Flip Case, an optional specialized case that includes the Pro-Photo Adapter (for mounting on a tripod or attaching a microphone or light) and a hinged corner that swings out of the way to let you mount the lens. It’s cleverly designed to let you use it to trip the phone’s plus volume “shutter” button. The wide-angle lens approximately doubles your field of view and is very effective in tight spaces and landscapes. Although it’s sharp, there’s some edge softness and barrel distortion, and Olloclip provides a free app to correct the barrel distortion. The fisheye approximates 180° and is fun for those fisheye occasions; the images it produces are sharp at the center and soft at the

edges. The pièce de resistance is its two amazing macro lenses, which extend a detailed view of the world that’s easily overlooked. They have impressive lens quality and strength to close in on your subject. Warning: The 4-in-1 lens covers both the iPhone’s power switch and flash. Olloclip’s 4-in-1 Photo Lens comes with lens caps and a soft carrying bag that doubles as a lens cleaner. It’s practical, well designed, easy-to-use, and fun. ■ Company: Olloclip

Price: $69.99 ($99.99 with case)


Rating: ◆ ◆ ◆ ◆ ◆

Hot: Versatile accessory Not: Small size makes it easy to mislay

HP DreamColor Z27x Professional Display Delivers Clarity, Contrast, and Saturation Review by Daniel M. East

There are many marketing terms that are used to describe display monitors, such as “bold colors” or “vibrant images.” For the design professional, however, a natural, more neutral, and completely accurate representation of your work is what tends to produce the best results. The DreamColor Z27x is just that: a professional display that delivers beautiful images with all of the clarity, contrast, and saturation for a well-balanced view of your work. As always, the first step for me was to calibrate the display, and it dialed in easily. In fact, after nearly a dozen test images, it became clear that everything looked better on this display. Given its price, there are definitely less expensive displays; but if your work is color-specific and will be used for more critical applications, the HP DreamColor Z27x is worth every penny. Its only real competition would be either the NEC PA271W-BK, which doesn’t have the Z27x’s 100% Adobe RGB color coverage (although its MSRP is a few hundred dollars less) or the Apple 27" Thunderbolt Display (at around $1,000) that has more screen glare, saturation, and contrast.

The Z27x will run in either landscape or portrait mode to produce sharp, clean edges and hues. Truly, any output that you create looks exactly as you intended. Its 2560x1440 resolution and 16:9 aspect ratio give you the whole image with outstanding accuracy (and 4K input support, as well). The quality is so clear that you may find yourself opening random images just to see how they appear on this display. So, if your work includes HD video, animation, graphics, or high-resolution photography, the HP DreamColor Z27x is a dream come true. ■ Company: Hewlett-Packard Development Company, L.P. Price: $1,499 Web:

Rating: ◆ ◆ ◆ ◆ ◆

Hot: Color; clarity; accuracy; coverage Not:

Serge Ramelli’s Lightroom Presets complete collection

Lightroom Presets: Volumes 1 - 8 over 450 presets to instantly transform your photographs

Photoshop User Discount!

$21600 $8200

Just use code “PSU82” at checkout Volume 1 Chic

Volume 2 Lights

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Volume 8 Winter


› ›

Ray Flash 2 Universal Ring Flash Adapter Review by Mike Mackenzie

Ray Flash 2 is a universal ring flash adapter that emulates the classic studio ring light look that studio photographers cherish for portrait and macro photography and makes it available for photographers on location shoots. It’s available in two versions: Short, for most camera bodies; and Long, for taller cameras such as the Nikon D4 and the Canon EOS-1D X. The Ray Flash mounts to an external hot-shoe flash via a tension fitting over the flash head. Through a series of acrylic bends and turns, the flash (light) enters a ring around the camera lens and is projected evenly throughout the surface onto the subject. There’s a rubber ring that fits around the flash to keep the flash head from drooping from the weight. It’s a simple, elegant design, if not a bit bulky. To get the most out of the Ray Flash, and have easy access to the zoom ring on your lens, mount your camera on a tripod. Yes, it’s possible to use the Ray Flash off tripod, but it’s a bit of a handful, especially if you’re working with a model and need to change your zoom in an instant. In testing, I used a bare flash, the built-in diffuser, and the Ray Flash 2 in a series of photos at different exposures, focal lengths,

and with a variety subjects. In each series, the Ray Flash yielded photos with softer shadows, creating distance between the subject and background and adding detail. The light was predictably brighter near the center of the image, but the falloff wasn’t dramatic. I was able to duplicate the studio ring flash look at a close distance. The Ray Flash 2 won’t replace your studio setup, but it will give you very good results without all the equipment and at a fraction of the cost. ■ Company: ExpoImaging, Inc.

Price: $139.95


Rating: ◆ ◆ ◆ ◆

Hot: Performance; versatility Not: Bulk; expensive external flash modifier

Intensify Pro Bring Out Detail and Add Contrast to Your Images

› › p h ot o s h o p u s e r › s e p t e m b e r 2 0 1 4

Review by Erik Vlietinck


Intensify Pro, a standalone app from Macphun Software, intensifies your images by bringing out details and structure. Using a brush and gradient tool to control the areas you want to improve, it offers total control over contrast and sharpness. (You can also run Intensify Pro as a plug-in for Adobe Photoshop, Lightroom, Elements, and Apple Aperture, and it’s available as a free trial.) When you start the app, you’ll have immediate access to a large range of presets, including monochrome and faux HDR. The real fun starts, though, when you adjust the presets to your liking. You can layer the adjustments so you only affect parts of your image and, because you control the size of the brush, it allows for granular adjustments. It’s easy to go overboard, but subtle improvements in contrast and detail are possible, too. (The only criticism I have with regard to the layer system is that the option for making layer masks visible should be a button instead of being buried in a menu.) Almost every tool allows you to tune parameters in the shadows, highlights, and midtones separately, resulting in dramatically different-looking images. The Details panel lets you reveal smaller

details by turning on micro-contrast, while Micro Sharpness will sharpen your image without introducing artifacts. There’s also a Masking slider that allows you to block the effect in areas that need to stay blurry or soft. A nice touch is that you can save your edits to an Intensify file format so that you can work on an image later. The exporting functionality is great, too. In addition to direct export to SmugMug, Intensify Pro also integrates with Macphun Print Lab, which is powered by MILK Books. ■ Company: Macphun Software

Price: $59.99


Rating: ◆ ◆ ◆ ◆ ◆

Hot: Presets; granular adjustments; layer masks Not:

Nikon COOLPIX AW120 Rugged Compact Camera Review by Mike Mackenzie

Back in 2012, I reviewed the Nikon COOLPIX AW100, so I was excited when Nikon announced the COOLPIX AW120, their third generation camera in the rugged compact segment. What improvements has Nikon made? The body is slightly redesigned (emphasis on slightly) and now it’s even more rugged. The AW120 is waterproof to 59', freezeproof to 14° F, and shockproof up to 6.6'. Inside, the AW120 has a 16-megapixel CMOS sensor; Hybrid VR (vibration reduction); GPS with mapping, electronic compass, and points of interest; and built-in Wi-Fi connectivity so you can share your journey via email, text, or on social networks. The AW120 has a 5x optical zoom (24–120mm equivalent); 3", 921,000-dot OLED monitor; and a faster f/2.8–4.9 lens. The back of the camera has a series of small buttons, their size allowing for the 3" monitor. It’s not an ideal setup for anyone wearing gloves (skiers, divers, etc.), but everyone else should have no problem using the buttons, with one exception: The Movie button is very close to the zoom rocker switch and it’s easy to push the Movie button while zooming. The camera strap is, well, not

ideal. The AW120 has a full neck camera strap that requires disassembly to attach it to the camera. This strap makes one-handed use difficult at times. A fully articulating wrist strap would suit this camera much better. Performance is greatly improved, especially in low-light situations. The scene modes work better and photos are sharp, unlike the AW100, which frequently yielded soft photos. Viewing the scene modes has changed from a full view to a scrolling list on the OLED. To me, this is not an improvement as it takes longer to find the appropriate scene. The Nikon COOLPIX AW120 is a tough camera that performs well. If you’re in the market for a rugged compact camera, you owe it to yourself to take a look. ■ Company: Nikon Inc.

Price: $349.95


Rating: ◆ ◆ ◆ ◆

Hot: Rugged build; improved low-light performance Not: Small buttons; position of Movie button; strap; no RAW

Accurate .Efficient .Deliberate


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$15 off use coupon code PSUSER15

Photoshop training with Blake Rudis For more information visit


› ›

Manfrotto X PRO 3-Way Head Make Precise Adjustments with Retractable Levers Review by Michael Corsentino

Long a favorite among photographers looking for maximum control and flexibility, three-way tripod heads have traditionally been bulky, heavy, and cumbersome pieces of equipment. This was due in large part to their long pan and tilt levers, and heavy-duty metal construction. With the recent introduction of its X PRO 3-Way Head, Manfrotto has taken all the benefits and sought-after features of the three-way head and rolled them into a new, compact, lightweight, yet extremely sturdy aluminum build. In addition, the X PRO has patent-pending retractable levers that you can extend when needed or retract when not in use. This is Manfrotto’s most compact, precise, and reliable three-way photographic head to date. When the levers are retracted, the head occupies a slim 5.1x5.3x5.3" footprint, making it easy to pack and carry for location photo shoots. The X PRO 3-Way Head weighs in at only 2.2 lbs, but don’t let its welter weight status fool you, this three-way head is a real champ that can support up to 17.6 lbs. The X PRO 3-Way Head’s tilt- and portrait-axes friction controls provide the balance necessary for heavy camera equipment loads,

while allowing you to make flexible, precise adjustments without locking down. Once the desired framing is achieved, the head is ready to be locked into place. Three bubble levels on the head provide the feedback necessary for proper leveling, and make getting it right in camera a snap. Engineered to be the perfect set of features, performance, and design to match with Manfrotto’s celebrated 190 and 055 tripods, the X PRO 3-Way Head is offered alone or in several tripod and head kit combinations. ■ Company: Manfrotto Distribution Inc.

Price: $156


Rating: ◆ ◆ ◆ ◆ ◆

Hot: Innovative design; compact; lightweight; sturdy Not:

Rocket Travel Slider Lightweight Gear for Filmmakers on the Go

› › p h ot o s h o p u s e r › s e p t e m b e r 2 0 1 4

Review by Michael Corsentino


Are you lusting after supersmooth dolly shots for your DLSR filmmaking, without the traditional bulk and expense typically associated with this kind of high-production gear? The Rocket Travel Slider from Aviator Camera Gear gives filmmakers an affordable and extremely compact dolly solution. This cleverly designed slider is built to travel and makes professional, smooth-as-silk dolly shots possible up to 10' long anywhere in the world. Setup takes just minutes, and the length is up to you: 2', 4', 6', or all the way up to 10'. Yes, this is possible in a compact slider. The secret lies in the Rocket’s compatibility with standard, inexpensive conduit pipe, available in most hardware stores. This means you travel only with the Base Kit and pick up conduit in the lengths you need, when and where you need it. The Rocket Travel Slider is compatible with most metal conduit pipe with an outside diameter of 28–32mm (in the U.S., it’s known as 1" EMT pipe). For more local applications, Aviator Camera Gear offers an optional carbon fiber Travel Tracks kit for $497, which provides the ultimate in lightweight and compact portability. In addition, the optional Aviator Micro Hi-Hat at $125 permits

leveling of any 75mm bowl (a.k.a. half-ball) mount fluid head on your Rocket Travel Slider. The Rocket Base Kit weighs just 3.5 lbs, supports an impressive maximum load of up to 45 lbs, and packs down into a compact 2.5x9.5x16" padded case. Easily supporting high-end pro cameras (such as the Epic, Sony F55, HDSLRs, or Blackmagic Cinema Camera, and many more), the Rocket Travel Slider brings professional dolly shots to the masses. ■ Company: Aviator Camera Gear

Price: Base Kit: $497; Travel Tracks: $497; Hi-Hat $125


Rating: ◆ ◆ ◆ ◆ ◆

Hot: Lightweight; compact; flexible; heavy-duty design Not:


Know just what you need from Photoshop to create images that break barriers. Scott Kelby, author of the #1 best-selling book on Lightroom, uncovers the magic of Photoshop in this quick, easy-to-follow guide specifically designed for the Lightroom user.

AVAILABLE AT KELBYONE.COM / BOOKS Copyright 2013 KelbyOne. Produced by KelbyOne, 333 Douglas Road East, Oldsmar, FL 34677. KelbyOne is a Kelby Media Group company.



› ›

Photographing People Like A Pro: A Guide to Digital Portrait Photography

Silent Book for Photoshop CC/CS6

This title, available only as an eBook, is a complete rewrite of his

While researching iBook and Kindle publications about Photo-

earlier (paper) books on the subject. (Note that the actual num-

shop and digital photography, I came across this interesting

› › p h ot o s h o p u s e r › s e p t e m b e r 2 0 1 4

By Rod Edwards


By Magno Urbano

ber of pages and accuracy of in-book page number references

little project. It advertises itself as “a book written without a

varies depending on the size at which you’re reading. I found

single word.” And while there is no text—the entire book is

Full Screen mode most comfortable, with the page count drop-

a series of screenshots with elements to illustrate or explain

ping to 330.) The author presents practical advice, especially for

what’s happening in the screenshot—there are lots of words

beginners, about how to capture interesting images of people.

in the screenshots. (It would be very difficult to, for example,

The book contains lots of info on shooting outdoors, but also

instruct someone to make a selection from the Filter menu

covers portraiture captured in the studio. The example photos

without the words that appear in the menu.) In essence, this

are well chosen and the author includes info on what lens and

is a series of nine projects that use mostly basic Photoshop

settings were used to create the images. Among the subjects

techniques to introduce the reader to using the program.

covered are cameras, lenses, lighting, focus, location, black

Each page has up to a dozen steps for that project. The

and white, and of course, Photoshop. (There’s lots of info on

concept is interesting and once you get a handle on how it

lenses.) The iBook version is purchased through iTunes, while

works, it’s fairly workable. It might make an interesting gag

the Kindle version is available through

gift for a Photoshop user.

Publisher: Rod Edwards Photography

Publisher: Magno Urbano

Pages: 499 (reviewed as eBook)

Website: iBook:; Kindle: Price: iBook: $7.99; Kindle $8.99

Rating: ◆ ◆ ◆ ◆ ◆

Pages: 106

Website: iBook:; Kindle: Price: $9.99

Rating: ◆ ◆ ◆ ◆ ◆

KelbyOne Members Receive Exclusive Discounts from B&H plus Free Shipping

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D E PA R T M E N T › ›

Photoshop Tips

boost your productivity and creativity


There’s nothing more thrilling than discovering a faster or bet-

the various fonts in the drop-down menu to see live font previews

ter way of doing a task that you’ve done repeatedly, sometimes

on any selected text in your document.

for years. Of course, sometimes you want to slap yourself for wasting so much time in the past. Don’t slap yourself, though,

Better Facebook Photos

and regret the past; just be happy with all the time you’ll save

If you’re outputting photos to share on social networks or

in the future. Next issue, I start my new column on therapy for

through email, then don’t go to the Save menu. Go to File>Save

Photoshop regret (I’m joking, just in case you didn’t pick up on

for Web, instead. What? I thought that was just for Web

it). In this issue, I have tried to provide something for everyone. If

designers? Nope, it’s for everyone and increasingly so. When

you’re a photographer, retoucher, designer, or animator, there’s

you choose Save for Web, you can see how the compression

something for you this issue.

looks on an image. You can also scale it and even embed a color profile. This is your Swiss Army knife for outputting photos. Of

Font Previews A useful option is the ability to create font previews. This

Interactive Layer Styles

is when you see an example

Layer styles are those wonderful things that make objects look

of what the font will look

supercool. These styles range from bevels to glows to drop shad-

like next to its name. You

ows and more. One thing that you might not be aware of is their

can see this by choosing

onscreen interactivity. You can drag on the screen and change

the Type tool (T) and click-

the positioning of some of the layer styles as you’re creating

ing on the font drop-down

them. Double-click to the right of a layer’s name in the Layers

menu at the top in the

panel to open the Layer Style dialog, and notice what happens if

Options Bar. You used to have to go into Photoshop Preferences to change the size of these previews, but now they’re easily changed from a handy menu. Go to Type>Font Preview Size (make sure that your cur-

› › p h ot o s h o p u s e r › s e p t e m b e r 2 0 1 4

sor isn’t inserted in the


course, you could use it for Web work, too.

text, or you have any text highlighted, or this option will be grayed out). You can hide the previews completely, or change the size from Small to Huge. If you highlight your text with the Type tool, and then click in the font field in the Options Bar, when you use your Up and Down Arrow keys on your keyboard, you get a preview of the currently selected font in the document. If you updated to the latest version of Photoshop CC (2014), you can simply hover over

you drag on the screen while creating Drop Shadows, Gradient Overlays, and Pattern Overlays—you can move them around in the document. This is so much better than moving sliders, trying to get things to fit properly.

Sharing Layers and Masks Between Documents I’m positive that you already know you can stack different images on top of each other and mask them to make compositions, but did you know you can take a single layer complete with a layer mask and copy it to a different image? Yes you can and it’s easy. The first thing you need to do is view the images side by side. Choose Window>Arrange>Tile All Vertically. Of course, you can choose a different tile option if you want. The important thing is


to be able to see both images. Click-and-drag the layer with the

a layer style to a different layer by dragging-and-dropping the

layer mask from the Layers panel and drop it on the second win-

layer style.

dow. Your layer will be copied to the new document along with its layer mask. You can also do this with multiple layers at once.

Nondestructive Power Line Removal

Animate Warped Text Warping text is fun to do. With the text warp controls that have been in Photoshop for, well, forever, it’s also easy to accomplish.

As you know there are always different ways to do the same

You can taper text, arc it, bend it, twist it, and more. To access

thing in Photoshop. One example is removing things from pho-

this tool, add some text with the Type tool (T). In the Options Bar,

tos. We have cloning, content-aware tools, path tools, and more.

you’ll see the Create Warped Text tool; it’s the T with an arc under

There’s one method, however, that’s truly nondestructive and

it. Here’s the really cool part: you can animate this in Photoshop.

that’s the Spot Removal tool (B) in Camera Raw. If you have CC,

Simply create some warped text, and open the Timeline panel

this tool does so much more than just remove spots; now it’s a

(Window>Timeline). Click the Create Video Timeline button in the

full-featured content-aware, cloning tool. Here’s a great tip for

middle of the timeline panel. Click the disclosure triangle to the left

removing power lines and other linear distractions. Click once

of the text in the timeline to open the animation options. You’ll see

with the tool, then reposition your curser, hold down the Shift

a Text Warp option. Use this to animate your text over time.

key, and click a second time. The Spot Removal tool will fill in

To create the animation, click on the stopwatch to the left of

the image in a straight line between the two clicks, as if you had

the Text Warp option to add a keyframe at the current position

dragged through the image with the tool.

of the playhead, and then drag the playhead further down the timeline. Click on the Create Warped text icon in the Options Bar, make a few changes, and click OK (only adjust the sliders for the current Style in the Warp Text dialog; if you change the Style, it won’t animate). You’ll see another keyframe automatically appear at the current position of the playhead. Drag the playhead back and forth to preview the animation. It’s really cool and a little funky.

Blur Tool Zero Setting I really love the tools in the Blur Gallery. If you aren’t familiar with the Blur Gallery, it’s a suite of nondestructive, interactive blurs: Field Blur, Iris Blur, and Tilt-Shift. You’ll find them under Filter>Blur in the previous version of CC. You can experiment by dragging how the blur will affect the image. It’s quick and easy and the

When working with layer styles, it’s not uncommon to want to

effect isn’t applied to the photo until you commit it by clicking

copy your styles to other layers so they take on the same appear-

the OK button in the Options Bar. The recent 2014 release of

ance. There are a couple of ways to accomplish this quickly. In

Photoshop CC added two new tools to this set of blurs: Path

the Layers panel, find the layer with the style on it and Right-click

Blur and Spin Blur. Blur Gallery is also its own menu item under

on the little ƒx to the right of its name. You’ll see an option to

Filter in this version. [For more on Path Blur, see “Photoshop

Copy Layer Style. Right-click on the layer to which you want to

Workbench” on page 100.—Ed.]

copy the style and choose Paste Layer Style. That’s it! If you want

But there’s one thing that may have always bugged you with

to paste it to multiple layers at once, just select all of those layers

the Blur Gallery. When you’re using the tools that require more

in the Layers panel before choosing Paste Layer Style. There’s

than one wheel, you need to set one of them to zero to get a

a quicker way if you just want to copy the style to one layer at

good effect (such as Field Blur). This isn’t hard, but it does require

a time. You can hold down the Option (PC: Alt) key and click-

a lot of dragging sliders. To set a wheel to zero, simply hold Com-

and-drag the layer style onto other layers. When you drop the

mand (PC: Ctrl) and click on the wheel. This only works on the

layer style, it will be copied to those layers. You can also move

latest release of Photoshop CC. ■

› › k e l b yo n e . c o m

these little wheels across your photo and see

Duplicating a Layer Style


Photoshop September 2014




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From The Help Desk › ›

Answers to Photoshop and gear-related questions BY PETER BAUER

The latest updates to Photoshop CC no longer support Flash-based panels. What should I do about the various panels I have relied upon in the past?—Rod

› › p h ot o s h o p u s e r › s e p t e m b e r 2 0 1 4

To: Rod From: KelbyOne Help Desk


The first thing to do is check to see if the author of those

specific pages often also include links to other products

Flash-based panels has prepared HTML-based versions.

by the same producer. (On your first visit, enter “Russell

If not, and if you really do rely on those panels, there’s

Brown” into the Search field and take a look at what

no reason not to keep two versions of Photoshop CC on

the inimitable Dr. Brown has been up to. You’ll find a

your computer (although only one should be running at

number of very useful—and free—add-ons.)

any given time). When you need to work with the Flash

If you don’t have Adobe Extension Manager CC

panels, open the older version. When you want to work

installed yet to install and organize your add-ons, down-

with the latest innovations, open the newer version.

load it from this website:

You can also check the Internet for new or different

em_download. (Keep in mind that once you visit Adobe

panels that meet your needs (or even panels or other

Add-ons you may very well get hooked. Addiction to

extensions that meet needs you never knew you had).

add-ons can lead to overloading your system, but Exten-

In May, Adobe went live with the Adobe Add-ons web-

sion Manager can be used to disable extensions that you

site ( as a replacement

don’t need for a particular session with Photoshop or

for the now-defunct Adobe Exchange Classic website. It

Lightroom, freeing up RAM for processing your work.)

offers free and not-so-free plug-ins, extensions, and more

If you have the necessary skills and time, you too can

for a variety of Adobe products. You can simplify your

produce extensions to be sold through Adobe Add-ons.

search by product and by paid vs. free items. You’ll find

Under the current terms of use (as of this writing), you

hundreds of free panels and extensions for programs of

can distribute up to 10 products (two of which can be

the Creative Cloud, many of which are compatible with

“paid products”) or you can pay an annual fee to set

earlier versions of Adobe programs, as well. Paid plug-

up your account for an unlimited number of products

ins range in price from a few dollars to several hundred

to sell. Proceeds from your labors are deposited directly

dollars. You can also sort the offerings by Most Popular,

into your bank account. The extensions you offer can

Newest, Title, Price (high to low or low to high), and Rat-

be free, one-time purchase for your customers, or sold

ing. If a friend or colleague has recommended a specific

under an annual subscription fee. Before your extensions

product, use the Search field to find it quickly and easily.

can be offered through Adobe Add-ons, they’ll need to

When you find something interesting, click on it to

be tested and approved by Adobe. If the thought of

open it in its own window for more information. Many

adding another revenue stream through Adobe Add-

plug-ins and extensions offer much additional informa-

ons appeals to you, get more information here: www

tion about the product, often including examples of how (logging in with your

it works and installation instructions. These product-

current Adobe ID and password). ■

The KelbyOne Member HELP DESKS

Are you taking advantage of the Help Desks at the KelbyOne member website? This is the place where you can get all of your Photoshop and Lightroom questions answered either by other KelbyOne members or by our Help Desk experts. Not only that, you can get photo and computer gear help and advice, as well. What are you waiting for? Visit the Community section on the KelbyOne member site today! ■

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