Now that we’ve had a chance to explore some of the basic functions and features of Photoshop, it’s time to study some of the application’s more advanced tools, tricks, and techniques. In our third installment of introductory Photoshop, we’ll look at many of the filters that allow us to easily change the overall look and feel of the images we’ll be working with. As we work together to build a composition that could represent a fictitious study abroad program (or a “backpack through Europe after graduation” advertising campaign), we’ll learn how to alter contrast, create non-standard drop shadows, convert pictures to line drawings, and turn traditional photographs into painterly-styled images. We’ll also re-visit topics such as image and layer opacity, blending modes, sequencing the layer stack, and layer effects to make sure their fully understood.
The step-by-step handout is available via the following link, if it helps you to follow along or remember what we’ve done after class is dismissed.
ART209 Lesson #3 Handout
Our second in-class tutorial hopes to build on the Photoshop skills and knowledge we gained from our first exercise by designing a fictitious real estate advertisement. We’ll briefly review how to make and edit selections, as well as how to create a new file, how to open existing files, and how to bring image content from one file into another file. Additional topics on tonight’s agenda include selecting and applying colors, creating gradients, and transforming selections. And we’ll introduce new topics such as alignment tools, layer effects, layer groups, paths and the pen tool, and advanced typographical controls. When we’re done, you should have not only a nicely designed print ad, but also an increased appreciation for the power of Photoshop.
As before, .PDF of the step-by-step instructions is provided here, in case you want more time with this exercise outside of class.
ART209 Lesson #2 Handout
The ART209 Student Survey results are slowly trickling in… and here’s what this quarter’s class has to say about our collective Adobe Creative Suite experience (so far):
- 58% (7/12) of those who have responded to the survey have not yet had any opportunity to work with a full edition of the Creative Suite
- But 83% (10/12) do confess to having some experience working with at least one version of Adobe Photoshop at some point in time
- While 75% (9/12) have never, ever used Adobe Illustrator
- And 83% (10/12) have never designed with Adobe InDesign (or PageMaker, or QuarkXpress, or any other page layout application.
It looks like we’ll be doing the majority of our work in-class this quarter, as 58% (7/12) of you explained that you do not have access to any version of the Adobe Creative Suite outside of school.
But, good news: a whopping 92% (11/12) of the survey respondents indicated they plan to use the knowledge obtained this quarter to pursue possible future career aspirations.
All this means there are lots of great things to learn this time around. Thanks for participating in the survey – the information will be very helpful as I continue to map out beneficial topics and develop new lesson plans. If you have not yet completed the survey, there’s still a little more time to receive credit for your feedback (…but time may be running out).
Pittsburgh web designer Megan Orsi shows off her forearm-long tattoo featuring the Photoshop toolbar.
Tom Hogarty writes on his Photoshop.com blog about a Photoshop user who enjoys the software so much she tattooed the toolbar on her forearm. If you’re interested in more of the story, check out his the brief interview with Pittsburgh web designer Megan Orsi in his post entitled “The Girl with the Photoshop Tattoo.”
Our first homework assignment is to identify the tools found on the Photoshop toolbar. You may use any reference material necessary (notes, books, online, etc.) to complete this assignment. Please print the .PDF from the link included, complete the form, and be prepared to turn it in at the beginning of class on Thursday night (September 26, 2013).
Please complete the ART209 online student survey before Thursday night’s class (September 26, 2013) to help me better understand this quarter’s class needs and capabilities.
Tonight’s introduction to Adobe Photoshop CS6 should help you better understand the application’s user interface, including the names and functions of the tools, panels, and menus that make it such a powerful software tool. In addition, we will begin our first real hands-on experimentation with Photoshop, and work to design a fictional publication cover by combining three separate image files into a single, cohesive composition; adjusting colors, contrast, and lighting effects; and incorporating and styling a small amount of text.
We’ll also have a little more time on Tuesday to wrap this up, but here’s a .PDF download of the steps we’ll follow to design the final composition in case you want to work on this project further outside of class:
ART209 Lesson #1 Handout