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Book Review: Adobe Photoshop CS6 For Photographers by Martin Evening

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Adobe Photoshop CS6 for Photographers is Martin Evening’s seminal work on Photoshop. This is a book on Photoshop by a professional working photographer and written for professional photographers, although its goal is to serve as a guide book for any photographer using Adobe Photoshop CS6. Evening is photographer who has been working with Photoshop for years as both an alpha and beta tester and to this end, the author has focused on the essential information that you need to know about Photoshop if you work in photography.

Adobe Photoshop CS6 For Photographers is really a reference book for both advanced amateur and professional photographers. It is a listing of every conceivable technique that a photographer may need to implement in the pursuit of creating digital photographic images using Adobe Photoshop. It contains 13 chapters and 768 pages. A couple of things to note, the first that the DVD that came with the prior editions of this book has been replaced with content that is available online. Second, also online is an additional 200 pages of content in the form of a PDF as well as other additional learning materials.

Chapters 1-2 are more of an introduction to the changes and new features that come with Adobe Photoshop CS6 as well as a guide to the physical layout of Photoshop interface. Here you will learn about how to navigate around Photoshop and Adobe Bridge You will also see how to configure Photoshop to optimize your computer system as well as what sorts of accessories are needed to help you in your work.

Chapter 3, “Camera Raw Image Processing,” has really grown and taken on a life of its own. Because you can process your JPEG and Tiff as well as your RAW images and do so much more, a significantly larger chapter is devoted to the subject. Chapter 4, “Sharpening and Noise Reduction,” examines pre-sharpening your photos in Photoshop. This topic was all but untouched in previous versions, but now with the changes in Camera Raw, it is become much more important.

Chapter 5, “Image Editing Essentials,” now gets into specifics about editing a photograph outside of Camera Raw. There are some techniques that overlap, but this also works with images that have never been near to Camera Raw. Here you will learn about the fundamentals of image editing. Chapter 6, “Black and White,” shows you how to create black and white images from original color images. It also goes into cross process looks as well as infrared effects, and other darkroom related techniques.

Chapter 7, “Extending the Dynamic Range,” is all about capturing the greatest range of tones from the minimum shadows to the brightest highlights and in this chapter you will look at various techniques for accomplishing this. Chapter 8, “Image Retouching,” examines the basic techniques for modifying an image to enhance your photographs. These include working with the Clone Stamp tool, the Healing brush, the Patch tool, Liquefy tool, and many more.

Chapter 9, “Layers, Selections, and Masking,” looks into what it takes to make composite images that use different image elements to create something totally new. This all begins with making selections, and working with channels. Chapter 10, “Blur, Optical and Lighting Effects Filter,” gets into one of the more powerful features of Photoshop; the plug-in filters. Instead of trying to look at all of the hundred or so filters that in Photoshop, you will focus on the main filters that are useful for photographic work. He also shows you how you can use the Smart Filters features to extend your filtering options.

Chapter 11, “Image Management” is all about the use of Adobe Bridge to allow you to preview images, choose the one you want to open in Photoshop, perform ranking, add metadata, and other basic file management tasks. Chapter 12, “Print Output,” deals with the print output process. Here you will look at what it takes to get images to print so that they look like what you have on the screen. Other issues covered include how to use soft proofing. Chapter 13, “Automating Photoshop” looks at how you can speed your work by using keyboard shortcuts, creating actions, and how to use scripts to automate Photoshop.

Keep in mind that while there are some of the images that are available online not all of the images are included. This is because some of them, especially the ones with the models are of restricted use, and cannot be given away. There are also tutorials, additional tips, and a keyboard reference guide available online as well.

To me Adobe Photoshop CS6 For Photographers is still just about the most important reference book I have. It covers every aspect of Photoshop in detail and presents them with an eye toward the photographer. It is written by a professional photographer for professional photographers. It covers both the Mac and Windows in a clear and concise manner. For intermediate and advanced Photoshop users, it is the definitive word on Photoshop. For the beginner, along with other sources for additional foundation, it will make you that advanced user. For anyone who is serious about photography and Photoshop, Adobe Photoshop CS6 For Photographers is a must have.

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About T. Michael Testi

Photographer, writer, software engineer, educator, and maker of fine images.
  • Lincoln

    Well I now know what is on my early Christmas wish list.

  • Glenn Contrarian

    Are you on the Lincoln?

  • Photoshop

    “Basic uses” is an incredible understatement. Photoshop is *the* tool for serious everybodies. Photographers, video editors, graphic designers, 3D artists, digital painters… everyone.

    It’s no one’s *only* tool, but it is in *everyone’s* toolbox, if you’re a professional in a field that involves both images and computers in any capacity, at every level, you simply can’t get by without it.