All too often photographers engage with Photoshop and come away over-awed, frustrated and disappointed. The blame, if there is any, can be laid at the feet of the application's complexity.
One way of dealing with the software is to work initially with the multitude of plug-ins available and deal with specific tasks to gain confidence.
Zuckerman and Stulberg's book, 'Digital Photographer's New Guide to Photoshop Plug-Ins', suggests you revisit your earlier images and revitalise them with the aid of specific plug-ins.
The book opens with a novel one in Instant Mirror, which allows you to duplicate sections of your image and reposition them into appealing and wonderful ways.
Another is Flood: this creates water surfaces and reflections that embellish an image and relocates it to a fantasy location. This chapter, like most of the others covers many pages and explains the plug-in's potential to a thorough degree.
The authors also move in to the controversial territory of High Dynamic Range photography and eschew Photoshop's HDR feature in favour of the Photomatrix Pro plug-in. Sure convinced me in 12 pages!
Just as convincing and subtle is the book's treatment of plug-ins like Liquify and Silver Efex Pro … showing that delicate changes to an image can often be far more convincing and rewarding than wild and woolly transformations.
In style, the book is excellent, moving through every step slowly, carefully and thoroughly. This approach has a price: you get to look at only a handful of helpers. Despite this the book is encouraging and inspiring.
Authors: J Zuckerman & S Stulberg.
Distributor: Capricorn Link. 160 pages.
ISBN 978 1 60059 212 6.
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