“Adobe Photoshop CS One-on-One (CD-ROM included)” by McClelland, Deke
Adobe Photoshop CS One-on-One
By McClelland, Deke
Published by Deke Press/O’Reilley
Subject(s): Photoshop CS3 for graphic artists, designers, and photographers
Interest Level: X_Business _all ages X_adult _X college _X_anyone interested___
Price: $ 49.95
Compatible with any machine that will work with Photoshop CS3 (cross platform). Several exercises can be accomplished using older versions of CS. However, many projects can only be done utilizing PS CS3. (Adobe Photoshop CS3 Software, 512MB of RAM, 2 GB of free hard disk space (1 GB for Photoshop and 470MB for the One-on-One Project and video application files), remaining 630MB for PS scratch disk, Color monitor with 16-bit color video card, 1,024 by 768-pixel monitor resolution, CD-ROM drive, Apple’s QuickTime Player Software version 7.0 or higher, PLUS you must install all sample files, total training video training software, One-on-One Photoshop preference settings, color settings and keyboard shortcuts.)
Description of book:
Deke created this book for both amateur and professional graphic artists, designers, and photographers. It is another in a series of books that provide step-by- step lessons accompanied by beautiful full colored lessons combined with video lessons and data files. The author’s approach is a “hands on – a step-by-step process” that allows the reader to proceed at their own pace and establish their own sequence of lessons to personalize the instruction.
The book’s content is divided into 12 lessons that include several (up to 3 – 7) step-by-step exercises to explain the techniques. Explanations, data files, and video lessons support these real world project based exercises.
The book is highly visual, colorful, informative, easy on the eye providing nicely laid out pages on heavy clay based paper, and a comprehensive index to support the text.
The content is as follows:
Lesson 1: Open and Organize. File management and navigation
Lesson 2: Highlights, Midtones, and Shadows
Lesson 3: Color balance corrections
Lesson 4: Managing selection tools
Lesson 5: Crop, straighten, size
Lesson 6: Paint, Edit, Heal
Lesson 7: Creating and applying masks
Lesson 8: Focus and filters
Lesson 9: Building layered compositions
Lesson 10: Text and Shape layers
Lesson 11: Styles and specialty layers
Lesson 12: Printing and Output
The lessons are highly structured. Deke presents the key concepts needed for each lesson in the video tutorial. The advanced user is not left out because the lesson is structured so that the advanced procedures or extra techniques are placed at the end of the basic technique sequences. These segments are called “extra credit.”
In addition, the author helps the reader to check their grasp of the concepts presented in the chapter by providing an end-of- the-lesson quiz. The author presents the information in such a way that the reader will understand what to do, how to do it, and why it is done.
Weakness & Limitations:
Another potential weakness was the fact that the book does not cover all of the techniques needed to effectively handle Photoshop CS. The author has planned ahead and listed up front the techniques not included. He then states that there will be another book in this series to cover those techniques.
The only weakness I found was the index (same as the earlier books also). Although it is very comprehensive, it is visually boring. All the letters were the same. I have become use to having key topics or techniques bolded or highlighted to bring attention to major concepts.
After reading many easy-to-understand chapters and looking at the informative CD-ROM, I felt that my personal skills had definitely been improved substantially. At the beginning of each book-based exercise, it was very helpful to play the accompanying video lesson and learn about the key concepts involved. I love the “Read, Watch, Do” sequence for learning. Lastly, the wonders of the digital age have provided us with the possibilities of a virtual classroom in which anyone can invite an expert in the field to tutor them one-on-one. I would like to say that Deke McClelland has created a comprehensive training experience into which you can submerge yourself for hours at a time. In process of reading this book you’ll get a good dose of graphics theory, best practices, and tips for avoiding Photoshop disasters.