30 Days of Photoshop

Lesson 36 of 45

Day 23: Automation I (Built-In, Not So Obvious)

 

30 Days of Photoshop

Lesson 36 of 45

Day 23: Automation I (Built-In, Not So Obvious)

 

Lesson Info

Day 23: Automation I (Built-In, Not So Obvious)

well today in the thirty days a phone shop we're gonna start our first of two days talking about automation a very important part of photo shop and one that could make our life simpler and if you're like me a lazy user anything we can do to automate things is a big plus now generally speaking when I talked to people about automation photoshopped the average person instantly thinks of actions actions are a big part of automation in fact we're gonna spend the entire hour tomorrow talking just about that topic but today we're not going to touch on those at all we're gonna talk about other kinds of automation first of all automation that's built into photo shop and bridge and then also what I would call not so obvious automation and one of the important points I want to make is that I think I have a slightly different interpretation than many people of automation I think many people when they think about automation or automating workin photoshopped they picture doing the entire thing from ...

start to finish automatically and that's that's great if you could do that but there's also to me if I can automate the whole thing if I can't do a tizzy automatically if I could do a m or even a t h that's still getting me closer to my end result so to me automation means anything that can make my life simpler that can get me closer to my end result that much more quickly so one of my favorite expressions when I'm talking about this is that the phrase compared to the alternative I think I've probably mentioned in passing before today but specifically today I'm going to mention because that's the kind of mindset we have tohave I think is when you look at something some people I talked to for example would look att attacks they're trying do and go I can automate that whole thing and they ought to make none of it well to me I'd rather automate some of it because that's still better so in your mind you should I think think to yourself if you're started to undertake some procedure I think could I automate even part of this because if I can compare to you alternative that would be a good thing so if it would take me ten clicks of the mouse to do this first part of the process if I could do that with some other function that does takes only six clicks or takes only four that's still better so that compared to the alternative to me is a big part of automation now just so you're not surprised by this throughout this our session I'm going to revisit a few things we've already talked about in other areas because now we're going to talk about them or in the context of not just how they work or why would use them but how they can be very useful in the area off automation or that compared to the alternative getting things done more quickly and that fits into that not so obvious automation category so it's not just like I'm repeating myself I'm repeating it trying to stress that here's another reason why a particular function is useful because it acts kind of like an automated feature now in many cases when we're looking first of all we look at the built in automation things that you don't have to record anything actions as you see tomorrow you have to record a series of steps and then play them back built in automated features means they're provided by adobe saying here you go just run them and one of things I want to mention first of all is there's a in many cases a bit of a difference between running it from within photo shop and running it from within bridge let's let me show you what I mean if I'm in photo shop we'll find all the automated features under automate and or scripts so let's go for example under automate and say I'm going to do a thing called contact sheet too which is going to try to take a whole bunch of images and put them together on one sheet like the good old days when we used to do traditional photographic contact sheets well here's the first a challenge to me is that when I'm doing it from within photo shop it says would you like to use a folder and when it says use folder another way of looking at that is apply this automated feature to every single image within this folder and maybe it's just me but I find while sometimes I want to do that I feel like a lot of the time I want to say I want this one this one this one I want to be more selective so I guess one alternative would be for me to go in and create a new folder and dragons that folder but to me that's a lot of work so as we'll see with bridge it might be easier here I could still go into this command and change it from use folder to use files that I have to browse for them and now I'm stuck with this interesting challenge if I go in and eventually find my way too today's lessons and this folder now I've got a bunch of files that are like something dot any f and I can't really tell the difference between this one and this one and I might be able to view them in my operating system is thumbnails but frankly to me that's just a lot of effort so if you do have a folder where you say I know I want to do it to every single image in the folder than you could navigate to that folder but what I would probably do is going to bridge because here I can look at the thumbnails inside of this and go okay I want this one I'm going down the commander controlled you this one this one this one this one and I'm just selecting the ones that I want instead of saying every single one I may end up taking many of them but the point is I'm now choosing them visually as opposed to trying to look at file names of working it out when you're in bridge you'll find the automated features they're built in under tools photo shop and here's contact sheet it's still jumps back to photo shop but now you see this whole top part is just saying okay you've got nine file selected so now I decide what kind of document I want I want a ten by eight with a resolution of seventy two I might put this higher if I was actually gonna print this for our purposes it doesn't matter then you can decide do you want to flatten the image or not I prefer not to it first because I'd liketo have the option of altering it if maybe I also like to initially try putting in the auto spacing and I could look up here inside have nine file selected so what if I just did three columns and three lows three rows and if if you wanted to you could also choose this check boxes says rotate for best fit which I mean it would take tall and rotate them wide and so on if you want to use the file names so that you're the person I'm giving it to will be ableto tell you I want the one called one two three four dot ndf then you khun include that I'm not going to bother in this particular case now if there's one thing about contact sheet that I wish was different I wish there was a preview button right here so I could see what was going to look like but at this point unfortunately I can't so I just click ok and it's gonna go through it now from this part on this is all happening automatically so to me the interesting part of this is it's taking those raw files and is automatically going in and putting them all on one sheet of paper for me which is pretty darn cool so you can see it's created this thing and because I did not check that box that says flatten all layers I get all the layers and the masks it created which is pretty cool so now if I wanted to say well actually now that I look at this I think it would make better sense if this one was over here well howto why tell which layer this is I suppose I could look at all the thumbnails but once again nice little shortcut command or control when you have the move too well selected it automatically when I click picks the right layer I just drag it over here and then we'll select the layer above it the same way and drag it back the other way so this is one of the advantages I'm stressed so many times by now I'm sure you're tired of me saying it about preserving layers and not flattening even this example initially this contact sheet will be bigger because I'm keeping the layers but now that gave me the option to do that kind of thing because normally just puts them the images in order based on their file name so once I was happy this would be a rare instance once again where I might actually flatten this whole thing because I don't really need to keep it all separate if I'm happy with it but you know I say that but I don't know I think I'd always be preserving the layered person just in case and the only downside to this is if you look at it and say you know what maybe I should have rotated all those images so doesn't have kind of this weird situation where I've got tall tall tall and then tall wide you know it's this is a case where maybe I would like to change it will unfortunately I mean I suppose I could change the layer but if I want to run or alter the contact sheet really my only option is to close and don't save and do it a second time go back to bridge and choose contact she too and this is why I was saying before I wish there was a preview option so that I could decide if I wanted to to tweak one little thing and click okay having said that when you see how long this is taking I mean I'm not changing this is really time it's still pretty fast considering it's taking raw files and making separate layers with mass and popping them all onto something and making it all look the way that I want so here's a perfect example of that phrase compared to the alternative excuse me even at this point if I'm looking this and going I wish all the thumbnails were a little bit smaller at least I could do that I could select them all and like this click on the first one shift click on the last one free transform scale them all down or whatever I want at least I can do that but to get to this point when you consider the alternative me going let me open nine raw files into separate windows dragged them in transformed them down that would take a lot of work so that's our first example of a built in automation command let me take this one little step further the the other thing about contact sheet which to me is unfortunate is you can't really customise it and make it a template per se but what you could do is let contact sheet run do this whole thing then scale them all down position accordingly and then have your name and phone number and logo toe add in here very quickly and I could even be a brush that you've already predefined and you click once or something like that so any time you can do this on automated feature that's built in where I didn't have to do any fancy kind of stuff that's to me is a really good thing because it cuts to the chase and says let me get most of it if not all of it done another example of that of a nice built in feature is if I decide I want to try and make a panoramic photograph so here's a situation I just took a few of this image out here to show you but this was a tip from a good friend of mine matt laskowski who mentioned this when he was out doing a photo shoot and what he would do is he was taking a whole bunch of photos and when he thought now I'm going to do a pan oh he would stick his fingers in front of the camera at the before the first shot take a siri's of panoramic photos then put his fingers in a tien and the reason for that is here it doesn't make sense because all I have is just these photos but imagine I'm looking at a folder full of two hundred photographs trying to figure out where were those panoramic images they're right here I can see because they're they're kind of book end by bookended by the two little blurry fingers so that's a great little tip from a photographic standpoint also just as an aside photographically if you decide to shoot specifically for a panoramic shoot vertically make sure you're on some kind of manual setting where the exposure won't change and then you don't have to nestle being a tripod anymore with today's technology but make sure as you move your camera there's a least a twenty to twenty five percent overlap that will give you a better chance I'd rather have eight photographs overlap quite a bit than five photographs that hardly had any overlap at all and these are all raw files so what I would do is take advantage of one of the ways that camera raw works is I can take these six images select them in bridge and then open them all at the same time in camera raw and as I'm sure I've shown you before once you have multiple images in camera you can do select all synchronize and decide what is it you want to synchronize and I always do it twice just to make sure we got everything white bell everything synchronized so that means whatever change I make if I increase the contrast and also the vibrancy it's going to change it on all of them I know if you can notice when I change a slider kind of those big peopie people you could see the kind of quick little update on the side now here's a good example of where I'm using camera raw to make sure all my images look the same at this point although to some degree I could do this later on but I want to make sure while they're still on camera for met I'm making all these changes I don't want to open them however because that would just open a bunch of separate files I mean once again I could but to me it's just simpler to say let me just say done and that means back in camera now they've all been updated to reflect whatever change I just made now I go to photoshopped sorry tools photo shop and photo merge and photo emerges thie name for merge these photographs automatically into in this case a panoramic image so in this case it's saying I want to use these files here's another example of me pause once again interrupt myself again and say here's another example of where I could have just gone file automate photo emerged but then I would have had to browse for these files and make sure they were correct ones I like to be able to do it visually in bridge but if you needed to you certainly could do this or if you had opened all of these six files you could just click this little button says add open files so either way uh here's that button that's great out because they're already open then we have all these layout options I use always start with otto I can't think of many times that I haven't and off usually most of time it just does a fine result I also like tohave blend images together turned on and that's all I'm going to do for now and I would say a very high percentage of the time it does a really nice job so I click okay and now it's doing the rest so once again it's creating a new document it's going to start putting these images in and starting to blend them together now let's think about what this is doing as we watch it it's again taking fairly large raw files and open them all into one document on separate layers but then as equally importantly or perhaps more importantly it's a lining them based on their content so it's looking for that overlap that we created and saying well if this was going to be a panoramic image it should look like this now what's really interesting to me I think this is fascinating because I don't understand the technology behind it but it's pretty cool when I very first time I tried to photo merge and I saw that it had layer mass I kind of assumed because if I was doing this myself I would take two photographs and use like a very gradual grady it layer mass to make them really blend in carefully but take a look at it we'd look at just one layer this is the mass that it created somehow it decided that between these two images I'm going to create go down this sky over to this area here and take just this little chunk but eventually when it does that you can see it is seamless I mean you cannot see any seems to go oh I can see an area here in older versions of photo shop you might see a little tiny difference in exposure or something but honesty these days not so much now in this case could I got away with a few more photo or a few less photos probably but I wanted to be sure so um oh and one other little tip didn't really happen here but sometimes and we've seen this before in other sessions if you zoom out to fit and window where something that's quite large and you're scaling it down this happens with mass in particular don't be surprised if you see what looks like a hairline that almost makes it look like oh my mass doesn't work properly now that's just a screen display thing so when it's zooms out to a really small fit and window kind of display sometimes it appears as though there is some kind of a line there that's why we always make our decisions at one hundred percent for you so at this point I would take my crop tool and I'm just going to click and drag in this case to say I want to crop to say here now here's where you have to make a decision I'm seeing there's a little corner here that I could changed my crop but I really like to have that tree in there so I'm going to try and use the as much of the tree as I can and if I have to miss a little corner like that I'm okay with that because it should be fairly easy to make a new layer on top let's zoom in closer to see where we have some problems take my I would use the patch tool in this case because it be pretty easy to just take that whole part and then dragged down to say fix that would you and then whips on keyboard shortcut I meant to do fit in window and they did it again one more time now here is a debatable point I suppose even though I keep harping on don't flatten don't flatten don't flatten I always use words as I've said before like don't ever or never do this or always do that and been very very adamant about one hundred percent of the time well honestly I say that so you at least consider it but in this case is there really any reason for me to keep all of these layers once it's all merge together most great no there isn't so this would be another case where I would be okay with merging them together because I don't need to have that fallback position so I'm not in any way suggesting were suddenly going to say hey flattening is fine go ahead and flatten but consider it carefully in a case like this it looks so good to me and I don't see any reason why I have to go and save all those layers and part of the other reason is I know at worst I still have all the underlying raw files so if worse came to worst I could always run this panoramic image again or panoramic and function again to get right back to this step okay all right now here's a similar kind of an idea where we're going to use almost the same technology but to get us towards on end result that's going to help us so I have these four raw files and if we look at them we can see I was trying to take a picture of this church and italy through an archway but it's just a busy spot every time I took photos there were people in it so my thought was maybe if I took a syriza photographs I could take them into photo shop and eventually try and remove as many people as we can as we talked about before make it look like they weren't there so I have four files here but maybe let's pretend I had five or six well I could I suppose even open even open each one separately and then combine them together but why would I do that because there's a couple of possibilities here for us one of them says load files into photoshopped players and when I do that it makes a new document and as we saw a moment ago with the photo merge it makes one layer per document but the big difference here is it just stopped at that point it says that's all you asked me to do was the load them into layers so then now as you can see as I look through them I did not do the greatest job of holding my camera still so you can see some movement in the camera well this is where I'd use another built in automated command which allows me to select a bunch of layers and again I just clicked on the top one shift click on the bottom one then I go into the edit menu and use auto align layers now when I do that this part should the icon should look kind of familiar because they're the same options that we saw under photo mers they're just these are the only options we're not gonna auto blend because it's not a panoramic it's just I'm trying auto aline and I use otto I would say there's been so rare cases where auto didn't work and it's pretty cool because it's almost like this magical feature where it says let me just look at all the layers and align them so it's looking for consistency like this church is always in relative the same place now you can see and look at the transparent area it actually had to move images around and at least one case rotates slightly so that I could get the main information aligned together now at this point I would have to move on to some more manual process of saying ok on this layer let me try to content to where this guy and on this layer let me try toe clone out that person but at least this part of a getting the the images into layers and be allying them that part was done very quickly because it was built in an automatic and that's the perfect example that's why show this to say this is what I'm talking about when I say get us part of the way there at this point it might take me on our of manual effort to try and clone all these people out and that's why I'm not going to show this part because that's not the point of this lesson but the point really is it's taking advantage of the automated as much of automation as you can so this part got me to the point of saying okay that's really nice and automated now I'm much closer now if you have full shop cia six extended version or extended version probably see us five or photo shop ccu have this external feature that I'll just show you because it's pretty cool you convert all these layers to a smart object and then under the layer menu under smart objects there's all these stack modes and there's different ones including this one I usually try maximum or medium let's do maximum and it's takes away most of the people of those you could see if we looked more closely that'll little pockets of people left and some little silhouettes so I still have some work to do but once again it's gotten us closer to the end result now back at the beginning of this example I talked about the fact there's a couple of ways of doing it the first way I went into bridge selected the images said load files into photoshopped layers I would do that when I wanted to make sure I was picking the right ones the other option though this kind of interesting is under scripts there is a function that says load files into stack which sounds kind of similar but this is actually an interesting one as well now the downside is I have to go find them so here take these ones here and say let's use all of these but the nice thing it it also lets me do these other two steps attempt I love the fact by the way it's his attempt to automatically on doesn't say automatically alliances attempt to so it's kind of giving itself a bit of an out to say well I said I would attempt to so if it doesn't work not my fault and also says create smart object after loading layers so let's see the difference here I click okay still starts off the same it still makes a new document it's not going to put these images these raw files on two separate layers but then it's going to auto a line and make a smart objects all those steps are done now I could go back to layer smart objects and try one of my staff modes so too different ways of getting pretty much to the same and result which is too try to get to this point where I'm now ready to do some manual effort okay here so earlier in another lesson we talked about covering things up and making them look like they weren't there and we talked about tools like the content were moved tool and the fact that it has functions like extend where you can try and extend a background let's look at example why I think this is so great from on automation standpoint so I have this photograph and I'm just going to pretty much leave it as is say that looks fine and I'm going to open it but what I really want to do is make this a background image so I can put another photograph of the same girl over here so I basically need more room so first of all we go to canvass eyes and let's say we just want to add a couple more inches on that side so I'm anchoring the right side so I adm or canvas on the left and click okay and at this point I need to make this background repeat but here's the thought process that I would go through and I've said a number of times and other lessons one of my favorite expressions is end up with this is what I'm thinking in my head I want to end up with a background that will look good enough when it's mostly covered up in other words I'm not going to obsess if every single part of this looks perfect because my intention is not to leave it just with this extension of this wallpaper and floor I'm goingto put another photograph on top so I could in a sense almost put the photograph on and think how much do I actually need to extend the background but in this case I'll just show you that the difference of of the thought process to say I'm extending this background with the intention of putting another photograph on it so I'm not going to be all that worried but again this is another case where gosh this is so much easier then any kind of manual method of doing the same thing so I'm going to that was a bad selection let me zoom out a little bit so I want to make sure I get it right to the edges go something like this now ultimately I do not want to copy her leg or her dress will take my lasso tool option or all tum to say don't include this sand don't include that and I'm gonna add a blank layer take my content aware move tool set to extend adaptation I'm starting medium and I have sample all layers turned on I start to drag and then hold on the shift key and I go as far as I can and then it does some quick calculations and says let me blend that now if I was just going to leave it like that your eyes would be drawn here ago it doesn't look all that good but remember my goal here is to have enough background that when I next put another photograph on it will look fine so back to the content of where moved so I just made a bigger selection now and I'm gonna overlap this something like that and again it does its calculations I didn't go back and change adaptation but I could try it and see if that looks better or worse in this case I'm not seeing a huge difference at least of this zoomed out view yeah I think we definitely need to be up here now once again if I went to actual size you're like oh dave that's not good I can see the obvious stripes but up here actually the stripes aren't that bad and that's really the important part because I'm goingto stick the great big photograph mostly here so I really won't see a lot of this but it's still giving me some background to play with so now back to bridge here's the other photo if you want to use I choose place in photo shop which again in this case is a quicker way than opening it and then uh exporting it or I should say copping it I want to make sure she's nice and big click okay because I want her to be bigger I want to see like this much now here have shown this before but anytime you're trying to transform and you can't see what's down below I'm gonna lower the opacity just a little bit because I want there to be just a very slight overlap of her hair actually let's make it just like this so it's not quite but I want to see her elbow so somewhere round there looks pretty good so I go hit enter then I put the opacity back up again now I'm not going through this really quickly we just use some of our compositing type techniques we mentioned before where we make a basic selection using our quick selection tool this was shot on a white background as you can see so there's a fair bit of easy contrasts and here goes one hundred percent and make sure we're getting fingers looking good I'm still doing this really quickly because needless to say we've already talked about this kind of procedure early on and again I'm not goingto really worry about air racing a little bit but I'm just trying to be relatively good here for you and maybe hear a little more okay then we go to refine edge it's on layers then we start doing some painting of hair you can see how once you get the hang of the techniques involved with this kind of selecting a positive when do it fairly quickly to get a really nice result that will look good and here a little bit looks pretty good let's go see up here your hair look a little better I don't want to revisit the whole compositing thing but this is just to give you the idea and then we choose layer mass click okay and now you can see that when I look at this the fact that ah lot of the background was an ideal doesn't really matter because that was the whole point is I was just doing that so I'd have room to put this other photograph of her and this works really well if you're thinking if you imagine your head this is what I'm ending up with if you were just thinking I need to extend this wall for my graphic designer and they might put text on there than perhaps content aware move wouldn't have worked as well because you can see those on the streif had to come up with some other solution but to me I look at anything with the word content aware innit as a riel timesaver almost like automation in the sense that it's saving me time compared to the alternative here's a typical example if you're trying to do content aware phil on something like this let's just see what happens if I just do this use content aware click okay he's done fairly well but over here decided that maybe I should use her leg as a place to do to make the film which is not a new ideal situation so this would be why I would say well well content aware is great why let's use the patch tool with content aware because we have many more choices in here I can go in to pick a better spot than that so I have basically doing a few pieces because it's just easier to do that but of all eventually I will get to the point of saying now we've got a better look than we had before so content where phil is great however sometimes it does picks the wrong spot what's funny to me is now the content where phil has been around for a while people are so blase about it like the go oh it picked the wrong spot think about the alternative before there was content aware fill it all it was cloning for an hour so to me I'm very careful to say au content where phil didn't work because it's still pretty darned good even when it fails to me it's still a pretty nice start so even a case like this where like I didn't quite get it all of her very nicely I would still applauded and say well you know what compared to the alternative now sometimes we can kind of trick photo shop and content aware phil so let's let me show you an example of what I might do in a case like this the problem we saw when I just used content where phil is that it used uh the wrong spot because I it used part of her as the film and I don't want that so what I conduce go through first of all make a selection and I'm basically selecting all the things I don't want content aware phil to use should do a better job around here I don't need quite a ce much around there so basically all I'm doing is saying these are the parts I don't want and I'm going to add a mask which is the wrong way around first and I inverted okay now I go back to the main layers so the basket basically just hidden any of the parts that I don't want it to use so now let's try and do a better job I'm gonna make a selection of this whole piece that I don't want to be green I want filled and I have to go this time under edit phil content aware click okay now it can't fill with the part of her because she doesn't exist for now now in this case there is one little piece that I'd have to just do that part again but you can see pretty quick civil groups sorry for that to happen carried away usually when I want to go right to the edge I zoom out a bit just to make sure I'm gonna get a little closer this okay so now I'm using the keyboard shortcut shift delete or shipped back space for phil content aware once again does that really nicely then once I've done that I just throw away the layer mask and deleted it and now I'm very close to the end result is still a bit of tweaking this story but once again closer that I would have been before that would have in the past taken me gosh I don't know I'm pretty good with the clone stamp tool but that's still would've taken a while whereas this way it's thinking about the end result I want to make sure that content where phil is restricted in the areas that it uses so let me help it by hiding the parts I don't want to use temporarily with the layer mask so once again and I hate that you're going to get tired of me saying the same thing but hopefully it's hitting home with you that I think from the end result backwards the end result is I want those bits of green to be covered with the yellow background but nor to get there might have to take a little side detour to say well I mean temporarily make a mask and hide the parts I don't want so I end up with the result I do and the reason I did that is because even though the patch too was really good there was so little room toe work with might have taken me quite a bit of time with the patch tool as well to get this kind of result all right so that's another example of the the fact that this kind of content aware option is available for us now we talked about this in an earlier lesson talking about converting files what I want to mention it again because I think it's so important let's change this just clear those settings in there so I have a bunch of raw files and at this point I need to make some j pegs this another example where I could do this from within photoshopped scripts image processor but like we saw before the problem with it is then I have to go in and say well let me select cem ah folder and in here is going to pick a source folders this example one where it's harder to use this because I can't just go in and indicate I want these particular images me so let's cancel that instead go to bridge and in here I can say what I really want is these first tall ones I want those to be export in a different file format so with them selected I go tools photo shop and there is image processor and now it's saying again the first part is already done because saying process files from onley bridge if you wanted to like because he's a raw files you could open the first image to apply ross settings I've already done ross sitting so that's fine the second step it says select location to save process image and I'm gonna choose same save in the same location and let me talk about that for one second because this will come more to play tomorrow I think when we talk about actions but quite often when you're saving something in photo shop the temptation is to say you don't want to save in the same folder because it could temporarily overwrite the files that are already there but in this case when you pick saving the same folder it will automatically create a new folder called either j peg psd or tiff because those are the four masters saving into so you don't ever have to worry about overriding the same even you're making jpeg files in a j peg folder full of j peg files it'll still make a new folder for you so let's take a look at the options here is going to choose saves j peg quality twelve resized to fit I'm not going to resize actually I will in a second to talk about that but here one of things I love about this is you could make decisions dough I want on lee jae pedro I want ajay pig and a tiff or do I only want tiff and you can choose your going to say I'd like a large j peg and a much smaller tiff and re size this to fit so that's kind of the options you have available when you go to resize you have to put in some number here and you'll see it has width and height this imagine this says resized the longest measurement for the longest side to fit so that means if I put nine hundred for both of these if it's a wide document the width will be nine hundred and the height will be whatever the math works out to and if it's a tall document the high it'll be nine hundred and the width will be whatever it works out to so either way you can just put that in for both doesn't matter tomorrow when we talk about actions we could also have that as well here but what one of things is great about this is that's it there's not a lot of choice here and that's what makes this work is just the fact that you can say ok let's just run that and then it just takes those raw files and goes blip blip blip opens um saves them make them smaller these air quite large files that I'm telling it make that smaller so now you see here's a folder that wasn't here a second ago that now has three j pegs in them and they're automatically size to that smaller size if I had said I also wanted to file I'd see a folder here called tiff so this is one of the ways when I talked before earlier on about always saving psd files this is one of the simplest ways that I do this all have a bunch of raw files I'll open a bunch of them and work on them and say it was a psd and then once I realized ok now I'm finished for now with those psd falls on might have ten of them I'll say now let's take those psd layered files and very quickly make a bunch of flattened j pegs and I do that through image processor so simple quick easy very simple no riel tricks to the whole thing now other things we need to talk about let's go in here for a second and just open an image doesn't really matter I just wanna have something on my screens you're not staring at a blank screen I talked in other lessons about things like defining patterns defining brushes anything keyboard shortcuts part of the reason for doing all of those things is to save yourself time so for example when we talked in a previous lesson about kate creating a brush out of a signature the whole point of doing that is so now it's built into photoshopped so if I ever want to add my signature toe on images said of me going file open search where did I save that file open it drag it over it's built in so anything like that so if I want tohave just to reiterate this whole concept if I wanna have a copy right brush I'd make a new document say let's make it sure it's nice and big a thousand pixels by uh hundred pixels so it's tall and wide and I take my type to ll make black my four on color and do copyright dave cross two thousand thirteen please don't steal this or plea don't steal us and make it just big enough edit define brush preset so now that's built into photo shop and a couple of lessons from that when we sum up our whole discussion of presets we'll talk about how you khun make sure you don't ever have to do that again but the point is now I have that built in so instead of me having to take my type tool and type it it's a simple a cz click on my brush toe make sure it's a hundred percent and find that brush I just made there it is and it's really big so let's say what if I just made it a brush that went this way instead I should make sure that's bang on ninety percent degrees make it a little smaller let's just get down here left bracket key like that that was backs I didn't just click once my mouse model but too much here well maybe we better who's white white he said there may be better for was great that we get the point so that's just to reiterate the fact that the main reason for creating a brush well there's two of them one is just from a creativity standpoint if you're making a brush out of smoke and that kind of stuff but for anything like copyright signature logo phone number all those things that's to make your life simpler and quicker by having a brushes go click same with make a shape player out of uh your logo or anything of that nature that's what this is all about is getting things dunmore quickly now let's look at one more kind of cool function that's a little bit different and it's built in but just takes a little bit more work on your part but it's pretty dark now this function that I want to talk about is called variables let me open the image and then we'll talk about what this means so the the point of this the reason for doing this variables is a really interesting part of photo shop which is considered data driven graphics which means you want tohave a lot of the imagery the same but you want certain things to change per person or persons e or whatever it is so for example in this case we're going to talk as if we're doing media passes for some event and some of it will stay the same the word media passed the background other things but then I want to customize it with their photo their name things of that nature so what's interesting about this one I think is really cool about it is that let me let me kind of rewind a bit I never used to show this to it's been around for a shot for a long time let me I should say that first this is not new but it's it's kind of a lesser known thing because it's a little unusual and at first I was almost hesitant to show it in a seminar settings I thought I don't know how many peop well actually uses but once I started showing it so many people are like oh gosh I could use that for this and this and this so I'm showing it to you this way with this media past with different customizing per person but the main point of this is any situation where you want most of an object tow most of it to look the same but certain things to change on the fly such as name address phone number photograph anything of that nature so once you see the concept how it worked I think you'll find lots of different ways of using it and it builds on standard photoshopped things you just change one thing so let's look at this document all it is it's a bunch of layers and the on ly thing this is giving me a warning that this type player isn't appropriate I'm not sure why it looks pretty standard so I don't know why that was not happening but so when you build this document you're basically putting in anything that's going to stay the same like media pass will never change unlimited access will always be there the blue background but a lot of these things are placeholders for example this yellow rectangle is in effect a placeholder that ultimately I'm going to put a photograph in and where it says they're full name that's going to be replaced with their actual name and media outlet would be the name of the company where they work and then this will change either photographer or writer or whatever it might be so tip number one when you're building something with layers that ultimately we use with these variables if you have a list of people's names or companies or whatever already there look down that list and picked the biggest one and make sure that fits here I just put in they're full name and photographer I figure is the longest word but the mistake I made the very first time I did this is I made my place holder just said like john smith so I scaled to fit and of course half the names were longer it didn't work so all I'm saying is you well you could go back and scaled them be easier if you made sure everything was big enough to fit the largest name or largest amount of text other that everything about this layer this layer document is standard the only thing I've done here is to make my life easier so said before it's always a good idea to name your layers here it becomes even more important because this is how I'm going to figure out which layer is which so this is basically just a standard laywer document but what makes it different is I go under the image menu two variables and first of all I'm going to define what it is that will change for each person so I go through the list here's the layers that's why I said it's important to have your layers name because if this pull down menu said layer one layer to layer three and be much harder so media past that never changes photographer that is going to change and it's going to change it's a I want to change it with a text replacement so I'm going to put something in and I'm going to say this is their position spell it doesn't matter what you put as the name of the variable but in a next step it needs to match up now has little asterix beside it to say this means it uses a variable so now I go the next layer country is this is a little placeholder that eventually will have a flag either canada or the u s are gonna put pixel replacement and put country and then keep going through that doesn't change that doesn't change that doesn't change photo will be I will place it with their photo and media outlet I'll replace with their company and again it doesn't matter what you call these things as long as they match up with the next part that you see pick a name and I think that's all of them so now as I look down the list I can see it at one two three four five variables that all have those little ass tricks to say these are things that are variable and I click okay now in here I have all in one folder I have all of their names our should say photographs with their names I have two choices of flags then I created text file and this is how this text file works see if I can get this bigger so you can see more clearly all right so the first line has to have the same names of the variables and I realized this one I actually called position and this one I called country if I didn't change these it wouldn't work so this has to match up so the first line is each of your variables separated by comus now ultimately this file you're going to use is a text file that matches up your photoshopped document the variables and the folder full of all the information like graphics the names of the variables have to match up to create this text file you either enter the information or for using maybe excel you could export his tab delimited and then it would automatically or comedy limited would do all this information other that I have one line per person I've written in their name the name of their photo which is the names here like you'll see there's j williams dot jpeg the company named their position and then whether it's a us or canadian flag that needs to be in there so I save that file now back in photo shop I go back to variables and I say now that I've defined all the variables I have to put in bring in that little text file that pulls it all together so I go to import I select the file and I navigate to wherever the heck it is and there it is and I hit open and that looks like the right one I click okay now first nothing appears to have happened then if we turn the preview on you can see it's filled in the first example to show us there's his photo it put in the country flag put in his name and his title and put in his the his position sorry and at this point I mean it could go through every single one and show but honestly a cz long as one is working then I click okay now let me point out one thing to does this happen to me the first time I thought I'd done something wrong when you're importing that previews you're showing me this is what it's gonna look like when you click okay it goes back to your kind of without any photograph in there and at first I thought oh what happened but then I realized that's just what it's supposed to do because it's telling me this is that was just a preview to make sure it works so the last step to make sure this all actually comes together is we go file export data sets as files and at this point I'm going to say where I want to put this let's make a new folder in here called after and hit choose and now I'm just going to say everything else yeah I'm going to just say that's fine I want to keep a layer document because once I export this I want to make sure if I need to tweak anything I still can and I come in here and I click okay and goes flash flash flash flash flash and then go that's it we go back to bridge and there's the after folder and you see I now have five photoshopped layer document but they're all customized too all the information and I put in there now what's great about this I think is first of all they're all psd files so at this point if I noticed on the third one oops I need to tweak this or he is actually not supposed be from can expose from the us or whatever it is I still have all the layered versions but this is probably one of the prime examples of compared to the alternate imagine not if we're doing fifty what we're doing sorry not if we're doing five prefer doing fifty or two hundred how long would take me to open the next file drag the photograph in size it to fit type in there naming this name and then say that as another file as opposed to build a folder full of information in this case one photo per person really that was it and then the text file had the rest of the information that I want to be replaced so the last step to me in this case of the once I've determined yet all those psd files look up then we return to something like image processor because I don't really want a bunch of psd files I want j peg virgins and it goes through real quickly and now I have the final j pegs that I can print off laminate here's your media passed so think about any situation in photo shop where either graphically or text content you want to change on the fly I've since I've shown this at various events I've had people tell me for example I got a note from someone whose husband works in a company that makes a lot of graphics for scoreboards at sporting events and they now use this principle of creating an overall look and they just go player number whatever it is toe update very very quickly could be a simple as I worked with a company that a car dealer that whenever they had a new car for sale they wanted to make sure all the five locations had a photograph of that car with their contact information so they would just use that so it could be very complicated with multiple layers or just wanting to change one thing but this is another example and honestly you said it's not new it's been around photo shop for a long time but when you think about the alternative how long would take to do something like this especially if you khun you since you can tie it to excel so if you start with an excel spreadsheet again you could have all that information and then just export it in the right format and then that becomes your text file youse have to type in those variables across the top now we've talked about this on and off throughout this whole event but I would I remind you that variables are another good example of something that the first time you probably try variables or I should say this way the first time you try variables it will probably take you forty five minutes because you have to kind of figure out okay how did that work again the next time takes the less time I've done variables for a number of projects even if I only had twelve graphics I needed to make a one per month it was still quicker to do it this way by the time I went in manually and re edited layers and dragged a new photograph and saved as it was justus quick now for me to go in variables to find them click okay import and get it done that quickly so very cool part of photoshopped data driven graphics but this first half of automation was really talking about automation from a different perspective things that are already built in where you can just use commands are already there like contact sheet and photo merge and image processor and the things that are not so obvious like the fact that if we do content aware technology if we define brushes if we edit keyboard shortcuts all of those things that are just an effort to speed up our work tomorrow we're going to explore the whole world of actions and how you can record very specific operations for your needs and as we'll see tomorrow I think a lot of people are reluctant to use actions because there either overwhelmed by it or have perhaps the wrong impression of what they can and can't do so well look at that in more detail for today's little quick assignment I would suggest that at the very least real quick one find a fuller folder full of raw files and try using image processor to very quickly make a new folder that has j peg versions that air smaller if you happen to have the time to go out and take a bunch of photographs even in your backyard and overlap them a little bit trying making a panoramic images even better but really the main thing is just to get used to the fact that a built in function like image processor or contact sheet is a great way to save yourself time without a whole lot of effort and tomorrow when we come back we'll talk about actions and where they can really make a difference will see that

Class Description

Photoshop is an essential tool for all working professionals, no matter what industry. Join legendary Photoshop pro Dave Cross for an intensive 30-day series on everything you need to know about this unparalleled — and often overwhelming — program. Dave will teach one hour every day for 30 days, covering everything from setting goals to expert retouching strategies. Taught in bite-size chunks, this series will help you improve your skills, efficiency, and creative ability. At the end of this intensive series, you will understand basic techniques for every photo editing task, innovative hacks to improve your workflow, and which tools to use (and which ones you never have to learn). In addition, you learn how incorporating a non-destructive workflow will boost both your productivity and creativity. This is not just a passive, sit-back-and-watch class: you will be encouraged to actively take part by completing assignments and participating in live Q&A and feedback sessions. If you want to take your Photoshop skills to the next level, join Dave for 30 Days of Photoshop.


Software Used: Adobe Photoshop CC 14.1

Reviews

Melinda Wong
 

Very good teaching. I really liked how clear Dave was with everything, the order he taught the material, and I thought the stories were very helpful. I REALLY wanted to understand photoshop and extremely thankful for his wisdom and knowledge. Thank you so much! This is what was holding me back from getting my photography started! :) It just seemed so intimidating and now I have a greater understanding.