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Customizing Presets

Lesson 4 from: Everyday Adobe Photoshop: From Workflow to Smartflow

Dave Cross

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Lesson Info

4. Customizing Presets

Lesson Info

Customizing Presets

So the other part of customizing photo shop and I this is one of these things has been around for a long time and photo shop and it always causes me great heartache to see how little people take advantage of this and it could be summarized as a whole as presets and pre meaning do it ahead of time to save yourself time in the long run and that means settings it means things like say you wanted to have your signature or logo readily accessible within photo shop that's considered a way to make a pre set to do that it could be settings for tools that can also be settings for adjustment layers so one of things people find say for example let's start with a simple one I have a whole series of photographs and I want to convert them to black and white well in in the world of photos job there's probably fourteen different ways to make a voter wrath from color into black and white and as long as you don't use this one this would be the worst one don't ever do this just changing at the gray scale...

like the worst possible way to make a black and white photograph because it makes all the decisions for you ultimately you may need to change into gray scale but first I want to have control over how it determines how to convert color to black and white and I would personally do that using an adjustment layer like oh, I don't know black and white well when you do that it comes up and says, here you go, go ahead you got all these sliders and like you say, I get to move a bunch of sliders and try and make something I like, which is fun like the first one or two times and after that healing you especially if you're processes I'm putting it on my own printer and I have to kind of figure out what the right combinations of settings and let's just say for the sake of argument I have gone through in this one and I've played around and violent, the lights glowing more so I'm just playing and soon that's too dark and just doing completely visually saying that doesn't affect anything, so eventually you get to a point like kind of like the way that looks looking at my screen up there so let's just pretend that I really like the way it looks and I have fifteen of these photographs well, I don't want to have to sit right down seventy four eighty nine for white down all this information I just like to make it available to me and other photographs and the way you do that is every panel has a little pop up menu which is easily seen by the very obscure little icon on the top right hand corner which tells you this apparently is a pop up and you and you choose save black and white preset that's it it asked you to name it. I would suggest you not call it untitled could I suppose, but give it some name which, you know, like let's call it, uh, I'm gonna use is specifically for a bunch of skyline photographs that I took and again, this is the beauty of this it prompts you to save it into the appropriate folder so that as you will see now it shows up right in that panel as an option. So in an article looking for it so I hit save and not continue working now let's pretend this is a different photograph looks a lot like the first one, but it's a different one clearly. And I say, I want to do another one of those black and white things one set of me trying to remember what I did. I just go to my pre set menu and choose skyline and is done now. The good part is this is what I love about presets. It doesn't mean that's your final look it means to start with I have given you these settings, but if you decide on this particular skyline, you want to move the green slider a bit more, go for it it just means at first I'm starting you off with whatever settings you saved, and this applies to every adjustment layer that there is scratch, that this applies to every just wonder that allows you to say process because it's bob, I won't say for five that they're ours presets for those particular ones, but what it means is you do the work once and then you do a test and see how this works really great. Let me instantly save a preset to me there's no downside to saving presets every single thing you do accept that your list gets longer, but a preset really is just a little text description that tells this command enter these settings automatically for me, so setting me have what I used to do every time, and I'm not kidding is I would say that looks good, okay seventy four, eighty nine, forty nine, right? Carol settings down in the next photograph type in those same settings which worked but where things like this, where there's a lot of settings that's. Too much effort. How do you race kenya race presets? Because, you know there's, sometimes somewhere can something and I know I'm never going to use that right said again, kind of like a daily yeah, I mean, you could you can go in and delete so you have to pick the one, and then you just from the same menu say, delete current preset or if that doesn't work for some reason, because there may be somewhere doesn't do that ultimately, when I saved it, it was saving into this folder, which is within the presets, which is in within photo shop. So ultimately, if you really you do you just have to dig in, like outside a photo shop on your operating system and find this folder and say, I don't want that one and deleted or rename it because you may have saved it and realize the name didn't make a lot of sense. Now you could rename it, then it will appear under that menu. Okay, thank you. And what I think is brilliant about this is that it would be great if it just said, let me apply this the end but what it's saying is, let me apply this and if you want to adjust that, you still can so it's not like a preset is like done now, it's like here's a preset that gets you a good starting point, but on this particular photograph, if you wish to, you can still tweak it, it doesn't affect the preset. Like this one it's still called skyline, but watch what happens as soon as I start toe move it, aiken still, just all these things that just technically it's no longer just that pre set is that preset plus, whatever I've done, and it wouldn't be unusual for me to go now let me save another preset that's, another version of it. So I very carefully named them, so I know exactly what the difference is between them. They like to say that was true, but, um, but if I need to go back and re name it so that's, just the first simple example of a preset is just I need to do this same adjustment to a series of similar photographs that's just so much easier than any other alternative, trying to remember what I used now they'll stay there from then on. So that's a good point if you did find you made like fifteen presets and five of them were at that moment in time six months ago, then you could remove them. I don't know, I'm like this. I'm not a harder in real life, but with photo shop I like horrid things I like hoard reza just in case you never know eight months or now someone might say, remember that photo so personally, I mean, I do okay like I had, I realized I had like fifteen unnecessary work spaces because I kept demonstrating how to save a work space so they serve no purpose except to show how to save a work space of those I deleted. So this applies if you look down the list of adjusting layers, many adjusting layers, you can save presets not all of them because by the nature of the adjustment or does like one thing so that's the first life of preset pretty simple to do the second type of pre set and this is the one that I talked about. I probably talked about every time I've been on great of life, which is quite a few times because it still kills me the number of people that look it and go oh that's really cool and never use it because we're such creatures of habit that we get in habits of doing things. It occurred to me a long time ago that I have part of my typical work flow is to click on a tool and then go up to the options bar and check out the settings for that tool. And depending on what the tool is, there might be one or two settings or there might be twelve with every time I have to remember to go change it to normal eighty percent you know all these settings but I keep using those same settings over and over again wouldn't it be nice if I could do that ahead of time and of course I'm only saying that because you can uh they're called tool presets and if you look up in the top corner here I'll try and zoom in a bit see when you look at the first part of the options bar you see the little tool icon a lot of people mistakenly believe that's just to remind us we're working with the brush tool but it actually is a menu fairly obvious from the little teeny tiny downward pointing triangle decided everyone knows that means menu right? So when I click on it there's a bunch of things under there so here are some presets that I have previously created for this particular tool and it means instead of every time I go to use the paintbrush I think ok, wait a minute to change it to this this this and this and go through a checklist instead I know for a particular function I just picked this one and it goes through and changes everything for me so instead it's the equivalent of me going through each element in that options bar and changing it but has been all this work has been done ahead of time this is particularly useful for things like a tool I don't use all that often so I always forget what's the best combination of settings now don't have to remember remember anymore because I know if I pick this preset it will fill in the settings that makes sense or in some cases this is actually really cool I think there's a tool called the mixer brush tool has been around for a few versions of photo shop and for most of us unless you have a fine art background actually using real paintbrushes it's a little mysterious, well, thankfully adobe went out and hired some person that really understands that could you make a bunch of presets? And I was like, oh, thank lord, because now I don't a friend figure out I just like, oh, I like it to look like an oil pastel yan I click on it and it goes through and change bills and all these settings only begin to understand, but I don't care there's someone who knows how to use that figure that out for me so that's another cool part about pre senses that now I gotta say this with caution some of the presets have come built in are really useful others I'm not entirely sure what they were thinking when they favorite example I might have already deleted but there's when you're one of the presets is called fill with bubbles pattern like seriously that's your one of your choices for a default preset anyway here's a perfect example it's still surprisingly hard, I would say in photoshopped to crop something if you want a crop, you have to go and fill in all these things like making eight by ten and you know every time or just goto preset to say I'd like it to be whatever and you just pick a preset and it automatically does it for you instead of song every time saying I want to make and type in eight by ten is just a preset now most of these again come built in the photos out, but you can also make your own so if you do a project where you wantto crop to a five by five instead of every time going to crop dolan typing in five tab five to make a present now the good news is it's surprisingly easy to make a preset so once you figured out what settings makes sense and I'll use let's, use the clone stamp to as an example. So I used a clone stamped a life figured out that a lot of the time I'd like to be in a different mode like, say darkened and a lower opacity for a particular thing I'm trying to achieve, so I've gone in and pick those settings and I also have sample all layer turned on, I'd like to make that a preset so I don't have to remember to do that every time, so the the process of making a preset is really very simple. You just click on the little pull down many which shows the existing ones and then you click on the this button, which is adobe four knew the little turning page icon represents make a new whatever in this case make a new preset, so you've already this is the key you've already entered all the settings you want, you're happy with it, then you come back here and say, make a new one, then you name it and this is key because you want to name it something that makes sense to you, as I always say, although I appreciate their effort every time you go to name a tool preset, it always starts with prompts you with the name of the tool and personally, I know this is a clone stamp tool presets, so to me that doesn't make a lot of sense to have been there, so I would personally delete it and then call it something that makes sense to you. Now this is all a very personal thing, so some people need their pre set with very tool setting type name like big round fifty percent see through brush other you might call it retouching eyebrows or whatever, so what they use it for that's completely up to you, whatever makes sense to you, you can either rename it a description of what the tools settings are or what you might use it for. Personally, I used to do that the tool kind of setting one and that's it now it's there. So from now on, I mentioned before, one of things a lot of people do is they click on a tool, then go and look at the options bar to see the settings my work blow smart flow is to click on the tool and then instantly go and say, oh, yeah, I want this one. So instead of me going through five things, I just click on a preset, it fills it in for me now one thing that I would hardly recommend if you're going to do tool presets, I think it's a really good idea to make a precept that's just one hundred percent normal, because if you want to just kind of revert back to normal settings, said I didn't go because I still have to go back and fill a mall backto normal, I usually start off with a kind of a default, my default of what I think should be for this tool, and sometimes it is one hundred percent no capacity, normal mode, whatever, so that way I can sort of flip flopped between some setting that I've created and kind of typical normal but I mean, the game and that's a personal preference if you never find yourself at that particular setting, there'd be no point in doing that now, there's two ways to access the tool presets one way is to go to the particular tool, and then you see a pull down list. Now the only sort of catches see down the bottom, it says current tool on lee. I can't remember now if that's on by default or not, because if it's not here's, what happened? So matter what tool you go to, you would see every single pre set in the world, which is just really confusing to me because if I'm trying to use the clone stamp tool, why do I want to see settings for like every other tool known to mankind? So personally, when I'm using this pull down list, I have currently on ly checked because that why I'm on ly seeing presents that are applicable to the tool I'm using however the other thing to do, and I think this is really amazing. I uses all the time now, it's funny, because one thing I love about photo shop is you find a way that makes sense for you, and you get so comfortable with it that you miss other possibilities because for years I was saying the people will be all I only use the presets from that menu because why would you want to see the presets for tools you're not using and then someone showed me their workload I was like that is awesome because here's the thing what I would always do is this I would click on or press the letter for the clone stamp tool and then look at the list of presets but there's also this floating panel called tool presets and here I would tend to show all of my tool presets and here's why I notice that I'm currently using the move tool well if I know that the next thing I want to do is go to the clone stamp tool and use one of my presets than here I could just go down and find it and when I click on it automatically switches to the clone stamp tool with that free set already chosen so just eliminated a step inside of me going and clicking on the tool and then picking the preset this does it in one shot so to me this is actually really interesting way if you narrow now I'm showing a whole bunch of pre sets a lot of which aren't mine so I would be kind of trimming this down a little bit more to the ones that I used but I think this is a pretty interesting concept to say instead of going first choose the tool then choose the precept that's kind of doing it in one step this presupposes you've already gone through and made a series of presets and by main I mean making a new precept that describes your tools options and this is just tool presets mean there's other priests will talk about the second but this I think is a very interesting way to work is toe for every of the main tools you use create a handful of pre sets for the normal settings he used the most often and then use use this panel to switch between them so I finished doing closed after I want a crop to a five by seven I just click on that pre set it automatically is now cropped ready to remediate enter before I could adjust accordingly so just like we talked about the adjustment air preset is saying when I using a adjustment air preset it saying start with these settings but you can tweak it this is no different I clicked on that five by seven crop preset so it's highlighted it but I can still adjusted and move it and rotated but it's still saved me having to go go get the crop tool type in the measurements it's still eliminating extra steps the incredibly sad part to me is almost every time I've ever talked about tool presets at least someone out there says is this new like no it's been around forever I mean, I'm not kidding this is like the one that probably oldest parts of photoshopped that most people don't even are aware or forget that it's there and I think I told this story last time I was here, but I was teaching a workshop in this guy came up and you were here like, two years ago nothing. Okay, I remember sometimes and he said, I just feel like I should apologize ceos likewise, because you showed tool presets at the time was like to a process I should use those all the time and I still don't and just showed me again and I was like, yeah, I shouldn't start using those and that's the problem is, until you actually incorporate these issues another good idea so you have to be prepared I don't know whoever said this first, but change change is painful she had to be prepared to go through some pain to go oh, wait, I should make it to a preset but I I guarantee you once you do it cautions save so much time and we even talk about other preset sir there do there's lots of other ones for tool like brush settings and all kinds of other things. This is just two things adjustment layers and tool presets and just those two alone can save you so much time say the obvious but do you do do the a new layer and then the tool whatever told it doesn't the order doesn't matter most the time because as long as you're going to end up using on another layer that's just part of the process of the order in which you do it for most tools doesn't make any difference the only thing I would say is there are certain things like if you've already for example typed text it's too late to pick a preset because you've already used the tool so part of the preset concept is you do it before use the tool but where you do it in the order of new layer or tool that part really doesn't matter I guess I'm saying is that like so with this background so right now if you just open that up with background and then he wanted to go straight to using tools um in the like that's where like where would you yeah, I think it doesn't really matter so like I've opened this image and I decide I want to use say one of my um clone stamp I would click on it and then go oh wait I also need new layer so the order doesn't that's all we haven't used the tool yet that's really the key is it's ok to do the tool preset first before you start using it you still have to use that same thought process of the weight. I should do that on a separate layer. So from that respect, the order doesn't really matter. I think I think sure, what you're saying, david furnish of is continually updating and bringing you stuff that we do. Then forget about the old stuff that's been there all along, and this is where I mean, I'm not kidding. If I look back, I want to say this was like I remember, but I want to say was probably forced up seven. Yes, but like, you know, a long time ago. But, I mean, the reality is a lot of us teach ourselves photo shop and if you didn't happen to click on that little teeny tiny triangle and go what's this, then the chance even daniel and see, listen, go oh, it's a list of things until someone tells you this is why this list of things is important, you're going to use the way you always have. I have a question because this arrangement I would prevent no. Which city is this? No idea. I realized it's not neil. Severely images so I just was like, look, dollar photo club next

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a Creativelive Student

I enjoyed this class by Dave Cross. I like his method of teaching and found him very easy to follow and I learned lots of good tips on smart objects and working non destructively. I have just made the move from PS Elements to Photoshop CC 2014 so have lots to learn so I look forward to more from Dave in the future. Thanks Dave, I thoroughly enjoyed this class.

Roni Chas


a Creativelive Student

Dave Cross is a wonderful instructor! He has a fantastic teaching style and has great mastery of his subjects!

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