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Foundations of Adobe Photoshop CC

Lesson 16 of 36

Creative Cloud Libraries

Dave Cross

Foundations of Adobe Photoshop CC

Dave Cross

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Lesson Info

16. Creative Cloud Libraries

Lesson Info

Creative Cloud Libraries

So this is an interesting idea. If we were having this conversation, this class sometime ago, and someone asked the question, "So I created a logo that I wanna use all the time, how do I save it and where do I put it?" And we had this big discussion of well, you gotta save it in a folder somewhere that you remember where it is 'cause every time I wanna use it, you have to go find it in that folder, and I hope you remember where that is. Life changed dramatically when Adobe introduced this thing called Creative Cloud Libraries. Now, it's called Creative Cloud Libraries 'cause part of the initial, the main premise of it, is that leverage is the fact that Creative Cloud is like this cloud. That always cracks me up 'cause I know it's a building somewhere, it's not really a cloud. "It's up in the cloud." No it's in Minnesota, come on, we all know that. But people say it's in the cloud. No it's not, it's on the server over there somewhere. Anyway, the idea of the Creative Cloud Libraries is ...

anything you put in this Library means that now instantly it's accessible for your Creative Cloud account, meaning in other machines where you have Photoshop, so you have a laptop and a desktop, or if you have different applications. There are things that are shared between, for example, Illustrator and InDesign. Things of that nature, but also, just individually, if you just eliminate internet and Creative Cloud for a moment, it still requires that to work, but it also means locally, on this laptop, it's so much easier for me to put things in my library 'cause they're right there all the time. So instead of me going, "Oh, I need my logo. "File, open, where did I put it again?" Search for it, now it's just right there. So this is what it looks like. You have this thing called Library. You can actually have multiple Libraries. I actually slimmed down this a little bit before I started 'cause I always, in demonstration, making Libraries for the purpose of demonstration. All of the sudden my library list is like 14 things long that have nothing in them. So here is a Library. And you can see, here is the kind of things I can put in a library, and some of these won't make sense too much yet because we haven't talked about it. But, if there are colors used all the time, like corporate colors instead of remembering what they are or having to type them in using codes or whatever, they're colors. So they're built in to my library, so anytime I'm doing work for maybe a client. You could create a Library for Smith High School. In that you have their school colors, their logo, their name and address and type, whatever it is. Now instead of going and finding that somewhere, it's right in Photoshop. You can also do things that are kind of odd in the Photoshop world like character styles. That's like a word processing page layout, but you can do it in Photoshop. We'll talk later on about layer style, so those are all saved there, but here are some examples. Oh, we can also save Brushes, which we'll also talk about later on. But here's some photos that I brought in, these are Adobe stock images. But I have other things in here like logos and things like that. So let's say that this is a logo that I gonna use all the time and I wanna just make sure I have it accessible. It couldn't be much easier, frankly, is I've got the thing open. I just click on the little plus button and I say I'd like to add this graphic. And it is added somewhere in here. Where'd it go? (laughs) He said, "It's so easy." And then it's like it's in here somewhere. That's interesting, have to try the drag and drop way and see if I can see where, ah there it is. The first one, OK. Now it's in my Library and there was a slight delay there for some reason. So technically what's happening it it's still putting it through the Creative Cloud. There's still internet required initially to get it in there. But once you've done it, it's fine. Now I'm working on a project and I decide, "Oh I need that logo," instead of me, as I used to in the past go file open and hope I remembered where I put it. Now it's right there. So I just say let's put that in here and drag it in. And there's my logo nicely added in automatically, OK? So the type of things you can put in here are photos used all the time, you could take a block of text that has your name, address, phone number you use all the time. Type that in first, drag it into the Library to add as an element. Now when you drag it out of there, it comes in automatically, but it doesn't change the content of what it is. In other words, if you bring in a block of text and put it in your Library, when you drag it back out again, it's still editable text, ultimately. It's just, saves you having to type it over and over and over again, OK? So think about anything in Photoshop that you're using in an ongoing basis that, up until now, you've been storing somewhere and going and getting it. That's one of the advantage of the Library function, OK? If I had another machine here with Photoshop, on my same Creative Cloud account, as soon as I go to the Library, that logo I just added would be on that machine too. I should say accessible for now, because technically it's not on this machine, it's accessing it from your Creative Cloud Library. To be able to move back and forth, there is still internet required at some point, but when you compare to he alternative of saving it somewhere on your hard drive in a folder that made perfect sense at that time, and then trying to remember where that is later, knowing that depending on how you do this, and we'll talk about this more when we talk about Layers. See if I have an example here. And, well, we can also bring, I happen to use another program called Adobe Illustrator, so sometimes I'll take a logo in Illustrator and drag it in to the Library from Illustrator, it instantly shows up in my Photoshop Library as an Illustrator file. Which is pretty cool. Trying to see if I have one here. Here's one, I think. One of the things that happens with Smart Objects is if you have a multiple layered file, with all this information, it'll initially come in looking like it's one graphic, like this logo does, but if I take a look at it in ways we'll talk about later on, you'll see there's actually multiple versions of this logo built in to that same file. So now on the fly, I can change the different logos if I don't want the initial ones. So if you hae, for example, a logo, use that example, that has different versions of color for different purposes, instead of saving five separate logos, it's technically one logo file with the five different looks built into it. So then you drag it from your Library and just decide which one you wanna use. From a time savings stand point, especially I know for me personally, I had this terrible habit, I probably still do actually, (laughs) of being really bad at file naming. So I'd call the logo like Logo One, Logo Two instead of like Logo with Red. (laughs) You know so, I'd always open both, "Oh that's the red one," and then drag it in. This way, it's all built into the same document. As we'll see, as we progress further in the next segment and talk more about what Layers are and how they work and all that stuff, you'll see that so many things we're gonna do, life is easier with Layers. Because instead of, in this case, having X number of separate files, each with the same logo, I have one, which has multiple versions that can be easily accessible and I just decide which one I want. And I say I want this one and then, now I have that version on my other photograph. When we talk about Libraries, I mean there's a lot more that can be done, but some of the interesting things we can do is save these elements of Photoshop that used to be much more challenging. For example, when we talk later on about, probably tomorrow morning I think, about layer styles, and there's a thing to do in Photoshop, you could always save a layer style, but it would save it out there somewhere in a folder. So if later on you went to get that, you'd have to say, "Where'd I put that?" Now it's right here, in your document. And in fact, I don't know that I have one I could show you right now, but say I had been working on a file previously that had, or maybe someone sent it to me, that had different images in it, different texts, different layers, the first time I opened it, it actually asks you, "Would you like to take any of this stuff "and put it in your Library automatically?" So it senses there's things in this document that you might want and if you want it to, it will actually build a separate Library from that document. So for example, if you're working with a client, and I've done this a couple of times, where they created what they called a Look Book. These are our favorite colors, this is our logo, they sent it as, on my suggestion, sent me a layered PSD file. I opened it and it went beep beep beep beep and I suddenly had like five things in a Library that now every time I do work for them, it's right there ready to go. So, kind of cool. The Creative Cloud part, the sharing between machines, that's really cool, but just for yourself, your own purposes, using the Library can be really beneficial. I'll just mention one other thing because I didn't think to set this up ahead of time to show you, but it's really cool. There's an app you can get, it's free for both, various phones, whatever version of phone you have. iPhone, what's the other one called? Android. Android, thank you. My name escaped me for a moment. It's an app from Adobe called Capture CC. So imagine you're sitting here going, "Those colored boxes over there, "I love those colors. "I wonder what they are?" Instead of having to guess, you take your phone, you point it at that thing and take a picture and it says, "Well here's those color of swatches." And then once you do that, then it automatically shows up in your Library as swatches that you can then use in Photoshop. That's pretty cool. Or you see some really cool carpet and you think that would make a really neat pattern. So you take a photo of it. It has a pattern maker inside the app that allows to make this really nice seamless repeating pattern and when you click Yes I'd Like That, it adds, here's, look at all these patterns. These are all things I made pointing my camera at something. Including the dog pattern, which is also very useful 'cause you can imagine using that every day, in your every day work. Point your camera at your dog and make a pattern out of it. So there you go. (laughs) Anyway, it's kinda cool. It's a free app and it does some pretty amazing things, considering it's tied into Creative Cloud. For me it was probably one of the first times where I thought that's a really good example of this technology, where you've got one device here, you take a pictures of swatches before you even get a chance to look at Photoshop. Those colors are already in your Library ready to use. OK so I put something in my Creative Cloud Library. Can other users, who are also members of Creative Cloud, but not on my account, can they also, can I share with them? You have the ability to share it, but it won't happen by default. In other words, you can make a Library that they become shareable so that other people can access it.

Class Description

Join Dave Cross in this beginner friendly class starting at the very basics with Adobe® Photoshop® CC. You’ll learn how to begin navigating the software and what the best practices and work habits are to approach different projects.

Dave will cover:

  • Working non destructively on your files
  • How to resize, crop, and straighten images
  • Using layers with basic layer examples
  • Adding text, color, and painting to images
  • How to retouch and adjust images using selections and masks
  • Learn how to use the tools you need to create the image you want. Dave will demonstrate using sample workflows that take you through projects from start to finish.

Don't have Adobe Photoshop yet? Get it now so you can follow along with the course!

Software Used: Adobe Photoshop CC 2017



I really like Dave's methodical teaching style. Step by step works best for my learning processes. He also has a lovely voice to listen to during his classes, that is important if you have to listen to someone talk for any length of time. I also like the "dance" he does by explaining what he is going to do, then does it, and then comes back to explaining the choices he made and why. Very, very easy to follow him in his straight forward explanations. He increased my understanding of so many tools I use and so many I have never used. Wow! Photoshop with Dave took away a lot of "fear"! (Wish I had a "happy face" to place here!) I bought this class today because I don't think I can get along without it!

Jim Bellomo

I was so lucky to get to attend this class in person here in Seattle. I have been a fan of Dave's for years and own a number of his courses from Creative Live. When this class was announced I almost decided to skip it since it was listed as a "beginners" class but decided that it "might" be worth it. One of the reasons I wanted to take it was that I am self-taught. I had started with Photoshop 5 (not CS5 but 5) about 15 years ago (at least). I figured it I took this class I might learn a little something that would help me in my work. Well, two days later I have 18 pages of handwritten notes, a whole new way to work and it has already paid off in a huge way in my daily workflow. I bill out my hours at around $100 an hour as a graphic designer and marketing person. That means in the two days that I spent 10 hours a day taking the class and commuting to it, it cost me about $2000 in working time. But it didn't. I can guarantee that I am way ahead on this one. I l learned so much. The real world things I learned will pay off for a very long time. Within one day after the class I had already started changing my workflow to be more non-destructive and faster. Dave is an awesome teacher and I can't say enough good things about this class. Even if you think you know Photoshop, you don't. I teach it in my small world but I learned so much.


A writer and an old person (over 60), I rarely use neat exaggerations like "great" or "fantastic," and never say "awesome" in the currently fashionable manner. However, I would call this class both great and excellently planned. Cross is well-spoken and a consummate teacher with a rarely non-irritating voice. It is information packed, clearly presented, well-organized, and extremely helpful. I wish I could afford his others.