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05-23-2011, 07:55 AM   #1
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New to photography/pentax/photoshop...any help would be awesome!

First, I'd like to say thanks to everybody on this forum for helping me decide to go with Pentax! I have been going to the forum everyday for over a year now just taking everything in, and trying to learn the basics. Well, about 3 months ago i finally took the plunge and purchased my K-r. I absolutely love it! still trying to figure everything out, but i can already tell the huge difference in quality from my old point and shoot.

Anyway, my real question is about layering images in photoshop (elements for PC). Ive looked at all the posts, and googled for hours but im still just not having any good results (although this is probably because i have no idea about anything to do with photoshop, im lost as soon as i open the program lol) Im trying to get what i think is called an action sequence shot, like a person swinging a baseball bat. But everytime i try it turns out really stupid looking. I was hoping someone more familiar with this, could help me by putting instructions in lamest terms. Or any kind of tips would be hugely appreciated!!
Thanks!

05-23-2011, 08:51 AM   #2
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QuoteOriginally posted by chel_c22 Quote
First, I'd like to say thanks to everybody on this forum for helping me decide to go with Pentax! I have been going to the forum everyday for over a year now just taking everything in, and trying to learn the basics. Well, about 3 months ago i finally took the plunge and purchased my K-r. I absolutely love it! still trying to figure everything out, but i can already tell the huge difference in quality from my old point and shoot.

Anyway, my real question is about layering images in photoshop (elements for PC). Ive looked at all the posts, and googled for hours but im still just not having any good results (although this is probably because i have no idea about anything to do with photoshop, im lost as soon as i open the program lol) Im trying to get what i think is called an action sequence shot, like a person swinging a baseball bat. But everytime i try it turns out really stupid looking. I was hoping someone more familiar with this, could help me by putting instructions in lamest terms. Or any kind of tips would be hugely appreciated!!
Thanks!
If you go here: Elements Village - Powered by vBulletin - you will probably find the answer...

Keep practicing!!!
05-23-2011, 09:09 AM   #3
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Hm... well, for photoshop in general, there's a few things I needed to learn about to get started:

1. Layers behave very much like cels in animation - basically, it's clear until you put something onto it, then the way that you arrange the cels determines what's on top and so forth. The layer system works in such a way that layers closest to the top of the list are sitting on the top of the image. That said, any time you want to make a change to a layer, select it first, then make whatever change to it.

2. The polygonal lasso tool is great for selecting items to cut out of an image. Things to be aware of with this tool:
- The "feathering" option - this tells how hard/soft you want the edges of the selection area to be (0 px is no feathering, anything further up will soften the edges).
- When you're done working with a selection, press Ctrl-D to deselect the area before working with anything else.

3. In the layers toolbar, there's opacity, fill, and blending options for each layer. Opacity determines the transparency of the layer including any layer effects, while fill disregards layer effects when determining transparency. The blending options tells photoshop how to render the given layer.

4. For photographs, under the "Image" or "Layer" menus, there's an adjustments sub menu. Here, you can change the brightness, contrast, color, and other adjustments. I usually work with the levels tool until I get the saturation and lightness that I like in the photo. If you're trying to splice two photos together, you might have to adjust the color on one to match the other.

After that, most other things are just learning the tools and figuring out what filters to apply in what sequence to get the look that you're looking to get. I took a class at a community college to learn the stuff that I know about photoshop - the professor knew most of the tools from actually having used them in a studio that did post processing in the old way, one of his stories involved getting masking in his hair every time he worked with it. You might find some decent tutorials online, though, by just looking up the name of the tool and see what it can do.

Hope that helps!

(Edit: Hrm, I just reread, and I don't know how well my advice applies to Elements.)
05-23-2011, 09:21 AM   #4
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Here are a couple of tutorials that you might find helpful.

Multiple Personality Editing - Tutorials

Cloning Tutorial - Tutorials


And Ron has a ton of PS tutorials.

http://ronbigelow.com/articles/articles.htm

Tim

05-23-2011, 10:35 AM   #5
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I run a one day "Introduction to Photoshop" course, but, unless you happen to be in the UK that's not much use to you.

But I run it because I know that, without some form of help, Photoshop can be impenetrable - you just don't know where to start. However, there is a pdf manual here (although it is quite large) but perhaps more usefully, there is quite a good series of video tutorials available here. The tutorial is based on Elements 8, but much of it is general enough to apply to most versions of Photoshop, particularly the bit on layers.

Hope this is useful.
05-26-2011, 07:34 AM   #6
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Original Poster
Thanks for all the suggestions and help! I'll let you guys know how it goes on my next try after all the tips!
05-26-2011, 06:50 PM   #7
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I have used this site for Photoshop and other programs and it is really a good start.

AdobeTV | Learn Photoshop Elements 9
05-30-2011, 08:20 AM   #8
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I found Photoshop Elements The Missing Manual to be a big help in understanding layers.

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