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Book Review Photoshop CS2 Killer Tips by Scott Kelby and Felix Nelson



Authors:
Scott Kelby
Felix Nelson
ISBN: 0321330633
Publisher: New Riders Press
288 pages
Published: Sept 2005

This book by Scott Kelby and Felix Nelson has a little something for everyone from the novice to the professional. Especially for the novice, each tip is fully illustrated with complete and easy to follow instructions. Also, I especially liked that there was no CD or image downloads. Because the authors did not rely on any sample images, the instructions are general enough to be used in many situations.

As with most books on AdobeR PhotoshopR written by Kelby, Photoshop CS2 Killer Tips has many of the tips and tricks you will need for photo editing and manipulation. However, this book also has some tips for those of us who use Photoshop to create digital art. The authors have divided these tips into logical categories which makes it quick and easy to find the information you need. So, this is a great book to keep close by on your reference shelf. Each chapter covers one category such as Adobe Bridge, essential tips, production, cool tips, camera raw, layers, type, image correction and prepress, advanced tips, troubleshooting and web tips.

Some of the tips that I found to be most helpful were those that I could apply to my digital art. Blending edges of adjacent colors and gradients is one way to prevent that computer generated look in your digital art and I found some nice tips for painting with digital color and gradients. One was a cool tip for achieving a custom gradient and another for softening paint strokes for a more traditional painting style. Another important aspect for creating art digitally is the freedom and flexibility that using Photoshop layers gives you when creating your design. There were several tips for working with layers including dragging layers between images, creating a more realistic drop shadow effect and controlling opacity in only a section of a layer. The book also had many good tips for creating print-ready graphics such as how to set your computer monitor to display print colors correctly and how to get a better drop shadow in print.

Scott Kelby is Editor-in-Chief for Photoshop User magazine, President of NAPP (National Association for Photoshop Professionals) and a popular author and Photoshop seminar instructor.

Felix Nelson is also an author and instructor, the Creative Director for Photoshop User, Senior Art Director for NAPP and Art Director for Layers magazine.




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