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Photoshop CS5 Mini Bridge & Workflow Enhancements

PhotoshopR CS5 has over 36 workflow enhancements which have been requested by Photoshop users. For example, you can straighten a photograph with one click. Just use the Ruler tool to draw a "horizon" line on your problem photo. Then go to the Options bar and click the Straighten icon. Photoshop will automatically rotate and crop your photo for the new alignment. Other easy-click enhancements include many preset Actions and the Crop tool with Overlay Guide for quickly cropping a photo with the Rule of Thirds.

For the photographer, Photoshop CS5 has some great enhancements for correcting those problem photos and the new Camera Raw 6 Plugin. Camera Raw 6 supports over 275 camera models and allows you to perform high quality camera raw conversion such de-mosaicing, noise removal and image sharpening. You can also add creative effects such as the new film grain and post-crop vignetting. Photoshop's Lens Correction feature will automatically correct some of the most common problems including geometric distortion, chromatic aberration and vignetting. You can also create your own custom lens-correction profiles.

Would you like to create High Dynamic Range images by merging multiple photos? Photoshop's HDR Pro's extended controls and new algorithms let you create images with full tonal range. If you don't have multiple source photos, you can get the same HDR effect using the HDR Toning feature which mimics tone mapping.

There have been enhancements to Adobe Bridge. Many Photoshop users, including myself, will be glad that Bridge has been fine-tuned to load and open faster. But even more convenient is the new Mini Bridge. Mini Bridge is a new panel in Photoshop that you can use to access your media directly in the Photoshop workspace. Mini Bridge has three sections. The Path bar displays the pathway for your file structure and the Navigation Pod displays the file structure. It's in the Content Pod and the Preview Pod where all the magic occurs. To easily open an image in Photoshop from the Mini Bridge, just double-click on the thumbnail or drag the image from the Content Pod to any Photoshop window. Use the Space bar to view an image in Full Screen Mode. Batch processing is possible via the Mini Bridge. Just select all the images to be processed and choose a task from the Tools menu.

I was surprised how easily I could create a professional-looking Flash-based web gallery from the Adobe Bridge Output workspace. You have several templates, styles and appearance settings to choose from and you can create/save your own custom web gallery style.

*Adobe provided a review copy to me free of charge.



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