Adobe Photoshop CS3 Extended Upgrade Review
Space Saving Workspace
If there is one thing that the digital artist never seems to have enough of, it is digital real estate. All those necessary, but space hogging, palettes seem to always be in the way. One of the nicest new features in this upgrade is the new palette system that allows you to minimize all those intrusive palettes into icons that can be docked to the edge of the workspace. With this new icon-based system, you can toggle the palettes open and closed as needed, which gives you a much larger workspace for your creativity. Of course, you can rearrange the default workspace to meet your needs and save your customized layout. With the new Workspace button and drop-down menu, it is easy to use and manage all of your custom layouts.
We still have the familiar Adobe Bridge for managing and organizing your images and other digital assets. I especially like the Bridge Home page which has links to up-to-date resources such as online video tutorials. The Filter and Keywords panels have some nice improvements to the way you assign identifying keywords for your images and then search and sort through those images. You will also like the new stacking feature which allows you to stack several images together underneath a common thumbnail image. This stack can then be toggled open or closed. Finally, you will have fun with the new Loupe Tool which works like a magnifying glass that you can drag over your image to view details. Like the Photoshop workspace, the Adobe Bridge workspace can be customized to meet your project needs.
New Quick Selection Tool
I don't work with photographs very often but I do need to select areas of my artwork to add filters and effects. The new Quick Selection tool has made this so much easier. It works much like a paint brush and it is surprisingly sensitive to differences in color and shading. As you click and drag over your image, you will "paint a selection". You can use the keyboard shortcut keys to quickly toggle between adding to and subtracting from the active selection. With just a little practice with this new tool, you can quickly and easily select exactly the area you need.
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