Category: Photoshop

Alien Skin updates Eye Candy

Alien Skin Software announced the immediate availability of an update to its Eye Candy 7 graphic design effects plug-in. The update adds the capability to store presets in a cloud storage folder so that they can be synchronized between multiple computers.

Perspective Shadow

Cloud preset sharing is available to all users of Eye Candy 7, not just users of Photoshop CC. It works with multiple cloud storage services, including Dropbox.

I’ve done a visual review of Eye Candy 7 in the recent past, and I love the plugin!

The update also adds compatibility with the new Adobe Photoshop Creative Cloud.

Get cleaner strokes in Photoshop CS6

Photoshop strokes

There are two ways to apply strokes to shape layers in Photoshop CS6 — via layer styles, which have been around since version 6 (that’s the ancient version 6.0, not CS6), or via the all-new vector shape options. They may appear similar at first glance, but there’s some significant differences.

Bjango has put together an excellent post on getting higher quality strokes in Photoshop CS6 that’s definitely worth a quick read!

Photoshop etiquette for agency designers

Photoshop Etiquette

Photoshop Etiquette is a site dedicated to offering some best practices for web designers using Adobe Photoshop. Of course, many of the tips are applicable for print designers as well.

Naming layers and using folders to group appropriate layers is a pet peeve of mine. There’s nothing worse than opening a PSD file with 75 layers all named “Layer Copy 1 Copy” and set in no particular order.

Got any tips not listed that makes life easier when using Photoshop? Share in the comments below.

Common myths about Adobe Creative Cloud

Adobe Creative Cloud

I get a lot of emails about Adobe Creative Cloud and whether it’s right for people. A lot of the questions have been answered by Adobe, but they’re hard to find.

I came across The 10 Most Common Myths About Creative Cloud at ProDesignTools that answers many of the most common questions. By far, the most asked concern seems to be about having a constant Internet connection in order to use the Creative Suite applications. This simply isn’t true. In fact, you only have to be connected once per month for the software to ping the Adobe license server in order to verify your subscription.

[zilla_alert style=”yellow”]Other than the way you pay for the Creative Suite Master Collection, there is no difference between Creative Cloud and the standard perpetual license versions we’ve been buying for decades. Well, other than Adobe will send black helicopters to your office to remove the software from your computer if you stop paying for it.[/zilla_alert]

Disclaimer: I don’t know if Adobe owns any black helicopters, but I’m pretty sure I made that part up about coming to your office.

Another question I get is why Adobe has chosen to offer freebies to Creative Cloud subscribers that aren’t available to standard license users. The answer isn’t as simple as you might think. Of course it’s a great way to entice users to subscribe to the Creative Cloud, but the reality is that the accounting methods used by software companies to claim income don’t allow Adobe to “add value features” to standard license users. You can read more about the situation here.

As for my take on Adobe Creative Cloud; I think it’s the future. Adobe wasn’t the first company to offer software on a subscription basis, but it was probably the first (and certainly the largest) in the design industry to do so. Microsoft has since announced Office 365, a subscription-based Office Suite. It won’t be long before all major software is offered as subscription only.

Got an opinion about Creative Cloud? Share it in the comments below.

Adjusting your cropping preferences in Photoshop CS6

Photoshop CS6 cropping preferences

Adobe Photoshop CS6 brought with it a new cropping method that has left some users frustrated, and others wishing they could tweak it a bit. Fortunately, Adobe has built-in the ability to do both.

With the Crop Tool active (hit the C key to activate it), click the little gear icon in the toolbar stretching across the top of your Photoshop window.

In the pop-up menu, you can tick the Use Classic Mode checkbox to return the cropping method to the way it was before CS6. If you like the new cropping method, as I do, you can also toggle the Auto Centering and Cropped are viewing. In addition, you can adjust the Cropping Shield (the dark area that you’re cropping out of your image).

Photoshop.com accounts migrating to Revel

Adobe Revel

Adobe has announced that current Photoshop.com storage and sharing accounts will move to the new Adobe Revel service starting April 2, 2013. The migration will be automatic.

Adobe Revel is a sort of mix of Apple’s old .Mac photo album feature and iPhoto. It stores your photos in the cloud, keeps them synced with all your devices, builds photo albums for viewing by friends, and offers minimal editing features.

Adobe Revel offers a free tier with limited uploading, and a premium tier that offers unlimited uploading and storage for $6.00 per month.