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Photoshop Masking & Compositing (2nd Edition) Paperback – Aug 24 2012


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Product Details

  • Paperback: 504 pages
  • Publisher: New Riders; 2 edition (Aug. 24 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0321701003
  • ISBN-13: 978-0321701008
  • Product Dimensions: 20.3 x 2.2 x 25.4 cm
  • Shipping Weight: 1.1 Kg
  • Average Customer Review: 3.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #94,438 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
  • See Complete Table of Contents

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3 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Gerbrand Uiterdijk on Jan. 15 2013
Format: Paperback
First of all I don't understand why there are 3 authors needed to write a book about Photoshop titled Masking and Compositing
while it lies in Katrin Eisman's power to do this job by herself in an excellent way.

Her collegues and students don't understand either nor do they understand why.

Sean Duggan seems always to have been selected as co-author but unfortunately he is by far not as talented as Katrin Eisman with reference to writing books.

Compared to the edition 0f 2004 this book lacks some of the in-depht tutorials as to selecting and extracting very intricate objects like smoke, hair and foliage.
Discussing the Pen Tool is fully neglected in this edition of 2012 while she makes clear in the former Edition
that the Pen Tool is one of her most favourites to use in Photoshop.

When I browse through the table of contents of the Book I can only conclude that it deals more with Compositing than
Selecting and Masking.

The Chapter History of Compositing Images included in this edition is written in that typical encyclopedian style, hence very boring and tiresome to read.
It consists of numerous dates, facts and names of Photo Artists referring to the History of Compositing Images.
And it gives the impression that this mind-numbingly drearly to read chapter is directly copied from an encyclopedia.

The following chapter The Creative Process is full of general statements and explanations which speak for themselves.

The last parts of the book involve general elementary philosophical theories and contemplations on the subject of compositing and postproduction images.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)

Amazon.com: 39 reviews
40 of 41 people found the following review helpful
The only book you'll need to become a Photoshop masking and compositing expert Sept. 5 2012
By Jerry Saperstein - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Back in February, 2012 when I pre-ordered this book, I was a bit concerned. Except for talking about a few new features added since the first edition was published, what more could be said - and the idea of co-authors worried me. Would they be taking over the writing and replacing Katrin Eismann who both knows Photoshop intimately and writes extremely well?

Well, all is well.

In its second edition, this is a great book made even better. In some ways, far better.

With this book, faithful attention (which means weeks of study), practicing with the examples and the willingness to persevere, you will become an expert in the techniques of Photoshop masking and compositing. No guaranty that you'll become artistically competent, but you will most certainly become technically proficient.

Brought up to date for Photoshop CS6, the book covers every aspect of using the program's tools for masking and compositing. The pen tool chapter is now a downloadable PDF item, a production decision I don't agree with, but no real harm done. The chapter on the pen tool has been revised and is more informative than its predecessor.

The chapter on using the Refine Edge tool is beyond outstanding. It is the best I've seen in a Photoshop book (and I've collected a lot of them) or online article. Eismann leaves no stone unturned in her exposition.

More material has been added on planning composites, which is nice, but the book would survive without it. The gallery section on masters of compositing has been expanded, which is also another of those things that is basically eye-candy. It adds in a way, but I could live without it.

Just as I did with the first edition, I have promised myself that I will read every page and do every exercise over and over again until I am, like Katrin Eismann, a total master. Of course, you know what they say about roads paved with good intentions.

The reality is that despite my good intentions, I will probably pick at the contents, learning what I need to know when I nweed to know it and blunder my way through to passable results.

Either way, as a text to be studied page by page or a go-to reference on Photoshop masking and compositing, this is the one and only book on the subject you'll need. (Its complement would be "How To Cheat With Photoshop" by Steve Caplin, which deals more with the methodology of creating photomontages. There is some overlap in that both teach technique, but they really are different books in terms of scope.)

Simply put: a classic on Photoshop masking and compositing.

Jerry
17 of 19 people found the following review helpful
a must buy Sept. 10 2012
By Lash LaRue - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
What I like most about the book is that the techniques are put into a context, so that the technical information is given a solid grounding in art.

The book is in four parts. It starts with a chapter on the history of "compositing" by artists as well as by photographers. If you believe, as I do, that learning from what other artists have done is essential, then you will think that this chapter is crucial. The chapter on history is followed by a chapter on creativity, which I also think is valuable. I suppose that everyone knows that thinking creatively about portraits is different from thinking creatively about landscapes, and so no one should be surprised that there are creative issues in compositing that are worth thought and discussion. Consequently, I praise the authors for starting with these two chapters and thus making the book much more than a "how-to" compendium of technique. By doing so, they show that they are thoughtful artists.

The second part is about camera work for composites. While one can composite images drawn randomly from an archive, at times one needs to take photos for the specific purpose of making a particular composite. When this is true, there are particular issues that one must think about, and so the authors set aside three chapters to these topics. For example, they suggest that the sequence of taking the photos can matter, and thus they have a discussion of how to think about planning a photo project. Furthermore, putting together a top lit photo with a side lit photo is likely to create problems, so they have an intelligent discussion of light. (In fact, this chapter has one of the best short tutorials on light and lighting that I have ever read.) And of course, if one has a photo of a vase that was taken from below and tries to composite it on a table shot from above, a composite of the two is likely to look really weird, so they teach how to use perspective, point of view, and scale to plan ones photography. (And the bonus here is the most lucid discussion of one-point versus two-point versus three-point perspective that I have ever read.)

The third part of the book is six chapters (240 pages) on techniques for using Photoshop to make selections, that can be turned into masks, and that in turn can be used to make the composite look seamless. These sections contain the nitty-gritty. I, for one, need this sort of technical information, and I look forward to studying it closely. (One reviewer thought that Katrin Eismann did not need the help of Sean Duggan or James Porto in writing these chapters. I can't image why a reviewer would believe that he or she knows better than Katrin herself what others can bring to the table.) But even this technical detail, as one might expect, is set into an overall context. The authors ask one to understand that there is no all purpose selection technique, and thus, to understand that selecting by way of edges versus selecting by way of color versus selecting by luminance are different processes. So they advise one to sit back and think before jumping into the technical swimming pool, which is, of course, excellent advice.

The fourth and final part of the book is two chapters on "putting it all together." One of the chapters deals with creative composites that have a close affinity to what multi-media artists are doing, and thus connects back to the beginning of the book. The other chapter deals with the photorealistic composites that have a close affinity to the special effects techniques that come out of Hollywood. Both are fascinating, and combine both creative and technical thoughts that have the potential to fascinate and inspire anyone who is interested in what can be done in these incredible times of the twenty-first century.

My recommendation: buy the book.
11 of 11 people found the following review helpful
Full spectrum of compositing techniques and history Oct. 29 2012
By Scott Valentine - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
I have both this edition and the 2004 release, but have not made a detailed comparison between the two. Having said that, this new edition is a hands-down winner. The material covers realism and collage, but also gives a good history lesson in how compositing has evolved for photographers. There are several references for exploration of different styles and philosophies in the front section, as well as some discussion about how technology and art have developed hand-in-hand.

If this does not interest you, skip to the techniques sections, where you'll find everything you need from start to finish. The level of detail allows for moderately deep dives, but is structured so advanced users can skim to get the important elements quickly. Not every possible variation is covered, but there is sufficient breadth to cover fine art, commercial, industrial, and even technical works.

While I enjoy seeing the techniques laid out, the biggest benefit for me is reading various discussions on choices in selection techniques, obtaining source materials, composition, etc. I'm pretty familiar with lots of the "how" in Photoshop, so I really enjoy being able to read about "why" from other users.

This is a fantastic book from start to finish. I believe intermediate to advanced users will get the most from this book, but beginners should be able to work through with some determination and patience.

Put this one on your desk.
47 of 58 people found the following review helpful
You had better buy the 2004 Edition of Masking and Compositing Sept. 8 2012
By Gerbrand Uiterdijk - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
First of all I don't understand why there are 3 authors needed to write a book about Photoshop titled Masking and Compositing
while it lies in Katrin Eisman's power to do this job by herself in an excellent way.

Her collegues (like Scott Kelby) and students don't understand either nor do they grasp why.

Sean Duggan seems always to have been selected as co-author but unfortunately he is by far not as talented as Katrin Eisman with reference to writing books.

Compared to the edition 0f 2004 this book lacks some of the in-depht tutorials as to selecting and extracting very intricate objects like smoke, hair and foliage.
Discussing the Pen Tool is fully neglected in this edition of 2012 while she makes clear in the former Edition
that the Pen Tool is one of her most favourites to use in Photoshop.

When I browse through the table of contents of the Book I can only conclude that it deals more with Compositing than
Selecting and Masking.

The Chapter History of Compositing Images included in this edition is written in that typical encyclopedian style, hence very boring and tiresome to read.
It consists of numerous dates, facts and names of Photo Artists referring to the History of Compositing Images.
And it gives the impression that this mind-numbingly drearly to read chapter is directly copied from an encyclopedia.

The following chapter The Creative Process is full of general statements and explanations which speak for themselves.

The last parts of the book involve general elementary philosophical theories and contemplations on the subject of compositing and postproduction images.
Any person with basic knowledge of the theme is able to write that sort of things down hence very annoying to read, superfluous anyhow not inspiring and instructional at all.

Through the whole book you will find lots of pictures but the majority of them is just gimmick and glamour in other words to make the book look like more attractive and engaging.

The only part of the book of real importance and relevance are the chapters that deal with Selecting and Masking.

Such as the chapter on using the Refine Edge tool that is new and explained in a way typical for Katrin Eisman.
I mean in such a manner that all aspects and features of this tool of Photoshop are discussed.
in a clear, understandable and in depht way but the Refine Edge Tool too has its flaws on selecting and extracting intricate objects.

As I wrote earlier this Edition lacks some of the essential tutorials on selecting and masking difficult to extract objects
the former edition has.

When you do want to become an expert at Selecting and Masking using Photoshop buy the edition of 2004,
read and study its great contents and the use of Plugins like Onone Mask Pro or Fluid Mask is definately not needed.
That book contains tutorials on the subject you won't find anywhere else and is 100% Katrin Eisman's,
the most recent edition is unfortunately and definately not.

Katrin Eisman is a well-respected, great and jaw-dropping lecturer and a very talented author, one of the most sought after\in demand worldwide as a presenter and instructor
on topics related to photoshop that's why I am looking forward to the next edition of Masking and Compositing or other titles which should be a 100% Katrin Eisman's,
I mean no other authors being involved in the project of writing a book.

One reviewer states: all the chapters are placed in a context and all the pieces come together at the end that's why it makes the book so great.
But that context is created artificially with the sheer aim to make the book look like more impressive and fascinating
while it isn't cutting-edge stuff at all except for the chapters written by Katrin Eisman.

The 2004 Edition of Masking and Compositing is a pleasure to read from the first word to the last one written in the book
but whether it's the case as for the 2012 Edition of Masking and Compositing it's up to the readers to judge.

As regards to compositing and post-production images there is a very interesting title on shelf.
How to Cheat in Photoshop CS6: The art of creating realistic photomontages [Paperback] Steve Caplin (Author)

Another Title that might be of interest: Photoshop Down & Dirty Tricks for Designers [Paperback] Corey Barker (Author)
( Tutorials on how to create genuine Hollywood Effects are included )
5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
Must Read Nov. 25 2012
By Michael Berghoff - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I appreciate reading reviews because it always helps me selecting a book or other photography equipment, but I never write reviews. This is my first writing and worthy of comment.

This is one of the best Photoshop readings that I’ve come across. May not be for beginners, but I’ve not found a good Photoshop book for beginners. Meaning, if you are a beginner, you might as well start with one of the best readings and figure it out from there. If you are a pro photographer, you can probably skip the first few chapters, but I feel that it never hurts to review the basics, and Eismann does a good job summarizing the basics of taking a picture. After all, the better the picture(s), the less work required in Photoshop.

The purpose of the book and photorealistic compositing is selecting, layering and masking. Using the tools and following the examples in the book, you become an expert, well perhaps comfortable working in Photoshop with these elements. The starting point in Photoshop is Selection, and you will be become familiar with all of the Selection tools. With a little work and practice, especially using the Redefine Edges, you will be able to get the desired selection. Once you have a good selection, you are only limited by your own creativity using Layers and Masking. You will walk away from this book with a good photorealistic compositing foundation. From there, it is up to you to refine your skills. Good reading.


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