Photoshop CS4: The Missing Manual Paperback – Jan 5 2009
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About the Author
Lesa Snider is on a mission to teach the world to create--and use!--better graphics. She's a stock photographer and chief evangelist for iStockphoto, founder of the creative tutorial site http://GraphicReporter.com, author of Photoshop: The Missing Manual (O'Reilly, 2008), Graphic Secrets for Business Professionals (http://Lynda.com), From Photo to Graphic Art, and Practical Photoshop Elements (http://KelbyTraining.com). She writes regularly for Macworld Magazine, the National Association of Photoshop Professionals, Elements Techniques, and Layers Magazine. Lesa is also a corporate trainer and teaches at many industry conferences including Photoshop World, Macworld Expo, Mac Mania Geek Cruises, and the esteemed Santa Fe Workshops. Since 2003, she has assisted New York Times technology columnist David Pogue's with many projects, including his Missing Manual book series and NYT videos. You can catch her Graphics Tip of the Week live each Wednesday night on the Your Mac Life internet radio show, which she also co-hosts.
Top Customer Reviews
The Missing Manual series is always a good investment in your time and money. This specific title covers every aspect of Photoshop and gives beginners a good intro and even provides great productivity tips for experienced users who are wanting to get up to speed with Photoshop CS4.
I read another review on the NAPP site that said this book reminded them of the original Photoshop Bible series by Deke McClelland. I wholeheartedly agree with this statement. The nice thing about Lesa's book is that she doesn't drive us nuts with a crazy sense of humor like Deke did. Yeah Lesa. I should say I really like Deke too. Lesa's Photoshop CS4 Missing Manual is a great replacement book to the bible series.
To give you some idea of the innovations let me highlight one.
The book is littered with (index type)references (eg you'll find the info on such and such at so and so page), its as though the index has been moved into the book pages. At first when all the references are future, its a bit annoying but if a subject is of interest you can skip ahead. But when the references start to included back references (subjects you have already covered) things get interesting expecially when you realize you didn't quite absorb the info you need. So you can flip back for a quick review.(My expanation makes it sound tedious but its really a useful innovation.)
Any way if your into CS4 (to paraphrase Abbie Hoffman) "Buy This Book", its worth it.
The layout of the book works quite well for this.
You can read the initial bolded statement that describes what the next section teaches you and if it sounds like something you'll never use -- jump ahead. This allowed me to get to the nitty gritty for what I needed the program to do. Taking time to read sections that you aren't sure whether they apply to you does yield the odd nugget or two. There are books that tell you step-by-step methods for doing things like coloring cartoons, but going through a book like this will get you thinking 'how could I use this tool for what I want to do'.
Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
As is the case with all the Missing Manuals, this book takes the reader through a well structured, in-depth inspection of the program's capabilities. The author has provided some excellent examples that allow the reader to read through the book as a tutorial or simply to refer to it as a reference text. I've used Photoshop from the first CS version to the latest CS4 and have a number of books on the subject yet I was able to pick up a number of very useful tips in the first 250 pages by working along with the examples in the book. In addition, the author has sprinkled some general graphic tips throughout the book that are very useful to those without a background in design.
I think that this book is an excellent resource for Photoshop users of all levels. For the beginner it will provide an excellent tutorial, while the more advanced user will find it a useful reference. It has found a permanent place next to my computer.
If you know nothing of Photoshop and want to make your own pictures, do web design, etc. then this is a great book to teach you this fantastic program but for photographers who don't care a lot about drawing or adding text, I would not recommend this book. Instead look for something specifically written for photographers that includes a discussion of Camera Raw.
It would have been nice if I had known this book only covers the program Photoshop, one of a suite of programs sold as Photoshop.
01. The Basics
02. Opening, Viewing, Saving Files
06. Cropping, Resizing, Rotating
07. Joining Images
08. Draining, Changing, Adding Color
09. Correcting Color and Lighting
10. Photoshopping People
11. Sharpening Images
12. Painting in Photshop
13. Drawing with Vector tools
14. Creating Artistic Text
16. Photoshop and Print
17. Photoshop and the Web
This is an easy book to put a stamp of approval on and it's another gem in the Missing Manual line of books, one of the greatest technical publishing lines out there today!!
***** HIGHLY RECOMMENDED
I was a bit disappointed at first because the flow of the book did not seem to take me in a direction that I thought was not teaching me how to use Photoshop in the best manner, but by the time you get near the middle of the book, the author ties everything together nicely.
This book is a great starter for those who are getting into Photoshop for the first time. Once you master the basics taught to you in this book, I recommend doing a google search on the words "photoshop tutorial" and visit some websites where photoshop experts give you step by step projects to work on. This book combined with that will enhance your skills in no time.
This book is exactly what you need if you are learning from the ground up. It provides a VERY well instructed process for each and every chapter in the book that takes you from the basics, such as introducing you to the User Interface to the more advanced functions of Photoshop. Each and every step is explained well and there are many photos that are referred to showing what they are talking about. Each photo is explained and there are descriptions of all functions they are referring to. Truly, if you follow my advice and read this book without skipping any steps you really can't go wrong. Also, I would encourage everyone not to skip certain chapters, even if you think they may not be useful because most likely some technique will be useful at some point later on.
I would also like to point out they cover Brushes very well in this book too, something that some books skip entirely or simply gloss over focusing more on those that are photographers. So, those looking at learning the art aspects of Photoshop certainly are not left out. There is even a real good chapter all about making creative text styles. That is another reason why I prefer this book to some others, it simply is one of the most comprehensive books I have read that is also concise.
You may notice there is no disc, but there is a web site for the Missing Manual books where you can download the files instead. I would advise to go ahead and download them for some of the examples they get to later on in the book. However, I will say it is not a BIG requirement you can get by without them.
This book is very thick, so don't be intimidated by the size when you get it. Just learn one chapter every couple of days and you will get through it OK. When I compared this book to another one I bought, Photoshop CS4 Digital Classroom, I much preferred this one. This book as I said is simply one of the best and most detailed around for learning Photoshop due to how well it is conveyed and laid out. The Photoshop Digital Classroom simply did not cover as much detail and is half the size or less than Photoshop CS4 Missing Manual. Yes, it is true the Digital Classroom book does have video tutorials on the included disc and has examples that give more than just what the book offers, but even after using that book I still felt the Photoshop CS4 Missing Manual was the better of the two by a good margin.
Bottom line is this book is the best I have found for anyone that wants a VERY good intro to Photoshop and learn from novice to intermediate skills. Once you have finished this book, you can then look at others which may focus completely on an advanced topic.
Hope this helps and good luck in your learning.
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