What would you have Deke do with his copious free time?

Release a weekly free video blog called "Deke's Techniques"
55% (1505 votes)
Create a series of "Photohop CS5 Extended: 3D" courses
12% (337 votes)
Finish his "Illustrator CS5 One-on-One: Mastery" course
13% (341 votes)
Take a break and let me catch up!
20% (529 votes)
Total votes: 2712


Different Formats

Try different formats, such as TIFF and see what results you get, if possible, or ask the printing company if they can handle .psd CS3 files directly and let them handle the output.


More about Channels and Masks

HI again Deke!

Just got to your Mastery course on lynda.com -- wow! At last I understand Calculations (although the practice is still, er, umm ...) But I want to learn more about channels and masks and I see from Amazon (UK) that you have "Photoshop CS4 Channels & Masks One-on-One" published 2009.

However I upgraded a while ago (from CS3 Extended) to CS5 Ext and I'm wondering if your above-mentioned book is mostly or entirely still OK for CS5?

I'm guessing that the channels side of Photoshop hasn't changed much between #4 and #5 ...?

Thanks for everything, friend. You're a one-man digital image university!

Adobe ACE - preparatory exam test sheets?

Hi Deke,

First of all, if I may walk the path already beaten by others, many thanks for the so many years of teaching us the essentials and mastery of Adobe products, from CS1 to CS5, be they written or video captured. Invaluable knowledge.

I am trying out for Adobe ACE for Photoshop, and in this regard, trainings form Lynda.com are excellent. However, I couldn't find any preparatory test sheets, you know, like those you have when you get your driving license. A collection of tests for CS5 that you can take at home and make as many as possible to prepare, with Q&A, then you can check at the end if you were right or not, and if not, why, and if not why, at least you will be able to research more on your own to why is that or take the answer as it is.
Where can I get such official test sheets?

Also, how would you recommend to get prepared for the Adobe ACE exams as thoroughly as possible?

Thank you,


Raving Fan and Question about illustration / drawing

Deke hi,
I really enjoy your videos on Lynda and now that I have a 20in second monitor I can actually follow along!
I have a question about drawing and illustration--what is the best way to develop this skill set? I would really love to be able to do caricatures, quick and memorable whiteboard info graphics--like the guy who does the "Brown" commercials for UPS.
thanks for all that you do for the industry,
Steven Carey, WDIM
2nd yr student, AiP

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Illustration/Drawing: Great Resource

Hello Steven,

Your question was addressed to Deke and I am not Deke. Nevertheless, as Ai WDIM faculty who also teaches illustration at a different campus, I strongly recommend Deke's book "Illustrator CS5 One on One" as a great resource. I use it in my Illustration classes here at Ai Austin.

I see from your post you have seen some of Deke's lynda.com videos. Other great resources are Deke's and Mordy Golding's Illustrator videos on Lynda.com. They have totally different teaching styles. Both are very thorough and compliment each other nicely.

Finally, Mordy Golding is the author of "Real World Illustrator CS5", a classic Illustrator book that should also be on every illustrator's shelf. Mordy also does a live presentation on friday afternoons relating to Illustrator that is free (Google "Fridays with Mordy")

Hopefully, your AI school library will have copies of Deke's and Mordy's books or else will be able to get them for you.

hope this is useful and always glad to see an AI student here,

Thomas Benner,
WDIM (Web Development and Interactive Media) Professor, AiA

p.s. One of our Ai graduates, Von Glitschka, has a new book "Vector Basic Training" out which focuses on the process of drawing (rather than on the tool = Illustrator) which you also might enjoy. You can reach me through our Ai email system "tbenner@ai.edu" if I can be of any help.

Illustration/Drawing: Great Resources

Thomas good morning,
Thank you so much for your response and I will follow-up on the additional resources that you provided, including Von Glitschka's new book which sounds spot on.
Steven Carey, WDIM
2nd yr student, AiP

The best

Deke is my favourite tutor on lynda.com because not only is he an expert, but he has a GOOD SENSE OF HUMOR. That makes him king of the pile in my mind.

Longterm fan but only just joined here

Hi Deke -- I'm a Photoshop user since CS3 Extended but before that used Elements in 2 editions. Didn't get CS4, but recently got CS5 Extended and love it! I worked your One-on-One book, CS3, til it almost fell apart, but it was only a week or two ago that I joined lynda.com and subscribed to your courses. Am just nearing the end of chap 12 of the Fundamentals. I thought I knew most of this stuff, but discovered -- gratefully -- that I didn't! This course is just terrific, world-class stuff -- and done so consistently interestingly that it doesn't even feel like work.

And yet it's hard work nevertheless! Luckily I have a laptop as well as a desktop, and the only way I could possibly follow your pace (which is quite a lick!) is by having your videos play on the laptop, while I follow on the desktop. So I'm afraid I have regularly to shut you up in mid flow, and then reach across and switch you on again! But I realise it's the only way -- if you went a more leisurely pace, we'd be here months rather than the 17 hours or whatever!

I'm really looking forward to the Advanced / Master stuff, and *especially* to your course on the 3D stuff. Before I joined lynda.com I bought Adobe's "3D in Photoshop", misleadingly subtitled "The ultimate guide for creative professionals". Perhaps I should have paid more attention to that word "professionals". Although the introductory pages start gently enough, no way is it a book for beginners in 3D in PS Extended. A couple of chapters in, I was floundering. The book is not at all like eg Adobe's excellent Classroom in a Book series. (In fact I wrote to the publishers to point out one serious omission in a chapter, and they wrote back to me -- there should have been a link to a website, and it should have been referenced in the relevant chapter and in the index: neither was the case.)

So at last I can thank you in person (or almost, cyberwise). And it's great now to be a member of your web-circle.

All best
Milton Keynes, UK

Cool, Milton, thanks!

Yeah, that 3D book is an interesting one. Initially, I was stymied to the point of exhaustion myself. It's more a manual than a book. But once I got my bearings, it became quite useful. It's one of those titles that has tiny, hidden sentences that make you go, "Oh, there's that feature!"

And it made me take a few moments and think how I might organize the information more practically. Which is, hopefully, what I've done.

Making Saturn

I loved this tutorial on Saturn; it was incredible, as all of your tutorials are!

But I watched you laboriously determine the width and height of the image, divide by two, and do *math* to determine where to put the horizontal and vertical ruler guides.

Try my technique: type 50% in the dialog box for View > New Guide and never do math again!

Thanks again for all you do,

Wow, I never knew that was an option

In the future, it's 50% all the time!


You're Welcome!

The 50% thing is something I figured out several versions ago when I thought, I wonder if this would work? And it did. I've never seen it in print. But I bet I've learned more from you over the years than you have from me — it's probably 10000 to 1. Thanks for all your books and videos and podcasts!

~ Jane Edwards

OMG, seriously?

Photoshop can calculate 50% for a guide? This program doesn't do calculations for anything, and suddenly a % calculation works in the New Guide dialog box?

Well, there you go: You all think I teach you. And now you guys teach me something. Awesome!

the best blog ... is ... this one ...

Always a wonderful smorgasboord of graphic treats !

One minor suggestion: if a lesser-angel is going to sign his comments with : "Lou B
Speaker of the Deke, dekeOnline," then we think it might be good to change the newsletter title to "Deke Spake." :)

regards from Chiang Mai, Thailand

best, Bill

"This thing we tell of can never be found by seeking, yet only seekers find it." Abu Yazid Al-Bistami

Just finished your 3 part CS5 One-on-One

I love you Deke,
Although metaphorically speaking, that said by a strait 52 year old Swede, really means something :)
I enjoyed every minute of all the over 600 videos.

I thought the worlds wittiest, most charming and inspiring man was petite moi, until this course that is.

Many thanks and give me a call when you plan to visit Sweden.


Photoshop CS5

Hi Deke! I'm a Lynda.com subscriber and I love the way you teach. I started photography classes a couple of years ago and it is when I started learning photoshop. You have been of great help for me!

Say hallo to everyone and "ONE ON ONE

I am a college student in China.I am not good at English.I just can understand a simple English.But I love "one on one",it is funny and amazing.I learnt it from my computer.I must watched it one more time because of understanding what you said.But I love the process.

I want to learn more about English and "ONE ON ONE".Just try and I can see that I can do it.To be honest,I love American music,the song "love the way you lie” is popular in China.It is amazing.Like the “one on one”.hey hey O(∩_∩)O

Have a good day.

Adobe Suite User Suggestions

I would enjoy hearing/seeing a movie/discussion on the relationships between the Adobe Suite programs.
I've heard Deke mention that he likes Photoshop better than Fireworks, for example. I would be interested to
hear various peoples comments on what program to use for what in the creation process for web design, print etc.
Is illustrator as good as fireworks for designing a website....what is an example of the best flow from program to program - from Photoshop/Fireworks/Illustrator/Flash Catalyst/Flash etc. After viewing a lot the tutorials on Lynda.com there seems to me to be a lot of overlap.



Illustrator CS4 Conundrum

Dear Deke,

While this is the first time I have ever written to you, I have been one of your loyal students and fans for years.

This year, I find myself among the unemployed, therefore, am on a very tight budget. I cannot afford to upgrade to Illustrator CS5. Question: Would your "Illustrator CS5 One-on-One" book be inappropriate for CS4? I had to ask you this because I absolutely adore your "one-on-one" series for everything Adobe. For CS4, even for someone with years of experience that I have, your "one-on-one" books for InDesign and Photoshop have been invaluable.

Got a free month on Lynda.com that I am finally using to view the Illustrator CS4 videos. But I have no access to the exercise files...sigh....and again, cannot afford a full membership right now. Oh what to do!?

Huge thanks,


write on the beach with a stick

Hi Deke, I've got a suggestion for one of your techniques, Imagine you are walking on the beach, suddenly you take a stick and write on the sand, "visit deke.com" or just something else. Please, please, how do you do that in Photoshop, my version is not that bad, but is not great!, thanks! keep our inspiration up my friend! :D!!

Real World Illustrator

I just came across Deke.com and am very pleased. I wanted to ask about the Real World series that Deke had authored. While the new author is, I'm sure, very knowledgable, the book is no longer worth purchasing. It is not nearly as thorough a reference as Deke's version. Any plans on doing a reference type guide again? The tutorial approach helps, but for me, having used Illustrator for some time, it's easier to go back and refer to techniques that I've not used for some time and have forgotten in a non-tutorial style book.


Illustrator vs CorelDraw frustrating problem

I have seen a lot of your tutorials and tricks and I’like to ask for your opinion or a solution to a “simple” Illustrator problem

The thing is I have this map, and in order to convert to a hotspot into fireworks the path nodes need to be straight lines, not beizer curves. And I don’t know if there is a fireworks solution to the problem because I’m not an expert with fireworks software.

But I’m a old CorelDraw user – since version 2 – although I ‘ve switched to Illustrator I still remember everything about Corel’s vector node (path) editing and I remember pretty well that convert curve path nodes into straight lines is an easy job with CorelDraw.

Illustrator is an amazing software, far superior to Corel in many ways, but sometimes I get stuck with simple problems like this and I find myself installing again some Corel version in order to get the job done after hours of frustrating research into Illustrator behavior

Corel solution is just one right click far

Ok, suddenly the solution

Ok, suddenly the solution came up :-(

object > path > simplify menu option

To go with a new 27" iMac or a New PC?

I am entering the graphics design and web development world and I am at loss as to which platrom to buy. I am waiting for the Mac OS Lion to come out this summer on one hand, or to go with windows 7 HP desktop, for the Adobe Master suite. Any recommendations? Thank you; Haik

To go with a new 27" iMac or a New PC?

If you are going to be using a lot of Adobe products you would be better off with the HP. There are tons of Plug-ins for both platforms, but many, many times more for Windows. If that makes any difference to you.
I have an Windows 7 64 bit HP i7 940. 2.93 GHz, 16 Gigs of RAM and 2 Sapphire Radeon HD 6870 1GB 256bit GDDR5 Vid Cards in Crossfire mode and it Rocks through Adobe Production Premium CS5 and my other 3D progs that are more demanding than Adobe.
Either way you can not go wrong, but be sure to check on cost before you purchase. My system was without the vid cards and with 8 Gigs of RAM for only $814.00 shipped to the house and full HP warranty.

To go with a new 27" iMac or a New PC?

Thanks Thelby for your response to my question. It was very helpful. I think I'll go with an HP computer. Just out of curiosity, what type of monitor do you use? I know that the 27" iMac has a very high resolution monitor - Higher than HD. What do you recommend? Thanks. Haik

Colour cast & edge fringing

how to solve some of the common problems
sometimes clients will send photograph which have these

Layer Modes

Deke mentioned that Hard Mix is one of the eight fill opacity modes that responds differently to fill than it does opacity. Anyone know which are the other 7 modes?

How to contact Deke

Is there a way that Deke allows members to contact him with questions?