New Year's Treat: Photoshop CS4 Channels & Masks One-on-One Video Lesson 1

Happy New Year, dekeOmaniacs. To get 2009 off on the right foot, (and seriously, put that last insane bit of 2008 behind us), we've decided to share something special with you, our beloved community. Frankly, we can't thank you enough for all the love, humor, and patience you showed us last year. (Especially the patience during the month of December where we both pulled off the miracle submission of the book and reintroduced ourselves to our families who were wondering who those smelly if vaguely familiar people who were always chained to the computer screen were.) Read more » 

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The Ice Fields

I've been searching around for an end-of-year post. And I came up with this. Altho truthfully, it's something of a downer.

The other day--about two weeks ago in fact--I was reading a few pages of my favorite print publication, The Atlantic. One article in particular appealed to me, and the next day I was discussing it with one of my friends. "Did you know," I began unceremoniously, "That it seems to be a foregone conclusion that the polar ice caps are on their way out? They may be gone in as soon as five years." Based on this article, Russia, Norway, and Canada are duking it out for over-the-pole shipping routes. Furthermore, if it successfully secedes Denmark, Greenland will suddenly become the first fully fledged (and potentially non casino-based wealthy) Native-American nation. Inasmuch as we're thinking that policy wonks are trying to save the North Pole, they're actually aggressively and enthusiastically scavenging its remains.

Which is great for the 500,000 native Inuit of Greenland. And--let's be really super generous--the 5,000,000 employees of a group of cargo, retail, and fulfillment companies that benefit from faster polar-express transportation. But somewhat disturbing for the 6,694,500,000 (or 99.92%) of the rest of us. Never mind that we have to invent new Christmas narratives. (Santa Claus lives on an impossibly large hovercraft? With mer-elves and flying beluga whales? Imagine Gene Autry or Burl Ives singing, "Rudolf the aqueous mammal, had a very shiny fin. And if you ever saw him, you would even say he's grim.") Without the polar top-ice, those of along industrial coasts could find ourselves knee-deep (or even scalp-deep) in a world of hurt. Read more » 

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Okay, You Illustrator Enthusiastz

Your push back is duly acknowledged. My video series Illustrator CS4 One-on-One: Fundamentals is done, and it features the Queen of Murder rendered as both a skateboard and a surfboard. For the extreme sportz setz, don't you know?

skate and surf

And now for the full story . . . Read more » 

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Ho Ho Ho, Free Training for the Holidays!

A few weeks ago, when I was up to my ears in a certain Photoshop CS4 Channels and Masks One-on-One book (that will otherwise remain nameless), I was thinking, "Gosh, I wonder what kind of documentation Adobe provides these days?" I happened to have a copy of the Design Premium SKU of Creative Suite 4 sitting on my comically cluttered desk, so I opened the box and poured through its contents. There was very little there. The DVD box and some legal stuff. But nothing resembling a manual. In fact, the only thing that passed for printed documentation was a trifold that read "Learn CS4." So I opened it up and saw this:

A bare-bones sketch of how you can search Adobe's online resources for assistance. But then I looked closer, and right there -- smack dab in the center, on one of the folds -- I noticed this:

I mention this not to draw attention to myself . . . oh, to hell with that. Yes, I'm psyched that the one guy, out of about 50+ presenters who got a picture in the one-and-only, passes-for-printed-documentation trifold is me. I am and will forevermore remain flabbergasted.

But my larger point is that there's a world of altogether-free, check-it-out-today, online video training that I'm guessing most of you don't know about. And because it's the holiday season, when traditional people traditionally exchange gifts, I thought I'd traditionally do just that. Read more » 

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Bernhard-Free Documents

Dear LPersonne (not to mention other persons),

I am so excited to have published a book like InDesign CS4 One-on-One. I could not be more proud of David Futato and the rest of my team for having created such a beautiful and educational manuscript. Here's one of David's typically elegant and understated documents.

Funny thing about books tho -- of all the kinds of training I do, books are the one I can't edit on-the-fly. A printed book is the ultimate form of "destructive edit." There is no undo, no backstep. Your every training defect is on largest display.

Which is my way of saying: We have a mistake, and our first for this title may not be our last. But my policy, in this site and elsewhere, will be to admit to mistakes and remedy them. (WWOD?) Read more » 

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