Macworld: No Steve but You Can Still Have Your Deke

I know, for the Mac Faithful, the loss of a 2009 Keynote from Steve Jobs (and the swan-song of Apple's participation in Macworld altogether) is devastating. But for the dekeHeads, things are still looking promising. Here's a list of where and when to find Deke during Macworld week. (Thanks, Thomas, for the prompt.) Read more » 

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The Scent of Stamina

First, my abject apologies for being so absent as of late. I, Colleen, David, Tim -- as well as names you don't know, like Toby, Carol, Ron, Julie, and the splendidly monikered Spink (I monikered her, which is why it's so splendid) -- have been so thoroughly buried by this Channels & Masks book (see below) that there is literally no time for anyone on the team to scratch his or her respective butt. We keep asking each other, "When you get a spare sec, will you please scratch my butt?" But the response is always, "Are you kidding? If I had that kind of time, I'd scratch my own butt. It's so itchy!"

Seriously, for the first time in I don't know how long, I went for 4 entire days without a shower. My beard had grown so far up my face, it was threatening to become one with my eyebrows.

But as disgusting as I was (I'm slightly cleaner now), the book is beautiful. A work of tortured but honest art. Here's a tiny view of a sample page spread. This is the actual InDesign view, with my editors comments (those from Carol and Spink) out in the margins. To see it in legible dimensions, just click on it.

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ACR 5.2's New Snapshot and Targeted Adjustment Features

One of the best things about Photoshop CS4 is the new features in the latest version of Adobe Camera Raw.  And the latest latest version, ACR 5.2, has a few more tricks up its sleeve, as previewed by John Nack to the gang at ADIM@MAX and announced for all the world on John's blog last week. In addition to the new output sharpening (ACR sends sharpening info along to Photoshop for printing) and adding support for a bunch of cravable cameras (including the Canon 5D Mark II), the ACR team has lifted a couple of other useful Lightroom-like features for this latest release: the ability to make snapshots and a targeted adjustment tool.

The Adobe Help for these features can apparently be a little hard to find, so Photoshop PM Shangara Singh has posted links here so that you don't have to use the (apparently currently ineffective Adobe) search. You can also see how these nifty features work in this screencast from Friend of Deke and O'Reilly Evangelist Derrick Story. My exhaustive internet search (which consists of plugging ACR 5.2 into Google during my quick break from working on Channels and Masks), reveals Derrick is first on the scene with this tutorial. Click the image above with Derrick's striking cactus flower to check it out. (Note: If you're CS4-compliant, the ever-present Adobe Updater will hook you up with ACR 5.2 next time it wakes up.) Deke meanwhile has about a week to go before I can let him play with any new toys. (The fans need their Channels and Masks, Oh Wise and Wonderful One.) Read more » 

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Tripping on Arbitrary Maps

 Colleen and David Futato and I are in the final death throes of Photoshop CS4 Channels & Masks One-on-One. I'm sitting here working on the introduction to the final lesson, Lesson 12, "Masking the Tough Stuff." By way of demonstrating arbitrary maps, which can be quite useful for "throw down" masking, I assembled this nifty composition. It's a photo from David Politi subject to two varieties of arb maps, one applied using Gradient Map and the other with Curves. Isn't she pretty?

It has nothing whatsoever to do with masking -- just introduces a topic -- but I'm rather transfixed with it at the moment. Takes me back to my teónanácatl-tinted halcyon days. So naturally I had to share.

Anyway, we're shooting to get the book to the printer any day now. We'll keep you apprised. Read more » 

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InDesign Book Miraculously Appears in Stock

Hail, dekeOmmunity. I'm thrilled to announce that Adobe InDesign CS4 One-on-One, the book, is now in stock. The timely appearance (as well as, literally, the generally awesome appearance) of this book is creditable in large part to the collaboration of our resident Design Mastermind, David Futato. David has been in charge of the final design of the One-on-One books since the beginning, so he's got cred on the streets of dekeVille (where he's running for City Council). As soon as we stop keeping him up all night working on books, he's planning on joining us here as a contributor.

In fact, unbeknownst to him, he already has. I posted an excerpt from the book wherein David explains the new features of the Links palette over in dekeStuff. You can read the excerpt of the excerpt just below, but you need to be a registered member of our community to read the whole thing. (And then you need to get the book to read the whole, whole thing.) Welcome David, and congratulations, and thanks!

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