Deke's Techniques 428: Auto-Blending Different Depths-of-Field in Photoshop

Blending Different Depths of Field in Photoshop

In this week's free Deke's Techniques movie, Emperor Photoshopus Dekian shows you how to blend two different depths of field, taken from a museum display case at the Roman Baths in the aptly named Bath, England. The result is the in-focus revelation of both the text in the display, and the coins that are the real focus of the exhibit. Tangentially, it will also make clear Deke's love of all things Ancient Rome.

In the video, you'll see how Deke uses Photoshop's ability to stack and blend layers to mix the important information from this placard, that was placed at the back of the display case:

Text in focus


With this detail from Phillip and Otacilia's coins that were mounted on wires coming to the front of the glass:

Coins in focus


To create this composite, in which all the important details are in focus (and some atmospheric bits still retain their original depth of field:

A blend of two depths of field make all the salient information in focus

Check out the video to see how Emperor Deke fine-tunes the process (and thereby saves you some trial-and-error of your own). And if you'd like to check out other treasures from the museum of Deke's Techniques, you can get a free 10-day trial at Read more » 

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Deke's Techniques 603: Drawing a Half-Circle Highlight in Keynote

Deke's Techniques 603: Drawing a Half-Circle Highlight in Keynote

Good Morning, DekeItarians. We're back in our regular time zone this week, bringing you Deke's Techniques a) on time, and b) without having to scrounge some hotel/ship-based internet. In this week's free episode, Deke shows you how to create a semi-circle for highlighting purposes inside Keynote.

This all came about when Deke and Hergen were working on their latest underwater photography course, and wanted to highlight the part of a dial on an underwater strobe. Oh, sure, Deke could have easily added this embellishment in Photoshop or Illustrator, but you know Deke. He was determined to figure it out in Keynote.

The result is this highlight-plus-masked-shadow slide that takes the student's eye directly to the place Hergen and Deke are talking about in the course.

Drawing a half-circle highlight in a Keynote slide.

Can't miss it, right?

And if subtracting shapes from one another in Keynote is too simple for you, Deke's got a follow up movie in which he shows you how to create semi-circles using Keynote's limited function pen tool.

Deke's Techniques, giving half-circle power to your presentations. Read more » 

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Deke's Techniques 602: Creating Offset Path Inline Strokes in Illustrator Tye

In this week's free Deke's Techniques episode, Deke finishes up his Inline Text Spring Fever by finally noodling through how to create this effect automatically with the Offset Path feature in Illustrator. Combined with some savvy use of the Appearance panel, you can turn your boring text into this, with just a few carefully chosen numerical  entries.

Inline text strokes created with Offset Path in Illustrator

If this isn't exciting enough for you, check out what else happened this week: Deke (and my) first encounter with a manta ray in Maldives. Note how calm Deke is while the manta decides whether he's interesting or not. There's no describing the magic of this moment, except to say one of our dive buddies invented an underwater hand signal for "I think my heart just exploded in wonder."

Deke and manta ray

You can see more images from our trip if you follow Deke on Facebook. And of course, the creatures of the Maldavian waters (and our Sri Lankan visit) are bound to make an appearance in an upcoming video.

Deke's Techniques, bringing you artistic automation and aquatic adventure! Read more » 

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Deke's Techniques 600: How to Mask Inline Text Strokes in Illustrator

Deke's Techniques 600: How to Mask Inline Text Strokes in Illustrator

In this week's free Deke's Techniques episode, Deke resumes last week's project by making those inline strokes inside the letters stop before they hit the edge of the this:

Masked inline text strokes in Illustrator Read more » 

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Deke's Techniques 598: Center-Stroking Letters in Illustrator

Deke's Techniques 598: Center-Stroking Letters in Illustrator

Greetings, dekeRevelers. In this week's free Deke's Techniques episode, you'll see how Deke finally answered a question from our dekeFriend Peter about how to create inline strokes down letters to recreate the effect found in an a poster for the musical White Christmas.

Of course, given the backlog of Deke's Techniques requests, we're going to have to change the message, since Deke's just getting to it now, in the Spring of the year following the two years that followed Peter's actual request.

Inline text in Adobe Illustrator

Last week, this message might have seemed appropriate, but alas today in Boulder, it's looking more like White Christmas. Well, at least it was this morning. But since this is Boulder,  tomorrow the nine inches of snow that fell today will be melted and we'll be back to newly budding crocuses and sprouting leaves on the aspens.

In the meantime, see how Deke made the inline stroke on the "easier" letters in this video. Along the way, you'll get a basket full of very useful Illustrator tips, including:

  • How to use the Appearance panel to make text fills, strokes, and shadows.
  • How to cut-and-paste whilst keeping Illustrator's cryptic features out of your way.
  • How, to use the old-school Blend command to make Illustrator do the math between edges of the letters for you, to precisely set your stroke down the middle.

Alas, some of these letters (E, F, P, and R to be exact) are going to need some hand work to finish the effect. Fortunately, even when Deke uses the dreaded phrase "by hand," he still has ways to get Illustrator (and any calculator you might have nearby) to do some of the work for you. If you're a member of, you can check it out here.

Deke's Techniques, filling your Christmas wish just in time for Easter two-and-a-half years later! Read more » 

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