The things you see here in dekeStuff are accessible only to registered users. Sign up for a free account.

The Self-Made Mask

Today's tip comes from from Chapter 26, "Masking Essentials," of Deke's video course Photoshop CS5 One-on-One: Mastery from And because this course is all about mastery, Deke takes on tougher masking challenges in this chapter, delving into such deep techniques as exploiting the native components of an RGB image to create highly exacting alpha channels and masks.

Photoshop CS5 self-made mask

Some of you may recognize this image (care of Stas Perov of the Fotolia image library) from Deke's Photoshop Top 40 videos, starting with Feature #33: Calculations. But this is a more detailed analysis, which includes compositing the masked image against a blue sky background.

We'll focus on the segment entitled "Making an alpha channel," where Deke demonstrates how the art of masking lies in using the image to select itself. Read more » 

. Tagged with:

Get Gorgeous Prints From Photoshop

This set of tips comes from Martini Hour 074, in which Deke and Colleen talk (Photo)shop. Their recommendations? Get better prints from your desktop printer by being highly experimental: Try different approaches, write down what you did, and be willing to use up some ink and paper in the process. Once you find your favorite settings, you'll be able to rely on those settings to achieve proven results from that point on.

Getting gorgeous prints from Photoshop

In preparation for printing, there are a few steps to take, and one that you definitely should not. Read more » 

. Tagged with:

All Pirate Flag Files and Art

Today I share with you the essential pirate flag asset files. As described in this week's 6-day video blog (which began with "Sketching the Pirate Flag" and continues until Friday, October 29), the flag art measures five feet wide by three feet tall. It's an Illustrator file, so every line is razor smooth, as if drawn with pen and ink. And because Illustrator saves PDF-compatible files, you can open it in the free Adobe Reader utility. Even better, you have my permission to modify the file and print it as you see fit.

Here's a picture of me with said flag that was shot this morning.

Deke and the pirate flag

It's my gift to you. The only catch is that you have to be a member of dekeOnline. Read more » 

. Tagged with:

The Power of Multiple Martini Transformations in Photoshop

Wouldn't it be great if you had a device that would create martinis for you, each one a suitable replica of the previous, without your having to painstakingly mix each of them separately? Well, when it comes to virtual cocktails---or really anything else of value and deliciousness---you can leverage Photoshop's ability to duplicate, scale, and reposition a layer with the Free Transform command and the judicious application of some modifier keys. And then, amazingly, you can ask Photoshop to do it all over again.

See, a while back, I was creating a graphic for my weekly Martini Hour podcast (using a martini glass image from Gunnar3000 of the Fotolia image library, shown below), and really appreciating this terrific, if largely undocumented, shortcut that allows you to repeat a transformation---including duplicating, scaling and repositioning a layer---without having to tediously reenter values, mouse around your image, or remember how you lined things up the first time. 

Here's how I turned this single refreshing beverage into three, each spaced equidistantly and scaled appropriately, efficiently, and somewhat miraculously. Read more » 

. Tagged with:

Photoshop World 2010 Las Vegas Session Notes

A mere three weeks ago---seriously? has it been that long?---I joined a few dozen of my fellow self-appointed experts for the largest gathering of Photoshop users on the planet: Photoshop World 2010 in Las Vegas, Nevada. At that event, I presented three all-new sessions on the topics of Photoshop CS5, the pen tool, and Camera Raw 6.

Photoshop World 2010 PDF notes for download

At that event, I distributed more than a thousand black-and-white notes that my illustrious sidekick, Colleen Wheeler, printed out for the attendees. But black-and-white goes only so far. Which is why I include the notes for all three sessions as full-color PDF documents that you can download from this post. The notes are altogether free to members of dekeOnline. Read more » 

. Tagged with: