Does for Video Training What Spinal Tap Did for Rock ‘n’ Roll

If you’re of a certain age (and I really don’t know what age that is), you may recall the movie This Is Spinal Tap. I love the 1984 movie, especially in its rare appearance as a low-resolution (and now out-of-print) Voyager 1994 CD-ROM. Because the CD-ROM was searchable. You could enter a string, such as “stonehenge” or “puppet show” or “Nigel Tufnel” and get not only the movie file where that reference occurred but the exact timecode as well. It was like some kind of wonderful movie index.

In walks, the most amazing video training site on the planet. When LDC elected to close-caption most of its movies in 2008 and all of ‘em in 2009, the company’s intention was to make its content accessible to all. But in doing so, they also made it searchable to all. Which was when suddenly became the awesomest 21-century heavy metal band on the planet, as I have diagrammed below.

Trust me, this is good.

Try this: Go to and become a member, even if only temporarily. (Don’t worry, you’ll join one day.) Choose me as an Author and try out my new Photoshop CS4 One-on-One: Fundamentals series. Click on the Closed Captioning option (below Exercise Files), enter a few words in the Find text in captions field (I suggest “Liv Tyler”), and click Search. Give it some time. (It is searching every word I employed in 14.5 hours of training, after all.) Then click the link and enjoy the training goodness.

So got a topic you’re looking for? Don’t screw off scrambling your way through a dozen or more movies. Run a Closed Captioning search and get results fast!

Next entry:Martini Hour approaches

Previous entry:Channels & Masks Video Lesson 6: “The 25 Standard Blend Modes”


  • Closed Caption Searching

    “Right on…I can dig it!” Perhaps that is 70s talk but it doesn’t seem so long ago. I have a year round pass at and you have become my favorite. That’s how I ended up coming to this site. (in all fairness, I think Chris Orwig does a pretty fair job too)

    This tip will be helpful as their standard search flounders under the strain of so much material on the site. I’ll be making notes of keywords to search as I watch the tutorials. I had been hoping for a comprehensive search solution there. Thanks.

  • I\“m back uff

    Hi Deke. I’m finally back. My 2 pc’s crashed in same time and then I had some personal issues so I missed a lot on the forum.  I had to build my own rig and I don’t regret it. Currently at 6 GB but soon go for 12 or 24. I7 overclocked to 4 Ghz and I have to tell you no more waiting in smart objects. I use 64 Bit version of PSCS4 now and I just can’t believe the speed. With fast HDD I open files in no time. If someone is planning to go with PC platform select I7 Intel chip. You already wont half of the battle.  Anyway I’m just glad I"m back.

  • Glad to have you back Archee

    Deke and I were just talking about you…glad to see you back.

  • me too

    Yeah me too. It’s tough time for me now. My dad passed away before Xmas and I almost lost job and my pcs went down so I couldn’t even communicate with my friends overseas. Now. it’s getting better. Hopefully I have more time.I also have to get the channels and mask book

  • I love the METAL

    I love the METAL logo, but it’s missing umlauts, ala Motley Crue!

    On another note, it’s true. is great. I am addicted to it.

  • Learning

    Signed up with….fantastic!  I plan to get to know you well!

  • Help on Layers Panel CS4

    Hi Deke, how are you? You are my mentor on Photoshop…thanks a lot for that…You are a very talented and charismatic person. I always laugh like crazy when I see your videos and I learn at the same time….Wish you were here in Greece to teach us some nice ways of working…

    Anyway, I would like to ask you about something. When I open an image on PhCS4 the program doesn’t automatically give me a preview of the image on the “Layers” panel down right (it doesn’t fully expand), so I always have to go to “Window” -> Layers….in order to show me the preview of my image. Is there any way to adjust this so every time I open the image, for the program to show me the preview automatically?

    Thanks a lot for your time and keep up the good work. Cheers from Greece,


  • CS4 Layers palette woes

    In my experience, the problem seems to be that—on lower pixel-dimension (resolution) screens—the Adjustments palette is so tall that it sometimes squishes the Layers palette and ultimately causes it to collapse.

    Two solutions.

    Collapse the Adjustments palette by clicking the dark gray area to the right of its tab. Then expand the Layers palette by clicking the gray area to the right of its tab.

    OR move the Adjustments palette to another location.

  • Sorry about your loss, man

    I lost my dad about 16 years ago, and it was far and away the worst thing that’s ever happened to me.

    Very sorry. Heal. But good to have you back, Archee!

  • Even on vacation…

    ...I called in briefly at the internet cafe to see what was happening, because dekePod is just that darned awesome. :-D

    What a wonderful difference a week’s vacation on a paradise island can do to one’s inner happy hippy. I will be moving to Waiheke Island at the first opportunity. It’s where I wanna be. grin

    It’s good to get back to some photoshop fun, though - and I have one or two images from my vacation that will do very nicely under Deke’s creative tutelage.

    And Spinal Tap is the best rockumockumentary ever made! It’s such a fine line between stupid, and clever. wink

  • Damn, Archee

    You’ve been having a rough ride lately. Sorry to hear about your woes - especially the passing of your father.

    I certainly do hope that things really are looking better for you now. Life can be quite the bitch sometimes, eh? :(

  • Lynda discount code?

    I am about to sign up at and I was wondering if Deke had a discount code. At the very least I’d like to give him credit for turning me on to

  • It’s more like a free trial will get you a free 7-day pass. As far as I know no discounts are offered at Lynda, but considering the unlimited access for 25 bucks it’s like having the whole Library of Congress for software goodies at your fingertips….in video form.

    Mmm Cookies!

  • Layers Palette Unfold CS4

    I’ve learned to tap the F7 key instead of having to go to the menu.

  • thanks mate :)

    thanks mate smile

  • thanks mate, I appreciate

    thanks mate, I appreciate it…

  • Thank you

    Thank you for your reply and yes it is an amazing offer.

  • Undo Madness

    Hi Deke,

    Thanks for all that you share. 

    I have been struggling with Photoshop CS4 Extended undo for a long time.  I have the 2nd button on my Wacom Pen set to multiple undo, (Ctrl+Alt+Z).  The madness is that often when I’m working on different layers and I choose undo, Photoshop changes the layer that I was in. 

    It’s driving me nuts as you might well imagine.  Is this normal?  Am I missing a setting somewhere in preferences?

    Thanks a bunch,


  • Undo always switches layers

    The Undo command (and backstepping, too) are very interested in returning you to the last state, which is layer-sensitive.

    So, yes, the behavior is to be expected.

    But it’s not desirable. In fact, I agree with you, David. It’s flawed.

    I don’t care what layer I was on when I undid some operation. I care what layer I am on right now.

    Adobe, change this!

    In the meantime, David, enjoy being driven nuts. Cuz tha’s the way it is.

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