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Deke’s Techniques

Your weekly quick-fix of Deke, with ideas you may inspire or inform your own projects.

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The Mating Habits of the Pen Tool

Adobe's landmark pen tool ranks among its most powerful but least understood features. And yet it all hinges on this: anchor points are boys, control handles are girls. It's not a drawing tool, it's a mating ritual.

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Giving It Up for the Family

As creative pros, we work all day for our various clients and then come home with the expectation of rest. But our families know we're talented, too. How to balance the needs of our families against the need to get some R&R?

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The Instant Liquid Diet

Imagine looking back on photos of this holiday season and seeing, for the first time ever, a *slimmer* version of yourself. Was this the year you suddenly discovered self-control? Or was it something even yummier?

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Sixties Space Siren

Ah, the election is finally over. And splendidly so! What better way to celebrate than with something that anticipates our bright future while at the same time honoring our heroic past? Something timeless. Like Captain Kirk!

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The Masks Palette

Working in the quick mask mode? Photoshop CS4's Masks palette reads: "No mask selected." Working on an alpha channel? "No mask selected." Learn how to satisfy this wicked imp of a palette in this week's dekePod!

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Faking an HDR Portrait

There's nothing scarier than an image that's so real you can reach out and touch it. Because if you can reach out and touch it, it can reach out and touch you. Learn how to create just such an image in this episode.

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Photoshop CS4, Buy or Die

Adobe has announced Creative Suite 4 and its myriad applications. But for the moment, there's just one that matters, Photoshop CS4. Thumbs up, thumbs down, thumbs all over the place? Deke knows and will tell you.

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Spirograph on Steroids

Creativity is an exercise in thought and energy, not manual dexterity. Learn how to puzzle your way through a piece of dynamic "op art" based on nothing more than half an ellipse and Adobe Illustrator.

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Stretching a Photo in Illustrator

Distort, Warp, Liquify. Photoshop offers plenty of distortion functions. But none of them measures up to Illustrator's Envelope. Fortunately, Illustrator doesn't limit itself to vectors; you can edit photographs. Learn how!

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Don’t Fear the Lab Mode

Digital cameras are wonderful, but they're ultimately machines. You, on the other hand, are a superior human being. Celebrate your humanity in the Lab mode, where you can take the work of machines and make it way better.

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Stealth ‘Shop, The Virgin Histogram

Have an image that needs an absolute color overhaul? This video shows you how to apply some shockingly massive edits, get great results, and clean up the histogram so it looks like you never set foot in Photoshop.

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