Noteworthy: Photoshop CS6 Creative Cloud Update December 2012 – Awesome “NEW” features!

Noteworthy:  Photoshop CS6 Adobe Creative Cloud Members now have some pretty awesome features available via the most recent software update this December 2012.

In a nutshell, here’s what has been enhanced, improved, or added new that will certainly make your lives easier and fall in love with Photoshop all over again, or more!

  • Liquify is now available as a “Smart Filter”, which means is now non-destructable and can be easily edited by just a double-click of your filter in its layer form.
  • Blur Effects is now available as a “Smart Filter” which means is now non-destructable and can be easily edited by just a double-click of your filter in its layer form.  And this can also be applied to videos clips in PS.
  • Creating Actions now allows you to create what Adobe is calling “conditional actions”.  Simply means that you can now tell the action “if” my images is horizontal do the following…. but “if” my image is vertical do this following step instead…. etc.  You can now create a new action that can be applied to different type of images by adding “conditional rules” to that action.
  • Cropping Tool now allows you visibly see and add your preferred image “resolution”:  Available at the top bar next to width and height.  Also, you can now crop the top image of out of grouping layers if that’s what your heart desires.
  • Photoshop now can generate CSS*:  New feature added in Photoshop for Web Designers.  When you design any website in Photoshop, you can now “right-click” on any layer and select “Copy CSS” then bring that Photoshop generated css to your css file and paste it.  Then view it via your browser to see the updated change.  The best part about this new feature is that it works on both individual layers and/or group layers.  (ie.  if you’re using Edge Code, as your coding editor remember that it only works in connection with Google Chrome Browser)  I’m in LOVE with this new feature!
  • Swatches* now allows you to upload swatches from a pre-existing “css file swatches” you may have used in a previous website design.  This is ideal or great if you loved the colors you previously used in another site and want to have those same colors available, just upload those css file swatches.
  • Character Panel now allows you toset the default styles for new documents”.  Lets say you always use Header and Footer (like most do in web design)  Now, you can save these two styles as your “new document default styles”–saves lots of time!
  • 3D Panel now has the new ability to use 32 color.  This allows you to enhance or light an object just turn on the illuminate effect in layer panel.
  • Retina Display is now compatible.  If you could not see in previous versions of Photoshop Cs6 an image at 100% view without having to scroll or move that image around, now you will with the new retina display compatibility.

If you want to see how these new features work in application, click on the link below to watch the video tutorial by Terry White, of Adobe.  Or simply watch the embedded video tutorial in this post.

Photoshop CS6 Creative Cloud Update December 2012 – What’s New? | Creative Suite Podcast: Photographers | Adobe TV.

Article credit: Adobe & Terry White of Adobe

Minted.com is Running the Best Designer Contests!

If you’re a designer, or even photographer you can participate in Minted.com designers contests.  I’m writing about this for two reasons.

1. I want to ask you for your support and vote!  I have submitted one of my images for the Wall Art contest.  The link to my art is below, please click on it and vote for my work!

2. I wanted to share the good news with all of you.  By that, I mean you as the designer entering your work to the Minted contests.

At the very least, browse the site and take a look at their designs even if you do not submit for the contest, you can certainly get inspired from other beautiful designs.

Now, go vote for my art!  Thanks;)

Click on this link:

http://www.minted.com/designer/cindyjbryant

Pinterest Introduces Secret Boards

Pinterest Secret Boards

Finally, Pinterest is rolling out “Secret Boards”.  That means you can now keep a private board filled with pins of all the goodies you love and with it, you’ll have the option to opt for privacy.  No one, but you will be able to see your “secret board(s)”.  Totally awesome!  I heard it via Mashable social media, check out their link below.

Pinterest Introduces Secret Boards.

Daily Tip: How to Find Out What WordPress Theme a Site is Using – WPMU.org

Noteworthy:  Inquiring minds want to know!

Have you ever come across a website that just totally knocked the socks of your feet?  Okay, maybe not the socks of your feet, but how about a website that was so pretty to look at that it made you wonder which theme the developer used to create it?   If this is you, then stay tuned because this next article link will help you get that type of information.   I have to admit,  I had many moments when I wondered about this stuff too, but had zero idea how to go about it.  Because this can become a daunting task for some, I wanted to share an awesome article written by Sarah Gooding, at WPMU.org that gives you the tips on how you too can find out which theme your favorite site may be using.   Click on the link below for details.  Enjoy!

Daily Tip: How to Find Out What WordPress Theme a Site is Using – WPMU.org.

School Project: What is File Compression?

What is File Compression?
File Compression is a software that uses a combination of dictionary words, numbers, and patterns through an algorithm that picks up repeated content within any file to reduce it half of its original size.  By reducing the file size in half or less, file compression basically re-wraps half of the important content of that file in what is called a “zip file”, in other words a compressed zip format.  This type of compression can be done with any type of file text, images, or graphics.  Most computers now come prepackaged with a default file compression software that allows you to zip any file.

The benefit of using file compression is that by reducing your file to half its original size, you are using fewer bits, bytes to travel via the net.  In other words, it takes less time to send to its destination and in some instances some networks limit the file size you can send via the internet, which means that by using a zip format you can then still manage to send your large file.  With having the ability to compress a file, you also have the ability to open a zip file and decompress it back to its original state.  This is a great way to send several files that normally would take up a lot of width band, but using a file compressing software like Zip it, WinZap, and there’s several others out there will allow you to send large files in less than 5 MB, or even less depending on what it is.  Tom Harris, wrote an article explaining in much details the break down of how a file compression works and it’s algorithm.  Here’s the link to that article for in-depth description of file compression, http://www.howstuffworks.com/file-compression.htm

How to boost your MacBook Pro performance | ZDNet

Noteworthy: If you happen to own a Macbook Pro product and feel as though your lap top is sluggish at times, especially if you’re running several softwares like Adobe.  Take a look at possible options you can use to speed up your computer.  Click the link below to get the details.

Article: How to boost your MacBook Pro performance

Article credit: ZDNet.com

How to boost your MacBook Pro performance | ZDNet.

Class Project: Ethics & Copyright

Class Project: Ethics & Copyright

What is Copyright? Believe it or not, the answer to this question is quite simple and easy to follow if you know the difference between right and wrong. Copyright is the right of the owner to reproduce or permit another person to reproduce their original work.  This can include, but not limited to photos, graphics, art, music, articles, audio recordings, movies, and even html coding to list a few.  Based on what I understood from my readings about copyright laws, if it is not something that I originally created consider getting permission from the original creator/artist of that material, otherwise do not use it.  Also, do not dismiss any works as not being copyrighted if it happens to be missing that information in their works, or listing it anywhere within their works.  The main take on this matter is that if you didn’t create it, consider it not yours to use and/or take, you must ask for permission before using it.  Here you can link to more details about copyright laws in-depth details. http://www.copyright.gov/title17/

What is Fair Use? This still falls within copyright laws, but has certain limitations of how an original creator’s work is used. Fair use, does not equate to take free, or use as you wish. Even if you’re using the work for educational purposes. I identified it as having some limits as to “how much” of any original works you can really use and still fall under the Fair Use laws.  As a student, if I were to use someone else’s image, graphics, or article(s) for that matter I would have to use a short excerpt and include attributed credit to that original creative source. In other words, how much content is the key element to keep in consideration when it comes to the laws of Fair Use. If you use too much, even if it is for educational purposes this may void/null the “Fair Use” law and the courts may see it as infringement of Fair Use and Copyright laws.  When in doubt, consider keeping is very short excerpt and always include attribute credit to the original source.  Fair Use link. http://www.copyright.gov/fls/fl102.html

What is Public-domain? One would automatically assume that means free for all, after all it reads public-domain.  However, this is another case similar of the Fair Use law in that it has some limits.  What I understand public-domain to be is works that our U.S. Copyright Office considered as work(s) not eligible to begin with, unregistered work(s) with date limitations, expired copyrights, or works published by the original creator as public-domain.  The key element is to learn “term/length” of any work to know if it’s really public-domain use. Wikipedia said it best, to avoid plagiarism always include attribution/credit to the original creative owner/author of any public-domain work.  Wikipedia, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wikipedia:Public_domain  You can learn more about recent public-domain law changes recently updated and published on January 1, 2012 by Cornell University, http://copyright.cornell.edu/resources/publicdomain.cfm

In closing, Copyright, Fair Use, and Public-Domain follows the rule of simple morals, or ethics.  Now that I have mentioned the word Ethics, what does it really mean to you? In my opinion, the word “ethics” is sort of like that saying “it’s in the eye of the beholder” and it can be a broad subject matter from person to person, families, or even a large corporation.  In my case, I distinguish “Ethics” with having good morals, knowing from the obvious right from wrong, and following the laws.  After all, this is what most of us learn from early childhood. It is the simplicity of making a good educated decision, and in the case of Copyright, Fair Use, and Public-domain is knowing to ask for permission, do not use something that you did not create yourself, follow the laws/terms, and give credit where is due this will equate having good ethics.

Fan Photo of the Week: Cindy Bryant’s Black bellied Whistling Duck | SIGMA Blog

Featured in:  Sigma Corporation of America, has selected one of my wildlife images as their “Fan Photo of the Week” and have made it their Facebook Timeline Cover.  And additionally have featured it on their website blog as well.  Here’s the link to the Sigma Blog.  (Sigma is a large major lens company)
I feel very honored and thankful that out of the thousands of fans and customers Sigma selected my image to be featured.  A big thank you to Jack and the Sigma team for this wonderful display and opportunity!  Click on image to go direct to Sigma’s Blog.  Or link Below:  Fan Photo of the Week: Cindy Bryant’s Black bellied Whistling Duck | SIGMA Blog.