Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Call Now!

Think the Fall Session of the Tech Club is going to be kind of neat but want to know more? Or, want to be the first in line to sign-up? All you have to do is:

Call Cabrini Connections at 312-492-9614 for info

There now, that was easy -- wasn't it? Look forward to seeing you in the fall!

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Why Adjustment Layers Rock!

Have a digital photo that you want to manipulate but don't want to destroy the original? You could accomplish this by making a copy of the original and working on that. Or, you can use Adjustment Layers in Photoshop.

Adjustment Layers allow you to apply various types of adjustments to the original photo sitting on a layer below your new Adjustment Layer without directly changing the original photo. It's kind of like looking at the world through a pair of sunglasses. The world takes on the hue of your sunglasses (green, brown, blue, gray) but the original world itself hasn't changed -- only how you're seeing it. Same thing with Adjustment Layers.

For example, let's take a photo

And add an Adjustment Layer of Hue/Saturation and set Saturation to -100 (remove all the color) -- I now have a black and white photo.

But I do miss the color and here's where I stepped away from Adjustment Layer and added in some other cool tricks. First I copied the original photo onto another layer *above* the Adjustment Layers. I then reduced the Opacity for that layer (made it see-through) so the black and white photo is also visible:

The color is subtle; maybe too subtle. So I again copied the original photo onto another layer, placed that layer above all other and deleted everything in the photo *except* the pink flowers:

I think I may have ended up close to the beginning, but it's a start. :) Here's my layer palette showing the different layers mentioned above:

Now, flowers may not be your thing, but this will give you a taste of the cool stuff we'll be doing with digital photos this fall.

Friday, July 25, 2008

Photo Fridays

Blue Ridge Mountains at Sunrise
(Asheville, North Carolina)

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Fall Session Preview

Thinking of signing up for Tech Club? Well, here's a sneak peak at what we're offering for the Fall '08 Session:

Fall Session:
  1. If you don't already know, learn how to use a digital camera and take a photo tour of the area

  2. Learn what makes a good photograph; then, retake area photos using your new knowledge about photography

  3. Digitally edit your photos. We'll get into:

    • Photoshop tools (magic wand, marquee, cloning tool, etc.) and how they're used

    • applying filters, such as distort, sketch, artistic, noise and seeing how they change your photo

    • using adjustments to experiment with color balance, brightness, contrast, etc.

    • changing your photo from color to black and white and how to create an old-fashioned brown-tinted photo

  4. If time allows, we'll start learning about animation or we may save that for the spring session

Thursday, July 17, 2008

Photo Fridays

Chicago Full Moon

Tech Tuesdays -- Summer Edition

It's summertime and you're taking advantage of the long days and open beaches. What fun!! But please don't forget about Tech Tuesdays.

Our summer session is setup to accommodate the casual visit. Stop by weekly and build on what you're learning each week, or sign up for a week here and there, just to keep your toe in the technology water (so to speak). Even just the causal day or two will give you a heads up of what we'll be doing come this fall.

So sure, we'd love it if you could come every week, because the program does build on what you learned the previous week, but we get it. After all, they aren't called the lazy, hazy, crazy days of summer for nothing!

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

It's All About the Tools

We started playing around with manipulating our digital photos via Photoshop. First stop, a discussion about the various tools at our disposal, what they do and how they can be used.

As you can see from the toolbar at the left, there's a lot of stuff to learn: magic wands to select areas; cloning tools that act just like a stamp; cropping, dodging, burning; adding text. Oh and then we also threw in a bit about layer and the history list. Phew! That's a lot, but this is just the start.

Next up will be taking some of the knowledge we just learned and see what we can do to one of our photos -- the good, the bad and yes, even the ugly. I have a feeling both CTL + Z and the history list will be our friends.

Monday, July 7, 2008

Stay Tuned ....

Team Tech Club will be getting into manipulating digital photos this week. Using the photos from last week, we're going to start to explore all the different ways they can be modified -- cropping, distorting, duo-tone. You name it, we'll try it! Every filter and feature available and all in the name of (a) learning some pretty cool software and (b) having some fun.

My previous post showed Sean's and Anthony's photos sans effects; upcoming posts will show you what they'll accomplishing using the "digital dark room". As the title says, Stay Tuned ....

Sunday, July 6, 2008

Photo Mania

Hope everyone had a great Fourth of July!

I wanted to share some pictures Sean and Anthony took at last Tuesday's Tech Club. We started off with a talk about what goes into making a good photograph -- things like the rule of thirds, identifying the photo's subject, composition, etc. With camera in hand, Sean and Anthony then took to the streets looking for photos of the urban landscape, but this time with more of a photographer's eye.

I think they absorbed the lesson well -- what do you think?

Anthony's Photo

Sean's Photo: