Posts Tagged ‘adobe’

Techie Tip of the Week: Use Content-Aware Scaling to Resize Images

Friday, May 4th, 2012

In Adobe Photoshop CS4 and newer, you can use Content-Aware Scaling to resize an image without distorting or changing surrounding content like people, buildings, animals, and so forth. Normally, when you scale an image, all of the pixels are uniformly modified. But with Content-Aware Scaling, Photoshop intelligently figures out what’s most important and only resizes those parts that aren’t (grass, sidewalks, water, and the like).

To use this feature:

  1. Select the photo (or part of the photo).
  2. On the Edit menu, select Content Aware Scale.
  3. Click and drag to obtain the effect you desire. Note that there are properties you can change in the properties palette for Content Aware Scale.
  4. Save!

For example, here is the original photo of Vincent Van Gogh’s painting of his bedroom:

Vincent Van Gogh's Bedroom

Original version of Vincent Van Gogh's Bedroom

Here is a version of this painting scaled using Content-Aware Scaling:

Van Gogh's painting of his bedroom scaled using Content Aware Scaling

Van Gogh's painting of his bedroom scaled using Content Aware Scaling

And here is what the same picture would look like using traditional scaling (using Image>Image Size or Edit>Transform):

Van Gogh's painting of his bedroom scaled using traditional scaling methods

Van Gogh's painting of his bedroom scaled using traditional scaling methods

Note the bed, pillows, paintings, chairs, and the objects on the table look relatively normal when using Content-Aware Scaling, but look squished, flattened, and distorted when scaled using traditional scaling methods. Content Aware Scaling keeps the important objects (in this case, the bed, pillows, paintings, chairs, and objects on the tables) looking as they originally did while only resizing the relatively unimportant objects (in this case, the floor and walls).

Techie Tip of the Week: Use QR codes to capture PDF form data!

Friday, March 23rd, 2012

If you use Adobe Acrobat Pro to create forms, did you know that you can use QR codes to gather, collect and and capture the data from the people who fill out the form?

Here’s how:

  1. Create your form in MS Word or some other editor and convert to PDF.
  2. Open your PDF in Adobe Acrobat Pro.
  3. Use the tool Run Form Field Recognition to create form fields.
  4. Add a QR Code Barcode to your form (Form Tools>Barcode Tool>Options>Symbology>QR Code).
  5. Add a Print button to your form (Form Tools>Button Tool>Actions>Select Action>Execute a menu item>Add>File Print>OK>).
  6. Enable Usage Rights in Adobe Reader (Advanced>Enable Usage Rights in Adobe Reader or File > Save As > Reader Extended). Save the PDF.
  7. Publish the PDF (send via email to your clients, upload to the website, etc.).  Have your clients enter the data, print the form, and send it back to you.
  8. Using a scanner, iPhone, Android, or other device, scan the QR code barcode. A few weeks ago, we highlighted some of the QR Code readers on the market. You can now analyze the data!

Techie Tip of the Week – Photoshop: Using Content-Aware Fill to Remove Unwanted Material

Friday, April 8th, 2011

Need to remove something from your photograph and make it look like it never was there in the first place? Photoshop CS4 and CS5′s Content Aware Fill is just what you need!

  1. In Photoshop, open the image.
  2. Using one of the selection tools, select the part of the image you wish to remove. In this example, we’ll remove the legs of the players in the upper part of the image.By Johnmaxmena (talk)john mena.Johnmaxmena at en.wikipedia [Public domain], from Wikimedia Commons
  3. On your keyboard, press the Delete key (or, on the Edit menu, choose Fill). The Fill window appears.
    1. In the Contents section, in the field Use, select Content-Aware.
    2. In the Blending section, in the field Mode, select Normal and Opacity 100%.
    3. Click OK.

The unwanted portion of your photo will no longer appear – Photoshop analyzes the contents of the photo and attempts to figure out what the photo would have looked like if they had never been there.

In this example, note, however, that the shadows of the unwanted players still exist – repeat the same steps to eliminate the shadows.

By Johnmaxmena (talk)john mena.Johnmaxmena at en.wikipedia [Public domain], from Wikimedia Commons

    Want to learn more great Photoshop tips? Come take our class Photoshop 101 on April 11, or Photoshop Level 1 on May 16!

    For more information on the classes, watch the course preview video , or visit http://techtraining.stanford.edu/.

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Techie Tip of the Week: Photoshop – Adding Drop Shadows

Friday, February 25th, 2011

Want to add some pizazz to your text or photo? Consider adding a drop shadow!

  1. In Photoshop, open the image.Stanford University
  2.  

  3. In Layers, right-click (on a Mac, control-click) the layer containing the part of the image on which you want the drop shadow to appear and click Blending Options.
    In Photoshop, choose Layers -> Blending Options
  4.  

  5. Check the box Drop Shadow.
    • In Structure, adjust the Blend Mode, Opacity, Angle, Distance, Spread, and Size as desired.
    • In Quality, choose the desired Contour and Noise percentage.

    In Layer Style, in Drop Shadow, choose desired Structure and Quality

  6. Click  OK.

 

Stanford University (no shadow) --> Stanford University (with shadow)

Drop Shadow Example

 

Want to learn more great Photoshop tips? Come take our class Photoshop 101 on March 24, Photoshop Level 1 on February 28, or Photoshop Level 2 on March 10!

For more information on the classes, watch the course preview video , or visit http://techtraining.stanford.edu/.

Play Video

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Techie Tip of the Week: Photoshop – Adding Soft Focus to Portraits

Wednesday, February 16th, 2011

Have a portrait or a photograph of a person or object you want to emphasize without overdoing it? Adding a soft-focus to the photo can be the difference between a flat, boring photo, and one that evokes warmth and interest.

Soft Focus

Demonstration of applying soft focus to a photo

Example of Adding Soft Focus to a Portrait

To add soft focus in Photoshop:

  1. Open the photograph in Photoshop.
  2. Create a duplicate layer by using the keyboard shortcut CTRL-J (Windows) / Command-J (Mac).
  3. In Layers, click Layer 1.
  4. On the Filter menu, point to Blur, and select Lens Blur. Click OK.
  5. In Layers, change the Opacity of Layer 1 to the desired amount of soft focus (e.g., 50%).
  6. On the Image menu, point to Adjustments, and select Hue/Saturation. Increase the Saturation to make the colors “pop” (e.g., +50). Click OK.

Note the soft focus on your photo!

Want to learn more great Photoshop tips? Come take our class Photoshop 101 on February 18, 2011.

For more information on the class, watch the course preview video , or visit http://techtraining.stanford.edu/.

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Techie Tip of the Week: Edit a PDF file using Adobe Acrobat Pro

Friday, January 28th, 2011

Did you know you can edit most PDF files?

Here’s how:

  1. Open the PDF file in Adobe Acrobat Pro.
  2. On the Tools menu, point to Advanced Editing, and then click TouchUp Text Tool (to change or delete text) or TouchUp Object Tool (to move or delete graphical elements or other objects).
  3. Click the text, graphics, or object to be altered, and then make the edits. (When using the TouchUp Text Tool, you can add, delete, or edit the text; when using the TouchUp Object Tool, you can select and then move or delete block of text or graphics).

To learn more about Adobe Acrobat, come take our class Adobe Acrobat & PDFs: Creating, Collaborating, and Saving (The Basics), which will be held on February 3, 2011.

For more information on the class, watch the course preview video , or visit http://techtraining.stanford.edu/.