Archive for November, 2009 is Aaron’s new BFF

Published by | Wednesday, November 25th, 2009

Aaron over at Creative Calamities says is his new best friend. After trying out a free trial, it appears he was hooked and had to subscribe. He especially likes our Creative Inspirations series.

“I thought I would only be learning the ins and outs of every piece of software out there, but to my surprise I am gaining a greater insight into the business side of art. And I am being inspired all at the same time.”

Read Aaron’s full post.

Earn while they learn! Apply to the new Affiliate Program

Published by | Wednesday, November 25th, 2009

new Affiliate Program

We’re looking for strong partners to promote on their sites and blogs and earn commissions on sales made through those promotions. Are you who we are looking for? Ideal candidates to the Affiliate Program include those sites related to and covering technology, software, education, graphic design, photography, business, and other applicable topics.

Program highlights:

  • • Links and banners are available for both web- and email-based promotions.
  • • A one-time 10% commission on Annual and Premium subscriptions (up to $25 and $37.50 respectively).
  • • A one-time $10 commission on $25 Monthly subscriptions.
  • • A one-time 10% commission on any Gift Subscription.
  • • A 30-day return cookie: Get paid on sales for up to 30 days after a first visit from your site.

Learn more about the program, and apply today!

Be the coolest friend ever: Give the gift of for the holidays

Published by | Tuesday, November 24th, 2009

give the gift of!

‘Tis the season for giving, and all through the house
all the creatures were learning with the click of a mouse.

Whenever, whatever you’ve wanted to know
From designing a web site to Final Cut Pro,

Coldfusion and Keynote, for the courses you came,
You found what you needed to sharpen your game.

Now share what you’ve learned with ease and aplomb—
Give each creature you know some free!

Better than sweaters or baskets of fruit,
Give the power of knowledge and save lots of loot.

give the gift of!No shipping, no wrapping, no stress or strain—
Happy learning to all, and to all a smart brain.

Give the gift of learning with starting at just $25 for a one month subscription. Learn more in the Gift Center!

Photoshop Top 40 Countdown with Deke McClelland: #21 – The Gradient Tool

Published by | Tuesday, November 24th, 2009

Every photo manipulation application offers a gradient tool, but Photoshop’s is special. Not only can you paint a soft transition from black to white, you can also soften the transition from one image to another. The gradient tool fades, swipes, and more. This week, Deke takes us through the many shades of the gradient tool and shows how to best use it for smooth results. author (that Excel guy) Curt Frye teaches critical financial skills

Published by | Friday, November 20th, 2009

When Curt Frye started working with, we were all very excited about the slew of new and much needed Microsoft Excel courses he was planning for us. With the state of the economy, and more people doing their own finances, as well as tightening their belts nearly to the point of of asphyxiation, it is becoming more critical for the general public to understand their finances, even on a very basic level.

In the November 2009 issue of the Harvard Business Review, The Forethought column “Teach Workers About the Perils of Debt.” states:

“It’s widely known that many consumers have poor numeracy–they can’t figure out percentages or do other elementary calculations–and have barely a rudimentary grasp of economics. In our research, we looked deeper, studying consumers’ ‘debt literacy,’ the ability to understand how interest rates work and make simple decisions about borrowing. We found it to be strikingly low.”

With the state of the economy, and more people doing their own finances, as well as tightening their belts nearly to the point of of asphyxiation, it is becoming more an more critical for the general public to understand their finances, even on a very basic level. <em>Photo courtesy of iStockphoto, image #3154423</em>

Curt's aim in creating a course on financial analysis was to teach skills required to analyze debt. Photo courtesy of iStockphoto, image #3154423

“My aim in creating Excel 2007: Financial Analysis was to teach the skills required to analyze debt,” said Curt Frye of his first course. “I’m hoping that it helps subscribers better understand some critical skills that not everyone is taught at home or in school.”

Curt is currently working on a new book, as well as new courses. For a full list of his training, visit his author page.

Learn Lightroom 3 from Photographer Chris Orwig

Published by | Wednesday, November 18th, 2009


The computer industry is usually a secretive place. Companies keep their product plans to themselves, and all product discussions take place under the Cone of Silence from TV’s Get Smart.

That’s one reason why Adobe Photoshop Lightroom 3 is a breath of fresh air. Adobe has made a prerelease version of its popular photo-management and photo-enhancement software available for free downloading. Curious to see what’s new? Grab the beta preview and try it.

But how do you learn it? By diving into Photoshop Lightroom 3 Beta Preview, a new course from Chris Orwig, photographer and instructor at the Brooks Institute. It’s more than two hours of detailed instruction on all the new features in Lightroom 3′s beta version, and it includes comparisons that illustrate what has changed from Lightroom 2.

Chris will also be doing courses on the final version of Lightroom 3 next year. But why wait? Download the free public beta and dive into the next version of Lightroom right now.

Photoshop Top 40 Countdown with Deke McClelland: #22 – the Healing Brush

Published by | Tuesday, November 17th, 2009

Be they pits, pock marks, or pimples, we all suffer blemishes that we wish we didn’t. Or so we would were it not for Photoshop’s Healing Brush. This amazing tool grafts good skin onto bad—and heals the seams in between. This week, Deke shares his techniques for using the Healing Brush to its full potential.

Catching up with InDesign expert and author, David Blatner

Published by | Friday, November 13th, 2009

David Blatner is a man on the go! He is the author of many courses, well known InDesign speaker (most recently jetting over to Moscow for an Adobe InDesign, Illustrator, and Photoshop conference), a regular on Twitter, and has recently announced his new plug-in package for Adobe InDesign, appropriately named Blatner Tools.

Blatner Tools is a suite of about 12 plug-ins to make your InDesign experience more fluid.  It has been in public beta for about a week now, and will ship in another few weeks. Also in the InDesign-y world of David Blatner, is the exciting news that the popular website he runs with fellow InDesign guru Anne-Marie Concepcion, ( has just announced it’s free forum and membership. And, because Anne-Marie and David never stop working, they’ve announced their first eBook today, too!


David Blatner at the Kremlin in Moscow, who was there speaking with Russell Viers (not pictured) at an Adobe InDesign, Illustrator, and Photoshop conference last week.