Archive for October, 2010

Illustrator CS5 One-on-One: Advanced preview—Phase two: editing scanned line art

Published by | Monday, October 25th, 2010

Phase two: Editing a scan to perfection

In this exclusive preview of his upcoming Illustrator CS5 One-on-One: Advanced course, lynda.com author Deke McClelland shares six phases in the creation of an authentic five-by-three-foot pirate flag. In today’s episode, Deke uses Photoshop to adjust, distort, and otherwise refine an ink drawing into a work of compositional perfection. Look for the full course to be released in its entirety later this year. Phase three will be online tomorrow.

Topics include:

• Editing artwork and filling in missing details
• Flipping a drawing to reveal its defects
• Reforming artwork with the Liquify command

See part one, Sketching.

A first look at Flash Catalyst Panini preview release from Adobe

Published by | Monday, October 25th, 2010

Last spring, lynda.com published Flash Catalyst CS5 Essential Training to show members how to create and publish fully interactive Flash (SWF) micro sites, widgets, portfolios, and applications from static artwork without writing code. Previously, we had published the Flash Catalyst Beta Preview course. This year, we’re trying something new. Instead of a Beta Preview course, we’re going to be publishing a series of videos and blog entries. We’re starting this new series of posts to coincide with Adobe MAX, to take advantage of an anticipated public beta of a new and improved Flash Catalyst. Here is the first of my posts.

At their MAX conference in 2007, Adobe showed a demonstration of a new product they were building, dubbed Thermo— a product that would come to be known as Flash Catalyst. At the ’08 and ’09 conferences, they released public beta versions of Flash Catalyst. Adobe seems to be keeping with the tradition at this year’s Adobe MAX conference by posting a preview release of a future version of Flash Catalyst, code named Panini, to Adobe Labs. It’s obvious that the Flash Catalyst team has been hard at work, because Flash Catalyst Panini sports some pretty big features.

Roundtrip designer-developer workflow

In the CS5 release, Flash Catalyst enabled designers to send their projects to a developer, who could open them in Flash Builder. However, once a developer worked on a project, there was no way to send it back to a designer to make changes.

With Flash Catalyst Panini, designers can start the process by creating an interactive wireframe, which they then hand off to a developer. Using Flash Builder Burrito (a preview release of that product, which is now also available on Adobe Labs), a developer can open the wireframe and add logic and connections to data services, and then send the project back to the designer. The designer can now reopen the project in Flash Catalyst Panini to skin the project and make additional changes. Developers can control which parts are editable and protect other parts. This means the designer can actually preview live data connections while working on the design.

Support for creating resizable applications

Perhaps one of the things designers struggle with most is dealing with layouts that will be viewed across multiple devices and screen sizes. Creating resizable layouts (also referred to as fluid, or liquid) is not only possible now in Flash Catalyst Panini, it’s also really easy to do. I demonstrate how it works in the video accompanying this post.

Better wireframing functionality

In the CS5 release, Flash Catalyst featured a list of ten wireframe components such as buttons and sliders. Flash Catalyst Panini now features an impressive library that contains over 35 components that include things like navigation elements, accordion boxes, and basic building block elements such as body copy or image placeholders. All of the components have also been redesigned to feature a consistent grayscale appearance. What this means is that you can quickly create great-looking mockups and wireframes for just about anything. You can see these new components in the embedded video as well.

While Flash Catalyst Panini is a wonderful peek at what’s to come, it’s still a preview release, so I’d be careful about using it on real-world projects (there’s no backwards-compatibility with CS5, and developers must use the Flash Builder Burrito preview release to open projects made in Panini).

Of course, if you want to learn everything there is to know about using Flash Catalyst CS5, be sure to check out Flash Catalyst CS5 Essential Training in the lynda.com Online Training Library. And you can be sure that I’ll continue to bring you the latest information on future versions of Flash Catalyst here on lynda.com.

Got a request on what topics you’d like to see in a future Flash Catalyst title in the lynda.com Online Training Library? Let me know in the comments below!

Illustrator CS5 One-on-One: Advanced preview—Phase one: sketching

Published by | Friday, October 22nd, 2010

Phase one: Sketching the pirate flag

In this exclusive preview of his upcoming Illustrator CS5 One-on-One: Advanced course, lynda.com author Deke McClelland shares six phases in the creation of an authentic five-by-three-foot pirate flag. In today’s episode, Deke creates, scans, and edits the original sketches to create a base piece of artwork in Photoshop. Look for the full course to be released in its entirety later this year. Phase two will be online Monday.

Topics include:

• Sketching an initial idea
• Creating a base ink drawing
• Printing and enhancing a drawing

Sneak preview: AutoCAD for the Mac course

Published by | Wednesday, October 20th, 2010

Autodesk just released their new version of AutoCAD specifically designed for Apple’s Macintosh platform. The new software has all the features of Autodesk’s popular CAD application, plus a new interface that takes advantage of some cool OSX features. These include Multitouch pan and zoom for navigation and an iPod-like CoverFlow interface to browse your designs. We thought these new features were so innovative, we decided to create a course that covers all of the differences between the OSX and Windows versions of AutoCAD.

In the upcoming AutoCAD 2011: Migrating from Windows to Mac course at lynda.com, Jeff Bartels, our resident AutoCAD expert, gives you a thorough tour of the new software for those people wanting to make the leap to OSX. The course covers the new interface and tools, as well as methods to print and share data between platforms. It should be terrific guide for anyone wanting to get started with AutoCAD on the Mac.

Here’s a sneak preview of the course, which will be released very soon:

iPad art: ‘New Friends’ by lynda.com co-founder Bruce Heavin

Published by | Thursday, October 14th, 2010

Long before he was our cofounder and Chief Creative Officer, Bruce Heavin was an acclaimed painter and illustrator. With his busy schedule, he’s found the iPad to be an ideal companion to be able to conveniently create on the fly, using his finger to paint in his trademark style. Thanks to the Brushes Viewer application, we’re able to share both the end result and show recordings of Bruce’s progress so that you watch how he put each together. Here’s the third, New Friends.



New Friends – © Bruce Heavin 2010, All Rights Reserved

If you’re new to the iPad as a creative tool, check out iPad Tips and Tricks with Christopher Breen to learn the basics of using the iPad, including using gestures and syncing and moving documents. Brushes Viewer is a free Mac OS X application used to record each of your brush strokes for replaying and exporting paintings as QuickTime movies. If you have videos posted showing your creations, please share the link with us in comments, below. And check out a couple of Bruce’s previous iPad creations, Monkey Sports Car and Sad Robot.

Avid dot-release for Media Composer 5 now available

Published by | Wednesday, October 13th, 2010

Avid recently released an update to its popular Media Composer 5 video editing software that fixes several bugs, including:

1) Default Segment Mode setting
The MC default for the timeline setting “Default Segment Tool” has been changed from overwrite to insert.

2) Copy/Paste Segment Mode fix
When copy/pasting mark in/out with no segment tool active, the paste mode will no longer be the last used segment mode but the default segment mode. Most editors want to paste in insert mode so unless an editor changes the default (insert), MC will paste in insert mode. The only time MC will paste in overwrite is if the user has only the segment overwrite tool active when paste is executed, as in versions prior to 5.

3) Smart Tools auto selection bug
A bug has been fixed that auto selected the default segment tool when an editor cut a marked in/out selection (Ctrl+X) with no segment tools active.

For information on how to obtain the 5.0.3.4 patch, go to Avid’s support area on its site: http://www.avid.com/US/support/downloads/

If you are a brand new user of Avid Media Composer 5, be sure to check out our crash course Avid Media Composer 5 Getting Started with Steve Holyhead. For a deeper dive, Avid Media Composer 5 Essential Training with Ashley Kennedy is also available.


iPad art: Sad Robot by lynda.com co-founder Bruce Heavin

Published by | Thursday, October 7th, 2010

Long before he was our cofounder and Chief Creative Officer, Bruce Heavin was an acclaimed painter and illustrator. With his busy schedule, he’s found the iPad to be an ideal companion to be able to conveniently create on the fly, using his finger to paint in his trademark style. Thanks to the Brushes Viewer application, we’re able to share both the end result and show recordings of Bruce’s progress so that you watch how he put each together. Here’s the second, Sad Robot.

Sad Robot by Bruce Heavin

Sad Robot – © Bruce Heavin 2010 All Rights Reserved

If you’re new to the iPad as a creative tool, check out iPad Tips and Tricks with Christopher Breen to learn the basics of using the iPad, including using gestures and syncing and moving documents. Brushes Viewer is a free Mac OS X application used to record each of your brush strokes for replaying and exporting paintings as QuickTime movies. If you have videos posted showing your creations, please share the link with us in comments, below. And check out Bruce’s previous work, Monkey Sports Car.

Over 30 hours of professional Photoshop CS5 tutorials

Published by | Tuesday, October 5th, 2010

Click on any one of the following images to view the trailer for that course:
Photoshop CS5 One-on-One: Mastery Trailer Photoshop CS5: Athletic Retouching Projects Trailer Photoshop CS5: Fashion Retouching Projects Trailer

In the past couple of weeks, we’ve released three new Photoshop courses in the Online Training Library®. Watch over 20 hours of expert tips and techniques in Photoshop CS5 One-on-One: Mastery with Deke McClelland, and over 10 hours of professional retouching tutorials in Photoshop CS5: Athletic Retouching Projects and Photoshop CS5: Fashion Retouching Projects with Chris Orwig.