Archive for October, 2011

InDesign Secrets: Selecting through and into objects

Published by | Thursday, October 6th, 2011

One of the more natural things I like about InDesign (as opposed to, say, Photoshop) is that you can more easily grab the elements you want and move them around or edit their contents. However, if your layout becomes complicated with grouped and stacked and otherwise hard-to-grab objects, you need an arsenal of tips for selecting the item you’re aiming for. That’s exactly what David Blatner has for you in this week’s free InDesign Secrets episode.

The most all-purpose trick? Ctrl-click (Windows) or Cmd-click (Mac) through one object to get the item below. If your graphic frame is overlapping some text you need to edit, this is a sanity-saving measure for getting at the frame below. And David’s movie has a bunch of other secrets for selecting particular objects in a group or using layers to effectively select (or protect) items.

Meanwhile, for members, David’s partner in InDesign secrecy, Anne-Marie Concepcion, has some more time- and mind-saving tips regarding the Swatches panel in the Online Training Library® this week.

Interested in more?
•  All the InDesign Secrets in the Online Training Library®
•  Courses by David Blatner the Online Training Library®
•  Courses by Anne-Marie Concepcion the Online Training Library®
•  Courses on InDesign the Online Training Library®

Lynda interviews poet and scholar Noah benShea

Published by | Wednesday, October 5th, 2011

When I first heard Noah benShea speak at our locally organized TEDx in Santa Barbara, I didn’t meet him in person. Rather, he was projected on the large screen, captured in a series of thought-provoking video monologues that worked as interstitials between the live conference sessions:

Most of the attendees and I found these videos riveting, so I was happy to meet Noah in person many months later. He agreed to come in to our studios for an interview. I recommend you check out the TEDx video first, and then if you enjoyed them, watch our interview to get to know a bit about the man behind the poetry.

Deke’s Techniques: Creating filter effects with Camera Raw

Published by | Tuesday, October 4th, 2011

The first time you try them out, Photoshop filters can be sort of fun, turning your images into a pastel drawing or giving them a chrome effect. But as Deke points out in this week’s free technique, you’ll soon realize that many of these built-in filters are nothing you’d actually want to use. So instead, Deke has used a familiar tool to a surprising purpose this week, by using Adobe Camera Raw to create some filter-like recipes that result in usable effects. And you don’t need to use raw-format photos to make it work, either.

He begins with this image (shot by‘s own Jacob Cunningham), which does happen to be a raw image to which Deke applies conventional Camera Raw processing in order to set his starting point:

For his first effect, Deke uses a negative Clarity value to reduce the edge contrast and a negative Vibrance setting to leach out the most vivid colors in the image. He then adds back some saturation to return the glow of the model’s skin tone.

Next, Deke takes the same image, and applies a bleached effect that’s centered around the application of a drastic temperature reduction. Who needs Instagram when you have ACR?

The third effect emulates old school cross-processing (as if you were developing one kind of film with a process designed for another) by adjusting the temperature and tone, then setting vibrance and saturation at odds. The result is this interesting effect:

The next recipe applies an etched effect, which gives our good-natured model an almost other-worldly look. This part of the technique involves tweaking the Recovery, Fill, Blacks, Contrast, and Clarity values.

Finally, because you’ve undoubtedly come to expect extremes from Deke, he’ll show you how he used the Tone Curve to set the different levels inside the image at extremes with one another, resulting in this stark treatment:

Five photo-processing filters in under nine minutes. And all along, you’re applying your effect to duplicates of an original smart object, so everything is non-destructive and you can riff off of Deke’s ideas without harming your original image.

And if that’s not enough, members of the Online Training Library® can view another new movie in which Deke shares his sixth and most outrageous filter effect inside Adobe Camera Raw. It’s Deke—you can occasionally question his taste but never his talent. And you never know what the inspirational effects of going over the edge might be.

Every week, there’s a free techniques from Deke!

Interested in more?
• The entire Deke’s Techniques collection
• courses on Photoshop in the Online Training Library®
• courses by Deke McClelland in the Online Training Library®

Curious about Google+? New course covers the basics

Published by | Tuesday, October 4th, 2011

When Google+ opened its doors to the public a few weeks ago, people flocked to the nascent social networking site. The service is evolving, and at this point it’s impossible to tell whether it will become a major player in the social networking space. But given Google’s reach, the service’s features (like customized sharing and video hangouts), and growing discontent with Facebook, many people are wondering what Google+ offers that the other social networking sites don’t.

If you’re one of the curious, Google+ First Look covers the basics and gets you up and running in the first 12 minutes. In the course, social media expert Adam Metz also shows how to sync your Google+ account with your other social media assets, like LinkedIn, Twitter, and Facebook, and reviews the service’s privacy controls.

We’ll be keeping a close eye on Google+ as it develops, and we’d love to hear from you if there’s something you’d like to learn about Google+—or any aspect of social media.