Monthly Archives: October 2011

Adobe Photoshop Touch

In early October Adobe announced a new tablet application focused primarily on photographers. This was the second such application to be announced over recent months. The first, Adobe Carousel, had been announced a month earlier and is now available from the Apple App Store. This new application, which I have been privileged to be testing for this past few months, is called¬†Photoshop Touch. As I was away on holiday at the time it wasn’t possible to keep up with all the news surrounding the announcement, but now that I’m home…

Why am I more interested in, and therefore blogging about Photoshop Touch? Well, in terms of photo editing, Carousel’s toolset is intended for fairly simple edits to images. Photoshop Touch, on the other hand includes a more comprehensive toolset which includes the ability to make selections, insert text, create layers, and apply layer blends and effects filters – effectively Photoshop for tablets.

Editing Image in Photoshop Touch

Photoshop Touch includes a comprehensive set of adjustment tools such as Levels, Curves, Temperature, Shadow/Highlights, Colour Balance, etc. Carousel has a similar set of adjustment tools, but they are based on Camera Raw code and therefore benefit from being nondestructive. Does this give Carousel a quality advantage? Not that I see, at least not with images that don’t require significant adjustments (i.e. substantially under/over exposed)

Photoshop Touch Curves

A feature unique to Photoshop Touch is the new “Scribble” extraction tool. With this tool you can scribble a selection with either your finger or stylus. I’ve found the Wacom Bamboo Stylus to be a much easier for making selections, but then I again, I have big fingers ūüėȬ†The selection identifies the elements that you want to keep (e.g. foreground) and those to be removed (e.g background).

Scribble Tool Selections 

I mentioned using the Wacom Bamboo Stylus above. However, I should make it clear that Photoshop Touch does work well with finger control. For example, you can pinch and zoom. Also, when scaling, cropping or warping an image the objects have finger-sized handles so it’s fairly easy to resize or distort them.

Photoshop Touch Warping Tool

Other useful features for those into making composite images is the ability to search Google for copyright free images. Images found by Google are displayed within the Photoshop Touch UI and can easily be downloaded straight into the application.

Photoshop Touch use the new Adobe Creative Cloud to automatically sync images to your desktop computer. Also, Photoshop Touch processed images can be opened directly into Photoshop via a plugin for finessing or printing. Using this plugin Photoshop Touch layers and blends, etc are fully supported by Photoshop.

Images stored on Adobe Creative Cloud

A unique feature of the Creative Cloud includes the ability to toggle on and off layers. It’s also worth mentioning at this point that the Creative Cloud is a subscription service, although no prices have been announced yet.

Adobe have made a number of video demonstrations available via their Adobe TV service. They are presented by Russell Brown and should give you a good sense of what Photoshop Touch is capable of.

At present Adobe are intending to release Photoshop Touch on the Android platform first. The iOS version for the Apple iPad 2 will be released sometime later. There has been much criticism of this decision, which I can understand, but it’s a matter that Adobe can address, not me.¬†For more information on availability of Photoshop Touch sign up here.

Rocky Mountain Gold ‚Äď Day 15 (Durango to Denver)

Today was our last full day in the US and with that the last we’d be using our cameras. We had about 280 miles of driving ahead of us and as on previous days in Colorado lots of photographic opportunities, especially of aspens.

While we did make a few short stops for breakfast and lunch our only planned photographic stop was at the United States Airforce Academy in Colorado Springs. We were particularly keen to photograph the Chapel.

From outside the triangular shape is quite photogenic, especially when shot against a moody sky. Internally, the light spilling through the stained glass is something special. The following four photographs are only a small sample of the many I took during our 2 hour stay.

USAF Academy Chapel, Colorado Springs

Interior of USAF Academy Chapel, Colorado Springs

Organ, USAF Academy Chapel, Colorado Springs

Ceiling Detail, USAF Academy Chapel, Colorado Springs

Well, another trip to the US draws to a close. It’s been most enjoyable and I’m sure that I have many good photographs safely stored on my MacBook Pro hard disk. During the trip I’ve shot close to 9500 frames. I have used a Garmain Etrex Vista HCx to record GPS data throughout the trip, and added metadata and keywords to images each evening.¬†The next task is to import Lightroom catalog I had created specially for the trip into my master catalog. Then begins the process of weeding out the bad and marking the best. However these last two steps will will need to wait until I get home.

** Disclaimer** Above images are quick previews specifically for this blog so that friends and family can see how I’m getting on.

Rocky Mountain Gold ‚Äď Day 11 to 14 (Green River to Durango)

Days 11 through 14 have been mostly spent travelling from Wyoming through Colorado. We also made short excursions into Utah and New Mexico. Planned stops along the way included the Flaming Gorge National Recreation Area, Maroon Bells National Recreation Area near Aspen, Red Mountain Pass, the Million Dollar Highway, the Silverton and Durango Railroad, Chimney Rock, the Cumbres & Toltec Steam Railroad (Chama, New Mexico), and the Great Sand Dunes National Park. The choice of such a long and at times out of the way route was to provide ourselves with as many opportunities to capture the golden colours of aspens and cottonwoods.

 Flaming Gorge Lake from Sheep Creek Overlook

Aspens, White River National Forest

Aspen Detail, White River National Forest

Aspens, Maroon Bells National Recreation Area

Lone Aspen, Uncompahgre River, Ridgway State Park

Aspen Grove and Fence, Dallas Divide

Obviously, any other opportunity to snap a few photographs was also taken. One such occasion was when part of the group decided to take a trip on the steam train between Silverton and Durango. The line was constructed in 1892 to haul silver & gold ore from the San Juan Mountains, but passengers soon realised it was the view that was truly precious.¬†This historic train has been in continuous operation ever since, carrying passengers behind vintage steam locomotives and rolling stock indigenous to the line.We’d been told beforehand that it would we probably take a lot of photographs, and as it turned out, we did. The following is one of my favourites.

Silverton and Durango Railroad, San Juan Mountains

Our last stop on this leg of the journey was to photograph the sun setting at the Great Sand Dunes National Park. We did get a quite spectacular sunset, but my favourite shots were of the afterglow.

Afterglow, Great Sand Dunes National Park

Tomorrow we begin the long trek back to Denver. Hopefully, the weather stays in our favour.

** Disclaimer** Above images are quick previews specifically for this blog so that friends and family can see how I’m getting on.