offers a professional-quality image editing package, at an extremely attractive price.
Elements is not a limited version of big-brother Photoshop--in fact, there are very few features of Photoshop that Elements doesn't offer, and it has been redesigned with plenty of straightforward editing tools suitable for the novice or business user. To aid those who are less familiar with image editing, the new Recipes palette gives step-by-step tutorials for applying common actions to a graphic, allowing the user to grow increasingly adept. Some steps are accompanied by a "do it for me" button that brings up the tool in question for that step.
Many features will be familiar to Photoshop users--the floating tool bar with brushes, the background eraser for removing background details while leaving your foreground image intact and the Save for the Web command which generates just the right sized GIF, JPG, or PNG image for your Web page.
Each of the vertical tool bar tools in Elements is accompanied by a unique set of options below the main menu bar that relate to the selected tool. Select the Clone Stamp, for example, and the tool bar displays choices for changing the clone stamp's size, tolerance, and so on.
Adobe has added several appealing tools. One such item, PhotoMerge, lets you stitch multiple shots of an area into a single panorama. You can also straighten and crop photos that are scanned askew, auto adjust for brightness and colour saturation and brush away red eye. These added features make it ideal for users with digital cameras and scanners. There are other additions too, such as the new File Browser tab that shows a thumbnail of all the images in the current folder, as well as displaying examples of filters and special effects on your selected image. A nice update to the Undo command is the History palette which tracks each step in your edit process. A slider bar lets you move backwards or forwards incrementally through the history so you can decide which steps to keep.
You won't find colour separations, CMYK or other acronyms and functions meant only for publishing pros. On the other hand, Elements offers plenty of exporting and printing options for sharing your photos in print or on the Web, such as a Picture Package feature that automatically generates multiple versions of the same image on a sheet of paper. Images can also be sent directly to Shutterfly.com via the program's new Online Services Wizard. Shutterfly lets you create glossy prints of your image, e-mail them to your friends or print them on greeting cards. Because of Elements' ability to download new services in the future, other Adobe partners may eventually appear in this Wizard. All in all, this is an extremely good value package and one which, unless you need professional-level colour-separation for printing, should provide everything needed for digital-image editing. --Simon Priestly
Adobe Photoshop Elements
offers unique features designed specifically for amateur photographers, hobbyists, and business users who want an easy-to-use, yet powerful digital imaging solution. State-of-the-art image editing tools free you to explore your creativity while mastering the elements of digital imaging. Flexible image capture options let you work with photos taken with digital or traditional cameras. Versatile delivery features enable you to prepare images for print, e-mail, or posting on the Web.
Capture photos from digital or traditional cameras and start working with your images immediately. Quickly straighten and crop your scanned photos, remove red eye, and fix overexposed areas with a few clicks of the mouse. Adjust the tone of a specific area of your photo using the dodge, burn, and sponge tools. Eliminate the guesswork from color correction.
Adobe Photoshop Elements can automatically create several color-adjusted versions of your image for you to choose from. Merge and blend multiple images into a seamless panorama. Combine multiple images, text, and graphics on layers. Easily move or modify the layers at any time. Twist and pull your images for surreal effects or subtle enhancements. Magically erase the background in your photo to help you create realistic compositions. Create Adobe PDF files that you can easily share with colleagues. Upload your photos to shutterfly.com to share photos, make personalized cards, or print 35mm-quality photos that are then mailed directly to family and friends.