on 5 April 2009
This book is an first-rate source of in-depth information upon all the features of Photoshop that one needs to know to reach intermediate and beyond level. Everything from colour management and printing concerns down to different ways that you can use the eraser tool. It's lucidly and amiably written, and effectively illustrated in colour or otherwise. It is moreover free from tiresome childish exercises tangential to one's aims, and it helps you evaluate your options rather than steering you confusingly around. You can dip into it or read it all through methodically - an interesting read plus a comprehensive reference afterwards.
I wish I'd gone straight for this book, hefty tome that it seems, when I first started using Photoshop CS3 in early 2008. The beginner books left me as much befuddled as edified, whereas 'obscurity' is the last word I'd use in relation to, not just this book that I'm reviewing, but to the joint authors' approach generally. If the volume length seems daunting, that's because it's referring to the ever-astonishing versatility of Photoshop.
Just add that I bought this along with Ben Willmore's 'Adobe Photoshop CS4: Up to Speed'. Since although I'm now using the latest Photoshop version, the current Real World books related to it have split into two concentrations - one specifically focused on photographic work, the other upon 'compositing' of imagery while statedly taking for granted basic Photoshop skills. As a digital artist, I'm seeking to fill in the fundamental holes in my grounding in image editing in Photoshop, before turning to compositing and so forth. Took a chance and bought this book and it seems to be exactly what I needed at this stage. Essential reading, in short.