Dec 28, 2010

35 Photo Editing Tutorials for Photoshop

I stumbled upon this very interesting site PSD Collector, and it has tons of tutorials.
Here's a very interesting one with some handy techniques, especially the "Bringing a Stone Statue to Life" one.

Check them out here

Dec 27, 2010

Small but Essential - VIGNETTE - Photoshop Tutorial

It can be very subtle, it can be very obvious. One thing is for sure: Vignettes make pictures better... most of the time.
Back in the days of film, vignettes were actually an unwanted and undesirable effect caused by lenses and the film. However it's removal sometimes proved to be... bad... so you may want to know how to apply one.

Dec 26, 2010

Small but Essential - Exporting Images - Photoshop Tip

Sometimes you don't always want to save as PSD, sometimes you have various reasons you want to save that file and what you want to do with it.
There's quite a number of formats you can export to in Photoshop. Here's a quick tip on which format to use and when:

  • JPEG - Good for exporting to the web. When it comes to adjusting the quality slider ensure that you're previewing at 100% if possible. Artifacts such as square blocks on anti-aliasing or discoloration is only visible at this zoom level. Also note that this will flatten your image. You'll lose your layers if you were to re-open it.
  • PNG - Preserve transparency. They also flatten the image. I used this format for the blog's logo, because if I maintained the transparency I could easily change the background and not worry about having to tweak the header as well.
  • TIFF - An interesting format, TIFFs actually preserve transparency as well. Though I've never used them, TIFFs preserve layers. Interesting...

Know any other good formats? Drop a comment below.

Another important thing to consider is the Resolution. I don't mean the width and height but rather the dots per inch.
When working in PS, you'll want to set:

  • 72 dpi - for stuff to be viewed on a screen, since that's the resolution a majority of screens use and it will also produce the accurate representation of pixels.
  • 300 dpi - for print. Printers use 300 dpi when printing for greater quality. You can print in 72 if the image is small, but it's advised for images that are bigger.

Also note that images of 300 dpi vs 72 dpi will always look much larger. For example, set 1280 x 800 px on an image and toggle these dpi. You'll find that 300 dpi is much much larger... in the view of the screen it is, but in view of the printer it's exactly the size you want: 1280 x 800. Inversely, 72 dpi would be smaller on print. least that's the theory...

Another thing to consider is the color mode:

  • RGB - Mostly for viewing on screen. RGB starts black and ends white.
  • CMYK - Best for print especially for shirts and press. CMYK images start white and end black.

Black in RGB (0,0,0) is actually about C 75, M 68, Y 67 and K 90. Basically, CMYK colors range further... at least in theory...So, remember this when working. If ever you should print and the colors look weird/different, try changing the color mode to CMYK then printing again (you can preview an image in PS in CMYK by pressing Ctrl+Y)

Before you go freaking out, it's good to remember that most of the time things don't get very specific. Perhaps the only relevant point out of all I've said in this point is the resolution (72 vs 300 dpi).

Dec 25, 2010

Merry Xmas!

I had an awesome Christmas with friends and family. Definitely a memorable one.

Hope you guys had a great Christmas! Thanks for reading, thanks for following and thanks for being here.
I appreciate you all for taking your time to check out my blog, for the support and even for the random click from Google.

Have a blessed holiday!


Dec 24, 2010

Radial - After Effects Preset

Hey guys!
So I was thinking about my previous preset "Scan" and suddenly thought: "What if someone wanted to create a Radar-style scan?"
Well, that wouldn't be easy (unless you used the linear one with lots of tweaks), so I thought I'd create a whole new preset.

Ladies and gentlemen. Radial Scan!


  • Animates automatically clockwise with Revolutions per Second setting and Reverse Direction setting to make it turn anti-clockwise. Animation can also be turned off so you can animate it's rotation yourself.
  • Offset control to make duplicates work together or look different from the initial start point.
  • Set any color, control Feather and 4 different styles with many editable controls.
  • Control the Coverage out of a full circle of the scan.
  • Change the thickness and make it anything Radial. It doesn't have to be a scan.
  • Works with layers with alpha (transparency). Can preserve transparency or take full size of comp.
  • Functions in any version of AE.
It took about an hour to construct and works mostly off of concepts from Linear Scan (as I shall call the previous version now).

The best example of the application of Radial Scan is in Andrew Kramer's tutorial "Futuristic HUD" in creating the "Targets" that circle around the eye. Radial can be used to quickly construct these without the need of creating masks.

Do check out the tutorial, and if you'd like to check out Radial Scan, holla and I'll hook up a download link.

Enjoy yourselves!

Dec 21, 2010

3D Buttons - Photoshop Tutorial

The long overdue tutorial is here: 3D Buttons!
This tutorial is for beginners to intermediate users, but you can never be too good for any tutorial, you just might learn something new.

Click the title to see the full tut on how to make this using Layer Styles and some shape layers:

About 53

So you're wondering what 53 is all about. Well, this post should sort out any concerns.
(Also, click on and download the image above, set as wallpaper)

To put it as simply as possible, 2011 will have 53 weeks, and of those 53 weeks we'll be making 1 production in the field that we work in.
So for my case, that would be a photograph, a Photoshop creation, a video, an After Effects preset, an animation, a 3D experiment. For you, it's whatever you want it to be!

Wait, wait, wait! I already do at least 1 production a week! So is there really a point?
Well... yes!
See I also fall into that group. So what I'll be doing, rather than pulling the usual stuff, I'll delve deeper into experimentation and produce something out of my comfort zone, something I've never done before or a style I've been curious about.
Basically, most of the works I'll be submitting for 53 will be from heavy experimentation (so most of them won't be so "show-worthy"
Aside from that you could dedicate your work to a specific style that you appreciate or have never done before and would like to use 53 as a platform to build upon it. Say you were learning using Photoshop in 2011, you can use 53 as your platform to not only show what you're learning but also to show your growth and get advice from various artists on how to improve and so on.

What if I don't want to experiment?
Well then, do what you gotta do, do what you wanna do. 53 is not a restricted project, it's free for all and you can do whatever the hell you want.

Okay, so how do I submit for 53?
It's simpler than you think.
First off, create what you're creating.
Photography and design people can watermark their work at the bottom corner with a "53" stylized as they like.
Video/Music people can throw in a 53 somewhere in the title, as a quick mention in the intro/outro! Video guys can throw in their own stylized version into the intro logos or outro.
Literature/poetry people can add it as part of the end sign-off like:

...then she died a horrible death, perhaps one not deserving of either her character or her actions, but in a world as dark as that she had lived in it was only expected.

David Alex
 or something, I dunno.

Perhaps this would be the best part: the 53 is NOT mandatory. Do what you wanna do, but no one's saying it HAS to be there.

Oh darn! I missed a few productions / I started late! Can I still join/continue?
Hey, I'm sure I've clarified that this isn't a strict thing. You could join at week 20, we don't really care. As long as you have something to give, go ahead and give it.
If you've missed a week, no prob. You could upload 2 pieces on the next week to recover or you could just skip the whole week and carry on (though I'll expect either a decent apology or a really good piece on the next one).

What else is happening?
Over the year, there's gonna be various periods dedicated to various influential artists. For example, February could be dedicated to Pablo Picasso and so we can call February the "Blue Period" and do blue artwork as he did. The possibilities are endless and it's gonna be really fun!

What's in it for me?
There's not much I can promise.
One thing for sure is that it's going to be hella fun!
Secondly, it's a great way to get to improve your style and learn new styles of work.
What's more, it's a great way to showcase your work and capabilities, plus also get constructive critique from not only viewers, but also others who work in the same field as you. Say you produce a song, and although fans say "THAT'S AWESOME", perhaps another music producer might say "This is great, however the bass is killing of the piano at certain points. You can fix this by..."

If you're still thinking about it, stop by soon to see what's going on...

If you're joining, welcome to 53!

Check us out on Facebook!!
Or, better yet, on Flickr

Drop by the DISCUSSIONS tab and tell us what you work with on the "What's your flavor?" topic.

Stay tuned to this blog for more info on 53.
The project is currently based on Facebook, but I'm working on getting it moved elsewhere. Stay tuned for more information.

Dec 20, 2010

Project Green Screen

In my hunt for a green screen, i made some progress.
I found some extremely nice manila from text book center. They were a3 and one cost 75 bob... Which meant human size would be about 1000bob...

Then my friend took me to eastleigh and wow what a bargain. Got good green material 3x2 metres for only 480 bob! Awesome!

Expect some random videos soon!

Also, i'm working on a new after effects preset "radial". Stay tuned for more

<posted through my phone>

Dec 14, 2010


If you're on Flickr, you've probably seen 365 projects, where users upload one portrait every day for a year.

Well, this is basically the same thing, but BROADER!

Whatever field you work with, be it design, Photoshop, art, poetry, 3D, music, videography... the program is simple: Create something cool and awesome every week for the year of 2011. Tag it with a 53 somewhere and upload it to your respective service, or on the 53 page. Preferably create something experimental and out of your comfort zone.

This is not only a great way to grow as an artist but also to get noticed by others and showcase your abilities.

More info soon!

Dec 6, 2010

Photoshop Tutorial - 3D Text

Hey guys!
So my pal Shuria made this Photoshop tutorial on creating some interesting 3D Text. Check it out and drop a comment on the youtube vid for him! 


Photoshop Basics - Who Wants In?

Hey guys!
So I've started working on the Photoshop Basics that I've been talking about for what must feel like forever now.
Anyway, I've decided to get some of the Photoshop users I know from all over and, with their help, we're going to create some Photoshop tutorials on the very basics! From how to create a new document to applying layer styles, cutting people out of photos to using filters and adjustments.
The plan's been laid out and I'm now recruiting anyone and everyone who could contribute to the project.

I have compiled a list of the lessons that need to be done (over 20 things) over the course of the project. Not that there'll be 20 lessons coz we can mash two things together into one lesson (like selection tools and masks). I'll be taking international people as well (you don't have to be in Kenya, just screen recording software (which I can provide)).

So, if you're willing to help out (even the least bit) please drop a comment below or holla at me on Twitter.


Experimental Week - Mask and Blend

So it's December. Aren't we psyched about Christmas!? Well actually, not so much, it's been a weird start to the month so... we'll see how it goes.

To start off the month, I'm getting into Experimental Week again. No foolin', this time I'm really gonna do it.
So the theme this week is Masking and Blending.