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Photoshop CS6 is here!…in beta form that is!

March 26, 2012

Photoshop CS6 is here, at least in beta form for all the world to start playing with! I want to share with you some of my favorite new features. Let me preface this by saying, there’s not many new ‘thrilling’ features to really get excited about.

My number one new feature in CS6 is the edition of the iris and tilt-shift blur gallery. This option is new in Photoshop, but has been around for a number of years from 3rd-party plug-ins like Focal Point from onOne Software and Bokeh from Alien Skin Software. In the new iris filter interface, Photoshop allows users to manipulate the focal point and the amount of blur around, in front and behind this focal point, like is available in-camera from a fast, large aperture lens or even the effect one gets from a Lensbaby. This new feature works awesome and I love it! The tilt-shift filter interface mimics the very shallow depth of field and tricks in perspective a photographer would get when shooting with an expensive view camera or tilt-shift lens. One of these effects is making a normal scene look like it is a miniature model version of a scene.

My number two most favorite new CS6 feature is the improvements made to the patch tool. New for the previous Photoshop CS5 was the option to use “content aware” for smarter filling and spot healing. Now that option is also available when using the patch tool, in effect building a new, smarter patch tool.

Third big change is in the crop tool. It functions now much more like the crop tool in Lightroom. The real big thing here is that the crop tool is no longer a destructive edit meaning Photoshop does not throw away pixels after you press enter/return. You can always go back to the original until you save the image.

Forth big change is in Camera Raw 7.0. You can now make more drastic changes with each of the individual, exposure-related sliders without the adverse ‘halo’ effects that used to happen when users pushed the program too far. Other improvements too…to many to mention here. If you want more information on these and lots of other new Photoshop features, visit the National Assoc. of Photoshop Professionals training website here to watch some videos made by Scott Kelby and friends. You can also get your free trial copy of CS6 by clicking here to go to Adobe Labs website.

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