If you are like many users, Photoshop’s basic functions are fairly straightforward and user- friendly, while its more complex functions remain a complete mystery. However, these lesser-known functions can in some cases be extraordinarily useful. Many people barely scratch the surface of the nearly endless possibilities built into Photoshop. Learning to use Photoshop to the fullest extent of its capabilities, however, need not be an overwhelming prospect. These five functions, for example, might not be on the list of things you do with Photoshop every time you use it, but they can be extremely useful nonetheless.
Did you know that Photoshop can animate pictures, not just manipulate stills? As opposed to Flash animations, Photoshop can animate gifs. In earlier versions of Photoshop, this feature was called ImageReady, an application that you opened from within Photoshop that easily manipulated the different layers of PSD files. However, later versions of Photoshop included a built-in animation pane. This is an often tedious but rewarding process that can create eye-catching animated pictures.
Did you ever wonder how some photographs portray perfect scenes captured amidst a downpour? Believe it or not, that might not have been how the photo started out, because Photoshop can actually create rain. A few simple tweaks can allow you to adjust a photo taken on a cloudy, albeit dry, day, and turn it into a thunderstorm scene complete with reflective water puddles and delicate raindrop splashes. You can even add in that distant lightning strike glowing hot white and purple to add a little drama to the scene.
# 3: Star Creation
With today’s technology, using a telescopic lens, your camera might be able to capture the twinkling of the stars against a velvety black night sky. More than likely, however, you will have to create this effect yourself if you want the heavens to sparkle in your picture. Yes, you could use a simple brush to create this effect, but Photoshop gives you the ability to simulate a starry night in your photos in a far more breathtaking and realistic way. By utilizing the Noise Filter, you can create your own star fields that are as clustered or vacant as you desire.
One of the newer additions to Photoshop is an intelligent option called the Photoshop Vanishing Point tool. With the use of algorithms, this tool determines the three dimensional elements in your artwork. Working with perspective is one of the finer details of creating a believable scene. This tool will help you to do that much more accurately by allowing you to move components along natural axes.
# 5: Image Warping
Lastly, one of the more amusing tools that has been introduced to Photoshop is called the Puppet Warp tool. Utilizing this very powerful option, you can bend and twist an image into truly remarkable shapes, even folding it behind itself. A simple straight rope can be bent into disarray, only to find itself spelling out your own name as it winds into the distance. The possibilities for creating your own art projects with this tool are endless.
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