Sams Teach Yourself Adobe Photoshop 6 in 24 Hours

If you want to grasp the basics of Photoshop 6, without too much stress, then this step-by-step guide is a great place to start. Alternatively, if you already familiar with earlier Photoshop versions, or want a guide to the expert level features of this popular image editing program, then this title may help you brush up on some new tools or tips.

This book is definitely a user-friendly guide. Not only is it designed in 12 hourly stages (great for working through during a lunch break, or after work), but it is clearly referenced with icons for tips (for shortcuts and solutions), notes (to explain concepts) and cautions (of what to avoid doing). It also has a handy tear-out sheet that displays the shortcuts, which you can post near your PC. At the end of each chapter is a summary, as well as a quiz and exercises. These are also great if you are doing a refresher later down the track.

The style of writing is conversational and friendly. For example, in the chapter dealing with colour photo repairs, it uses a photo of "Uncle Eddie" - with someone who isn't his wife - to illustrate the techniques required to crop photographs. This is also cited as a great way to remove former spouses from the family album!

Speaking of colour photos, this is something the book could really use. There is something about working through a book about graphics that demands colour. The source images used in the book are available to download from the publisher's Web site, though, which goes some way to addressing this issue. With Photoshop being one of the most commonly used graphics programs, this book is a great way to fast-track your skills.

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