Adobe MAX This Week!   October 15th, 2017

 

This week, Adobe is having it’s Adobe MAX conference in Las Vegas, NV. I’ll be working as a Teaching Assistant for several classes, and according to the conference schedule, anticipate being kept VERY busy for the week! I’m looking forward to it, very much – and anticipate I’ll be “paying” for the worthwhile time with some exhaustion for the entire following week!

For those of you trying to reach me this week, either via the blog, our Facebook page ((2) AYM 4 Training – Home), our Twitter Account (AYM 4 Training (@aym4training) | Twitter)

I do hope that some or many of my students and colleagues will be attending this event, and if so, please seek me out – I’d love to see you! I’ve been assigned to TA the classes named
B342 – Photoshop Magic: Making Brushes to Speed Up Your Workflow, and B341 – Photoshop+After Effects = Awesomeness (multiple bookings of each in my schedule). I’ll also be attending other classes with some of my favorite speakers/writers and Adobe Evangelists.

I hope to see you at the conference, if you can make it, and I’ll do my best to respond to questions and such, as time allows. Have a great week!

 

Adobe Creates the Pen Tool Game   October 10th, 2017

For my students who need to practice the Pen Tool, Adobe’s created an adorable online game to practice it’s usage. The pen tool is important in Adobe Illustrator (of course), but also in Photoshop, After Effects, Premiere, InDesign, Animate… there’s a version of it in almost every Adobe App!

Check out the game here: https://helpx.adobe.com/uk/illustrator/how-to/pen-tool-game.html

InDesignSecrets.com has shared a link to a script that FINALLY allows us to rotate selected characters INSIDE a text box in InDesign. The text remains editable and the effect can be applied to individual letters, selected character, and/or dingbats. So VERY handy!!!

https://indesignsecrets.com/free-script-to-rotate-selected-characters.php

FREE Designer Watercolor Assets   March 23rd, 2017

You all know I love FREE! DesignBundles.net has a free, very very large and beautiful bundle of watercolor assets for your design needs. Check it out at:
https://designbundles.net/free-design-resources/free-watercolor-bundle

As my Photoshop students have already learned, brushes can be made using any set of pixels and can be manipulated almost unendingly with the Brush panel. But sometimes, it’s very helpful to have a starting point. Grutbrushes.com provides some beautifully made starting points! The detail and settings of his brushes are unique in their realism and detail in use. They work well with just a mouse, but like any brush, take on their real strengths when using a pen tablet like the Wacom brand of tablets.

Normally, I pass by a lot of the ads I see on Facebook, but a few months ago, I decided to click on one and found an excellent resource.

At Grutbrushes.com, the (very responsive) developer Nicolai has made sets of brushes, ranging from inks to calligraphy, to natural media, and more. He even provides a Photoshop Extension to open a panel in which you can organize your brushes into sets as you like them. Just recently, I used just one of his cloud brushes in a project, and created very realistic clouds. He offers a LOT of freebies, and if you sign up for his email list, you can get even more. He sells sets of them as well. His full set is a VERY reasonable $22.

Remember, all of the brushes are just starting points – Presets – from which you can use the Photoshop Brushes panel to manipulate them, resize them and alter how they work.

You all know, I LOVE Free stuff – and here, there’s a plethora of freebies along with the paid content. I think any Photoshop user will find a great deal of use and enjoyment of these. Plan on seeing some lessons on this within a few weeks.

Grutbrushes.com

 

For the love of Typography   April 2nd, 2016

As most of my design and graphics students know, I’m a bit of a type geek. In almost every class, even if it’s not in our regular syllabus, I try to include at least a brief introduction to Type as Design – or, Typography. 

And, you probably also know how I stress the idea of kerning – the way individual letterforms fit together, as a method of refining your work, adding a cohesive look and confirming that you’ve taken some time and put in some effort at making your type look good, as well as read well.

Today, I found an excellent infographic at Digital Synopsis.com, that may help you to make better decisions about how to improve your Headers, your Titles, and all display type. Take a look!

As almost all of my students know, I’m a bit of a type geek. So, imagine how fulfilled my inner geek feels, when I find blog post about Typefaces, Type Structure, Type families, Type anatomy, and Type Classification, the use of Type in Paragraphs, Typographic Terms like kerning and spacing, Page Layout and Type, and so much more!

Although this article is written with a focus on software development, the article is about DESIGN. Knowing what you’re using, and why. As I always say “in design, you can always break the rules, but first you have to know what the rules are!”

I seriously recommend this article to all my design students, my motion graphics students, my still image students, and anyone else who feels that Type is more than just a way to make a word show up.

http://www.imaginarycloud.com/blog/a-typography-workshop/?ref=webdesignernews.com

According to an Adobe Blog, Adobe is about to cease support and updates for it’s Edge tools, including Edge Reflow, Edge Inspect, and Edge Animate. Some of their functionality will be implemented within Adobe Dreamweaver and Adobe Muse – and will also be covered in Adobe’s upcoming Flash Pro replacement, Adobe Animate – which is due out in January.

Creative Cloud members cans till download and use the Edge products, , and security updates will still be implemented

Please see their original blog post at: http://blogs.adobe.com/creativecloud/update-about-edge-tools-and-services/

In a recent article on InDesign Secrets, I can finally find the reason why so many of my InDesign classes have been having font errors when using files from the Adobe courseware. It seems that InDesign – and all of the Adobe programs, for that matter, are no longer installing the fonts that used to come with the programs! I’ve been using Adobe programs for too many  years than I want to count, so of course, I have the fonts installed, but so many of my students are downloading demo software for their classes, and work in an environment with security limitations, so they can’t easily access Adobe’s Typekit (part of the Creative Cloud suite).

In my opinion, this is a terrible move on Adobe’s part, and I can’t quite figure out why they’re choosing to do it. Over the years, I’ve seen Adobe seemingly losing touch with their users in quite a few ways, but in software that’s ABOUT design, I can’t imagine what they’re thinking.

To view the post on InDesignSecrets.com, please visit http://indesignsecrets.com/adobe-drops-fonts-leaves-users-stranded.php

There’s an earlier article about the issue here: http://indesignsecrets.com/happened-fonts-indesign.php   (which includes a work-around)

And, for a list of the fonts originally installed, and mostly still necessary, please see Adobe’s article here: http://www.adobe.com/products/type/creative-suite-6-installed-fonts.html

As for me, I’ve backed up ALL of my installed fonts into a directory I use for my font management program. I suggest you do the same. If you’d like instructions for doing so, please comment on this post.

 

27 Useful Design Tips   July 18th, 2015

For my design and typography students, here’s a really nice blog with some tips and ideas to improve your feel for good design, good use of typography, and maybe provide some inspiration.

http://digitalsynopsis.com/design/beautiful-illustrated-graphic-designer-tips/


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