Publishers of technology books, eBooks, and videos for creative people

Home > Articles > Design > Adobe Photoshop


  • Print
  • + Share This
This chapter is from the book

This chapter is from the book

TWO SIGNIFICANT CHANGES WERE MADE in the Adjustments menu: The Curves dialog box received a major update, and the new Black & White converter has taken us out of the dark ages of Photoshop and made it possible to quickly and easily get a great looking grayscale image out of a color original.

Below is an overview of what we’ll be covering in this chapter:

  • Curves: The Curves dialog box got a radical makeover. Not only has it graduated to being one of the most useful tools in Photoshop, it’s now possible to tell what’s happening to the quality of your image while you’re making the adjustment. Control freaks rejoice!

  • Black & White: If you’ve ever struggled with color to black & white conversions, you’ll love this awesome new adjustment tool which makes the conversion a faster and more intuitive process. In seconds you can get gorgeous, high-quality grayscale images.

  • HDR & 32-Bit: HDR capability was added in CS2 and now Adobe has expanded the features that are available. This is especially useful for photographers and people who work with video and 3D software.

  • Misc. Changes: See what smaller changes were made to Levels, Brightness/Contrast, and a new way of applying Variations and Shadow/Highlight adjustments.

Where’s My Stuff?

Before we move on to the newest adjustment enhancements, let’s look at what’s happened to some of the features you might have used in previous versions of Photoshop:

  • Curves–Flip Gradients Icon: If you’re used to clicking on the small double triangle icon that appears in the middle of the bottom gradient (to switch between working with light and ink), you’ll now have to click on the Curve Display Options icon at the bottom of the dialog box and toggle between the Light and Pigment/Ink settings.

  • Curves–Small/Large Curve Icon: Photoshop CS2 offered an icon that allowed you to switch between a small and large Curves display. Photoshop CS3 only offers the larger version of the Curves dialog box.

  • Curves–Load & Save Buttons: The Load & Save buttons have been replaced by the new Preset menu at the top of the Curves dialog box. To save the current curve as a preset, click the icon that appears to the right of the Preset menu, choose Save Preset and then assign it a name. To access the preset in the future, just choose its name from the Presets pop-up menu at the top of the dialog box. You can also choose Load Preset from the same icon menu to load curves that you’ve saved from previous versions of Photoshop. If you’d like older presets to appear in the Presets menu in CS3, move the files to the following directory on your hard drive:

    Mac: Users\Current User\Library\Application Support\Adobe\Adobe Photoshop CS3\Presets\Curves

    Win XP: C:\Documents and Settings\Current User\Application Data\Adobe\Adobe

    Win Vista: C:\Users\Current User\AppData\Roaming\Adobe\Adobe Photoshop CS3\Presets\Curves

  • Curves–Simplicity: If the new Curves dialog box looks cluttered with features you’re not used to, click the Curve Display Options icon and turn off all the checkboxes that appear. This should get you as close to the way things used to work as possible in the new Curves dialog box.

  • Brightness/Contrast–Same Results: Adobe has improved how the Brightness/Contrast adjustment affects images (it’s a big improvement). To make it work like it did in previous versions of Photoshop, turn on the Use Legacy checkbox within the Brightness/Contrast dialog box.

  • + Share This
  • 🔖 Save To Your Account