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Photoshop Masking & Compositing (2nd Edition) (Voices That Matter) Paperback – September 3, 2012

ISBN-13: 978-0321701008 ISBN-10: 0321701003 Edition: 2nd

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Photoshop Masking & Compositing (2nd Edition) (Voices That Matter) + The Hidden Power of Blend Modes in Adobe Photoshop + Photoshop Compositing Secrets: Unlocking the Key to Perfect Selections and Amazing Photoshop Effects for Totally Realistic Composites
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Product Details

  • Series: Voices That Matter
  • Paperback: 504 pages
  • Publisher: New Riders; 2 edition (September 3, 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0321701003
  • ISBN-13: 978-0321701008
  • Product Dimensions: 8 x 0.9 x 10 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 2.5 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (39 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #267,053 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

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Well, I didn't, and this book cleared the fog.
I continue to admire the clear directions and comprehensive approach to an area of post-production that can be demanding.
Harold Davis
The purpose of the book and photorealistic compositing is selecting, layering and masking.
Michael Berghoff

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Back in February, 2012 when I pre-ordered this book, I was a bit concerned. Except for talking about a few new features added since the first edition was published, what more could be said - and the idea of co-authors worried me. Would they be taking over the writing and replacing Katrin Eismann who both knows Photoshop intimately and writes extremely well?

Well, all is well.

In its second edition, this is a great book made even better. In some ways, far better.

With this book, faithful attention (which means weeks of study), practicing with the examples and the willingness to persevere, you will become an expert in the techniques of Photoshop masking and compositing. No guaranty that you'll become artistically competent, but you will most certainly become technically proficient.

Brought up to date for Photoshop CS6, the book covers every aspect of using the program's tools for masking and compositing. The pen tool chapter is now a downloadable PDF item, a production decision I don't agree with, but no real harm done. The chapter on the pen tool has been revised and is more informative than its predecessor.

The chapter on using the Refine Edge tool is beyond outstanding. It is the best I've seen in a Photoshop book (and I've collected a lot of them) or online article. Eismann leaves no stone unturned in her exposition.

More material has been added on planning composites, which is nice, but the book would survive without it. The gallery section on masters of compositing has been expanded, which is also another of those things that is basically eye-candy. It adds in a way, but I could live without it.
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17 of 19 people found the following review helpful By Lash LaRue on September 10, 2012
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
What I like most about the book is that the techniques are put into a context, so that the technical information is given a solid grounding in art.

The book is in four parts. It starts with a chapter on the history of "compositing" by artists as well as by photographers. If you believe, as I do, that learning from what other artists have done is essential, then you will think that this chapter is crucial. The chapter on history is followed by a chapter on creativity, which I also think is valuable. I suppose that everyone knows that thinking creatively about portraits is different from thinking creatively about landscapes, and so no one should be surprised that there are creative issues in compositing that are worth thought and discussion. Consequently, I praise the authors for starting with these two chapters and thus making the book much more than a "how-to" compendium of technique. By doing so, they show that they are thoughtful artists.

The second part is about camera work for composites. While one can composite images drawn randomly from an archive, at times one needs to take photos for the specific purpose of making a particular composite. When this is true, there are particular issues that one must think about, and so the authors set aside three chapters to these topics. For example, they suggest that the sequence of taking the photos can matter, and thus they have a discussion of how to think about planning a photo project. Furthermore, putting together a top lit photo with a side lit photo is likely to create problems, so they have an intelligent discussion of light. (In fact, this chapter has one of the best short tutorials on light and lighting that I have ever read.
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11 of 11 people found the following review helpful By Scott Valentine on October 29, 2012
Format: Paperback
I have both this edition and the 2004 release, but have not made a detailed comparison between the two. Having said that, this new edition is a hands-down winner. The material covers realism and collage, but also gives a good history lesson in how compositing has evolved for photographers. There are several references for exploration of different styles and philosophies in the front section, as well as some discussion about how technology and art have developed hand-in-hand.

If this does not interest you, skip to the techniques sections, where you'll find everything you need from start to finish. The level of detail allows for moderately deep dives, but is structured so advanced users can skim to get the important elements quickly. Not every possible variation is covered, but there is sufficient breadth to cover fine art, commercial, industrial, and even technical works.

While I enjoy seeing the techniques laid out, the biggest benefit for me is reading various discussions on choices in selection techniques, obtaining source materials, composition, etc. I'm pretty familiar with lots of the "how" in Photoshop, so I really enjoy being able to read about "why" from other users.

This is a fantastic book from start to finish. I believe intermediate to advanced users will get the most from this book, but beginners should be able to work through with some determination and patience.

Put this one on your desk.
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47 of 58 people found the following review helpful By Gerbrand Uiterdijk on September 8, 2012
Format: Paperback
First of all I don't understand why there are 3 authors needed to write a book about Photoshop titled Masking and Compositing
while it lies in Katrin Eisman's power to do this job by herself in an excellent way.

Her collegues (like Scott Kelby) and students don't understand either nor do they grasp why.

Sean Duggan seems always to have been selected as co-author but unfortunately he is by far not as talented as Katrin Eisman with reference to writing books.

Compared to the edition 0f 2004 this book lacks some of the in-depht tutorials as to selecting and extracting very intricate objects like smoke, hair and foliage.
Discussing the Pen Tool is fully neglected in this edition of 2012 while she makes clear in the former Edition
that the Pen Tool is one of her most favourites to use in Photoshop.

When I browse through the table of contents of the Book I can only conclude that it deals more with Compositing than
Selecting and Masking.

The Chapter History of Compositing Images included in this edition is written in that typical encyclopedian style, hence very boring and tiresome to read.
It consists of numerous dates, facts and names of Photo Artists referring to the History of Compositing Images.
And it gives the impression that this mind-numbingly drearly to read chapter is directly copied from an encyclopedia.

The following chapter The Creative Process is full of general statements and explanations which speak for themselves.

The last parts of the book involve general elementary philosophical theories and contemplations on the subject of compositing and postproduction images.
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