SURTEX - the premier event for selling and licensing art and design

FAQ: CMYK vs RGB colors – what is an artist to do?

I remember when I started licensing my art, I got very confused about this whole RGB vs CMYK color issue – it isn’t something we ever discussed in marketing class!  I assume many of you who have a degree or training in art were less perplexed by this – but I get questions pretty regularly about it so I thought I’d do a little post about color – as I understand them.  Feel free to add to my and everyone elses knowledge in the comments!

Pink Floyd - dark side of the moon album coverCMYK stands for Cyan (a pale blue) Magenta (a hot pink), Yellow, and Key (or black).  It is called “subtractive color” because it starts with something white – often paper – and filters out wavelengths by applying ink to the paper.  (Remember physics? Yes, it is coming back to haunt you! Don’t remember it?  How about Pink Floyd’s Dark Side of the Moon album cover – not just pretty, it has meaning!)

RGB stands for Red, Green, and Blue.  RGB is “additive color” because it starts with black – or the absence of light – and adds light in colors as needed.

Computer monitors use RGB while most printers that print on paper use CMYK.

You might still be scratching your head and saying, “Tara, this is fascinating but still leaves me in the dark about what to do with my art if I want to license it.”

My answer: ask your clients.

Here is how I handle color – and I’m sure someone will jump in and tell me that I’m wrong but I’m just telling you what I do – my scanner scans in RGB and I like the way colors look on my monitor in RGB.  I create everything in RGB.

When I work with a new client, one of my first questions is, “What color mode do you need my art in, RGB or CMYK?”  Then I remember which manufacturer wants what and deliver the files appropriately.

But what happens when you move your art between color modes?

If you work in Photoshop, you might think it’s as simple as going to the IMAGE menu, clicking MODE and changing from RGB to CMYK.  Depending on the colors in your art, this could work with little visible differene or really change the way your art looks.

Certain colors – blue in particular – really change when you make them CMYK.  Below is an example of a blue square I created in an RGB space – nice and bright!  I then put it in a new file and simply changed the color mode to CMYK.  See how drastically it changed?  Pretty significant!

Color is a huge issue in art and printing and will vary by the factory doing the printing, what is being printed on – paper, ceramic, fabric, etc.  There are no easy solutions.

Here are some suggestions to make color – and your clients – your art’s best friend:

  • Think about the end printing process when you create if possible.  If you know you are designing something for a company that needs art in CMYK, know that the brilliant blue you paint won’t be quite so bright in the end.  Be willing to accept some changes – it’s the nature of the business.
  • Get some Pantone color fans. 
  • When I design for ceramics, rugs or some fabrics, a few clients ask me to give them the closest Pantone Fashion and Home color matches (TPX) to my art.  So I paint, then sit with the fan and place colors next to them to make my choices.  It helps them communicate color with the factory and get the best results.
  • The Color Bridge fan is helpful to see how colors will change from RGB to CMYK since they have the swatches side by side.  You can get more technical if you have the “coated” or “uncoated” fans to see how the colors work on coated or uncoated paper.
  • Learn more at
  • Really controlling and picking colors is easier if you are a digital artist who creates on the computer.  Artists like myself who paint by hand and scan have to understand that the colors may shift a little more.  The important thing is to remember that your client’s goal is to get it looking as good as possible – that is what will make it sell.  So I pay attention to color, but I don’t obsess about it.

Hopefully this helps… now all you color experts, chime in in the comments and teach us more!

Here’s to your creative success!

– Tara Reed


How to create repeat patterns in Adobe Illustrator

kid at computerI have no clue. :)  Since I do repeats in Photoshop, I regularly have artists ask how to create them in Illustrator.  Honestly – Illustrator and I are more like wary-aquaintences than friends.  I use it rarely and I use it like a Navy Seal – I’m in and out and back to the safety of Photoshop as soon as possible.

Someone once said artists are often happier with pixels (Photoshop) or vector (Illustrator) and not all that many have an equal love for both.  Well, color me a Pixel Lover!

That said, an artist sent me a link to a blog that she says gave her great instructions to help figure out how to create repeat patterns in Illustrator.  I’m taking her word for it – haven’t tried it. :)

SO, if  YOU want to create repeat patterns in Illustrator – here is a great place to start.

(If it works really well, come back and let us know so we have more than one point of reference.)

Here’s to your creative success!

– Tara Reed

P.S.  want to do repeats in Photoshop?  THAT I can help you with!  Go check out my eBooks – they work in Photoshop Elements thru CS6! >> CLICK HERE

P.P.S. Need to upgrade or get Photoshop, Illustrator or other Adobe products? CLICK HERE to see the current deals*


new “Puppet Tool” in Photoshop CS6 could bring mockups to a whole new level!

I was trying to get a design to look like it was on the inside of a bowl the other day… no small feat and my usual Transform > Warp method wasn’t cutting it.  It couldn’t make the center dip or the edges move the way I wanted them to.

So I headed to trusty old Google and entered – warp tool in photoshop cs6 – figuring I might find something.

Well – there is a cool new tool called the Puppet Tool – my heart be still!

Instead of just being able to move things from basic, present points, the Puppet Tool puts a grid over your image and you can choose any point to select and move.  Totally rocks!  You can see my first, quick attempt at using it below. With practice I think this might become one of my favs!

Here is the video that taught me how to begin playing with the Puppet Tool – introduced in CS6:

I’m quite happy with my new Cloud subscription to the Creative Suite and any new add-ons.  I joined in August (2012) and they have already sent an email announcing cool new features… that I still need to read about.

My favorite part of the subscription is that it is much easier on the budget – you pay monthly instead of that big investment all at once.  And since they seem to update so often and don’t allow you the upgrade price unless you keep up – it makes sense in that way as well.

Learn more about the Creative Cloud option here:


Here’s to your creative success!

– Tara Reed


Love to learn by video? Check out The Ultimate Guide to Repeats and Other Textile Design Essentials from Pattern Observer

Do you love to learn by watching videos?  Artist Michelle Fifis’ self-study module might be for you! Michelle Fifis is a textile design expert who consults with manufacturers and designers to create lucrative print collections. She runs the blog PATTERN OBSERVER and aims to support, inspire and promote those in the textile/ surface design world. Michelle has over ten years of industry experience

The Ultimate Guide to Repeats and Other Textile Design Essentials is aimed at artists who have a working knowledge of Adobe Photoshop and Illustrator, this video-based class will offer you plenty of tips, structure and techniques to help you on your way!

In this class students will learn:

  1. How to create square and half-drop repeats in Illustrator and Photoshop
  2. How to evaluate artwork to decide if a square or halfdrop repeat is needed
  3. How to prepare artwork for textile design production through color separations
  4. How to label artwork for factory production, including a downloadable template

This self-study module will be video-based and upon payment, you’ll be directed to a page where you’ll be able to watch the complete collection of videos online, and it will also be available for download.

Lesson #1: An Overview of Textile Production
Lesson #2: The Importance of a Repeat
Lesson #3: A step-by-step guide to Illustrator Repeats
Lesson #4: A step-by-step guide to Photoshop Repeats
Lesson #5: Color Separation
Lesson #6: Labeling Your Artwork for Factory Production

CLICK HERE* to read more and sign up.

The videos are 5-15 minutes in length.  I haven’t done this class since I do repeats in Photoshop (and have an eBook for those who like to read and learn).  However, even though I haven’t used it personally, her experience and professionalism led me to tell you about it as I know many artists prefer to learn from videos and to date, I haven’t had any resources for those of you wanting to do repeats in Illustrator.

For even more in-depth information, about developing your own surface design collection, you can enroll in Michelle’s class that starts on May 7th, The Sellable Sketch: Developing an Irresistible Surface Design Collection!


Who Else Wants to Create Repeat Patterns in Photoshop?

Some things just bear repeating… like patterns for fabric, gift wrap, home décor and more.  Also great feedback about my eBooks – Basic Repeat Patterns and Half-Drop Repeat Patterns.  I just got this feedback last week and Kathleen gave me permission to shout it from the roof tops!

“I can’t believe how easy your “repeat” instructions are.  I can’t thank you enough.  I’m already very proficient in PhotoShop so got it right away.  I had previously purchased a $600+ program that was SO daunting and intimidating I never got thru it!!  ARG!  And yes, I’m doing 1/2 and 1/3 drops, etc!!”

Again, THANK YOU!!!!!!!!

– Kathleen Francour,

I still vividly remember the calls back and forth between Oregon and Kentucky when I was trying to put purses into repeat for my very first wrapping paper license. I was so excited and so stressed out at the same time! I wanted to make working with me easy – not a test of the poor woman’s patience as we both scratched our heads wondering why what she was telling me to do worked one time and not another.

After finding bits and pieces in a variety of books about Photoshop – where I had to wade through tons of information I didn’t need – I still ended up hiring someone to come sit at my computer, watch what I was doing and tell me how to make it behave!

Since repeat patterns are used on all sorts of licensed products, I decided to create this series of 2 eBooks to help other artists significantly decrease their learning curve.

Jill Seale, who has done 2 Ask calls with us, has also given feedback on the eBooks…

JillSeale“Tara’s tutorial on fabric repeats unlocked the mystery for me! It’s easy to get through and is presented in a very friendly manner. In addition to the great repeat information, I picked up some excellent Photoshop tips that simplified things I’ve been doing the long hard way all these years, which was an unexpected bonus!”

– Jill Seale, Artist, Author, Licensor  |

How to Make the Best of Your Art Photos with Photoshop – by Chris Mills

Thank you so much to Chris Mills, a British artist represented by Suzanne Cruise.  He offered to share these Photoshop tips with everyone and I was happy to oblige!  Without further ado – here is what Chris has to teach us:


For your artworks to stand the best chances of success, art professionals need to see their quality even at low resolution. If your work is very colourful, they need to see those wonderful hues. If your work relies heavily upon textural relief, this also needs to be shown by the image. If your art is very graphic and linear, a blurry image will fail to deliver those crisp edges that characterise your style. All these factors could mean the difference between getting your art accepted or not!

If your photographic skills are limited and you use a non-professional digital camera, you may find that your snaps are poor relatives compared to the richness of the originals. Unless you can hire the services of a professional photographer to make publication quality shots of your art, your photos may not do any justice to your hard work. Home desktop scanners can also present a big disappointment compared to the original art.

Submitting the raw results of amateur digital photos or from desktop scans will not make a good impression, but all is not lost! These images can be edited to look far better. For this you’ll need Photoshop or similar image manipulation software. It’s worth the investment! This guide is based on use of a recent version of Photoshop.

The familiar problems

1) Unwanted details around the picture - the artwork does not fill the entire frame.

2) Mis-alignment - tilt of the camera fails to capture the picture head-on.

3) Poor Contrast - image may appear too dark/light.

4) Poor Colour - tones may appear too strong/weak.

5) Uneven lighting – Part of the picture os lighter/darker than the other.

6) Blurring – painting looks flat, untextured and lifeless.

7) Specular reflections – light bounces off the paint relief and washes out the picture.

Of course, if you want to produce photos of your large-scale art for publication quality, you are best advised to use a professional photographer, but the issue for most artists is that it’s not financially realistic to hire professional photography for every piece in the folio.

The good news is that Photoshop techniques can get your snaps to sufficient quality for initial email viewing, or for posting to your website. You can then save the serious photography or professional scanning costs for those pieces which have been accepted for publication.

Of course, everyone has different ways of working and the order of procedures described below is not gospel. It can be changed depending on how you like to work and the problems you’re experiencing. Furthermore, I don’t claim to be a world authority on digital image manipulation, so I’ve tried to write this from my artist’s viewpoint, for the benefit of other artists who are not necessarily tech-heads and visual software experts. The methods here are an essential fistful that I have found to work well.

Before we start:

Get the photo right!

  • The higher the camera’s image resolution the better!
  • Use a tripod or any fixed surface to stablize the camera. Hand-tremor creates blurring.
  • Take the shot head-on. Ensure all picture sides are of the same length.
  • Light the picture as evenly across as possible. ‘Bounce’ the light onto your picture using a couple of desk lamps and big pieces of white card. The card ( not the lamps ) should be the light source for the pictures because reflected light will be more dispersed.
  • If the relief of the paintwork is picking up too much light and scattering across the picture, ( known as specular light ) adjust the lighting until this problem has gone.  Specular light problems can look terrible and are tough to resolve on your computer, so it’s best to stop this from happening right from the start.
  • Note: a little specular light can be a good thing as it shows off the paint relief, which you DO want if your work relies heavily on texture. It’s just a matter of not letting this aspect dominate and wash out the image.

Work in Layers!

When doing something to an image, always create a Duplicate Layer to work on. If your changes don’t look right you can always delete the Duplicate Layer and start again.

To make a Duplicate Layer:

  • From Window, click on [ Layers ].
  • You will now see the Layers drop-down menu.
  • Select the Layer which shows your digital image.
  • Within this Layer box, right mouse-click to bring up a menu.
  • From this menu, select [ Duplicate Layer ].
  • If you have made this new Duplicate Layer from the first Background Layer, it will automatically be named ‘Background copy’.
  • Performing the same operation on ‘Background copy’ will then create ‘Background copy 2′ e.t.c. You can rename Layers with your own titles.

Use the Layer Opacity feature!

The Layer Opacity feature allows you to adjust the comparative visibility of your Layers. You’ll find this feature at the top of the Layers drop-down menu.

  • Select your new Duplicate Layer.
  • Make an obvious change to the Duplicate Layer – darken it for example.
  • In Duplicate Layer: in the Opacity box, slide between 0 and 100%.
  • 100% Opacity makes your Duplicate Layer fully visible – fully darkened image.
  • 0% Opacity makes your Duplicate Layer invisible – no darkened image.
  • 50% Opacity gives a ‘halfway house’ between your original and Duplicate Layer.
  • You can use this feature all the time to modify the relative visibility of your Layers ( and the changes you have made in them ) to very subtle degrees.
  • When you’re happy, ‘flatten’ the Layers back to a single Layer. To do this: from Layer, select [ Flatten Image ].

Now to the image!

1) Unwanted details around the picture

  • In your main image window, select the area you wish to preserve.
  • From Image, select [ Crop ].
  • The image will now be reduced to the selected area.

2) Mis-alignment

  • From Image, select [ Transform ] then [ Perspective ].
  • Drag corners inwards or outwards to make sides equal length.
  • Alternatively, select [ Transform ] then [ Distort ] for more precise manipulation.

3) Poor Contrast

  • From Enhance, select [ Auto Smart Fix ]. This will give a basic correction which may look  too raw compared to your original.
  • Alternatively, from Enhance, select [ Adjust Lighting ] then [ Brightness/Contrast ].
  • Move the Brightness and Contrast sliders until you’re happy with the light levels.
  • You’d be advised to confine these changes to their own Layers, then use Layer Opacity  for subtle manipulation.

4) Poor Colour

  • From Enhance, select [ Adjust Colour ] then [ Adjust Hue Saturation ].
  • In the Hue Saturation Edit box: select [ Master ] so that all colours will be affected.
  • Sliding on the Saturation bar to the right increases the general ‘colourfulness’ of the image.

If, for example, your image looks too much on the blue spectrum and lacks the warmth of the original, you can solve this:

  • From Enhance, select [ Adjust Colour ] then [ Adjust Hue Saturation ].
  • In the Hue Saturation Edit box: select [ Master ].
  • In the Hue bar, slide into the negative numbers ( left ) a few points.
  • In the Saturation bar, slide into the positive numbers ( right ) a few points.
  • What did we do here? We created a ‘bias’ towards the reds ( Hue ) and then increased the red intensity ( Saturation ).

5) Uneven lighting

  • Create a seperate Duplicate Layer of the image.
  • In Duplicate Layer: from Filter, select [ Render ] then [ Lighting Effects ].
  • In the Style box select [ Default ].
  • In the Light type box select [ Spotlight ].
  • Adjust the lighting area so that the brighter part falls over the darker part of the image.
  • If necessary, drag out the circular lighting area to make it big enough to cover the image properly. What you want to avoid is seeing the rounded perimeter of the spotlight area.
  • Slide across the Intensity and Focus slider bars to adjust the light level and coverage.
  • Use Layer Opacity to complete complete your lighting change. Around 50% is usually needed to get a good blend between the two Layers.
  • You’ll find that the extra light you’ve made in the Duplicate Layer brightens up the darker portion of the image in the original Layer. There is now more equalised light across the whole picture.
  • Flatten the image back to a sigle Layer.

6) Blurring

The solution to this problem is the Sharpen tool, but this feature needs to be used carefully.

Over-sharpening can create a grainy, noisy looking image which won’t look good!

It’s best to confine your sharpening changes to a separate Duplicate Layer and use Layer Opacity for final adjustment. The Sharpening result can then be manipulated with more subtlety.

  • From Enhance, select [ Adjust Sharpness ].
  • Use the sliders to alter the strength of the sharpness ( Amount ) and extent of the sharpness ( Radius ).
  • The [ More Refined ] option will offer more subtle results.
  • You will find that any painterly relief in your original will become more noticeable by using the Sharpen feature. The extent of relief you want to be made evident is up to your artistic judgement. If you’re really into the textural value and it’s an important part of your style, the Sharpen feature is very useful and important.

7) Specular reflections

Hey! Now I told you, this should not have happened! Smack wrists! Really, if there’s a lot of specular light ‘ghosting’ all over your picture and ruining it ( due to reflections from the paintwork relief ) your best option is to take another photo and use the light bouncing technique mentioned above. This can be a horrible problem to resolve digitally, but if you’re determined to use software it can be addressed to variable success. You will get the best result if the specular ghosting is confined to a limited and well defined area, and where there are no specific details.

  • Use the Lasso Tool to select the area affected by specular reflection.
  • Save and Paste this selection as a New Layer. Shortcut: [ Ctrl + S ] then [ Ctrl + V ].
  • In New Layer: From Enhance, select [ Adjust Lighting ] then [ Brightness and Contrast ].
  • Slide across the Brightness and Contrast bars until the selection looks the same as the rest of the picture.
  • From Enhance, you can also use [ Adjust Lighting ] then [ Shadows/Highlights ] in a similar way as above.

Even after correcting the brightness and contrast, the selected area may have a visible edge around it, which you don’t want. This is because the area you made for correction is a result of your Lasso selection, which has a defined edge. There is a method of reducing this:

  • Make a second Duplicate Layer of the same selection you made.
  • Go back to your first Duplicate Layer: From Filter, select [ Blur ] then [ Gaussian Blur ].
  • In the Gaussian blur panel, slide across the Radius bar to blur out the selection.
  • This may help blur the edge, without affecting the selection’s texture. Remember, it’s the topmost Layer in the stack that you see, and the blurring of the selection edge is taking place in the Layer underneath. The underlying blur will bleed out beyond the selection edge and will help to hide it.

If the specular ghosting is occuring in a general area ( blank sky, for example ) there is a final tactic available:

  • Use the Lasso Tool to select an area similar to and close to the ghosted part, but which is unaffected. Create a selection shape similar to ( and slightly larger than ) the ghosted part.
  • Copy and Paste this selection to a New Layer. Shortcut: [ Ctrl + S ] then [ Ctrl + V ].
  • In New Layer: move the selection until it sits over the ghosted area exactly.
  • In New Layer: use the Layer Opacity feature to blend in the selection.
  • The setback here is that the digital image will not be exactly the same as your original.

When submitting your images:

  • Avoid large borders – this takes up unnecessary space and memory.
  • The usual submission format is Jpeg  – it compresses the visual data to take up less bytes.
  • For submitting as attachments to email or for posting online: 150dpi, approx 600 pixel width, and Medium jpeg quality should be sufficient.
  • Remember, there are pirates out there on the digital ocean who would love to scuttle your high resolution files for unlicensed reproductions. ALWAYS keep your images at low resolution in the public domain so they can’t make proper use of them.


The unique and diverse creativity of this British artist is enjoyed as greetings cards, wall-art, tableware and ceramic products worldwide.

Chris Mills lives and works in the English county of Leicestershire. He remembers being able to draw and paint from a very young age, owing early inspiration to Reg Cartwright, author and illustrator of ‘Mr. Potter’s Pigeon’ ( a children’s book classic ). With his large canvas illustrations exhibited behind him, Reg shared his creative experience and enthusiasm for painting with Chris’ junior school. From that point Chris knew that he’d been well and truly bitten by the art-bug!

After attaining a Combined Honours Degree in Art and English with Liverpool University in 1990, he worked as a digital artist for a number of computer game development studios and cut his teeth on concept art and 2D/3D graphics software. Chris no longer works in the games industry but it taught him valuable skills which he now uses in combination with traditional media for many of his designs.

Chris aims to keep busy and seek new venues for his artwork, but does enjoy time out on his piano and guitar, or for longer distractions there’s always Greek island-hopping!

See more designs by Chris at

Thank you for this great information Chris!

Here’s to your creative success!

– Tara Reed

FAQ: Do you need physical product samples to succeed in art licensing?

This question comes up now and again, recently arriving in my email inbox from Lori Kirstein – Resident Artistic Lunatic.  (I LOVE her title – I could certainly borrow it!)

Lori asks…

“I have my images up on Cafepress, but when it comes to product in hand, I don’t have any because the final products of my work are Photoshop-manipulated. Do I need to attend to getting “real world” samples – and figure how to do that best – before I get your book?”

(She was referring to the “How to Find, Interact and Work with Manufacturers Who License Art” )

In case you aren’t aware, CafePress is a Print-On-Demand website where anyone can upload art or digital files and when they are purchased, CafePress creates and ships the product.

The answer I gave Lori was “No.” In art licensing you don’t need to have physical samples to get an art licensing deal.  Sometimes artists will do digital mockups, to show how their art would look on products, but it isn’t a requirement.

When you do get your foot in the door and get a licensing deal or two, it can be helpful to show those products.  Lori could also purchase a product or two from her own CafePress shop if she wanted a photo of an actual product or two for her website.  I’ve even known artists to go to pottery stores and hand-paint samples to show – but that does require time and money.  The most important thing, in my opinion of course, is to be clear about whether any physical products are licensed or mock-up samples and available to be licensed.  I often add a note like this: “These are samples of how the art could be applied to products but are not licensed at this time.  Please contact me if you are interested in this collection for your product line.”

Here’s to your creative success!

– Tara Reed

P.S.  If you want to create digital mock-ups of your art on products in Photoshop, check out “Product Mock-Up Magic” – we’ve done the hard work of taking photos of products and getting rid of the backgrounds, as well as creating video tutorials to help you learn how to apply repeat patterns to them and more.  Take a look at

P.P.S.  To give Lori some “link love” for her question, you can see some of her work at

Product Mock-Up Magic addition – Kitchen and Bath photos

I’ve had a post-it note on my computer for months: Add Kitchen and Bath photos to the Product Mock-Up Magic mix.

Of course there were many other things I needed to do and just wasn’t getting to it.  SO…I got smarter and had the photographer who taught me how to do the original photos join in the fun.

Finding time at a premium, I decided to “Divide (the work). Conquer (the project). Share the Wealth!” (With Bruce, who gets a % of sales) That way I could get the new products out and still keep up with my art – pretty smart, huh?

I also took outsourcing to a new level.  With the first product I was too nervous to use a fulfillment company – I felt the need to control, touch and handle every disk.  I’m so over that now!  After buying padded envelopes, addressing them, getting stamps and running to the mail box on a regular basis, I’m VERY COMFORTABLE with outsourcing the whole thing.

I found a great source that will create, store and ship the products, I can sit back and focus on my work. YEAH!  This is a little off topic but I want you to know that even though I say “outsource” I know how hard it can be!

SO… back to the topic at hand.  The latest addition to the product line is two-fold:  The Kitchen & Bath addition includes 43 new photos. It is ideal for the artist who already has the Original Product Mock-Up Magic. If you don’t, you can get everything in one fell swoop by purchasing the Deluxe Edition.

In case you skipped this part before, it is important to know that the tutorials focus on placing repeat patterns and borders on the product photos but you can use the same concepts for more illustrative art as well. If you don’t know how to create repeat borders & patterns and save the patterns to the pre-set manager in Photoshop, I highly recommend you consider working through the Repeat Pattern eBooks before buying this product.

Here’s a little video preview – you will also find it on the web page with all the details –

Here’s to your creative success!

– Tara Reed

RBG Color Correction Techniques in Photoshop

I am loving what this blog and Art Licensing Info community is evolving into lately… not only do I share things I find or learn, but I am beginning to have artists share what they are finding that might be of interest to everyone else as well.  THANK YOU!

That is what it’s about – a community supporting each other, learning together and rooting for each other along the way.

Bruce Michael of recently sent me information about photographer Eddie Tapp’s “90% Technique” for adjustind correcting RGB colors in Photoshop.  While I hand paint my art in watercolors, I often tweak and adjust it in Photoshop so any tips to make that easier and better are always greatly appreciated!

So I emailed Eddie and asked if I could, as they say in elementary school, “Share with the group.”  He obviously said yes.  (Thanks Eddie!)

Here is a bit about Eddie Tapp

A gifted photographer and artist, Eddie Tapp has become a tireless educator for professional photographers and a prominent figure in the world of digital imaging. His digital imaging seminars have been hosted around the world, and he’s a regular consultant to businesses large and small. Today, he’s recognized as one of the top experts on digital photography and Photoshop in the world. With a reputation as an authority on workflow, color management, calibration and Photoshop, he is associated with Adobe Systems along with some of the world’s most prominent photographic manufacturers and distributors.

Eddie has made some of his specialized techniques and processes available to visitors of his site. These are the methods and techniques you’ve heard so much about — Dream Glow and Soft Focus. They are currently available, right here, for downloading.

Click the link to download his “90% Method of Color Correction”

Let me know if you have discovered resources that you’d like to share and I’ll see when we can fit them on the blog.

Thanks again Bruce & Eddie and everyone else in this fabulous community – know that I appreciate you!

– Tara Reed

Photoshop Tips: How to use Contact Sheet II to automate your Portfolio and Presentations

In December, Art Licensing Agent Suzanne Cruise was the expert of the month for the Art Licensing Info Monthly Ask Call Series.  (The hour long audio is available for free – CLICK HERE to get your copy.)

One thing she mentioned was that her team uses the “Contact Sheet” function in Photoshop™ to create presentations for manufacturers. This got my attention because anything that can make my work go faster so I have more time to create is something I want to know about!  I promised to figure it out and put it on the blog so here we go…

Contact Sheet II is an automation script (I think it’s a script – I’m calling it one anyway!) that allows you to sit back and watch Photoshop™ grab and organize groups of images for you.  It is ideal if you work in a consistent size and orientation, requires a little human tweaking if your image sizes vary.

Contact Sheet II comes in Photoshop CS3 (and earlier versions, I think) but you need to download and install the plug-in if you are working in CS4.  Here are the links for CS4: – for windows -Mac

These plug-ins have more than just Contact Sheet II.  Here is what it includes (text from the linked web pages):

There are some plug-ins and presets that have been removed in Photoshop CS4. If you wish to use these plug-ins and presets still you can find them in your Goodies folder on your DVD install disc. 

This download includes plug-ins for Photoshop CS4 English, Spanish and French versions.

The following plug-ins and associated files are included in this package:

• Bigger Tiles
• Picture Package (ContactSheetII)
• ExtractPlus
• PatternMaker
• PhotomergeUI
• Web Photo Gallery (WebContactSheetII) plus presets
• Textures for Texturizer
• script for Layer Comps to Web Photo Gallery

Here is a video tutorial of how “Contact Sheet II” works, some examples and some pluses and minuses.  I for one plan to start using this more in my business, hopefully it will be helpful for you as well!

Here’s to your creative success!

– Tara

P.S.  Thank you to all the artists who emailed me with help in finding this feature! You are awesome!

P.P. S. Want to learn to create repeat patterns like the ones shown in the video? Check out the 2 eBook series – CLICK HERE