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Photoshop 911 FAQ and Short tips Page 1 of 8

These are the cases of the Photoshop 911 ER where Adobe Photoshop and Elements users get tips & tricks and answers to
their questions about image manipulation, painting. Since 1990 in the Design & Publishing Center, formerly called: Photoshop
Tips & Tricks

Photoshop 911 FAQ and Short tips

[1.1] Flat Black vs 4c Black SEARCHING:
[1.2] Halftone in PMS Ink USE your Browser's "Find"
command, or "Search"
[1.3] Borrowing clouds command to find keywords
you may be looking for.
[1.4] Fixing Blurred Photos?
[1.5] Blurring Edges FAQ CONTINUES
[1.6] Work at 72 or 300?
[1.7] Corel Text to Photoshop
[1.8] CMYK to Spot Color?
[1.9] Change night to day
[1.1] Editing Path Anchors
[1.12] Best Scanning Tips
[1.13] Red Eye Redo
[1.14] Spinning an object
[1.15] Multiple Prints, single sheet
[1.16] Too many fonts

Flat Black vs 4c Black

Symptoms:"When I send the job for color saparation the matter of black
text comes with in four colour cyan, magenta, yellow that makes
problems in printing the Newspaper pleas tell me how i can make black
text saparate from cyan,mangeta, yellow at the printing time on
computer. thanks"
Patient: Ameenuddin, using photoshop 5.5 and 6, on windows98
You've got what is called "rich black" which is the combination
of all four colors to 'build' black. It does make for heavy coverage and
most newspapers don't allow it. "Too much coverage!" What you
actually need is referred to as 'flat' black.
Keep all your black elements on exclusive layers. Just before
flattening, gather the black layers to the same layer. Now click the
foreground color in the tool bar and specify black as: C:0, Y:0, M:0,
K:100. Now Command (Control) click the layer to load the black
elements, type, etc., and hit Option (Alt) Delete to fill with your "flat"
SEE: "Duotones"
From Photoshop 911 Case #01.06.2003-pakistan 6/1/2010
Photoshop 911 FAQ and Short tips Page 2 of 8

Halftone in PMS Ink

Symptoms: "I have a grayscale image that I want to replace All the black
and gray with a pantone swatch color. I don't want any black or gray,
but I do want to keep the white areas. How do I do this? I tried to use
the replace color tool but it was sooo confusing that I gave up. HELP!
Oh, this is for print and will be exported to an Illustrator file."
Patient: Dana Oliver, using Photoshop 6.0, on MAC, OS X
Diagnosis:Your problem is really not a problem at all, and you don't have
to deal with it in Photoshop, but rather let Illustrator handle it during the
separation process.
You should never modify the values in a grayscale image halftone in
order to print it as a PMS color. When you import the image in
Illustrator, set the layer as a spot color. Illustrator will generate a
separate negative for just that halftone, and the printer will use PMS
inks appropriately.
If you feel compelled to generate the separate negative out of
Photoshop because of other color subjects or other issues, then set up a
new spot color channel. (SEE: "Spot Colors in Photoshop" and
From Photoshop 911 Case #01.06.2003-California, USA

Borrowing clouds

Symptoms:"Shooting a lot of pictures here in Arizona, with a lot of clear,

blue skies. I would like to copy some cloud formations from photos that
have some. I used to be able to do this easily in Photoshop 5, but the
copy/merge function doesn't seem to work any more. Am I forgetting a
step or two??"
Patient: Mike Hallock, using Version 7.0, on Windows ME
Diagnosis: Best thing to do here is select the sky areas of your photo -- use
your favorite selection tools -- then select the "new" sky from the
separate file, copy, return to the destination file and select "Paste Into"
from the Edit menu. Make sure you've 'balanced' the resolution of both
Much trickier: if you want to bring in just the clouds you'll need to
make sure the sky color is at least close to matching both files. Then
you can use the "Extract" function to remove the clouds for insertion
into the destination file.
SEE: "Resolution"
From Photoshop 911 Case #01.06.2003-Arizona, USA

Fixing Blurred Photos?

Symptoms: "I'm a graphic designer for a government contractor and I had

to take some pictures at a briefing because the prof. photographer wasn't
available. I took about 30 pictures and about half of them came out
really blurry and unfocused but the other half came out perfect. I have
no idea what I did or what happened but they want to give each person a 6/1/2010
Photoshop 911 FAQ and Short tips Page 3 of 8

copy of the picture in a frame. Is there any way I can fix these in
Photoshop? "
Patient: Robin Stritenberger, using Photoshop 7.0, on Windows 2000
Diagnosis: Wow. You're in trouble. My only suggestion would be to start
very large and sharpen carefully as you reduce to final size. Usually in
badly blurred or out-of-focus images there's very little you can do
because you really can't invent sharpness. Good luck.
SEE: "Resolution"
From Photoshop 911 Case #01.06.2003-Ohio

Blurring Edges

Symptoms: "Was just wondering if you could tell me how to blur the edges
in an image. I use the "blur" button to manualy apply around the edge,
but I'm pretty sure there's an easier way of doing it. Thanks, Henry KL "
Patient: Henry , using 7.0, on Windows XP
Diagnosis: The following solution requires a little testing and decisions
based on the image, how much blurring you want and how deep into the
image you wish the blur to go.
Select the object to be blurred. (It might be a good idea to save the
selection for future use in case it takes several tries. Use: Select > Save
Selection.) Once selected, use the Select > Feather dialog to apply
feathering to your selection.
In doing so remember that the width of the feather will be split: half
inside the selection and half outside the selection. At this point if you
want a wide 'blur' make the feather wider. If you want only a subtle
blur, then make the feather more narrow. You may find that expending
or contracting the selection will move the 'center' of the feather into a
better position. That will depend on the image and your desired results.
With the selection active, and your chosen feather in place, now invert
the selection (Select > Inverse) and apply either a normal blur or a
Gaussian blur. You could also try motion blurs, and/or radial blurs
depending on the desired results. If the results are not what you want,
change settings and try again.
SEE: "Feathering"
From Photoshop 911 Case #01.06.2003-Malaysia

Work at 72 or 300?

Symptoms: "Is it ok to work at 72dpi and later increase to 300dpi for

printing. I know its probably better to start with 300dpi in the first place
but the file size is very big and everything becomes slow. I do the
designings for a magazine and I'm quite new at it so could u please help
me out."
Patient: bhunu, using photoshop 6, on winNT
Refer to our other posts concerning resolution. It's sometimes a
bit confusing, however if you always remember that a 300 dpi image is
25% (one quarter) the size in pixel dimensions as a 72 dpi image, you'll
be okay. So, if your finished art needs to be 4 inches by 4 inches or
smaller, then it's perfectly okay to work at 72 ppi as long as the file 6/1/2010
Photoshop 911 FAQ and Short tips Page 4 of 8

actually measures 20 inches by 20 inches. At the end when you set the
resolution to 300 dpi, the 20 inches will print at 4 inches.
From Photoshop 911 Case #01.06.2003-india

Corel Text to Photoshop

Symptoms:"When I am placing Text from Corel Draw - done with drop

caps and other effects, which you can't do in PS, as an EPS file, even at
a high res, say 600 dpi, I still get the text jagged. Is there any other way
wherein I get razor-sharp text placed in PS, from Corel. Of course I
know I can export from PS my work as TIFF and import into
Coreldraw. But precision layer alignment and other things are done
effectively in PS and more easily. PLEASE suugest solutions. Thanks in
advance Ramani J. V. Iyer"
Patient: Ramani J.V. Iyer, using Photoshop 6.0, on Windows XP
After styling the text in Corel, save your work file, then make
sure the text is converted to paths. Perhaps even work larger than the
target size. Once imported into Photoshop the type should be nice and
smooth since you're importing vector objects rather than text.
From Photoshop 911 Case #01.06.2003-Tamilnadu, India

CMYK to Spot Color?

Symptoms: "My question is how do I convert CMYK colors to spot colors?

I have created a Font in Photoshop for a rock band using the marble
filter and adding a bevel to the lettering and then I overlayed the text
onto some fire. I went to try and have these printed on some T-shirts but
the prnting company told me I needed spot colors in order for them to
do it right. How would I add spot colors to such a complexed image
with so many color variations? The actual font is located at If you have any suggestions or comments that
would be great or even a point to the right direction."
Patient: Kris Rogers, using PS 7, on MAC
Diagnosis:Kris, you have one of two choices: get a new t-shirt vendor who
can do process color printing, or pair your art down to flat colors.
If you select the latter of the two I suspect your art will lose
dramatically. You would have to break down all your elements into
simple, flat color and lose modeling and toning. If you would like to see
what this might look like try posterizing the art to around 8 or so colors.
Choose Image > Adjustments > Posterize. If you must boil the art to
flat, spot colors then you will need to rethink the design.
SEE: RGB or CMYK?, and Spotcolor, and our piece on Channels
From Photoshop 911 Case #01.06.2003-Texas, USA

Change night to day

Symptoms: "I have a picture that was shot at night and therefore is really
dark. Most of the features can be made out with no probllem but a lot is
hidden. I have seen the tutorial somewhere that explains how to shed
light on the problem. Can you help?" 6/1/2010
Photoshop 911 FAQ and Short tips Page 5 of 8

Patient: Gary Mickels, using 5.2, on Mac

Diagnosis:It's going to be tough going in version 5. In all likelihood, the
results will be somewhat less than spectacular.
First, try AutoLevels to see a quick equalization of the image, and
where it might go. Next, go to work on it with the Brightness/Contrast
dialog, but leave 'contrast' alone. You can also use Levels and work on
each of the brightness ranges individually -- which will take much
From Photoshop 911 Case #01.06.2003-OR

Editing Path Anchors

Symptoms: "Suddenly I am no longer able to edit a closed path in a Phshop

document. When I choose the path, then choose the direct selection tool,
it won't allow me to move anchor points on the path or access the
direction lines. All I can do is move the path away from its original
location. It's acting as if the path isn't closed, but it is! I've made
hundreds of paths before this. What's going on?"
Patient: Connie Biggar, using PhShop 7.0, on Windows 98
Make sure the path is not selected. If the anchor points are all
black then you won't be able to edit any individual anchor. Click
elsewhere to deselect the path. Now, with the direct-select tool (hollow
pointer) you can select just the anchor you wish to work on.
From Photoshop 911 Case #01.06.2003-Wisconsin USA

Best Scanning Tips

Symptoms:"I work scanning photos and various other things for a

newspaper and I am wondering if you can help with the best settings
and what to be careful of when scanning B&W and color 35mm prints
and negatives, digital and paper copies. I calibrated my monitor but i am
not sure of the exact lighting. I selected daytime. Thanks for your help."
Patient: Susan, using Photoshop 5.0, on MAC
Diagnosis: Once you've properly calibrated your system, there are really
only two rules for scanning:
1) Test everything, and 2) Keep records.
Since almost all images and situations will present their own unique
set of problems, running a test first usually helps sniff out and correct
the problems. After a while you learn to eyeball the situation and scan
right the first time.
Keeping some form of record of what worked best is always a good
idea when in a production-oriented environment. Perhaps a quick screen
capture of the subject and scanner settings, perhaps just a text file with
notes. Later when you encounter a questionable image, a quick glance
at your notes or 'cheat sheet' will remind you of the best configuration.
I will strongly advise you keep your eye on contrast when scanning
film negs or slides. They always seem to gain contrast.
Daytime lighting setting is usually a safe bet.
From Photoshop 911 Case #01.06.2003-Massachusetts, USA 6/1/2010
Photoshop 911 FAQ and Short tips Page 6 of 8

Red Eye Redo

Symptoms:"It's probably simple but when I want to correct a red-eye

problem I have difficulty to select correctly both eyes! The first is ok
but then if I did not place my selection at the right spot on the second
one I cannot move with the arrow only one selection because both are
moving at the same time!!! Help!!!"
Patient: Michel, using PS 6.0, on windows xp
Michel! Stop. Do just one eye at a time. Or, another method
you might try is actually better and more fool-proof: Select a soft edged
brush about the same size as the offending red-eye and then use the
sponge tool (key 'o') set to desaturate. Dab around the red until it's gone.
(This lets you retain the values of the pupils and effect only the color.
Remember, pupils should be black, but possible light reflections and
highlights should be retained.) You may need to adjust the pressure and
size of your sponge in the Options bar above.
From Photoshop 911 Case #01.06.2003-Quebec, Canada

Spinning an object

Symptoms: "Is there a way to use photoshop 5.5 to make an object appear
as if it is spinning?"
Patient: Julie Hutchings, using 5.5, on
Drag a copy of the image to a new layer. Now use the "Motion"
blur tool (Filters > Blur > Motion Blur) and set the angle in the
direction of the 'spin'. Now make another copy of the original image.
Select the object, and then scale that object slightly (maybe 80%) in the
direction of the spin. Apply the Motion blur to that object as well, and
then set the opacity of the layer to 60% or so to superimpose the new
version of the object over the previous one. By now you get the
concept... experiment with more versions, all with a Motion blue, until
you get the effect to the point you like.
From Photoshop 911 Case #01.06.2003-Missouri, USA

Multiple Prints, single sheet

"Just wondering if it is possible to make multiple prints of the

same image on one sheet of paper."
Patient: Tony, using photoshop 7, on Win98
Choose: File > Automate > Picture Package and select options
from the resulting dialog box. It's pretty cool, but beware -- printing
may take quite a while. PS does all the work resizing and positioning
the images. (Elements has the very same function.)
SEE: Batch Printing
From Photoshop 911 Case #01.06.2003-Virginia, US

Too many fonts

"Hello, My problem is related to Photoshop for Mac. I use

photoshop 7.0.1 on Mac OS X. My system contains approx. 750 fonts, 6/1/2010
Photoshop 911 FAQ and Short tips Page 7 of 8

all can be seen in Illustrator, Word etc. But in Photoshop only the first
438 fonts can be seen. After that the list just stops. So instead of my
fontlist going from A to Z my fontlist goes from A to M, and then just
stops? Does anyone know know how I can get Photoshop to see all of
my fonts?"
Patient: Paul, using Photoshop 7.0.1, on Mac OS X 10.2
We have no explanation why this is happening, but believe
you've discovered a buffer limit. I've read about this somewhere and
will search all the list archives for the reference.
On a more important note, you really should consider trimming those
750 fonts down to somewhere under 200. Check out any of the font
management programs and utilize your font library more purposefully.
There should never be a need for 750 fonts online at the same time.
Never. It not only lugs the system down but encourages design-on-the-
fly, a dead giveaway of amateurs. I've got 11,000 fonts. But never more
than about 60 online at the same time.
(Perhaps Photoshop is trying to tell you something!)
SEE:Font Problems in Photoshop
From Photoshop 911 Case #01.06.2003-the Netherlands



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