Adobe Photoshop CS2 for Photographers, by Martin Evening, ISBN: 0-240-51984-1

Reviewed by: Mario Georgiou, August 2005
Published by: Focal Press/Elsevier
Requires: N/A
MSRP: US$44.99, UK£27.99

Martin Evening is without a doubt one of the leading lights in the digital imaging and photography business in the UK. His fabulous photos and images have graced the pages of many magazines and his work has influenced many a potential Imageer and photographer. His earlier editions of the Adobe Photoshop for Photographers books have been very successful and won many fans—including me. This updated edition benefits from his experience with the earlier titles and with a good reworking to reflect the updated feature set in Photoshop CS2.

The book has been rearranged and enhanced by Martin to more accurately reflect his experience with Photoshop CS2 in real world scenarios. The book is organized in a very clear and helpful color coding scheme and although it is quite the weighty volume, it remains fairly easy to handle. Photoshop CS2 for Photographers is very clearly aimed at the intermediate and advanced user who is familiar with Photoshop and who is a working professional. Accordingly, the book starts with an overview of the features which are new to CS2. The book follows with fitting introductions to Adobe Bridge, DNG, Camera RAW and High Dynamic Range based image processing.


Evening explores the improvements made to UI and covers the many useful shortcuts available in Photoshop for improving the efficiency of your image processing and editing. He then covers the process of configuring Photoshop and your workspace up to and including lighting, using neutral colors in your studio, calibrating your equipment and refining your preferences. As with his earlier volumes he describes all shortcuts by using both MAC and Windows conventions.

Although the author covers some of the basic capabilities in Chapter 4, this book only half-heartedly talks to the novice and in my mind that's not a bad thing. There are many other books out there which the novice can use to learn Photoshop. I don't want to come off as a Photoshop snob, but I'm personally and professionally past the 'Learn in 24 Hours' and 'Dummies' books. I simply need far more advanced information and no longer have use for the novice level and many intermediate level publications. Nonetheless, some novices can make use of the information in Chapter 4 which spends a lot of time covering the use of curves, histograms and levels. I enjoyed it thoroughly.

The next sections deal extensively with color correction and repairing images. I managed to pick up a few tips here, but much of it was familiar. What I did like was the chapter referring to Layer blending modes and the pictorial representation of how each mode affects one image layer over another. It was a very clear lesson in the use and application of this feature. The montage techniques explored here were directly relevant and useful.

The chapter on Darkroom techniques is without a doubt going to be of interest to any photographer, digital or otherwise. The coverage of effect emulations like black & white, toning, infrared, cross processing and channel mixing techniques have proven popular in the past and continue to impress with this edition as well. In a related set of subjects, the following chapter does a good job of covering Photoshop filters, plug-ins and the effects you can produce with them.

Digital capture technologies and the issues relating to dealing with them are covered fairly extensively and the information is nicely support by a chapter covering the concept of resolution, resampling and interpolation. These topics are covered only briefly, but enough information is imparted to make them worth reading. Intermediate imageers will glean some useful information.

Evening does a very good job of covering color management, profiling, gamut and color spaces. At the same time, he introduces the concepts of profile conversions, rendering intents and color spaces. It's the only part of the book that initially feels a bit confused because he mentions some of these earlier in the book and then revisits them. On the other hand, the idea of refreshing and reinforcing with additional information is one which sits well with me.

Coverage of output technologies is divided into sensible topics including inks, processes, building printer profiles and proofing techniques. The pros and cons of each method are explored closely, with care and attention paid to the practical usage of each system. Evening also explores the multitude of file formats that are available, again covering the pros and cons. The topic of output is continued in the next chapter which covers output for the Web with attention given to technical and aesthetic issues as well as coverage of ImageReady and Photoshop’s other features.

Evening revisits image management in the form of Adobe Bridge, which has become a central part of Adobe's asset and file management strategy for now. In the future, Bridge promises to be a very interesting companion product to all of Adobe's Creative Suite products and its coverage here is not without merit.

Cons: Some repetition. Some of the topics (resolution, resampling and interpolation) could have been more thoroughly covered.

Pros: The book is printed on a high quality, heavy stock. Good case studies and supporting information. Excellent examples. Excellent content on CD. Well written. I thoroughly enjoyed this excellent volume. Evening covers and lot of ground and I want more from this expert and author. I'm thoroughly impressed by both Martin Evening's work and the quality of Focal Press publications. Highly recommended for anyone interested in real-world imaging processes and techniques.





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