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Adobe Photoshop CS6 - New Features

Written by Aaron Charlie – Sun 01 Apr 2012


After a few months of sneak peek videos on YouTube, Adobe have just released a Beta version of Photoshop CS6. Adobe have really gone to town on the popular image editing package and have not only added a host of new features but dramatically increased processing speeds. This is great news for those of you who thought the new features would slow Photoshop down and make it too clunky to use.

We downloaded the Photoshop CS6 Beta on the first day and have been excitedly getting used to it ever since, and over the next few weeks we will be showing our favourite features. In part 1 we look at the interface, video editing and blur functions in Photoshop CS6.

As with all our Adobe training courses we will start using CS6 on our Photoshop courses as soon as it is released in full. We always endeavour to keep our training as up to date as possible. This is even more important for courses such as Photoshop Training, InDesign Training and Illustrator Training where it is vital to use the most up to date packages and skills to compete in the market.

1. New Darker Photoshop Interface

The most striking change to Photoshop is the interface:

adobe-photoshop-cs6-new-look

This new darker scheme is so that images stand out more when you are editing them, which actually works. This also brings Photoshop in line with other Adobe products that have used the dark grey interface for a while.

2. Photoshop CS6 Video Editing

It was only a month ago that Adobe posted a video on YouTube created with Photoshop. No information accompanied this video so it was mere speculation as to whether this huge step forward would appear in CS6 or in a later version of Photoshop.

Well, I can happily announce that it is present in the Beta and it is really easy to use!

As we wrote in our previous post, video editing is an interesting move for Photoshop as Adobe already have dedicated software to do just that. However, an increasing number of still cameras now come with powerful HD video capabilities and this is a great way to encourage photographers to take advantage of the video function without having to learn a new tool.

photoshop-cs6-video

I have found the editing tool a bit slow to use, but I have been working with large video files, I am sure it would be smoother with shorter or lower quality clips.

Within the editor you can resize clips (with a live frame preview to help choose the right point), add fades, audio, drag and drop clips and all the usual features you would expect from a video editor.

More exciting is the ability to apply all the usual Photoshop layer functions to video layers, allowing you to really improve the look of your clips.

There are also some great image functions, but for more on these please watch the videos at the end of the post.

3. Improved Blur in Photoshop CS6

Using blur in Photoshop has always been a bit laborious, requiring multiple layers. Now, Adobe have added three new blur functions that will make blur a stand out feature for Photoshop CS6.

Tilt-Shift Blur

Tilt-shift blur allows you to pick a strip in your image to focus on. The most popular use for this is to 'miniaturise' images so that they look like toy models. However, it is also useful for highlighting particular depths in your photos and taking the focus off the clutter surrounding your image.

photoshop-cs6-tilt-shit-blur

This is achievable simply by going to Filter> Blur> Tilt-shift and then just dragging the parameters around until you are happy with your image.

Iris Blur

Iris blur allows you to choose a focus point in the image and blur the area around it. Using sliders and drag and drop points you can specify the size and intensity of the blur.

photoshop-cs6-iris-blur

Field Blur

The final new blur function is field blur, which allows you to select points on your image to blur or highlight. This is useful if the point of focus in your image is irregular and so does not fit within the straight parameters of the tilt-shift blur of the circle of the iris blur.

Unfortunately, Adobe seems to have left out the incredible unblur function that they announced last year. Let's hope it makes it to the final version!

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