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In this first chapter, we are going to take a look at setting up some key preferences inside of Photoshop, just so we can make sure that you and I are on the same page while we are working throughout the series. So what I am going to have you do is go over and get into your Project Files folder and navigate to Chapter 01 and select The Field.jpg. When you double-click that, Photoshop CS3 will begin to launch. Now we have our photograph opened.
So what I am going to have you do now is go ahead and get into the Preferences dialog box and we are going to do that by hitting Command+K on the Mac, Ctrl+K on the PC and that's just going to bring up the General Preferences dialog box. There are a couple of key things that I want to mention in here that I would like for you to turn on and some that I would like for you to turn off.
So the first thing I want to talk about is automatically launching the Adobe Bridge. I am going to go ahead and tell you to turn that on. That way when you first start Photoshop, the Bridge will automatically launch with it. Bridge is just a great tool that you can use inside of Photoshop and as a secondary application to Photoshop to help keep you more organized. So I always recommend keeping that turned on as well. I am going to have you turn off the Use Shift Key for Tool Switch because it's just easier if you happen to want to access one of the keys on the left hand side of the toolbar, to not have to use that Shift key to access the tools that are down inside of those sub-menus.
I am also going to ask you on the PC to turn on Zoom Resizes Windows. It should be automatically turned on, if you are on the Macintosh platform, but if not, go ahead and check that box as well. I am also going to give you the option to turn on the Zoom with Scroll Wheel feature. If you have a mouse that has a scroll wheel on it, you might find it useful for zooming in and out on images. I am not actually going to turn this on, but it can be useful if you choose to do so. So go ahead and play with that and take a look at it and see if you like it. If you don't, you can always come back and turn it off later.
The last thing we are going to take a look at in this first dialog box is the Export to Clipboard option. I am going to tell you to turn that off because when you are exporting the clipboard, a lot of times you can get huge delays when switching between applications and you can also get a nice little error message that pops up and says, I can't export the clipboard. So instead of having that annoyance come up every time you switch applications, just go ahead and turn that off and it will save you some headaches in the future.
Now I am going to go ahead and move over here and click the Next button. We will just jump into the Interface Preferences. Now in this dialog box there is nothing that I really want you to turn on but there are a couple of things that might make Photoshop work better for you. For instance, you can come up here and turn on this Use Grayscale Toolbar Icon. When I click that, you will notice over here in the toolbar that little icon goes into a Grayscale Mode. Now this can be useful for those of you who have to have that neutral gray background all over Photoshop and you don't like that little blue dot distracting you all the time.
So if you want to turn that on, go ahead and do so. I am also going to show you this Show Channels in Color option. What this allows you to do is actually view the channels in your Channels Palette as the actual colors they are for whatever particular color mode that you are in at any given time. So for instance, if I was in RGB mode, then my channels would show up red, green and blue. If I was in CMYK, there would be cyan, magenta, yellow and black. So it's just an interesting way of displaying your channels and it's also great for printing professionals to go ahead and take a look at your image as it would be in a print separation. I am actually going to leave that turned off for now, but later on I will show you exactly how that works.
I am going to go ahead now and come over here and click the Next button again. We are going to jump into the File Handling Preferences dialog box. There is only one thing that I really want you to go ahead and take a look at inside this dialog box and that is the Maximize PSD and PSB File Compatibility option down here at the bottom. By default, it should be set to Ask. What this does is it's just going to automatically make your file more compatible, both when you are placing layered Photoshop files into other applications such as InDesign or After Effects and it's also going to help you if you are opening up this document in any older version of Photoshop.
So for instance, if you want to open up this layered Photoshop CS3 file in Photoshop 7, it's going to help you open that. Now you are not going to have all of your bells and whistles and layer effects and things like that, but it will help you to open up a composite file of that image. So therefore, you are still going to be able to view the image, you are just not going to have all the extras that you would inside of CS3.
So this is great for people who go back and work in older versions of Photoshop and then for creative professionals who also work in other media applications as well. Now if you are only going to be working inside of Photoshop CS3, I am going to go ahead and recommend that you set this to Never. I am going to tell you to do this because automatically it saves file size and also if you are not switching between other applications, why do you need this extra composite file built into your Photoshop document? You don't. So I am just going to automatically tell you to turn this to Never.
Now we are going to come up here and we are going to click the Next button again. There is really nothing in the Performance Preferences that I want you to change per se, but I do want you to take a look at something that has changed. Here in the Preferences for Performance, you will notice there is new option for Scratch Disks. Before, they had Scratch Disks built into the Plug-ins Preferences in Photoshop CS2. So for those of you who are looking for your Scratch Disks or want to know how to set up your Scratch Disks, here is your dialog box stored right there in the new Performance area of the Preferences dialog box.
So now let's go ahead and click Next again and we will jump into the Cursors Preferences. Now there are a couple of things I would like for you to take a look at inside this dialog box as well. The first thing I am going to have you do is turn on Show Crosshair in Brush Tip. What this is going to allow you to do is have a little crosshair in the middle of your brush, so that you just get more precise pointing when you are using brushes inside of Photoshop. This comes in really handy, when you are working on layer masking and different things like that.
Now by default, it's also set to Normal brush Tip. This is fine and this is actually what I am going to be working with throughout the series. However, if you want to turn on Full Size Brush Tip, you can totally do that. What it's going to help you do is see every pixel that's being affected when you are using your brush inside of Photoshop. So if you are using a really soft edge brush, this is going to not only show you exactly where the hard edge of the paint is going to be, but it's also going to show you the all around pixels that are being affected by this particular brush. So that's just a good thing that you can turn on for later on, if you want to.
I am going to go ahead and set this back to Normal and go ahead and click Next. Now there is nothing in this dialog box that we need to worry about, so I am going to go ahead and click Next again. Now we are into the Units & Rulers Preferences. There is one thing I do want you to change inside of this Preferences dialog box. I want you to go ahead and change from inches to pixels. I am telling you to do this simply because pixels are universal unit of measurement. So we won't have any problems converting between inches and centimeters and all that different kind of stuff. So if we use pixels, it's