Monday, December 17, 2012

Ups and Downs with CS6

Mostly, new software turns me into a quivering mass of dread and my brain turns to unset jello. On the other hand, new program also inspires me. I get excited about all the things I'm going to be able to accomplish with the new tools. That doesn't mean I learn the software quickly and easily. It's that the joy of discovery eases the pain. 

On the Jesse Dread and Inspiration scale, Photoshop CS6 was a 9.5. I have eyestrain from the tutorials that I've watched and I still feel like a blithering idiot. The first time I launched CS6, my jaw dropped. My first thought was a panicky, "What program is this?!" I knew immediately that I was in for a long and steep learning curve. For me, it's a big leap from CS3 to CS6 and I'm still not done.

Would I go back? Not even that proverbial "team of wild horses" could drag me there. (Well, face it, if there were horses involved, who knows.) The point is I find CS6 a dramatic improvement over previous versions and only wish that I made the move earlier. 

The new ACR alone makes the cost of the upgrade worthwhile, if you shoot RAW files. Since upgrading, I have examined  RAW files previously processed in CS3 and been astonished by the untapped information. This is mostly true with the equine action photography. There were countless cases where I got everything I wanted in the image except the exposure—the black horse running into a shadow resulting in under exposure. In most cases, so far, I have found that the RAW file had all the information that I needed, after all. 

And, I haven't even gotten into those incredible brushes. I like painting with the various brushes before, but this is a whole new world. 

Especially if you shoot RAW files, give CS6 a try.  I don't think you will be able to resist it. It's that good.
Note: new post up at 


  1. You're too modest! You know that you're an expert, Anita. :) And, as for wild horses, you'd be photographing them all the way back to CS3 and coming up with cool new impressions of them along the way!

    1. You are so kind. I appreciate your vote of confidence. But, I want to be "that" Anita—the one who is an expert and could chase after wild horses. Ah, you have been spying on my dreams, Paul Lester.

  2. Well, this guy thinks your very good at what you do and quite capable of learning new tricks. All that shows in your final product. I shared your sight with the young lady who owns this coffee shop I support because she is a horse lover. She just bought a new one from overseas somewhere and think she prefer to sleep with it than her husband. :-) I find it interesting you mention the learning curve of new software as I've been thinking about moving up to PSE 11 from PSE6. We'll see.

    1. Thanks, Monte. Thanks for comment and for sharing my work with your friend and a horse lover. We are all over the place, you know. The story about the horse and the husband makes me laugh.

      Learning curves are exciting, but I always feel that I burn up a few brain cells in the process. I am running short on any I can spare.

  3. Anita, I'm still at CS 5.5 so it would only be a moderate change for me...that and the upgrade cost are the reasons I haven't made the jump yet. I know I probably will but I'll wait a while. There has been a lot of improvements in PS. since CS 3.

    No matter how you feel internal your results tell a different story about your proficiency with PS. I can't wait to see what you do with this new version.

    1. I wouldn't think that you would have much to learn going from CS 5.5 to 6. And, yes, indeed, from 3 to 6 was a big leap. Tons of goodies.

      Thank you, Earl for your comment. I know that I have made considerable strides; but, I am keenly aware of the possibilities offered. I suppose that I am greedy. I want command of all of those things as soon as possible.


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