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Photoshop Skills Essential for Brochure Design

Published on 25 September 13
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February 1990 marks a quiet anniversary in the computer world. The date goes by year after year with hardly a thought beyond Ground Hogâs or Valentineâs Day. But without the minor blip on the radar of the launching of a little program called Photoshop 1.0, millions of digital photos and designs may have never been born. Well, somebody else would have cornered the market but it was Adobe that bought the rights to a program so dominate today that working on a brochure design would spawn its own verb: Photoshopping an image. The history of how Photoshop was developed was highlighted in this 2005 article from Computer arts.

Many steps go into the production of any size brochure. Several different programs are used to produce the text, graphics, images and final layout and design. The heart of most full color print products is the photo. Using sharp, colorful, well-composed and dramatic pictures is one of the most important ingredients to catching the attention of a consumer. The ultimate goal of any promotional piece is to sell a product or service. What better way to draw in a potential client than with a spectacular brochure design?

Know a Little

Photoshop is an amazingly complex program. Now in version CS6, the software is capable of performing so many tasks the weekend user is likely only to brush the surface. But knowing a little about some of the major functions can improve existing photos, create unique images and produce a print ready file for effortless print runs.

Sizing it up

Digital cameras come in many varieties. From simple point and shoot models to professional packages priced in the tens of thousands of dollars, the cameras themselves are capable of capturing images in resolutions known as megapixels. Basically, the more megapixels, the more detail is contained in the photo and the larger it can be blown up for insertion into a brochure design.

Learning how to resize the photo in Photoshop is important for the printing stage. While the photo may appear great on the computer screen, it may not print as clearly. Too small a resolution, it will be grainy and pixelate, and too many and it may take too long to render. Typically, the photo should be actual size in inches and 300 dots per inch. For example, if the cover of the brochure is 11 by 8.5 inches, than the image should be slightly larger to allow for bleeds, at 300 DPI.

Improve and Experiment

Few pictures can be harmed by cropping. The viewfinders on most popular cameras do not show a 100 percent view, so cropping out extraneous edges most often improves the composition for layout in the brochure design. Often crops can isolate the main point of the picture for emphasis.

Rotating the picture can add drama or uniqueness but donât flip something upside down and make it unrecognizable. Remember the old Batman television show? The director used to rotate the camera 30 or 40 degrees to create an odd angle for the shot. It drew attention and added drama. Try it.

Colors and Curves

Photoshop has a large range of tools that allow the user to do just about anything to the image using commands to change the color, hue, saturation and lightness and darkness values. Most of these functions were never available in a darkroom. The best partâif you donât like it, donât save it.

Adding Text

The ability to add text to an image for a brochure design is a monumental step in producing a creative product. The words can be on a curved path, in any color of the rainbow and any font you can find. By embedding the text on the photo, it can be easily imported in the page layout program without further manipulation.

Apply Filters

The filter command offers various artistic and sharpening tools to further change a photograph, sometimes into something that appears as though it is a drawing. Try these for some variety or to make an average photo really pop.

So many other commands are available, from dodging and burning sections to saving the file in a number of different formats that is hard to imagine working on a brochure design without this innovative and ground breaking program.
February 1990 marks a quiet anniversary in the computer world. The date goes by year after year with hardly a thought beyond Ground Hogâs or Valentineâs Day. But without the minor blip on the radar of the launching of a little program called Photoshop 1.0, millions of digital photos and designs may have never been born. Well, somebody else would have cornered the market but it was Adobe that bought the rights to a program so dominate today that working on a brochure design would spawn its own verb: Photoshopping an image. The history of how Photoshop was developed was highlighted in this 2005 article from Computer arts.

Many steps go into the production of any size brochure. Several different programs are used to produce the text, graphics, images and final layout and design. The heart of most full color print products is the photo. Using sharp, colorful, well-composed and dramatic pictures is one of the most important ingredients to catching the attention of a consumer. The ultimate goal of any promotional piece is to sell a product or service. What better way to draw in a potential client than with a spectacular brochure design?

Know a Little

Photoshop is an amazingly complex program. Now in version CS6, the software is capable of performing so many tasks the weekend user is likely only to brush the surface. But knowing a little about some of the major functions can improve existing photos, create unique images and produce a print ready file for effortless print runs.

Sizing it up

Digital cameras come in many varieties. From simple point and shoot models to professional packages priced in the tens of thousands of dollars, the cameras themselves are capable of capturing images in resolutions known as megapixels. Basically, the more megapixels, the more detail is contained in the photo and the larger it can be blown up for insertion into a brochure design.

Learning how to resize the photo in Photoshop is important for the printing stage. While the photo may appear great on the computer screen, it may not print as clearly. Too small a resolution, it will be grainy and pixelate, and too many and it may take too long to render. Typically, the photo should be actual size in inches and 300 dots per inch. For example, if the cover of the brochure is 11 by 8.5 inches, than the image should be slightly larger to allow for bleeds, at 300 DPI.

Improve and Experiment

Few pictures can be harmed by cropping. The viewfinders on most popular cameras do not show a 100 percent view, so cropping out extraneous edges most often improves the composition for layout in the brochure design. Often crops can isolate the main point of the picture for emphasis.

Rotating the picture can add drama or uniqueness but donât flip something upside down and make it unrecognizable. Remember the old Batman television show? The director used to rotate the camera 30 or 40 degrees to create an odd angle for the shot. It drew attention and added drama. Try it.

Colors and Curves

Photoshop has a large range of tools that allow the user to do just about anything to the image using commands to change the color, hue, saturation and lightness and darkness values. Most of these functions were never available in a darkroom. The best partâif you donât like it, donât save it.

Adding Text

The ability to add text to an image for a brochure design is a monumental step in producing a creative product. The words can be on a curved path, in any color of the rainbow and any font you can find. By embedding the text on the photo, it can be easily imported in the page layout program without further manipulation.

Apply Filters

The filter command offers various artistic and sharpening tools to further change a photograph, sometimes into something that appears as though it is a drawing. Try these for some variety or to make an average photo really pop.

So many other commands are available, from dodging and burning sections to saving the file in a number of different formats that is hard to imagine working on a brochure design without this innovative and ground breaking program.

This blog is listed under Development & Implementations and Digital Media & Games Community

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