1 Photoshop Actions
What if I told you that by the end of this article I could drastically boost your Photoshop productivity? Interested? That's actually not an exaggeration if you've never taken advantage of Photoshop's actions and batch processing tools. If you find yourself repeatedly performing the same (often mindless) tasks in Photoshop one step at a time, I'm going to show you a better way to work.
Actions are essentially a way to have Photoshop perform a series of predetermined steps on an image. You create them by first manually performing steps for Photoshop to record. But don't worry, Photoshop isn’t timing you when you record an action. No matter how long you take to perform the steps, once the action is created Photoshop will execute it as quickly as possible, which will always be faster than we mere humans could do it. Most Photoshop commands can be included as part of an action, and I'll show you how you can incorporate those that cannot.
We'll explore how to:
- Create a basic action
- Create an action with a modal control
- Create an action with a stop
- Batch process images
- Create a droplet
- Use Photoshop's Image Processor
In this article I'll be using Photoshop CS5. While Photoshop Elements cannot be used to create actions, it can import and run actions created in CS5.
Actions live in the Actions panel, available if you go to Window>Actions. Without creating a single action of your own you’ll see the list of default actions that ship with Photoshop. It's important to note that an action must reside in a folder, called an action set. You can name both the Action Set as well as the individual actions. Because Action Sets are the primary means of sorting and finding your actions, I recommend giving them descriptive names that relate to the actions contained within them.
|A collection of Photoshop's pre-built
actions can be found in the Default
Actions folder of the Actions panel.
|More action sets are available
via the panel's fly-out menu. Click
on one to add its contents to the
Let's begin by creating a new action set to store our custom actions. Click the folder icon at the bottom of the Actions panel (shown below). A dialog then appears in which you name this new set. In the examples below I typed 'Ellen’s Actions'. This set is where I will store the actions I'll be demonstrating in this article. As you start to create additional actions on your own, however, I recommend that you create several distinct sets that are geared towards specific techniques such as resizing, editing or prepping for output and name them accordingly.
In this action we're going to add a copyright watermark to an image. Open an image in Photoshop (the simplest, though not the only way to begin) and then click the New Action icon (shown above). Because we're going to create a white watermark to use on images that are 1280 pixels wide, I name the action accordingly (shown below).
I've given the action a descriptive name and chosen to house it inside the 'Ellen's Actions' set.
Notice that you can also assign a Fn key to invoke the action, as well as give it a color label.
Press the Record button. To create the watermark perform these steps:
5. Go to Layer>Flatten Image.
6. Press the Stop recording icon.
7. Close your image (without saving it).
That's it. You’ve created a watermark action. To test it, open the same image you began with, select your newly created action from the Actions panel and click the Play button.
Before we go any further, you should know that by default the actions sets you create are stored in Photoshop's preferences. Should those get reset or corrupted, you've lost your actions. Fortunately you can save action sets to a more easily accesible location on your hard drive, which I strongly recommend.
|With an action set highlighted, clicking on
the panel's fly-out menu lets you save the
it and all of the actions it contains.
|Action sets are saved with the '.atn'
extention and can be stored on any shared
drive within your network.
Doing so allows you to export them to another computer, share them with others (including Elements users) and easily bring them into a newer version of Photoshop should you upgrade.
Sep 30, 2014
Jun 18, 2014
Jun 18, 2014
Jun 18, 2014
|scrum break away by al booth|
from Sport competition
|Parking Deck by Olaf R|
from Your City - Parking Garage
|Communication Tech by alberto_b|
|With & without by OBellini|
from Empty - Full
The winners of the 10th annual iPhone Photography Awards have been announced, and they're striking.
If you were disappointed by reports that the Sony a9 struggles with adapted Canon glass, you might be able to take some comfort from Metabones' latest update.
Blackmagic Design has dropped the prices of its Video Assist external monitor/recorders for a limited time. Prices of the SD card-based recorders will be reduced in all markets, while supplies last.
Instagram has started testing a new feature called 'favorites' that enables users to share photos with only certain people. Only a small number of users have access to the feature at this time, though it may roll out to everyone in the future.
Lensbaby has announced the Velvet 85 F1.8 for interchangeable lens cameras. The lens is available in Canon, Nikon, Sony E, Sony A, Pentax K, Samsung NX, Fuji X and Micro 4/3 mounts.
It's the end of an era. Parent company Micron has announced that they are discontinuing the Lexar retail brand. This includes 'memory cards, USB flash drives, readers, and storage drives.'
Youthful trainspotter turned adult photographer, John Sanderson has traveled across the United States, documenting the country's railroads. But you won't find any trains in his pictures.
Sony's new CMOS sensor is backside-illuminated and offers an all-pixel global reset function which should drastically reduce rolling shutter effect when panning.
Shoulderpod has converted its offerings into a lego-like modular system by offering all individual parts of existing products separately, allowing users to build exactly the rig they need for a specific project or simply replace a damaged part.
Photographer Felix AAA has spent the past ten years touring the world with a variety of musicians, capturing behind the scenes shots and portraits. He talks about some of his favorite images on the FujiFilm Blog.
A roll of film discovered in an Argus C2 from an Oregon Goodwill turned out to contain some incredible images – and has been re-united with the original owner's family.
Nikon's 28mm F1.4E ED appears to roundly complete the company's updated lineup of fast, professional prime lenses. We've already seen some initial images from a Nikon ambassador, but we've worked through a gallery of our own, with a lens of our own over the past week. Take a look.
Google is holding a competition that could see your Pixel photos gracing millions of screens.
Nikon's 100th birthday party continues worldwide as a distributor in Italy organized a one-of-a-kind feat: assembling the world's largest 'human camera' from over a thousand volunteers.
Ricoh has dropped the price of its Theta SC 360 spherical camera by to $199, a reduction of roughly $50. The camera features two 12MP sensors and can record Full HD video in addition to stills.
Photojournalist Pete Souza served as the presidential photographer for both Ronald Reagan and Barack Obama. In an interview with fellow photographer Marcia Nighswander, he discusses several of his most noteworthy images.
Photographer Michael Wolf has been documenting the crowded conditions of Tokyo's subway trains since the 1990s. The photos have gone viral regularly in the years since he started the project, and he just published the final edition in the series.
The just-launched OnePlus 5 is getting a minor update that should improve camera function.
A Belgian camera shop is showing off an extremely rare, limited 'Rex Edition' Nikon D500. The cosmetic alterations were provided by a customer's German Shepherd Rex, who got ahold of the camera within a day of its purchase.
Adobe says that many of its users have been relying on SkyBox for VR editing and it therefore made sense to make the plug-ins available to all subscribers through Creative Cloud.
The Pictar grip provides a number of customizable physical controls for your iPhone camera, but at its price point we would like to see better materials and build quality.
Peak Design's 'consider every detail' approach shines in the Everyday Backpack. While expensive, it's one of the best options out there for a photographer who needs to pack a lot of stuff in addition to gear.
If you're thinking of using Canon's sports glass on the Sony a9, think again. The ultra-fast camera slows way down when you attach off-brand glass.
The Polish town of Katowice is not famed as an area of beauty, but as all photographers know, that doesn't mean that beauty can't be found if you look in the right places. Mariusz Pietranek used a drone to look down on the colorful sedimentation tanks at an ironworks.
New York Times video journalist Ben Solomon spent a harrowing three weeks accompanying Iraqi Major Sajjad al-Hour as he and his men fought to retake Mosul from I.S. forces.
The 3D VR camera launched through a crowdfunding campaign in 2015 goes on sale beginning June 26.
Noctilucent clouds, a crescent moon and Venus were visible in the pre-dawn sky over Budapest yesterday. Photographer György Soponyai captured NASA's astronomy picture of the day.
Squirming pets won't sit still for photos? A Kickstarter campaign is looking to help.
Find out how Chris Burkard shifted from editorial photography to his true passions: landscapes, conservation and, of course, surfing.
The updated EyeEm app scans your camera roll and picks images that are composed particularly well, have the best quality, or highest chance of selling on EyeEm Market.