Photoshop applications


January 24, 2003, 12:18 AM
Need some advice from someone good with Photoshop.
I'm not all familiar with what one can do with the program. Is it possible to take a photo of a blued gun, say a 1911, and manipulate it to see how it would look with different accessories?
Before I spend the $$$ I'd like to see how my gun would look better with the engraved Alumagrips, or checkered wood; stainless safety etc.
:confused: :confused:

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January 24, 2003, 12:44 AM
Sometimes it's hard to match the lighting, so you may have a really bright and crisp gun with some manufactuer's kinda dark and crummy photos. I'm not good enough to do it nicely, but it can be done.

You need a version that supports layers. That's the most important thing. I have 5.0LE as it came with my Canon G2 Tactical. Not sure if Photoshop Elements (a dumbed down but very adequate rendition of Photoshop) can do layers, but it's affordable for your purposes.

I've done it before, but found that your best bet is to try to find someone who has your setup and see how it looks on an actual gun, because it can be hard to scale everything to size perfectly in Photoshop.

Hope this helps.

January 24, 2003, 12:54 AM
HOLY COW! Just checked prices on Photoshop. I could buy a new gun instead. :eek:
I could buy a pair a Alumagrips and throw 'em away if I didn't like them and still come out ahead!
Thanks anyway Skunk!

January 24, 2003, 12:56 AM
Photoshop is quite capable of doing what you ask ... in fact I've done that very thing.

What you want to do is put the picture of the gun on one layer and put the pictures of the accessories on another layer, then either erase the extra bits around the accessory, or better yet paint on a layer mask.

I work for a catalog company and spend 8+ hours a day editing photos in Photoshop. Every day I'm amazed by what the program can do.

If you can't afford Photoshop and are unwilling to download a warezed version off the net, there are other programs that will work and are free.

One is a windows version of Gimp (photoshop like program for Linux):

Attached is a joke I put together for a thread over on the makarov forum a while back :)
Please keep in mind that this was thrown together in about 10 minutes and is not indicative of my best work :p

January 24, 2003, 01:09 AM
Try downloading a demo of Photoshop Elements and see if it does layers. The Lite Edition is more than enough for me.

Guy B. Meredith
January 24, 2003, 01:10 AM
Try Real World Photoshop by Bruce Fraser. Bruce is a photographer and frequent contributor to reviews and informational articles on color management in the printing process. Also a nice person to deal with.

I have done community work for Xerox which promotes the use of our products for high quality image production. On one of the projects a young man from Support Oakland Artists did the Xerox ad page. He took a waistline up image of an Astronaut, added legs and changed the tool the astronaut held to some Xerox symbol all freehand using Photoshop. He created the legs by "cloning" the color and feel of the fabric in the rest of the suit into the leg shapes. Proportion and all. Took him less than an hour to do that and the rest of the image between crashes of our ancient Mac.

Possibilities are limited more by your imagination and skill than by the product.

January 24, 2003, 01:24 AM
What Guy said. You can do just about any sort of image manipulation in PhotoShop, limited only by your skill, imagination, and the quality of photos you have to work with.

If PShop is too pricey for you, check out Paint Shop Pro, it's priced more on a consumer rather than professional level, and does a lot of the same things.

January 24, 2003, 01:25 AM
Checked and was overwhelmed by the selection of shareware programs

January 24, 2003, 10:54 AM
photoshop is so much fun....

January 24, 2003, 11:00 AM
actualy had my wife convinced that my buddy and I were shooting in the house with thses 2. The look on her face was priceless.

Dan Shapiro
January 24, 2003, 11:34 AM
If you really want to get the full version of a software package, then take a class at your local junior college and learn the tool. As a "student" you can get the full version at a ridiculously low price. Up until the budget "crisis" here in the PRK, JC classes were 11 buck a unit. Darn good deal if you are looking at a $1000 software package for about $200. You cannot legally do commercial work with it, but I doubt that's what you want to do.

January 24, 2003, 11:43 AM
One thing to watch for when photoshopping.

Let's say I wanted to refinish a Beretta. Beretta's photos on their web, they are taken from a slightly upwards angle.

When I want to mount optics or taclights or other parts on a quality Beretta photo, it looks slightly 'wrong'....

January 24, 2003, 12:37 PM
What you can do with Photoshop is only limited by your time and skill. It's so easy to get any piece of software these days using P2P programs.

January 24, 2003, 02:51 PM

No ads or spamming, just do a search for it...

I just got Photoshop 7.0, but I actually like 5.0 better because it is more simple to use and not so automated.

January 24, 2003, 05:52 PM
I got into Photoshop almost exactly eight years ago, and now that's how I make the majority of my living. It's the most amazing tool out there, and one of the most user-friendly programs I've ever used. A dozen or so years ago it would have been impossible for me to do something like this:

January 24, 2003, 05:56 PM
Or this:

January 24, 2003, 06:02 PM
Let's try that again.

In doing the photographs that are going to be combined, the toughest part--as Skunkabilly mentioned--is making sure that all the elements will line up properly in the end. Yes, you can do some manipulation on the scope to make it look like it's somewhat in the same perspective as the gun, but nothing beats gettting it right.

The problem with trying to do it for a living is that most of the young art directors/designers coming out of school are competent Photoshop users. My Photoshop-only clients tend to be the older folks who never got into using the program and don't want to learn it.

January 24, 2003, 06:04 PM
Like mocking the hard working men of retail security :evil:

Standing Wolf
January 24, 2003, 11:09 PM
It continues to amaze me that Photoshop has so little competition. I read recently that over 95% of all images on the internet were handled with the program.

I currently have versions 4.01, 5.5, 6.01 and 7 on assorted hard drives. I use 5.5 because the newer versions devoured still more screen real estate.

The only other program I've ever seen that's even near the same ball park is Painter, but a.) it's highly specialized for artists, and b.) even after spending a decade working in it, I can assure you it's got a user interface from the far end of hell's furnace room.

I think Corel had a Photoshop imitation for awhile, but I've never so much as seen a copy of it on a Macintosh.

January 25, 2003, 12:35 AM
You can get Corel Photopaint for Mac now ... I still prefer photoshop.

BTW, Painter is now owned by Corel too

In Photoshop 7, you can actualy put all your pallets in the bar across the top and it will take up less screen realestate then 5.5 (but I've got a 21" monitor at work running 1600x1200 and a 19" at home at 1280x1024 so screen real estate isn't a problem)

also I use a Wacom tablet and PS7 interfaces with the tablet better then earlier versions.

Standing Wolf
January 25, 2003, 12:57 AM
Hello, Zundfolge!

I'm using a 21" inch main monitor and a secondary 19" monitor for all my tool palettes—but Photoshop 6 and 7 won't let me move that @#$%^&! bar from my main monitor off to the secondary screen. I'd put up with its essential uselessness if I could move it, but it's locked on my main screen.

The real advantage of 5.5, of course, is that all my third party filters work. I'm using every version of Kai's Power Tools that was ever issued, as well as Convolver, Paint Alchemy, Terrazzo, Screens, Xenofex, Eye Candy, et cetera, et cetera, et cetera. I don't use all of them all the time, but when you need Convolver, there's no substitute. OS X is half the problem, to be sure, but Adobe could have tried a lot harder to open new versions of the program to old filters. Grrrrrrrrrrr!

January 25, 2003, 01:26 AM
Photoshop is definately popular and expensive. My wife uses it daily, but frankly I prefer Paint Shop Pro. You can download a fully functional demo of it at and if you decide to buy it it's much cheaper than Photoshop.

Some will say you get what you pay for but for what you want to do - build fantasy guns with a photo editor - PSP will do just fine.

The GIMP that Zundfolge suggested works well too, but in my opinion has a steeper learning curve than PSP. It does have the advantage of being totally free, which may make it worth it to spend the time to learn the tool.

January 25, 2003, 01:27 AM
I use it about 3 hours or so a day and have to agree - it's the cat's ***. I've finally gotten to the point that I know the hotkeys well enough that I no longer use the toolbar, or several of the pallettes, so that opens a ton of real estate. All I need now is the navigator, history, & layers / path pallettes, everything else is gone. Hit "F" a few times, and go to town.

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