Category Archives: Tutorials

Color replacement using the HUE blending mode

For this tutorial we’ll be using the HUE color mode to replace an image’s color without affecting the underlying contrast or luminosity.
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Grids, Guides, Proportions and InDesign Math

You can get obsessed with grids. Grids act as the skeleton or backbone of most design work and are considered integral to the process of balancing aesthetics with information exchange. Grids are beloved by some and bemoaned by others – some find the rigid parameters invaluable to harmonious design, others find it limiting and constricting. I find myself falling somewhere in the middle – there’s an inner geek inside of me that loves to find a clever way to break up space, but there also the anti-establishment side of my personality that likes to break rules and push the boundaries. For that reason, I like using grids as I see it as an opportunity to act as both lawman and outlaw, I can be both the cops and the robbers.
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A Digital Watermark

This tutorial will provide some tips on creating a digital watermark, making alpha channels and using layer adjustments. There are endless variations on this so it would be in your best interest to give yourself time to experiment and  play around with settings you like.

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Photoshop Tutorial – Halftones…and beyond

A student of mine wanted to create text that had an old school analog halftone look. While the Photoshop Halftone filter does an adequate job, it is fairly limited and doesn’t allow for a full range of experimentation and exploration.
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Homage to MacPaint..

…or why I made an Illustrator swatch set of the original Macpaint patterns

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Photoshop/InDesign Tutorial – Create a super-duper black graphic

To provide yourself some flexibility in InDesign with scanned graphics – changing colors to match swatches, using graphics as knockouts etc.. graphics need to be converted to a superblack – or in this case a super-duper black – a CMYK file with all levels of ink at 100%

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Photoshop Tutorial – Photoshop Cross Fader

So, my friend Mike writes me again
Yo Nick-baby,

I thought I could figure out my photoshop trick to have five pictures blend seamlessly into one another, but no can do.  I re-learned how to make and use adjustment layers, and how to use a gradient to mask the amount of the adjustment that shows through…..but how do i set up an adjustment layer for opacity/transparency?


Mike, I can help you!
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InDesign Tutorial #5 – Transparency

A student asked if it would be possible to convert a drawing from full color to black and white in InDesign. The answer is “of course you can but why would you want to do it when you have better tools in Photoshop?” The method uses InDesign’s effects Palette to do the conversion which is why this questions lends itself nicely to making a tutorial exploring Transparency.
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InDesign Tutorial #4 – Highlighted text

I’ve been seeing this style in a few magazines of late, I think its some kind of digital equivalent of a dymo tape label.

I think it gives layouts a kind of digitally scrapbook look and feel

Below are steps to make this effect in InDesign plus a variation on the theme

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Indesign Tutorial #3 – Interview Article

In this tutorial we’ll set up a magazine page for an interview. This tutorial will introduce importing text from Microsoft Word, Character Styles, Drop Caps and some graphic design decisions to introduce a visual hierarchy to your article.

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