Photoshop 401 – Dan Margulis Applied Color Theory in Photoshop

Class Description
An intensive, small group, hands-on, 3-day color correction Course with Dan Margulis This is a demanding and sharply-focused seminar for those who are serious about improving the way their color images appear on the printed page. The class is image enhancement/color correction only. There is no coverage of special effects. The emphasis is on the use of input-output curves to improve quality. THIS IS THE CLASS THAT MANY PROFESSIONAL PHOTOSHOP INSTRUCTORS TAKE. The majority of Participants are not from the geographic locale of the classes but fly in from out-of-state or from other countries. Classes normally run from Thursday through Saturday. Sessions begin early (9 a.m. on the first day only, earlier thereafter) and continue well into the evening. The goal is to pack a week’s worth of content into three long days. Each student is assigned a fully-equipped Macintosh. Lecture/discussions are followed by sessions in which each member of the class works on improving the same images. The results are compared against one another and critiqued. The images–around 20 in all, depending upon class speed–are typical of those encountered in professional work and represent a variety of requirements. In addition to professional retouchers, this class appeals to photographers, art directors, and anyone involved with image manipulation. Familiarity with Photoshop is a prerequisite, but, as this is a concept-based course, expertise in the program is not. The class is not version-specific. For those who are looking for more foundational Photoshop training, it is recommended that Participants attend some of the other Photoshop training at Sterling Ledet & Associates first. The class was overhauled at the start of 2008 to accommodate the new “Picture Postcard Workflow” introduced by Dan Margulis at Photoshop World in 2007. Those having previously taken the course would find substantial new content.

Course Benefits
Dan Margulis, a veteran prepress manager, is author of Professional Photoshop Fifth Edition, (Peachpit Press, 2006) the leading book on professional color correction. His book Photoshop LAB Color (Peachpit Press, 2005) is an international bestseller. His column, “Makeready,” focusing on production issues, appeared in both Electronic Publishing and Photoshop User magazines, the only such column ever to appear regularly in two publications simultaneously. In 2001, he was one of the first three persons, and the only writer, inducted into the Photoshop Hall of Fame created by the National Association of Photoshop Professionals. In its citation, the NAPP said, “Dan’s ability to reduce complicated concepts to words that users can understand and his insistence on dealing with real-world relevance have made him today’s most influential voice in professional color reproduction.”

Course Outline
DAY 1: Concepts and Curves

  • Objectives of color correction
  • How humans perceive color
  • Differences between human perception and that of a camera

DAY 2: Colorspaces in depth

  • Theory behind use of CMY as colorants
  • How the transition from RGB to CMYK is made.
  • Role of black ink and GCR
  • GCR and UCR differentiated
  • When is GCR appropriate?
  • Anticipating press problems
  • Limitation of the printing process
  • Separating color from contrast in RGB
  • The new “Picture Postcard Workflow”
  • Basic LAB curves
  • Retouching advantages of LAB
  • Creation of masks with LAB
  • The Man from Mars Method

DAY 3: Putting it All Together

The majority of the day is spent working on images that illustrate the points covered by the course. The lecture/presentation portion of the day is programmed by the class: each student submits one topic or question, and these topics will form the core of a two-hour presentation by the instructor.

Our goal is to make sure your class meets your objectives, not ours. Therefore, all of our outlines are treated as guides to help steer the workshop. This outline does not guarantee that all the topics listed will be covered in the time allowed. The amount of material covered is based on the skill level of the student audience. We may change or alter course topics to best suit the classroom situation.