You can never learn all the possible combinations of what can be done with Adobe Photoshop. While you can certainly learn the tools and the menu commands, the combinations of how these tools work together offer an infinite number of possibilities. This is why even though I've been using Photoshop since version 2.0 in the 90's, I still learn something new every time I watch someone else use Photoshop. There are tons of books, online tutorials, online classes, YouTube videos, etc. offering to teach you Photoshop. However, Photoshop CS 5 now offers a remote connection capability that includes the iPad. This opens Photoshop up for Apps to drive it. The folks over at Dark Glass Media have taken advantage of these new hooks in Photoshop and have begun offering digital magazine/tutorials that not only walk you step-by-step through various tasks, but also at the tap of an onscreen button the app can drive Photoshop and perform the task for you!
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I bought a couple of these Apps to try out and I was really impressed with how well they are put together. Once you enable Photoshop CS 5 (5.1 or 5.04) to allow remote connections, you can then launch one of the DI Direct Apps and connect to you copy of Photoshop via your WiFi connection. Then you can proceed with the lessons and whenever you want to have the App perform the task in your copy of Photoshop just tap the button. The App can even transmit and open up the same sample image that you see in the App to your copy of Photoshop so that you have the exact image that you see in the tutorial. Of course you can use your own photos too.
This opens up a whole new door for learning software and this is a great example of how a developer can exploit the new Photoshop CS 5 Remote Connection hooks. The Apps work as advertised and when you rotate to landscape view you can see a gallery of different effects to try. Awesome App! My only ask would be a mode that allows me to try an effect, but do it step-by-step instead of running through all the steps instantly. Let's say an effect takes 5 steps, I'd like the option to tap a manual mode and apply each step one-by-one so that I can see the effects build up. Currently when you try one of their gallery effects it just does it all in one swoop. Otherwise, I have no complaints. The App is well designed, works as advertised and is cost effective! Each App focuses on a single area of Photoshop, so if you're looking for an end to end class, this probably isn't what you want. If you're looking to learn a technique here and there, then you'll love these.