Adobe Photoshop 7.0 was the last stand-alone version of the software before the creation of the Creative Suite series in which all of Adobe’s programs interconnect. It doesn’t have all the features of later versions, of course, but it is a good, basic photo-editing package, whether you work on the Apple Macintosh or in Windows. Here are some tips to get started.
After you have uploaded your images from your digital camera—or scanned them from negatives, slides or prints—the first thing to do is size them. Digital cameras tend to shoot images at 72 dots per inch resolution, but at a very large width and height. Open the first image (click “File,” then “Open”) and go to Image Size (click “Image,” then “Image Size”). You can set the width and height to anything you want, but for a standard, set a horizontal image’s width to 11 inches by 8.5 inches in height. Set the Resolution to 300 dpi for prints or 72 dpi for Web-only use. Save a copy of the image so you don’t change the original inadvertently.
Color and Tone
Working with the saved copy, it is time to fix the color and brightness of the image. There are several ways to do this, but the easiest and most effective in most cases is to use Auto Levels (click “Image,” then “Adjustments,” then “Auto Levels”). For some images, however, this won’t give you a pleasing result. To control the tone better, use Curves (click “Image,” then “Adjustments,” then “Curves”). This essentially is a bar graph where you click and hold on the line in the middle and drag up or down at an angle to change the overall brightness. When you get a brightness you like, set the line by unclicking, then go to the upper right portion of the line and tug that up or down for a level of white. Use the lower left portion to change the darker areas. You also can use Levels (click “Image,” then “Adjustments,” then “Levels”). This also gives you a bar graph, but without the central line. Under the bar graph are three slider controls, from left: darks, mid-tones and lights. You can move these to get the tone you want, too. Save the image, and you are ready to print.
Photoshop 7.0 also has a variety of special effects you can use to turn an image into a drawing or painting using Filters (click “Filters,” then “Artistic” or “Sketch”). Using Charcoal, for example (click “Filters,” then “Sketch,” then “Charcoal”), you can turn the photo into a sketch. Opening Charcoal will give you some controls to tweak the effect. Another effect you can try is Framing (click “Window,” then “Actions”). Go to the little arrow in the upper right corner of the Actions palette and you will find some preset groups at the bottom. Select Frames, then go back to the little arrow and change to Button Mode. The Frame buttons will appear, such as Wood Frame, Brushed Aluminum and Photo Corners. Clicking any of these will set a script in motion that automatically will frame your image. If you like the result, Flatten Layers (click “Layers,” then “Flatten Layers”) and save or print. If you don’t like the result, Revert the image to its original state (click “File,” then “Revert”).