A book by R. Scott Ireland
I remember my first one-day class on how to use Photoshop in 1997. During the long drive home I was excited by the possibilities of what I had seen a Photoshop Master accomplish. However, as I began work on my own images I had great difficulty implementing what I had “learned.” Even though I had diligently scribbled notes during the entire class, when faced with the power and complexity of the program, I hardly knew where to begin. Photoshop was speaking a language, indeed it was a language — one that I had not yet learned.
Over the years that followed I gradually learned Photoshop’s language. In hindsight, what I really needed was a primer that outlined, step by step, exactly how to optimize my images and why I needed to do it in a particular way — a book that cut no corners or assumed that, as a beginner, I did not need to understand the big picture, complex techniques or why things worked.
I have written Photoshop Astronomy to do just that. It is packed with tutorial examples that are specific to astronomical imaging. Each Photoshop step is explained in great detail. A beginner will see results immediately. But make no mistake; this is not a “Photoshop for Dummies.” I have not avoided complex material or procedures. Quite to the contrary, I have included difficult, extended image-processing tasks along with the simpler ones. Once you see how even the difficult procedures are worked with my step-by-step examples, their “difficulty” vanishes.
There are many things within this guide that even seasoned digital imagers will find challenging and useful. I have also included explanations of how and why things work. “Do this” and “Do that” are not sufficient. It is my firm belief that to speak the language of image processing you must understand the meaning of its “words” and their syntax. I have seen this method work during the many seminars I have conducted for amateur astronomers across the United States.