If you’re new to digital photography and, more importantly, if you are a beginner when it comes to using Photoshop, this is an absolutely great place to start. The book doesn’t make the false pretense of trying to cover every aspect and feature within the massive Adobe Photoshop CS3 program. What it does deliver is an efficient guide to identifying useful tasks and how to get them done quickly. How this differs from a lot of other manuals is the way in which author Scott Kelby uses humor to teach. The tone and flow of the prose keeps the four hundred and sixty plus pages of this book from becoming a chore; this does not fall into the realm of tedious medical text reading. It really remembers that doing things in Photoshop is supposed to be fun.
After a lighthearted (and unexpected) question-and-answer section where the author asks and answers his own questions, The Adobe Photoshop CS3 Book for Digital Photographers jumps right into it. The book is broken down into thirteen chapters: Bridge Essentials, Advanced Bridge Techniques, Processing Your Images Using Camera Raw, Resizing and Cropping Your Images, Step-By-Step Printing and Color Management, Color Correction Secrets, How To Create Stunning B&W Images, Dealing with Common Digital Image Problems, Retouching Portraits, Special Effects for Photographers, Sharpenings Techniques, How to Show Your Work, and last (but not least) My Step-By-Step Workflow.
Along with all the tips and tricks, each chapter is absolutely packed with beautiful color and black-and-white photos. They are not only nice to look at; the photos (along with the concise descriptions) really help you understand the desired effect and what it takes to achieve them. This is a great thing to have, especially when you’re starting out. Sometimes there is a need to be all encompassing, and that will just frustrate the newbie. There are chapters that the author fully admits an entire book could be dedicated to. Instead, The Adobe Photoshop CS3 Book for Digital Photographers gives just enough to get you going without whalloping you over the head with information. You could find books that are more dense, and more comprehensive. But overall, this book is an excellent primer for those looking into sharpening their skills for best utilizing Photoshop CS3.