Hi & welcome to my PS blog! This blog is for full PS although some steps will also work in PSE. Most actions, unless stated are not PSE compatiable. I do try to make an action for PSE from time to time. I hope you have fun here and learn some things along the way. If you have any questions, just drop me a comment! :O)

Thursday, May 14, 2009

Let's talk ACTIONS post 1...

I think that's a fun place to start. So I will share a little something you with...I have a MAJOR addiction to actions. Like I need a serious intervention. I have an actions panel FULL of amazing actions. Which isn't necessarily a bad thing. But when you hardly use them, it's bad! I have serious control issues when I edit and have always preferred to do it by hand.

But recently I've recorded my own actions for standard processing, which has sped up my work flow. And with this I've learned how much I love the speed. So I've told myself that for a couple weeks, I WILL try ALL my actions and see what they are about. I'll buy a set, play with it & dissect it, learn it and then go back to my recorded actions. These poor actions that I buy are not living their destiny. And it's wasting my money. I'm about to change that. And my hope is that as I post these examples and my opinions on different sets that I have & love, it will help you find some great actions that will suit your style and hopefully speed up your work flow as well. Actions are a big time saver, but also an AMAZING way to learn your program. It's a sin to run an action as is, flatten and save. They are meant as a starting off point and then meant to be adjusted. I dissect my actions and try to figure out every layer, what settings and how it's effecting my shots. They should be a learning tool as well as a way to get your edits you can't get on your own and to speed up your work flow.

I do have one set I do use A LOT and I will share those next post. They are my FAVORITE actions of all time and I use them a lot. They are great for outdoor summer shots...just in time. BUT...you'll have to wait a few days to hear about those.

So this is the first post of my actions reviews/samples series.

Today...I'm going to talk about a set I bought last week! They are called Childs Play and here is the website... http://www.petamazey.com/actions/actions.html They are great for clean crisp edits and will really help you POP your shots. And they are VERY affordable. When I first bought the action, I thought they were okay. But I decided to really play with them today. To try different combos and see what end result I can get. I tend to be on the creative edit side of the fence and I came up with a combo that I loved. So I give these actions TWO THUMBS UP. And I will say that Childs Play does not know me and I have nothing to gain by this review!
Here is my SOOC shot. Brought through ACR and resized and sharpened for the web in CS4...

And here is my final edit! I'm VERY happy with this!
And here they are side by side.

And here are a few more examples...
This is my beautiful cousin...

And Nugget again...
And please excuse my dog pics but I don't have a lot of full size pics on my laptop and I was too lazy to hook up the EHD (external hard drive).
This is Dixie...our beloved crazy yet gorgeous puppy!
And for this shot I just tried a really standard clean it up pop the color edit...
So that's my review and examples for the GREAT Childs Play actions. There is a Flickr group to share shots that you ran her actions on if you want to check it out... http://www.flickr.com/groups/childsplay/
I hope this was helpful and I sure had fun playing with her actions and I will be using them now that I've really gotten my hands dirty with them. And remember...GOOD actions allow you lots of freedom to adjust them!


Anonymous May 14, 2009 at 5:35 PM  

Great new site Crystal...can't wait to read/see more! You go girl. :)

Anonymous May 15, 2009 at 8:34 AM  

I'm so glad you are here - can't wait to learn!

Mindy August 28, 2009 at 2:21 PM  

Thank you for this great blog - I can tell I will be a frequent visitor! Thanks also for your help in the ivillage group. By the way - LOVE your dog! You can see my two fur babies (did I really just call them that??) on my blog www.beansblessings.blogspot.com
Thanks again for a super cool blog!

momaziggy August 28, 2009 at 2:24 PM  

You are very welcome Mindy! I remember when I first started and how overwhelming it all was. So I'm really happy to help and give back! And OMG your babies (fur) are SO beautiful! What joy they bring!!!!! :O)

Kevin & Ashley September 1, 2009 at 10:41 PM  

I am loving this! I want these actions badly (I have become an action junky!) Are they still some of your favs?

momaziggy September 1, 2009 at 11:02 PM  

Hey Ashley! I'm so glad you are finding the blog helpful! Things have been a bit crazy with the fires here, so as soon as things settle down I'll post more!

I think these actions are great for beginners. I don't use them much now, but they are great if you are first starting out and need great quick actions. And they are priced really well too so I don't think you'd regret them! :O)

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About my PS Blog

Hi, my name is Crystal and I am addicted to Photoshop. I have PSCS4 and it's my other half. I love photography, but sometimes I think it's a means to edit!

So I thought it would be fun to have a place to post the free action sets I record, tips and tricks that I learn in PS and tuts for various different types of photo editing.

I hope you enjoy and find my PS blog helpful and if you have any questions, leave me a comment with your questions and your email address and I will get back to you!

Happy editing!

About Me

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I am a stay at home to 2 great girls. My older daughter Haylee just started middle school and my younger daughter Avyree is in 1st grade! I have been married 11 years to my hubs Eric. I got my first DSLR June 31, 2008 and have been hooked ever since! My style is primarily Lifestyle! I like to take a natural and real life approach to my images! I want them to remind me of WHO my girls were when they were little, not just what they looked like. I love to edit and my editing style is always evolving and changing! I like variety and photography is a means to edit! I shoot Canon (full frame) and almost only primes. I pull out my wide angle zoom from time to time! Thanks for stopping by and I hope you like our story...
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