Damien Symonds Photoshop Classes – How I learned to edit
I have been asked countless times how I learned to edit my images. So I thought I would let you all in on the secret, and the truth is, I asked Damien! Yes, he taught me everything I know. So, if you need any Photoshop question answered, you need to ASK DAMIEN, because he always answers you and he always knows the answer.
So who is Damien?
Well, he is a guru/master/wizard with Photoshop. Call him what you want but he truly is the BEST Photoshop instructor out there. Join his forum for free for advice, tips and tricks. And if you really want to learn and empower yourself take his classes.
Luckily for me, I found Damien early in my career, so I didn’t spend countless hours watching videos that didn’t make sense or paying for expensive classes that didn’t start with the basics. He is also very, and by very, I really mean exceptionally generous with his time and completely FREE advice.
The thing with Damien is, he is honest with his critique, and he is passionate about teaching the correct methods of using Photoshop. Like any good teacher he wants us to master the tools for ourselves, so a little “constructive criticism” from him, which felt harsh at the time was all I needed to spur me on to learn the correct way.
His classes are legendary and so inexpensive. They will truly rock your world.
He has several classes but my advice would be to start at the beginning and do the RAW class first. If you’re shooting in raw format and wondering why everyone told you to do so because your images look flat and dull, well this is the place where you have so much control over how your final image will look. This is where the magic really begins. Once you understand what RAW processing is and why it’s so important in your editing workflow, your world will open up. There’s one catch, he will insist you need to be calibrated. More about that here.
Once you have mastered RAW, I would suggest the LAYERS & MASKS class. A real beginner module that’s quick and easy peasy to grasp and is the foundation of all your Photoshop work going forward.
NEXT up is LEVELS This is where your world will really start to rock and you can begin creating and playing and developing your own unique look.
There are 2 more advanced classes:
The PRINT SHARPENING class. And who would have thought? But this is a game changer if you print for your clients. I would not have believed it myself until I did the class and ordered the different size prints and tested it for myself. It transforms great photos into WOW images you can be proud to sell and display.
And finally the best class is for last – the SKIN class. Pure genius. If you’ve struggled with skin tones, all the answers are here.
No more expensive actions and presets that never work. You will be in control of how your images turn out. Once you have these basics mastered you can edit anything from simple to multiple layered projects.
Here is a little example of how my workflow look:
This image is straight from the camera and yes, I completely underexposed this, so I thought it was a good example to use to show you the power of shooting and processing in RAW.
This image has had raw processing done in ACR
My Final edit – finished in Photoshop using a combination of layers and the skin class.