My ISP publishes a monthly newsletter and they include programs/sites of interest. This is what they published this month. Thought of this thread when I read it. I've never used Photoshop so don't know anything about it except what they said in the newsletter.
"Adobe Photoshop is one of the most powerful programs available to professional photographers and graphic artists. It is also very expensive to purchase and difficult to learn. Take that powerful image editing technology, apply it to a new program, make it simple and make it free. What have you got? Adobe Photoshop Express.
Adobe Photoshop Express, http://www.photoshop.com/express
, was made public in beta form at the end of March 2008. It is a free Rich Internet Application (RIA) available to anyone who wants to store, sort and show off digital photos with eye-catching effects. Photoshop Express allows users to store up to 2 gigabytes of images online for free, make edits to their photos, and share them online in creative ways, including downloading and uploading photos from popular social networking sites like Facebook.
Photoshop Express works with JPEG photos only-the most common format used in digital cameras. With Photoshop Express, photos can be edited non-destructively so the original image is always preserved. Non-destructive editing allows you to add and remove changes quickly just by using the checkboxes beside each tool, turning effects on and off. Standard edits, such as removing blemishes and red-eye, converting to black and white, cropping and resizing, are easy, and even special effects require no experience. Users with limited photo editing knowledge can simply select what looks best from a line-up of sample photos with visual hints showing different variations of the added effect.
Photoshop Express Edits
Crop & Rotate-Turn it, straighten it, crop out the background.
Auto Correct-Automatic, one-click, optimal lighting and contrast adjustment.
Exposure-Change the brightness of the photo.
Red-Eye Removal-Removes red eyes caused by some camera flashes.
Touchup-Remove scratches and other imperfections.
Saturation-Ramp up the colors to blinding brightness, dampen them down to black and white, or anywhere in between.
White Balance-Ever notice how people look different inside an office with the ugly fluorescent tubes, as opposed to outside on a bright sunny day? Adjust the white balance and you change the type of lighting in the photo.
Highlight-The brightest parts of a photo are the highlights. This control lets you brighten or darken just the brightest part of the photo, without affecting the shadows.
Fill Light-If you take a shot facing into the sun, your subject can end up too dark due to the camera's automatic exposure adjustment. Fill Light brightens the dark area without over brightening the background.
Sharpen-Brings everything into focus.
Soft Focus-Creates a subtle blur for artistic effect.
Hue-Changes all the colors in a photo at once.
Black & White-Control how the colors are converted when you change a photo to black and white.
Tint-Imagine instead of black and white, you want red and white, or pale brown and white for an old Western look.
Sketch-Makes any photo look like you drew it yourself.
Distort-Stretch, twist, bulge specific areas of your photos.
Try out things like Auto Correct, Exposure, White Balance, Highlight, or Fill Light. You can even add multiple effects if you want, and if it doesn't turn out right, you can always undo the changes later.
Some of the flashier special effects, like Pop Color, are great fun. Pop Color selects an object in an image, mutes the background color of the photo and allows the user to switch the object's color so it jumps off the page. Sketch effects help photos look like drawings, and the Distort feature allows you to distort facial features or objects within the images for a humorous or artistic effect.
With Photoshop Express, you can share your photographs in a variety of ways. Photos can be uploaded to your own online Gallery hosted by Adobe, and embedded or linked to Facebook, Photobucket and Picasa albums, as well as personal blogs. All of this happens without having to leave the application.
For best results, Adobe recommends a computer with Windows XP or Vista, or Mac OS 10.4 or later; a minimum screen resolution of 1024x768; 512 MB of RAM; Internet Explorer 6 or 7 on a Windows machine, Safari 3.0.4 or later on a Mac, or Firefox 2 or later on either platform.
Other than a capable computer, an Internet connection and an up-to-date Flash® Player 9 are all that are required to experience Adobe Photoshop Express. The application does not work on systems that do not support full Flash.
During the public beta period, Adobe will solicit Photoshop Express user feedback on product features and functionality, which will continue to evolve over time. According to Adobe, a subscription service will eventually be available for Photoshop Express, which will offer additional options."