book reviews

Commercial Photoshop with Bert Monroy by Bert Monroy

Wow! If you've never seen or read any of Bert Monroy's stuff you're missing out on the real power of Photoshop. Bert is a master at Photoshop and a true digital artist. Though his book is titled "Commercial Photoshop" this book is much more than that. Bert also shows you how he incorporates Illustrator and three-D programs to create his final works of art.

You'll pick up some really cool Photoshop tricks while thumbing through the book but more than that you learn valuable techniques for real work. There are several chapters on how to make composites. This can and has saved clients and me hundreds of dollars. Every time you use an image you've purchased in the past that's money in the bank and Bert shows you how.

He also teaches techniques in tweaking images after a photo shoot. Though we try to make each shot perfect, that's nearly impossible. He gives several practical situations that can and will happen after you get your images back from the photographer. A few of these examples are items in the background blending or overpowering the proposed "hero" in the shot. Another example is cloning an image to make it closer to the other images in the shot. You'll also learn how to tweak entire images color or focus on adjusting color in one area or the image.

I loved the chapters on merging Illustrator and Photoshop. Again it's a real job that Bert had for a real client and you not only learn from the steps he uses in Photoshop, you learn from Bert's experience with the client. One thing I use on a weekly basis is using alpha channels to create complex masks.

I own two Bert Monroy books and I'm constantly going back to both of them for reference. They are well worth the money you spend on them. I only regret I don't have a 6th star to give the book. "Commercial Photoshop" is definitely 5 out of 5 stars.

Reviewed By: Ernest Phillips
New Riders Press