Written by Tavascarow
Nearly everyone has a digital camera now, even if it's just one on a phone.
But so many people I know seem afraid of the vast array of software available to enhance their photos.
I use Adobe Photoshop ver 5.5 a professional program but so out of date you can purchase licensed discs for a fraction of the cost of a reasonable compact camera.
Equally early versions of photoshop elements & Corel Paint Shop Pro are all good to work with & just as cheap.
Gimp is a free downloadable graphics editor originally designed for linux but available for windows & mac.
I've tried using Gimp but found it not so user friendly, that's probably because I've spent 3 years working with Photoshop.
For the sake of this article I will use Photoshop.
First open an image (file, open) Top left of desk top & select your image.
Then file, save a copy
so you always have an original to go back to,
in case of disaster or to rework in a different way.
This is one I took of an oak tree that fell down
a couple of months ago & will be next winters
Holding the cursor over the rectangular marquee tool
& holding down the left mouse button
will give you other options.
You want to select the crop tool.
Next draw the tool over the part of the image (Whilst holding down the LH mouse button) you wish to crop. By moving the arrow over the boxes in the corners or sides & holding down the mouse button you can shrink or expand your selection.
By moving the arrow over an edge & holding down the mouse button you can rotate the crop.
Great for levelling horizons or correcting the leaning tower of Pisa.
By moving the arrow anywhere inside the crop box & holding down you can move your selection.
By double clicking inside the box your crop will be made.
If you don't like the results go to edit, undo at top of screen & the original will return.
Next go to layers, duplicate layer (nothing will appear to have happened but all will become clear later) & then Image, canvas size.
A dialogue box will open as below. Double the width (I always work in pixels, find it easier for really detailed work) & click on the right hand centre box in the soduko square.
Press OK then select the move tool & then go to edit, transform, flip horizontal.
You should end up with something like this.
By using the left hand nudge key on your keyboard (next to Ctrl) you can now move your flipped top layer to the left until it matches up to its mate.
When you think you are there go to view, actual pixels & double check you have no gap or overlap.
Now go to layers,flatten image. & your first digital mirror is complete.
If you like it give it a border by going back to image, canvas size & increase the width & height by 50 or 100 pixels but leaving it centred in the soduko square.
Have fun playing, it's a great way to while away the dark winters evenings & remember the only limitation is the extent of your imagination.
If you get lost & can't rectify the problem with Edit, undo you can open Window, show history & by clicking on the action before the mistake was made all will be rectified.
In part two I will demonstrate how to create a more geometric image using one or two other tools & techniques.