Here is a list of common questions. PSE = Photoshop Elements I will be constantly updating this list as I think of new questions/answers to add!
1. Do not redistribute, repackage, post for download, or sell "as is" anything on this blog.
2. Do not link directly to any of my downloads on this site. Please link to the post in my blog that contains the freebie.
3. If I incorporated design elements that are not my own in my designs, I mention them in the post where the freebie can be downloaded. It is your responsibility to check out the updated terms of the designers/design elements on your own.
The only way I can continue to keep on creating and posting freebies on CoffeeShop is because of traffic to my blog. So please feel free to post links to my blog or blog posts on your own websites/blogs/shops. I appreciate any traffic you can send my way!
What are actions? Actions are just editing steps to get a certain look or effect that have been programmed. They are great time-savers. Instead of having to go through each step, you simply start the action and it does most of the work for you! Most of my actions allow you to customize the end effect.
Can I use actions in Photoshop Elements? Many actions work in Photoshop Elements. Almost all of the action I have on my blog work in PSE (if they don't they are clearly marked). And many action-writers are making versions of their actions that run in PSE. If you don't know if the action will work in PSE, you can always load it and give it a try.
How do I install actions in Photoshop and Photoshop Elements? Just go visit this page.
What are all of those different files in your action downloads? Most of my downloads include an .atn file (the action), a 64 x 64 pixel .psd file (the image thumbnail for PSE5 users) and a 64 x 64 pixel .png file (the image thumbnail for PSE6-PSE10 users).
If you have Photoshop 7 - CS5 simply install the .atn file. If you have PSE5 you will need to install the .atn and tiny .psd thumbnail. If you have PSE6-PSE10 you will need to install the .atn and tiny .png thumbnail.
What are thumbnails? In Photoshop Elements you need to install two files, the action (.atn) file and a corresponding thumbnail (.psd in PSE5 and .png in PSE6-PSE10). The thumbnail is a tiny 64px by 64px image file that will load in your action pane in PSE. This is the image you will click on to start the action. The thumbnail name has to be identical to the action name or they won't work!
My action did not come with a thumbnail and I have PSE. No problem! You don't need a thumbnail file for the action to work, but instead of an image in your action pane you will see a gray square. Just dangle your mouse over the square to see which action it goes with. If you want to make a thumbnail just create a 64px by 64px square and put text/image to taste. Flatten it and save it as a .psd (if you have PSE5) or .png (if you have PSE6-PSE10). Make sure to name it the exact same name as the action or it won't work.
Do your actions work in Photoshop? Yes! All of my actions should work in Photoshop CS-CS5, and most of them should even work in the old Photoshop 7. One or two storyboard actions don't run in PSE running on Macs.
I have Photoshop Elements 5 (or an earlier version) and some of you actions don't seem to work. Unfortunately several of my actions don't work in PSE5. If you have PSE5 or an older version and want to use actions it might be a good time to upgrade. :-)
I have a foreign language copy of Photoshop or Photoshop Elements, will your actions work? Some will, some won't. I would suggest trying them. If you have Photoshop, you can install the action and re-record it using your program.
I used some of your actions and my images look nothing like your samples. There is no action that will look great on every image, and no action will save a bad photo! Most of my actions have adjustable layers, so you can tweak them for every image. However, nothing replaces learning how to use your camera. A great image is at least 95% great photography. Actions are not magic. ;-)
Where are all of your actions? You can find the complete list here.
Are your actions free? Yes, every action download on this blog is 100% free. If you click on an ad and are redirected to another blog or site they are not necessarily free. If you want to help support this blog and get my favorite actions in one download, just click here for more info.
Are purchased actions better than free ones? It completely depends on the actions and it is very subjective. Actions are not magic and won't fix bad photos. You might see a skilled photographer's amazing before and after and find the same action will not work magic on your images. Start off with learning great photography skills. It is easy to edit a great "before" shot.
I personally think you can find great free pro-level actions all over on the net. However, many "for pay" action writers are small business owners and have put together great action sets. I love supporting these small businesses, so definitely go check them out. It also can take time digging up free actions you love, while buying them from famed photographers and action writers can save you this time (thus money and sanity). However, an action that costs $100 is not necessary better than one that is free. :-) Actions are only recorded editing steps and no action is completely unique.
Can I use your actions in my commercial work? Yes! You can use them personally or commercially. I only ask you don't repackage the actions on my site and try to sell them as is on your own or put them up for download anywhere else than my blog. I want them to stay free.
Do I need to link your blog if I use your actions on my work? No, it is not necessary. However, I love when people spread the word about all of the free stuff I have on this site, so if you install my button on your blog or write a post about this blog it makes me happy!
What are textures/digital papers? Textures and digital papers are just image files like any other photo. They are usually .jpgs, .pngs, or .bmps. They are dragged and dropped on images to add artistic effects.
How do I open your textures in Photoshop or Photoshop Elements? Since texture files are image files and not actions, just open them like any photo.
How do I use textures? I have many tutorials on using textures, and if you google you will find many more.
Do you have a texture-loading tutorial? Yes! You can download it for free here.