Image Editing with Photoshop

Among many image editing softwares, I always come back to using Adobe Photoshop for its user-friendly interface and smooth movements in applications. Although both softwares are pretty comprehensive with the basic tools available in their software, the intriguing part is that there are wide range of extensions on other websites. For example, Adobe Photoshop allows us to express creatively by experimenting with their brush tool. However, the number of brushes are not limited as we can import new brushes into the program to test out new expression styles. The same goes for other tools such as fonts. This has been used to experiment our poster image for our digital story.

Processed with VSCO with hb2 preset
Photoshop Experiment: Dead Road’s Poster

There are a few functions I’ve tried out for this poster, where I have included text on top of the picture and played around with the brushes. However, I have also experimented with the layers and its blending mode, which was not mentioned in the flipped lecture. Originally, the photograph was brighter and personally I felt like it does not reflect accurately to the general vibes of our digital story, which has a thriller/mystery genre. So, I added an extra layer with black and white gradient for more moody vibes, went to Multiply mode and altered its opacity for my desired outcome.

The flipped lecture has only touched on the very basic tools available on Photoshop and GIMP. However, if you are really interested to experiment more with its endless possibilities but clueless on navigating around yourself with the tools, there is always helpful step-by-step tutorials on the Internet.


Programming Concepts 2


In my previous post, I have posted an image of snowflake created in Hour of Code Lesson, which has taught me the purposes of different commands required to create that imagery. It was such a powerful lesson as these commands have enabled me to understand that command inputs do not only facilitate computer to simplified tasks on our behalf, but also it offers me an insight into the dynamic power of programming concepts that can be applied for various purposes with these basic formula.

First of all, it improves user’s experience to be more convenient and favourable by users as it creates a smooth and hassle-free user experience. The usage of repeat command can eliminate additional manual work required by users when they are using a software. For example, the repeat command in Spotify’s algorithm system enabled users to just click on the repeat icon (twice, as it has been programmed in Spotify) to listen a single track on the loop. With the repeat command integrated and represented by a symbolic sign (as pictured below), users can easily disable listening the track on loop by clicking on the repeat symbol again. In light of this, users no longer required to manually click play for the same track to listen to it again every time it ended. Furthermore, what we don’t see beyond the surface is the algorithm system that has organised these commands strategically in order to respond accordingly to user’s desired actions. In this sense, these codes are very significant not only because it smoothens Spotify’s users experience, but also it is fairly applicable in other softwares such as 8tracks, Pandora and iTunes player.

Apart from creating a hassle-free user experience, another usage of these algorithm commands such as repeat and loop on software offers its users creative experiences as well. This is particularly evident in Instagram’s Boomerang App and VSCO’s DSCO App. Both of them have applied a simple function of repetitive video playback akin to the GIF format by simply using the video recording device available on your phone. However, up until now we have only touched on repeat loop command, which is just one of repeat command’s potential. During The Hour of Code lesson, basketball star Chris Bosh has pointed out the repeat until command, where movements will only continue to a certain stage we assigned it to. To give you an idea of the significance of repeat until command, one of the example is the gaming app, Fantasy War Tactics. This game has a function of auto-repeat to complete a dungeon stage for several times. But it does not goes on infinitely because that will not create a fun or challenging experience to gamers. Hence, there are few variables such as limitation of repeatable attempts or the energy level that prompt users to continue the game themselves. So, the algorithm system has been designed to allow these dungeon stages to repeat until their character died (failed to complete the game), reached the limit of repeatable attempts, or the game rans out of available energy to enter the dungeon stage. Not only it prompts user to find ways to continue their game, but it also actually allowed players to multitask, where they can train their game characters even if they are pre-occupied with house chores or other duties.

In short, these commands are really powerful for its varying potentials in different situations and purposes. Most importantly, its potentials shine most thanks to programmers’ creative and innovative thinking in constantly shaping new user experiences with a software. And if you are interested to learn these codes yourself, check out the link here to the Hour of Code lesson!