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Greetings from Beantown. I’m here in Boston for the Photoshop (PS) World conference, learning all sorts of yummy new things about every designer’s favorite killer workhorse application.

I consider myself an intermediate to almost-advanced PS user, and it was gratifying to find that a good number of things presented today were review for me. But I got to see lots of nooks and crannies in PS CS4 that I was unaware of. The neat thing about PS nooks and crannies is that they can have a very meaningful impact on your workflow. For example:

  • If you have PS CS4, check out the Content Aware Scaling. In essence, if you have an image that you need to scale in a non-proportional way, you can protect the important content of the photo so it doesn’t squish or stretch. Very powerful when you have a photo that is perfect for your project but it doesn’t fit the dimensions of the end product.
  • PS CS4’s mask and adjustment panels are awesome time savers, and they give you the ability to apply masks, feathers, and adjustments to an image in non-destructive fashion. Very cool.

I could go on, but I don’t want to bore my few readers. In any case, I’m learning lots, and having a very good time here at the conference. I’m eager to get back and put these little tidbits into practice.

In other news, your One and Only Favorite Friendly Neighborhood MonT-SteR™ is, well, fat. Portly. Obese. Rotund. Corpulent. Some of you who actually see me on a regular basis will doubtless be completely UNsurprised at this revelation. But it’s true. Call me Moby Dick (Ishmael was thin, I’ll wager).

And so, The MonT-SteR must reduce. Lots. Like, the “over 100 lbs.” kind of “lots.” To be specific, I need to lose at least 140 lbs.

This seems kind of daunting, but I done this before. I lost nearly 100 lbs. years ago, and over time (especially after the birth of my first son) I gained the weight back, and then some (and how!). And corresponding medical complications are forcing my hand. I’ll not be done in by hypertension and declining cholesterol.

So, as a therapeutic measure, and to help with motivation, I’ve decided to use my blog to chronicle my progress. Think of it as The Biggest Loser for the blogosphere.

Not sure what shape this will take, or how I’ll publish my results. But I think it will be helpful to know that readers and other netizens can come along for the journey. I’m sure there will be days when I’ll need encouraging words from folks out there!

In an effort to continue my recent trend of getting to the gym, I’ll be heading to the fitness center here in the hotel before breakfast and class.

So, off to bed with me!


aka The MonT-SteR