Monthly Archives: September 2008
Posted by John Dangerbrooks
Adobe Photoshop CS3 Extended is a major upgrade over its predecessor. This version of Photoshop is able to do everything Photoshop CS2 and ImageReady CS2 could do combined… even importing animated GIF files, which Adobe officially says “is impossible”.
In Photoshop CS3, if you try to open an animated GIF file using File menu, Open… command, you will only get the first frame. Similarly, you cannot use File menu, Save… command to save your animation as an animated GIF file: You will only be saving the first frame. Officially, you can save your animations using File menu Save For Web and Devices… command. However, there is no official way of opening an animated GIF file in Photoshop CS3. Adobe’s official recommendation is to use the Fireworks which ships with Photoshop CS3.
When I was working with Photoshop CS3 Extended, I realized that it uses QuickTime API to access video. It is not the best solution on Windows, but it is a cross-platform solution. Fortunately, QuickTime recognizes animated GIF as a valid video format. So, all you have to do to import an animated GIF file into Photoshop is:
- Open Photoshop CS3 Extended
- From File menu, choose Import, Video Frames to Layers…
The Load dialog box will appear, asking you to select a file.
- Navigate to the folder that contains your animated GIF file.
The Load dialog box will not show any of your animated GIF files… yet.
- Type *.gif in File Name field and press Enter key on your keyboard.
The Load dialog box will show your GIF files, including animated GIF files.
- Select and open the animated GIF file you wish to import.
Import Video to Layers dialog box will appear.
- Make sure Make Frame Animation box is checked.
- Set the Range To Import settings according to your needs. You might like to select From The Beginning To End and do all your trimmings in Photoshop.
- Click OK button whenever you are ready to import.
Photoshop will now process you animated GIF file and will import it as a frame animation.
Now, you can edit the imported animation via Animation palette. If you wish to suspend editing temporarily and resume later, save your work as a Photoshop PSD file. Once you have completed editing your animation, you can export it to an animated GIF file using Save For Web and Devices… command in File menu.
Posted by John Dangerbrooks
For some times now, I have been searching for a solution to enable exporting Adobe Premiere Pro projects directly into DivX movies. I have searched a lot over the web – even though now I feel I still haven’t searched enough. Apparently, for some reason, Adobe Premiere Pro intentionally does not support MP3 audio in AVI files. I read this over the web in a forum and it seems true.
I tried adding both Fraunhofer and LAME MP3 codecs for Windows ACM to my system, but Adobe Premiere Pro CS3 ignored them. However, when I added a Dolby Digital AC3 ACM codec to my system, Adobe Premiere Pro CS3 immediately recognized it. In time, I tried adding a DivX movie to my Premiere Pro project but Adobe Premiere Pro CS3 ignored the audio stream and only recognized video. Adobe Premiere Pro 2 Tryout and Adobe Premiere Pro 1.5 also exhibit same behavior.
I do not know why Adobe Premiere Pro ignores MP3 stream and I do not know whether this behavior extends to other forms of modern audio as well. (I have to see if I can find an ACC codec for Windows ACM and try it.) But as it stands, exporting DivX movies for DivX-Certified devices with Adobe Premiere Pro is not an option. An alternative will be to export video and audio separately, then combining them into an AVI file using a Multiplexer (muxer) utility. Such utility is now available from labs.divx.com. Another alternative would be to encode DivX movies with AC3 audio, but such movies will not be playable on some DivX-certified devices.
I have already started searching for a better MPEG-4-based (or equally potent) solution for delivering download-based web contents…
Posted in Multimedia Content Authoring