IN THIS CHAPTER
Because Photoshop is an image-editing program, you need to know how to get an image to the canvas and work with it. Of course, you can open an existing image or choose File, New to create a new document.
Remember that when you create a new document, you have a choice of the different color modes. If you don't choose the right mode when you create the document, you can change it later by choosing Image, Mode.
If you are already working in an image, you can place or import other image files into it. You choose File, Place to bring an image into an existing canvas. You have the ability to place nearly as many file types as you can open in Photoshop. After you place an image in a document, it becomes part of the new document as a new layer.
What is the advantage of placing an image into another image rather than just copying and pasting the contents? The difference is that when you place an image into another canvas, the placed image appears in a new layer as a Smart Object. This allows it to be placed at the document's resolution but still allows you to resize the contents in the future without any loss to the original resolution. This may not seem like a big deal, but when you work in multilayer documents and things are changing in your design, it's a very nice feature. It's especially beneficial if you place a vector EPS or PDF file. It means you'll always be working in the best quality possible. Earlier versions of Photoshop set placed images to the document's resolution immediately; transforming that layer was limited by that resolution.
One more thing to know about placing images is color mode limitations. If an image's color mode is Indexed Color, Bitmap, or Multichannel, you are unable to place other images, regardless of their mode. You will learn more about color modes in the next section.
All the programs in Adobe CS2 use color. One key to using color correctly is understanding how it works and how to control it digitally. Throughout this chapter you'll find references to Photoshop and Illustrator, with occasional mentions of ImageReady, InDesign, and GoLive. As you read, remember that GoLive and ImageReady are web oriented. They work with RGB color and subsets of RGB in Indexed Color mode. InDesign is primarily a print tool, and it works with CMYK and spot colors.