Working with Type Tool in Photoshop

Type Tool is the tool that lets you add text in your work area. When you are starting to create a design in most of the cases you’ll find yourself working with it. In this article I’ll discuss about the 3 main, powerful elements that you must use in order to avoid design mistakes. Continue Reading

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Direct Technology – Flyer Tutorial

Direct Technology will be a tutorial based on a corporate, modern, fun looking flyer. We’ll use brushes and work with paths, textures and images. Also we’ll keep a color scheme provided by Adobe Kuler. You may feel free to use other shapes in some cases as long as the design remains the same, or you can go ahead and experiment with it. It really doesn’t matter as long as you achieve the effect you wish. Continue Reading

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Photography for a Spy Software Website – Who Knew?

I wanted to share this one with you as I found it really interesting. A few weeks ago I got an email out of the blue asking if I could do some shots for a website. Normally webmasters are just looking for free or at least very cheap stock photography so I was definitely curious. It led to a very unique assignment, at least for me.

The website in question was in the cell phone monitoring market called What I found interesting, apart from the spying bit, was that it does not sell anything – it is basically a resource site. It focuses on a lot of information, guides and user reviews of some of the big spy phone software products. I was really intrigued why they would want to hire a specialist photographer – and the expense that involves.

The site owner is a guy called Michael and he explained that he is attempting to really stand out from the competition with unique photos and an overall different approach to the whole review model. He hated the fact that virtually all of his competitors are using the same boring stock images – in fact most use photos and banners directly from the manufacturer’s websites.

I certainly see his point and it marks a shift that I have been aware of for quite a while – and it is great news for photographers like spy online

Standing Out from the Crowd

Some forward thinking website owners are finally seeing the value of custom, unique photography. It can be another part of the branding process if done well. Remember than all online markets are relatively new – the internet itself is young in terms of developed markets.

I think things are definitely changing. Most website owners and developers have been content to use free stock images. How many times have you spotted the same photo on several different blogs? If you want to stand out, do something a little bit different.

When you think of the branding value plus the value in search engines of having truly unique and copyrighted photos, hiring a pro photographer might be worth the cost. Let’s hope this is going to encourage people to invest a bit more in their website development.

As far as the photo shoot itself, for me it was more or less another day at the studio. Mostly shots of different phones and tablets plus I was able to include some previous work with models – still good stuff but saved myself some time.

The big thing is that the results on the website were great. Just seeing the effect it had, creating a website with professional quality photography – it made a bigger impact than even I imagined. Comparing it to the competitors was a revelation – the difference in quality was really significant.

Now all I need to do is convince more website owners that stock photography is not the way to go if you really want to stand out in a crowd. By the way have you even heard about spy phone software? It was a new one for me and a bit of a frightening education. I didn’t think that stuff would have been legal but apparently it is!

So my takeaway is that I need to convince more website owners to go a step further with their site photography. Showing them two examples of websites, one with dull stock images and one with vibrant originals should help to convince at least some of them. That’s the plan anyway.

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Email Attachments: To Open, or Not to Open?

Some of the most malicious worms, viruses and Trojans are being distributed through email attachments today. Many computers today become infected by malware at some point in time from downloading email attachments. The email is delivered with the attached PDF file to your address with instructions for you to download the file.

The attachment may appear to be harmless at first glance but once opened it will infect your computer. After your PC is infected, the worm will begin search the system and the email will be forwarded to all your contacts. If you have an updated security patch, reading the content in the message will not harm your system but the attachment will.

Most email service providers will filter out malicious emails from your inbox but you cannot always depend on this. Criminals that target high-value organizations will grab hold of any vulnerabilities in your email attachments tips

Malicious File Extensions

If you can tell what type of file is attached to the email then it will be easier for you to determine if the file is harmful. For instance, files with .exe are Windows programs and should not be downloaded to your PC. Email services like Gmail and Hotmail will block .exe file extensions. The problem is that there are many other dangerous file extension that your email service will not filter out. These include .cmd, .cpl, .msi, .com, .hta, .reg, .jar, and .vbs. This may seem like a lot but there are many other file extensions that can infect your PC.

Even office files that contain macros can be harmful. Macros are a set of instructions that are used to automate a task. Macros can be useful, they are used by many businesses today. However, they are also a great place for cyber criminals to store harmful codes. All they need to do is send you a file with macros and once you open it your computer will be infected. PCs with office 2007 or 2010 are less vulnerable to malicious macros. Once you try to open the file a warning will pop up allowing you to disable the macros. File extensions that ends with an ‘m’ like .pptm and .docm come with macros while those ending in ‘x’ like .pptx and .docx are usually free from macros.

It’s always best to avoid downloading files that you think may be harmful. Images files like .jpg and .png are usually safe but you can never be too careful with other files. Ensure that your security patches are updated to prevent files from infecting your system due to vulnerabilities in your Microsoft Office or Adobe Reader.

Archive Files

Some criminals will go a bit further to make it harder for email filters to identify malicious files by using an archive. Archives are a set of computer files grouped together to be transported to another location and to save space on the hard drive. They can come in a number of different formats like .rar, .zip, .ace, .7z, .s7z and others. When you receive an archive file you will need to download it and extract the content.

In some cases the files may be encrypted and may need a password to access the files. Encrypted archives can be more harmful than those without encryption. That is because it is not affected by antivirus programs and email filters and thus makes it easier for malware to make its way onto your computer. Although archive are the best option for sending sensitive files, you should be sceptical about downloading files from strange emails.

Who Is The Sender

The sender of the email is also another clue to help you determine if the attached file is harmful. Keep in mind that the sender may also be someone that you are familiar with. As mentioned before, once a person’s PC is infected the malware can be easily distributed to people that they contact. If you receive a file from a strange address or a contact that you were not expecting you should avoid opening it – it could be malware.

If your boss or lecturer plans to send files to your email they are likely to tell you beforehand. Remember: if the file contains macros you can’t be too careful.  Making a quick phone call to find out if the email is real will not hurt – it’s always better to ask them directly.  In doing so you will also be informing them of the malware on their PC so that they can remove it.

The Content In The Email

The way the email is written may also be an indicator that it contains malware. For instance the email might be coming from your friends address but the content may seem strange, it may be written by a scammer or malware on the senders PC. These can also be phishing emails that do not come with an attached file. Instead it may be from someone claiming to have a terminal illness and in need of urgent help asking you to send money via Western Union.

Also, be on the lookout for emails from prominent businesses, like UPS and FedEx, which instruct you to download files. Most of these companies will never ask you to download files to your computer but will instead ask you to do all paperwork in person.

Pay Attention To Antivirus Alerts

Yahoo!, Gmail and, among other email services, will notify you if an attachment contains malware. You should always pay attention to these warnings. Refrain from opening files if you receive a warming, as the phrase goes – “it’s better to be safe than sorry.” The content in the email may reassure you that there is no harm in downloading the files but in most cases it is a trick.

If your PC has an antivirus it will alert you if files that have already been downloaded pose a threat. It’s always best to put your trust in your antivirus and scan and remove the file if this happen. Of course antivirus programs are far from perfect so it may not always warm you about malicious files.

Better Safe Than Sorry

You can never be too careful when it comes to emails with attachments – always expect the worst and you’re likely to save yourself a lot of trouble. Avoiding downloading and opening attachments if you can. If the email is irrelevant to you there is no need for you to over think it – hit the delete button. Images and PDF files are safe for download as long as you update your security patches. Other files should always raise suspicion.

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Easy Web Design Helping the Medical Salary Niche

Web design has become a household term over the years and anyone who has ever used a computer has dabbled in it in one way or another. Before that, it was only used by software engineers and IT professionals as it required a great deal of knowledge that only they had. And the thing is, that aspect hasn’t changed.

While everyone calls themselves a web designer nowadays, after making a website or a blog by using templates, they lack the fundamental understanding and knowledge on how web design actually works. It’s like people calling themselves mechanics after just learning to check the oil on their car.

But apart from that, the fact that web design has been brought closer to casual users can only be considered a good thing. Often, people with great ideas may lack the skills to actually turn them into reality. By making the design process easier and more streamlined, everyone gets a chance to do something with their ideas.nurse salary guide

Because web design was made more accessible to the people, the influence of the internet has become much more profound, with everyone shifting their focus toward the virtual world. This is especially evident when you come across a website or blog that is related to something that doesn’t seem even remotely related to computers or modern technology. For instance, if you were to come across a website like this one:, you would be hard pressed to find the connection between IT and nursing, which is what this website is all about.

But, if you take the time to look beneath the surface, you would be able to connect the dots. You see, just like people turn to Amazon or eBay when they want to purchase something, instead of going shopping like they used to, they also look for jobs and any additional information about them online, as well.

This particular website tells you all about how nursing is surely becoming one of the most sought out professions, and the growth is set to continue at least until 2020. There is useful information not just on salaries in general, but salaries in each state, which illustrates how much of a difference location makes.

While nursing is still a hands-on job, the internet can’t help much in terms of teaching you how to do it, at least not yet, but it can be extremely helpful for those who are looking to have a career in medicine, or those who are looking to change their profession. Since there are a lot of factors you have to consider when making such an important decision, websites that are as detailed as this one are practically a gold mine.

We failed to mention that most websites like this one are made by people who are not experts. Instead, they are your regular users who decided to share their knowledge and experience with the world, and in turn, do something that can help others. But, it can also earn them money, but that is an entirely different topic.

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Protecting Your WordPress from Malware

There’s a lot of appeal when it comes to WordPress blogs. After all, installing them is easy, and administering them is even simpler. A good chunk of popular websites run WordPress, and its uses are uncountable. They can be used for blogs, companies, education, media, and more.

Their usage, however, is a weakness as well. People can make malware that can infect many blogs, and it can cause a lot of destruction for owners. Owners must act upon this malware, and fast, or it can spread to your viewers’ computers as well.

This means that your visitors now assume you’re some scumbag who wanted to infest their computers. Say goodbye to your site and your trustworthiness! After all, 11,000 WordPress domains have blacklisted by Google, and as many as 100,000 may be infected.

The Case of the SoakSoak Bug

Recently, people have been asking for support concerning an infection. This infection revealed to be coming from malware known as, and it came through a premium plugin. As you should know, plugins are everywhere on WordPress. Admins use them to add many components to their site, from looking at statistics to sizing pictures. Free plugins are susceptible to malware, so it’s common.

But premium plugins are a different story. Take Slider Revolution. Costing $18, it was an investment many admins took if they wanted a great way to display images. While the program isn’t solely to blame when it comes to the SoakSoak attack, it’s a common factor, and it’s safe to say that it’s one of the major culprits.

Note that WordPress wasn’t the only site type that had an infection. This attack was centered around similar weaknesses in a lot of plugins and webhosts.

How Can Malware Affect a Visitor?

If you’re going to visit an infected website with no protection that stops you from doing so, you may see a website that doesn’t look suspicious. There’s no red flashing around, and it seems as though everything is all right. It must have been a false alarm, right?

While you’re doing that, malware is infecting your computer secretly. The page automatically installs the moment malware security 01you land on it. This is known by many as a drive-by download, where you don’t download something by just clicking on it. It’s automatic, and it hits you pretty hard.

This malware takes you to, where they put even more malware on your computer without your consent.
That sounds dangerous! How can you handle this?

How to Pinpoint if Your Site’s Infected and Eliminate it

Even if your site isn’t WordPress, you should definitely look at it and make sure that there’s no malware around. If your site is infected, this means that most likely, your readers got the virus too, and if they realize that your website caused them to get malware, they won’t come back.

So how do you remove malware from your site? It’s actually a bit different than removing it from your computer. What you should first do is go to This is a site checker that will scan your website and look for signs of malware as it attempts to load on your browser. The scan is quick, so you won’t have to worry about it wasting your time if it doesn’t fine anything. In addition, you can remove the malware using this site, but you have to pay for that.

So what do we know about the SoakSoak malware?

What it does is that it changes the wp-includes/template-loader.php code.This file has a malware wink that automatically loads to your site. Because it’s infected the template loader, you can’t fix it by changing your theme. So how do you change it? One way is to always backup your site. Your host should do it for you at least once a week. Simply delete your site and reinstall using the older backup. This is the best way to do it for no cost.

If you want to manually hunt for it, go to the swfobject.js script and delete it, as well as the changed code in template-loader.php. Search through your database to make sure that there is no instance of this code. Look at all your files and see if the code is hiding in any of those. This is the best way if you want to manually delete your stuff.

If your site is blacklisted by Google, go to their advice page and see how you can get your website off their blacklist.

So no matter how you host your site, malware is going to be there waiting for a good time to strike. You should not think of malware as harmless. It can do a lot to your site, some of it irreversible. It can turn away visitors and even steal precious data from you.

So the best way to make sure that your site is protected is to keep backing it up, keep scanning it, and make sure that everything you install to it is secured. This will help you to prevent most malware attacks. By keeping your site secured, you have a low chance of being attacked, and you’ll be happy that you added that extra security to your site.

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Reasons Why Desktop PCs Will Never Disappear

Even though we live in an era of portable devices, desktop PCs still have their place and purpose. Yes, laptops, tablets and smartphones are small, light, portable, and easy to use, but they are inferior to desktop computers when it comes to digital heavy lifting. Desktops are not as flashy, but they get the job done better than even the best mobile device. For those of you who are serious about design, there is no need to list the pros of desktop PCs. For those of you who aren’t, we have singled out some of the reasons why you should never abandon desktops.

They Are Cheaper

Your average desktop machine is much cheaper than the equivalent laptop. For the same kind of cash, you can wind up with a much more powerful configuration that will blow any portable solution out of the water. Laptops havedesktop-photoshop-02 to be expensive because their components are smaller, which means that the entire process of fabrication costs much more, as well. It is exactly the same when you have to replace one of the components.

Desktop components are not just cheaper, but easier to replace as well. In all fairness, when you get a laptop, you get the whole package: a computer with a screen, a keyboard and a touchpad. On the other hand, desktop are relatively cheap nowadays. Keyboards are dirt cheap. Speakers, too. Even if you buy a 24-inch screen, you will still spend a lot less money than you would on a laptop.

They Are Faster and More Powerful

Desktops are designed to be powerful. Laptops, on the other hand, are burdened with portability and battery life. Processors integrated into today’s laptops have to consume less power. The more powerful they are, the more they will overheat, which is a problem, because you can’t fit a large cooling fan to solve the issue. With desktops, that is a non-issue. Thanks to their large casings, you can pretty much install any kind of processor, overclock it, and then get a powerful cooling system to keep it from melting down.

Professionals Still Rely on Desktops

When it comes to graphics, nothing can replace a desktop. Graphical designer, website builders, architects, engineers and photographers would not be able to do their job as efficiently if it weren’t for custom configurations and large screens. Professionals using Adobe Photoshop, Adobe Premiere, AutoCAD and similar program suites rely heavily on the capabilities of desktops. Not to mention you can always upgrade, and attach any kind of peripheral to it.

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Photoshop New File Print Settings

There are some things that you want to be aware of when you start creating an artwork that will be printed. Because most of the Photoshop Tutorials on web are not going through a printing process, these details are omitted and in this way the user is getting used to develop over many years without considering some important details. He is reaching the point when, as a graphic designer, his work will be printed and chances to become a total fail will be huge.

To avoid mistakes in the long run we must learn some basic things about printing.

What you see on the screen is different than what you print and this happens because most of the printers (even the high-end ones that cost a lot) can’t perform like a screen.colors


Your monitor is using RGB colors while a printer is performing with CMYK (K is black color). It often happened to me to use RGB instead of CMYK and when I printed the work  a light blue was a dark blue, a yellow to green color was complete green etc. Apart from these, black happened to be a dark blue sometimes and result was catastrophic. It is important to keep in mind when you are creating something that will be printed that CMYK is the best way to go. When you create a New File, just make sure that CMYK is selected.


You started with CMYK and you begin working. Unlike the rest of colors, black has a different approach.

Now you may say ” Hey, but isn’t that black a blue ? “. Well, it is, but is good for print. I personally tested on my CanonMP160 and I had a black with a little bit of blue to be honest, but was black. Don’t think now that a printing company has a compact printer. To be clear on things, go and talk to the company that you will print, otherwise keep it like in the image above.

When it comes to layouts, you must be aware of some guidelines. These guidelines are called Bleed, Trim and Safe. Often you can see them as areas or zones. Let’s look at the image below.cmyk


Bleed area is the portion of your artwork that is bleeding or stretching if you want. To prevent white borders when a business card is trimmed, for example, bleed comes in and is completing the color. This means that your bleed area is not always something that will disappear.

Some use trim areas, some don’t. Often the bleed area from above is called Full Bleed and the Trim Area – Bleed Area.

Trim line is where the material is cut. Maybe now you’ll have a better understanding of bleed. If the trimming is made a little bit more to the left and you lack of bleed area, white borders are appearing. This is why it is important to always keep these guidelines in mind and apply them.

Safe line is the line of the police. No more text and images beyond this point, sir ! You should keep your title, text paragraphs, logos, everything in this zone because only the background can pass. Always make sure that important elements of background are not passing this line. Suppose that you have a man stretching his hands with a blue towel in his back. You may extend the towel until bleed, but don’t let his fingertips pass the safe line.

Now you may ask yourself “Ok, so what do I have to do ? Create these lines everytime ? What are their sizes ?”. Most of the times, the bleed area is a 0,25in, same for trim area, but sometimes other companies that will print your work have their own sizes so, if you can, ask them for a template. If you always go with 0,25in is perfect because these are standard, although when I used to work at a local printing company they had different sizes for bleed.

Anyway, keep it 0,25 or to make it more easier for you, download templates from companies like They have all kind of templates, from tri-fold, bi-fold brochures to business cards. Just register and start downloading templates whenever you need them.
These templates already have the resolution and DPI set, bleed/trim lines are drawn. You only have to start working on your project.

DPI comes from dots per inch and is a measurement tool for pixels if I can say that. For materials like brochures/flyers/book covers 300DPI is enough and very good. If you consider an artwork for a billboard, a mega poster or something bigger, you have to raise to 450 and even 600 sometimes. Be aware that increasing the resolution or dpi also makes your file bigger so prepare for Photoshop to start using more of your processor.

What I told you here are only some basics that you have to keep in mind. Further information is always welcome so I recommend you to take time and take a look at this article “A Guide to Preparing Files for Print“.

Now that everything is clear, you will have a plus when you’ll start another tutorial. Good luck !

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