Windows Vista SP2 Finally Hatches



Don''t count your Vista chickens before they hatch?

Windows Vista SP2: Readers Report Big Increases in Free Disk Space
Windows Vista Service Pack 2 went final earlier this week, with numerous fixes and tweaks to improve performance, bolster security, and squash bugs. But some PC World readers are seeing another welcome change to SP2: a lot more free disk space.

I haven't seen SP2 available in Windows Update yet, but the direct downloads are here:

Download Service Pack 2 (SP2)

SP2 Standalone is an update for computers that have Windows Server 2008 SP1 or Windows Vista SP1 installed.

x86 for Windows Server 2008 and Windows Vista (32 bit)

x64 for Windows Server 2008 and Windows Vista (64 bit)

Just installed with no problems. In my case, not updating to the latest Defender defintions file prevented SP2 from showing up in Window's Update.

NewTerminator = Hasta la Vista Arnold



Terminator is now but a rerun machine, as Arnold plays in Sacramento.

New "Terminator" no fun without Schwarzenegger Reuters
In Arnold's absence, an important ingredient of the "Terminator" iconography -- namely, the fun factor -- is in short supply. Apparently sensing the deficiency, the filmmakers have found a couple of ways to pay homage, both in terms of line callbacks and through the magic of special effects.

The Orton Effect



Need a new look to your photography? Then try the the Orton Effect.




(Original and Ortonized)

The above image of Michelle was done with a free Orton Effect action at:
Action Central: Image Enhancement Downloads

Bleach Bypass Textured Skin Effect

I have had people ask me how to get that textured skin look in my work, so I will give you the fundamentals and urge you to explore your own style. Whereas specifics are generally deemed as my trade secrets.

What it essentially boils down to in Photoshop is using a bleach bypass process (there's dozens of ways) and this visual effect has been around for many decades. Then I'll add back in the color, sharpen and sometimes use a high pass or emboss layer on a duplicate layer in overlay model. Finally it comes down to hand touch-ups with the dodge/burn, smudge and clone stamp tools for key shade/highlight enhancements and fixing those overcooked areas.

In this image, Angela Jolie has an extremely airbrushed look, so I will use an embossed layer and some tonal contrast work in addition a bleach bypass process.



I intentionally exaggerated the effect so you can see how intense it can be. Texture, grain and noise filters are also useful, if the skin is completely void of details.

Applied a noise reduction filter to the above image:


Here's a couple other examples in which I used the bleach bypass process:






Additional reading:
Improving Local Contrast with Unsharp Mask
PhotoCreate A Skin Texture In Photoshop

See also: FreakingNews Tutorial: Easy High Contrast Textured Skin Effect

Happy Photoshopping...