Photoshop Actions

 

What are Photoshop Actions? How can I use them?
Vikram Bhaumik, Kolkata

You can use Photoshop Actions for a variety of effects in your photographs. Photograph/ Raj Lalwani

You can use Photoshop Actions for a variety of effects in your photographs. Photograph/ Raj Lalwani

Actions relates to a feature in Photoshop thatallows you to record the steps you performon any image, and repeat them for a numberof photos. You can carry out any image-editingprocess, record the process and store it. These‘actions’ can then be used anytime, for any image.
Photoshop actions is a useful and efficient tool as it performs all the recorded tasks as if it were being executed by the user in a much faster pace. You can access the actions window by pressing Alt+F9 on Photoshop.

Apart from automating your tasks for you, there are several websites which contain various free Photoshop actions which you can download and use. These predetermined set of  actions allow you to resize the images, or adding any effects like a vintage look, sepia, B&W conversion and others.

However, not all Photoshop functions work well with actions. Replicating certain features like cropping, dodging, burning, cloning and so on may be problematic since these actions cannot have the same effect on each photograph. For instance, you cannot repeat a crop action on all your photographs because point of interest in each picture is different and repeating the crop action on them can result into poorly cropped photographs.

Tags: February 2011, Question of the Day, Photoshop Actions