Alumnus Phil Toran’s background knowledge in Photoshop and digital media propelled him to new places in his career that he never imagined it would. Now, he is helping students develop these skills to improve their own marketability.

Toran ’10, works part-time in the school’s Media Center. He conducts RCADE workshops in Xavier Hall for the Fairfield community to expose students to the world of digital media production and applications.

The workshop focuses on introducing Adobe Photoshop CS6, the newest version of Photoshop. This program allows users to manipulate specific parts of an image in a variety of ways including cropping, copying, tracing and recreating selected pieces of an image.

The program can also be used to create different layers within a canvas, providing the image with more depth and dimension. It simulates sheets of a project stacked on top of one another, so a person could create an image with a city skyline as the backdrop and a picture of a skydiver on top of that.

These manipulations are done through the use of a wide range of tools, such as the lasso, crop, target, wand and eye drop tool. The clone stamp, for example, is a tool that copies and then recreates a piece of an image in another spot. This is commonly used in magazines to give models the appearance of flawless skin.

Toran says the best way to learn Photoshop is by practicing with the program over and over again. Broadening and perfecting these digital media skills will go a long way in today’s job market, he explains.

“We are getting to be a pretty digital world and every company is looking for these types of skills,” Toran said. “Businesses are in need of workers who understand new media.”

Many of the participants were pleased with the workshop, finding it beneficial and educational.

Junior Diamond Delva says, “I thought it was very good, very informative and hands-on.” She believes that the tools in the program make manipulating images much easier.

Sophomore Jenna Canfora agrees that the workshop gave her a good introduction to the program, and she left feeling confident in her new skills, saying, “I feel I could play around with it on my own now that I know the basis of it.”

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