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Changing Text Box Background Color in Photoshop

Are you trying to add labels to maps, charts, drawings, or other images in Photoshop? Are you finding it impossible to change the background color of your text box?

If so, that’s because it is impossible! Photoshop does not have this functionality. There is a workaround, however, if you’d like to continue working with your image in Photoshop:

First, create your text box by selecting the “T” tool from your Photoshop Toolbox.

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You can change the size, style, and color of your font from the top menu.

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Next, find your Rectangle Tool. It may be hidden behind a tool that looks like a forward slash (/). To switch tools, mouse over the / icon and hit control, then select the Rectangle Tool.

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Using the Rectangle Tool, draw a box around your text. You can adjust the color and opacity from the top menu. If you don’t see an option for opacity at top, you can change the opacity from the layer adjustment tools at right.

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You can then send the box you made behind the text by going to Layer > Arrange > Send Backward.

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By default, each time you create a new object or text box you will create a new layer. You may want to flatten the image periodically, if you know that you won’t be making further adjustments to some boxes/text. You can also learn more about managing your layers in CS6 by viewing this tutorial.

 

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ARTstor Java Problems When Downloading Images

It’s been reported that Mac users are having problems downloading images from the ARTstor Digital Library due to an outdated or disabled version of Java.

If you are using Apple OSX 10.7 or later, you will need to install the latest version of Java and enable it on your browser. If you are using Mac OXX 10.5 or 10.6 and are unable to download images, Java may have been disabled, so all you have to do is re-enable it.

If you are encountering problems downloading images from ARTstor and these solutions aren’t helping, please do not hesitate to contact us!

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Citation Management Consultation

TECHB@R at Regenstein - Photo by Quinn Dombrowski

Do you need assistance with EndNote, Zotero, or RefWorks? Or would you like to learn more about how these citation managers can help make your research and writing process easier? Visit the TECHB@R during office hours for tips and advice on using EndNote, RefWorks, and Zotero. No appointment is necessary.

Spring office hours for citation management software at the Tech B@r will be from 3-5pm on Mondays (not available on April 9th). The TECHB@R is located on the first floor of the Regenstein Library (to the left of the reference desk, near the stairs). Additional technology training will be available throughout the quarter at the TECHB@R; watch the library’s event calendar for more details.

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ARTstor OIV for Mac OS X 10.7 Lion Now Available

From ARTstor:

We are pleased to announce that a version of the OIV for Mac OS X 10.7 Lion is now ready and available for download through the ARTstor Digital Library.  To download this file, please log into the ARTstor Digital Library using your ARTstor registered user account.  In the ARTstor navigation bar at the top of the screen, please click Tools > Download offline presentation tool (OIV).  Select the radio button next to “OIV 3.1.2 for Mac (Java 6.x; Mac OSX 10.7),” and the download will commence.

University of Chicago users, please contact the VRC with any questions or comments. You may also contact ARTstor directly.

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Zotero Workshop at Regenstein

Are you interested in learning how to manage your research? Feeling bogged down by bibliographies? Try Zotero! Learn how at a workshop on Friday, November 4th, at the Regenstein Library:

With a single click, Zotero saves citations and enables you to create customized bibliographies in standard citation styles, including MLA, Chicago and APA. This hands-on workshop will introduce some of the key functions of Zotero such as: installing the Zotero extension in your web browser, adding citations to your Zotero library, organizing and managing your citations, creating a bibliography, and using the Microsoft Word plug-in to easily insert citations from Zotero into your documents.

Workshop is from 12-1pm in Regenstein 127.

 

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PowerPoint 2011

Have you upgraded to PowerPoint 2011 on your Mac, or are you thinking about upgrading? Microsoft Office for Mac has released some helpful tutorials, including general PowerPoint basics and more specific guides (like how to design your presentations using themes). A very useful PowerPoint 2008 to PowerPoint 2011 map also shows new locations of commands in the 2011 version.

If you have any questions about PowerPoint or would like to request a training appointment, please contact the VRC.

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Celebrate Preservation Week!

Did you know? This week is National Preservation Week. From April 24-30, the Library of Congress and libraries around the nation will provide guidance in preserving digital images and other files.

Thursday, April 28th the Library of Congress is hosting a free webinar at 1pm Central Time titled Preserving Your Personal Digital Memories. Registration is required, and the form is available here.

Digital photos, electronic documents, and other new media are fragile and require special care to keep them useable. But preserving digital information is a new concept that most people have little experience with. As new technologies appear for creating and saving our personal digital information, older ones become obsolete, making it difficult to access older content. Learn about the nature of the problem and hear about some simple, practical tips and tools to help you keep your digital memories safe.

As always, if you have any questions about managing your digital images, please contact the VRC.

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Using the University of Chicago VPN

Have you ever had trouble accessing LUNA or ARTstor off-campus? Try using the University of Chicago VPN. The VPN (virtual private network) allows UChicago faculty, staff and students access to restricted services from any computer. Logging into LUNA or ARTstor after connecting to the VPN ensures access even if your ARTstor 120-day off-campus “grace period” has expired.

To connect to the VPN, just point your browser to http://cvpn.uchicago.edu. You will need a Cnet ID and password. The first time you connect, the VPN will install some software; you will need administrative privileges on your computer to complete this process.

Via IT Services.

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A Color App for the iPhone

The mobile application colorID, by Winfield & Co. LLC (and available for download from iTunes for $1.99), is a color recognition tool that allows users to capture, identify, and share colors on the go. A recent blog post by Austin Seraphin highlights a profound use of this application: used in conjunction with the iPhone’s standard VoiceOver screen reader and iPhone camera, colorID speaks the names of colors. This allows visually impaired users to hear a narrative of color as they experience it. Below is an excerpt from Seraphin’s blog; find the entire post here. Read more about accessible applications here.

The next day, I went outside. I looked at the sky. I heard colors such as “Horizon,” “Outer Space,” and many shades of blue and gray. I used color queues to find my pumpkin plants, by looking for the green among the brown and stone… I then found the brown shed, and returned to the gray house. My mind felt blown. I watched the sun set, listening to the colors change as the sky darkened. The next night, I had a conversation with Mom about how the sky looked bluer tonight. Since I can see some light and color, I think hearing the color names can help nudge my perception, and enhance my visual experience.

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We’ve Moved!…

…back upstairs, and down the hall! Please come visit us in Suite 257 of the Cochrane-Woods Art Center.

The beginning of fall quarter is quickly approaching. Need help using ARTstor? Finding what you need in LUNA? Creating presentations? As a reminder, VRC staff are available for individual or group training sessions. We also provide in-class image searching orientation for students in the humanities. If you are interested in scheduling a session, please contact us.

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