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# Lesson 1 (for me)
never merge anything ;-)
(, Fri 14 May 2004, 5:05, archived)
# you have to merge it to save it
I should really just save multiple versions, I suppose
(, Fri 14 May 2004, 5:06, archived)
# Why?
I merge last (and then only copies of the layers).

(, Fri 14 May 2004, 5:09, archived)
# maybe imageready is different
but I couldn't get my head around it

(, Fri 14 May 2004, 5:11, archived)
# Imageready can use layers
from a PSD file. I've only just started using Photoshop/Imageready, and that's one of the many significant benefits over Paintshop/Animation Shop.
(, Fri 14 May 2004, 5:16, archived)
# I use photoshop elements
I don't really know how it compares to the others, since it's all I've ever used, but each layer is a frame in the animation, so you have to merge it all to save it as an animated gif
(, Fri 14 May 2004, 5:18, archived)
# since it's really just 5 frames, I may go back and put some shadows in anyways
but probably not
(, Fri 14 May 2004, 5:23, archived)
# that's the big difference
between elements and the full $1,000,000 version of pshop -- you have to merge to animate.

As for me, I merge to compress the file size before I animate, and I do it in Macromedia Fireworks instead of Imageready. It optimizes better and is more intuitive (for me). Plus, it lets me layer each animation frame as much as I want, so I can go back in and add the shadows later if I forgot them. In a lot of ways, Fireworks 4 is like a junior version of Flash 5. (Yes, I am behind the times.)
(, Fri 14 May 2004, 5:26, archived)
# Photoshop CS is a realy nice tool
I hear the Middle Eastern version is less expensive*.

*from bit torrent.
(, Fri 14 May 2004, 5:31, archived)
# Yes, but
You can duplicate the layers before you merge them (that way, you have the originals). If you want to go back and edit something, you can use the original layers and remerge them for that/those frame(s).

Now that hard drives are cheaper than $1/meg*, you can afford the space. ;-)

*I remember buying a 500 Meg hard drive for $750 US back in 1994 or so... I also picked up 8 meg of RAM for only $600 for the Win3.1 to Win95 upgrade.

(, Fri 14 May 2004, 5:27, archived)
# I know
but I have my own way of working, and duplicating all 40 layers would take time and hurt my wrist.

It's just for a silly website anyways ;)
(, Fri 14 May 2004, 5:30, archived)