December 2003

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QuarkXPress 6 Visual QuickStart Guide by Elaine Weinmann and Peter Lourekas, Peachpit Press, $24.99

If you’re new to QuarkXPress or just new to version 6.0, this wonderful book will have you up and running in no time. With lots of graphics to show you just how the program works, step-by-step instructions for laying out pages, and full treatment of version 6’s new features, this book maintains the Visual QuickStart tradition of showing you everything works and how to make the program work for you. An indispensable addition to your QuarkXpress library, this book is where you go when you want to really understand how the program’s print and Web functions work, and you want to learn quickly. More than a reference book (which it is) and less than a bible, it’s a sure and steady guide to getting the your QuarkXPress pages to print properly..

QuarkXPress 6 Killer Tips, by Eda Warren, New Riders, $29.99

If you think you know everything about QuarkXPress 6, think again. This beautifully designed and intelligent book will transform you from a QuarkXPress user to a proficient and advanced user. Every page contains a tip or shortcut for making QuarkXPress behave the way you want it to. Organized into sensible groups that follow the layout process, the tips take you through the application’s functions for making text and graphics dance. Correcting fuzzy type in a Photoshop image, creating snazzy bullets, undoing actions and so much more give you a comprehensive understanding of this complex application. Lots of graphics make these truly killer tips understandable and make the user far more productive than just those who can only select tools and menus.

Photoshop CS Down and Dirty Tricks, by Scott Kelby, New Riders, $39.99

This book is more fun than a bag of peanuts. In fact it’s much like peanuts in that after you play with one trick, you can’t wait to get on to the next. A combination of step-by-step instructions for creating effects seen in magazines and Hollywood studios and tons of graphics enable the language-impaired master the tricks. Scott Kelby will have you creating 3D images, turning snapshots into professional-quality prints, and generating spectacular Web effects. In the tradition of New Riders books, this beautiful text is laid out to make it easy to read and use with intelligent text supported by explanatory images. There’s no reason why these simple yet powerful tricks and enormously helpful tips shouldn’t be part of anyone’s Photoshop repertoire. In fact, my Jaguar X (Cool Type Effects chapter) looks better than Apple’s!