. 10
( 11)


Finding a missing toolbar
Seeing images in their real size
Figuring out why colors come out wrong
Avoiding creating new text when editing old text
Fixing broken brushes
Making the Magic Wand tool work better
Getting tools to work your way
Getting Paint Shop Pro to open your images

I n real life, your paint brush doesn™t suddenly start painting in plaid, your
canvas doesn™t double in size, and (unless you have kids) your tools don™t
suddenly become unavailable. In software, however, all the laws of nature are
repealed and then reformulated by people whose idea of a good time is to
make your brush paint in plaid: software engineers.

When the bright colors you see before you are the result of a migraine and
not paint, this chapter is a good place to start. Take a deep breath, get a
chocolate chip cookie, and repeat, “I am smart, software is stupid. I am
smart, software is stupid.” Then read on.

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“The Tool or Command Doesn™t
Do Anything”
If a tool or command doesn™t seem to do anything as you apply it to an image,
the cause is probably related to selections or layers. Specifically, the problem
may be one of the following:

You have in your image a selected area (called a selection) that you™re
unaware of. Tools and commands are almost always constrained to
working within a selection, if one exists. You™re probably either not
working on, or not looking at, that selection. If you don™t really want
to be working within a selection at the moment, simply press Ctrl+D to
remove the selection.
One reason you may be unaware of this selection is that you have
somehow hidden the selection marquee, the moving dashed line
that indicates a selection™s presence. Choose Selections and exam-
ine the square button next to Hide Marquee on the menu that
appears. If the button has a black outline around it, the marquee is
hidden. Click Hide Marquee to unhide it.
Another reason you may be unaware of the selection is that your
image is larger than the window and the selected area isn™t visible.
Zoom out (right-click with the Zoom tool, the magnifying glass icon
on the tool palette) until you can see the whole image, including
the selection marquee.
You™re mistakenly working on an image layer that™s empty (transparent)
in the area you™re trying to work in. Switch to the background layer and
try the tool again. If that doesn™t work, pause the mouse cursor over the
names of the various layers to see tiny, thumbnail images of the contents
of each layer. Click the layer that contains the content you™re trying to
modify. Refer to Chapter 11 for more help with layers.
You™re painting in exactly the same color as the background you™re
painting on! Change the foreground color or background color (refer
to Chapter 9).

If you have been trying to use a menu command with no apparent effect, you
may have been having an effect within your selection, without knowing it!
When you find the area, check it. If it has been altered unintentionally, press
Ctrl+Z repeatedly until the change goes away.

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“Paint Shop Pro Keeps Asking
Me Confusing Questions!”
Many tools have requirements that have to be met before you can use them;
for example, you can™t use any of the tools from the retouch tool group on an
image that has fewer than 16 million colors, and the Text, Shape, and Pen
tools all require the creation of a new vector layer.

Thankfully, Paint Shop Pro is smart enough to automatically take these
actions whenever you use the appropriate tool; for example, try to dodge or
burn on an image containing fewer than 16 million colors and Paint Shop Pro
automatically increases the number of colors for you.

Sadly, Paint Shop Pro defaults to asking you for confirmation on all these
minor changes ” which is annoying because not only do these questions
sound terrifyingly complex, but you also can™t do what you want until you
click OK anyway. It™s sort of like asking “You can™t leave the house until the
door is open; is it okay if I open it for you?” If you want to go for a Sunday
drive ” or any drive ” chances are that you™re going to say yes.

You can stop all these confusing questions by choosing File➪Preferences➪
General Program Preferences and clicking the Auto Action tab. Then click the
Always All button and click OK; Paint Shop Pro always takes these actions by
default. (If it turns out that you really don™t want to do whatever it was that
Paint Shop Pro did automatically, pressing Ctrl+Z undoes your last action,
complete with any changes that Paint Shop Pro made to accomplish it.)

While you™re there, we may as well tell you how to disable the annoying
splash screen that Paint Shop Pro displays when it™s starting up; click the
Miscellaneous tab and uncheck the box labeled Show Splash Screen When
Application Starts.

“The Tool or Palette Just Isn™t There!”
You can accidentally close or move one of the toolbars or palettes that holds
the tool you need, thus stashing the Paint Brush tool where you can™t get at
it. If you don™t see what you need, choose View➪Toolbars or View➪Palettes
and look for a likely candidate that would contain the tool you™re looking for.
(The main offenders are generally one of these three: View➪Toolbars➪Tools,
View➪Palettes➪Layers, or View➪Palettes➪Materials.)

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If the toolbar or palette is open but has been dragged somewhere that it™s not
supposed to be, its icon on the menu has a thin gray box around it; choose it
twice from the menu to “flash” it, by turning it off and then on so that you
know where it is. If it doesn™t have a box around it, you have accidentally
closed it; select it to open it again.

“The Image Is the Wrong Size Inside
or Outside Paint Shop Pro”
Paint Shop Pro displays an image in different sizes to fit the Paint Shop Pro
window. The program doesn™t change the size of the image ” it just displays
it with a different zoom factor. As a result, an image may look much smaller in
Paint Shop Pro than it does in some other program. To see an image in its
true size in Paint Shop Pro, press Ctrl+Alt+N.

If you need to change the true size of an image ” which is the size it usually
appears in other programs (in Web browsers, for example) ” refer to
Chapter 2. If you need to change its size as it™s printed on paper, refer to
Chapter 14.

“The Paint Doesn™t Come Out Right”
Paint Shop Pro has a Stroke Properties box, which can make life complicated
if you™re not sure what™s going on. The usual result is that you end up apply-
ing paint that isn™t what you had in mind. The best solution is to get a good
grip on the Stroke Property boxes™ features, so turn to Chapter 9 to see how
they™re used. In addition, settings on the Tool Options palette can make paint
come out in unwanted ways. Here are a few specific things to check:

If the paint is too light and kind of dappled, you may be applying a
texture unintentionally. To paint without a texture, see whether the
Texture button (the one in the middle) directly underneath either of the
Stroke Property boxes is indented. If one of them is, click them to reset
them to No Texture.
If the color you™re applying doesn™t match the color in either of the
Foreground or Background Stroke Property boxes, you™re applying a
gradient or pattern, not plain paint. Click and drag down on the Style

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button (the one on the left) directly underneath the Stroke Property
boxes, and drag it up to the solid circle to resume using plain paint.
If paint is too thin or too thick, adjust the opacity on the Tool Options
palette; higher opacity makes a thicker paint.

“New Text Appears Whenever
I Try to Change Text”
The Text tool, in its normal vector mode of operation, lets you click existing
text to change it. When you click, the Text dialog box is supposed to appear
and display the current text so that you can edit it. You have to click right
on the text character, not the space between characters ” not even within a
character™s outline, if that character has no fill! Otherwise, you start creating
new text. The cursor displays an A in brackets, like this, [A], when it™s posi-
tioned correctly for editing text.

“The Text or Shape Comes Out the
Wrong Color, Texture, or Pattern”
Although you may logically expect your text, drawings, and shapes to appear
in the foreground color, sometimes they appear in the background color!
Sometimes, too, the colors can be weak or mottled or otherwise weird. Here™s
what™s going on.

Shapes, drawings, and text are made up of outlines in one color and are filled
with another color. The Stroke Property box controls those colors. The out-
lines are done in the foreground color (or gradient or pattern) and in the
foreground texture ” although outlines can be very thin or even turned off.
In that case, nearly all you can see is the fill color. The fill color is the back-
ground color (or gradient or pattern) and background texture (if any). If the
background Stroke Property is turned off (you see a circle with a slash), you
may see very little ” just the outline.

If patterns, textures, or gradients are unintentionally turned on in the
Foreground or Background Style swatches, the result can be strangely mot-
tled or even nearly invisible.

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To get plain text, choose a background stroke property and then click the
Transparent button (the one on the right), directly underneath the
Foreground Stroke Property box.

“The Magic Wand Tool
Doesn™t Select Well”
The Magic Wand tool, which selects an area based on color (or other pixel
qualities), is sometimes not so magic. What looks like a perfectly uniform
color to you ” one that the wand should be able to select cleanly without
gaps or overlaps into unwanted areas ” is apparently not so uniform. You
may find that when you increase the Tolerance setting, you close the gaps
but get more unwanted areas. Here are a couple of things to try besides fid-
dling with the tolerance:

Try different match modes on the Tool Options palette, by choosing RGB
Value, Color, Hue, or Brightness from the menu.
Don™t fuss any more with the Magic Wand tool. Use it to do the basic
selection job and then use other selection tools to add or subtract from
the selected area. For example, switch to the Freehand tool, set it to
Freehand on the Selection Type menu on the Tool Options palette, and
with the Shift key depressed, drag a circle around any gaps in the selec-
tion. Likewise, hold down the Ctrl key and drag a circle around any
unwanted areas.
Choose Selections➪Modify to fill in gaps, expand or contract your selec-
tion, or exclude specific colors. See Chapter 18 for details about
advanced selection techniques.

“The Tool Works, but Not Like I Want”
The key to a tool™s behavior is its Tool Options palette. For painting tools, it
controls brush size, shape, edge fuzziness, paint thickness, how speckly the
paint comes off, and how close together the individual dots are that make
up a stroke. For other tools, it may also control how the tool chooses which
pixels to operate on (by color, hue, or other attribute) and exactly what effect
the tool has. Refer to Chapter 1 for details about the Tool Options palette,
which you can enable or disable by pressing F4 on the keyboard.

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Sometimes, though, the Tool Options palette hides some options from you
because it doesn™t have enough room; look for a small vertical row of single
gray dots on the palette and hover your mouse over it. If the cursor turns
into a double-headed arrow, Paint Shop Pro is hiding some options from you!
Click and drag the arrow down to reveal all the options this tool has to offer.
(Sometimes, Paint Shop Pro hides things with a small rightward arrow; if
that™s the case, just click it and then look for the vertical dotted row.)

“Paint Shop Pro Doesn™t Open Images!”
Have you ever been in line at a grocery store when some rude person shoved
his way in front of you and took your place? Some programs are equally rude,
but rather than brusquely take your place in line, they take over responsibil-
ity for opening your JPEG, GIF, and PNG files without asking you.

You see, whenever you double-click a file to open it, Windows knows what
kind of file it is and assigns one program to open that file type. Certain poorly
designed programs assign themselves to be that program when you install
them, which can be annoying. To put Paint Shop Pro back in charge, choose
File➪Preferences➪File Format Associations, click Select All, and click OK.
Paint Shop Pro is then your default image handler.

If you™re using Windows XP, double-clicking an image may bring up the
Windows Viewer instead, which gives you a preview of your image; press
Ctrl+E to open it in Paint Shop Pro.

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Chapter 17
Ten Fast Fixes for Photo Failures
In This Chapter
Rotating photos 90 degrees
Removing red-eye
Brightening dark photos
Correcting overexposure
Bringing out dark areas
Removing people or objects from a photo
Adding people or objects
Retouching blemishes
Turning skies blue
Getting more lively colors

D espite all attempts by camera makers to make photography foolproof, we
all still make less-than-perfect pictures. Sometimes, we™re the problem ”
we™re too close or too far away or can™t figure out how to use the camera™s fool-
proofing features. Sometimes, the problem is that reality stubbornly refuses to
comply with our expectations: The sky is overcast, Great-Grandma can™t be
present for the family photo, or management has decided to cancel a product
that appears in the product-line photograph.

Fortunately, Paint Shop Pro has a wide range of solutions, which range from
quick-and-dirty fixes to professional-level retouching. In this chapter, we give
the fastest possible solutions to the most common problems. For more in-
depth looks, check out the chapters in Part II, which tell you everything a
casual hobbyist needs to know about digital photography.

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Rotating Right-Side Up
Photos that lie on their side are a pain in the neck. Don™t put up with it! Take
these simple steps:

1. Press Ctrl+R ” a fast way to pop up the Rotate dialog box.
2. In the Direction area of the dialog box, click either the Right (for
clockwise rotation) or Left (for counterclockwise rotation) option
If you have added layers to your photo, click the All Layers check box.
You probably haven™t done so, however, or else your neck would already
be stiff from turning your head sideways!
3. Click OK or press the Enter key on your keyboard.

Chances are, all your sideways photos need rotating in the same direction.
Fortunately, the Rotate dialog box remembers which rotation you chose in
Step 2; for future corrections, all you may need to do is press Ctrl+R and the
Enter key!

Getting the Red Out
Suffering from a little too much red-eye? Photo flashes tend to make the nor-
mally black pupil of the eye glow red. Here™s the fast fix for getting the red
out. It works in nine out of ten cases ” where only the pupil is red and the
iris is unaffected; for tougher cases or more finicky retouching, refer to
Chapter 7. Follow these steps:

1. Choose Adjust➪Photo Fix➪Red-eye Removal.
The Red-eye Removal dialog box appears.
2. In the right preview window, drag the image to center the eye.
3. Click the Zoom In icon (the magnifier with the + sign) repeatedly until
the eye fills the preview windows.
Repeat Step 2 as needed to keep the eye centered.
4. Set the Iris Size option to zero.
This setting should be zero unless the red covers any of the iris (the col-
ored part of the eye). If the red does affect the iris, refer to Chapter 5 for

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5. In the left window, click the red area.
A circle appears in a square frame in the left window. The circle should
be centered on the pupil and cover it to some degree. (If not, refer to
Chapter 5.) In the right window, the red area is partly or entirely obliter-
ated. (If that isn™t true at first, drag the Refine slider a bit to the left.)
6. Drag the Refine slider left until a bit of red reappears and then to the
right just until that red is gone.
7. Click OK.

Repeat these steps for the other eye.

Photos without Enough Flash
If things are looking a bit dim in a photograph, Paint Shop Pro can often
brighten your outlook. Follow these steps for a too-dim photo:

1. Choose Adjust➪Photo Fix➪Fill Flash.
The Fill Flash dialog box springs into action. The photo may already
show sufficient improvement in the sample in the right window. If so,
click OK and skip the rest of these steps.
The preview window on the right shows the result of any changes in this
and the following steps.
2. Choose a Strength.
The Strength bar shows you how much virtual light will be shed on your
darkened scene. Larger numbers equal more light.
(Unfortunately, larger numbers also tend to wash out the rest of the
image and make it pale; if you can™t fix it with the Fill Flash alone, try
reading Chapter 7 for more options.)
3. Click OK.

If the colors appear a bit too washed out after you™re done, see the section
“Making Colors Zippier,” at the end of this chapter.

If this effect doesn™t do the job, check out Chapter 7 for more help with
brightness, contrast, and saturation. Nothing can restore image data that just
isn™t there, however. Things that are way dim will never look natural ” unless
you do some touch-up brushing.

If you can™t see an image well in the right preview window of this dialog box,
click the button with the eye icon to see the effect in the main image window.
Click the button again whenever you want to see the result of your changes.
Refer to Chapter 7 for more help with effect dialog boxes.
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Photos with Too Much Flash
If you got a little too close in a flash photo, Paint Shop Pro may be able to
help you back off a bit. Try this fast fix:

1. Choose Adjust➪Photo Fix➪Backlighting.
The Backlighting Filter dialog box comes to your aid. The photo may
already look better in the sample in the right window. If so, click OK and
skip the rest of these steps.
2. To make the picture darker, drag the Strength bar to the right.
Larger strength values dim the overall light values of the photo.
3. Click OK.

Photos with way too much flash are washed out, which may be harder to fix.
If, for example, portions of someone™s face are practically white, you need to
restore skin tone without affecting the rest of the picture. A little work with
the Smudge tool (refer to Chapter 8) can help you push skin color into small
white areas. Alternatively, try carefully selecting the entire face area with a
feathered edge and then using the Manual Color Correction effect, which we
describe in Chapter 6, to change the white area to skin tone. (You may have
to disable the Preserve Lightness check box in that effect.)

Revealing Dark Corners
If you need to cast light into the dark corners of your life, Paint Shop Pro can
help. Of course, nothing can reveal totally dark details, and ” as in life itself ”
details that are very dark are generally not too attractive anyway, when
brought to light. But, given those limitations, here™s something you can do
to reveal dark corners or other dark areas of your photo.

This approach is the computer equivalent of an old darkroom trick known as
dodging. Dodging requires a little eye-hand coordination because you, in
effect, brush lightness and contrast onto just the dark portions of your
photo. Follow these steps:

1. Choose the Dodge tool (the white comet-looking icon) from the
retouch tool group.
2. Locate or open the Tool Options palette.
Press F4 on your keyboard to toggle the palette on or off.

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3. Make these choices:
Size: To lighten broad areas, the best setting for this value is about
25 percent of the width or height of the image, whichever is larger.
(Image dimensions appear on the status bar, in the lower-right
corner of the Paint Shop Pro window.)
Hardness: Set this option very low, or at zero, unless the dark area
has well-defined edges and you have a steady hand.
Opacity: A good typical setting is about 20. A higher number gives
you a stronger effect per stroke. A lower number gives you a
weaker effect.
Step: A good typical setting is about 25. If you set it too high, you
may see a dotty effect.
Density: 100.
4. Drag over the dark areas of the image to lighten those areas.
Keep the mouse button down and do a first pass over the area. Then
release the mouse button and drag again over areas that need more
lightening. Return to Step 3 and adjust any settings that you think may
be necessary, especially Opacity (strength of effect) or Size. Press Ctrl+Z
to undo your most recent pass at the image, if necessary.

As you brush the image, objects in the dark become brighter and the con-
trast against any black or very dark background is increased. The improve-
ment can be dramatic!

Removing Unwanted Relatives
Removing unwanted relatives is much easier in Paint Shop Pro than in real
life. You™re not limited to relatives, though. You can use the same Paint Shop
Pro tricks to remove other unwanted features, like power lines or passing

Like removing unwanted relatives in real life, this task requires some skill. It
also requires some sort of continuous or repeated background, like the clap-
boarded side of a building, a grassy field, a rail fence, some water, or some
shrubbery. If the unwanted relative is blocking more than half of some unique
feature (like a fireplace, chair, or china cabinet), the job gets nearly impossible.

The main tool for the job is the Clone Brush tool, which you use to extend
the background over the unwanted feature. For example, you can brush out
junk on a lawn by brushing lawn taken from just below or alongside the junk.

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Refer to Chapter 8 for a full-fledged example (we removed a mat, but the prin-
ciple is the same). Here™s the general idea:

1. Click the Clone Brush tool (the 2-headed icon) on the Tools toolbar.
2. Right-click the background that you want to brush over your object, in
an area that has no unique features.
For example, if you™re removing a pile of junk from your lawn, right-click
the lawn, not the junk. Don™t click too near the object you want to
remove, either. Because backgrounds tend to have horizontal strips of
stuff, like grass at the bottom, trees in the middle, and sky at the top,
clicking to the left or right of the object you want to remove usually
works best.
3. Drag carefully across the object you want removed.
If, in Step 2, you right-clicked to the left or right of that object, move the
cursor only horizontally before you drag. That precaution ensures that
you extend the correct strip of background and don™t paint grass, for
example, where you want trees. As you brush, the Clone Brush tool
picks up pixels from under an X that starts where you right-clicked and
follows your motion. Keep an eye on the X to make sure that it doesn™t
pick up pixels you don™t want. You may need to reset the X in a new loca-
tion periodically; return to Step 2 to do so.

You probably need some trial and error to get a feel for the process. Press
Ctrl+Z to undo any errors.

One problem with removing relatives and other objects is that if they were
initially blocking a unique object, that object now has a hole in it. For exam-
ple, the relative may well be blocking one arm of a person or half of a piano
(if that relative is fairly wide). Fortunately, many objects are symmetrical; if
Aunt Katy™s left arm is now missing, you may be able to copy her right arm
and paste it in place of the left one. (You can even mirror half a face to make
a whole one in some instances. Your results may be unsatisfactory.)

Use any selection tool (the Freehand tool, for example) to select the object
you need to copy (refer to Chapter 3). Press Ctrl+F to float the selection, press
Ctrl+M to mirror it, drag it to the correct position, and then press Ctrl+Shift+F
to defloat it. Press Ctrl+D to remove the selection marquee. You may need to
do a little painting and retouching because any light striking the object is now
coming from the wrong direction.

Adding Absent Relatives
If Great-Grandma just couldn™t make the wedding, boost her spirits (or seri-
ously confuse other missing relatives) by creating a picture that includes her
with the happy couple. The same trick works for adding anyone or anything.
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Chapter 17: Ten Fast Fixes for Photo Failures

Have a new product to add to your product line? Just add it to the product
family photo. Here are the basic steps, with references to other parts of the
book that provide more detail:

1. Open the original photo (the one without Great-Grandma) in a
2. Press Ctrl+B or choose File➪Browse to open the image browser.
The browser window opens. Arrange the browser and image windows so
that you can see both. (For example, choose Window➪Tile Vertically.)
3. Drag the thumbnail of the new image (Great-Grandma) from the
browser to the main image window.
The new image becomes a new layer of the original photo. You can close
the browser window now, if you like. (Click the X in its upper-right
4. With the Eraser tool (refer to Chapter 9), erase everything except the
part of the new image that you want (leave Great-Grandma).
5. Click the Deformation tool on the Tools toolbar (second from the top)
and drag the new image (Great-Grandma) to the place where you
want it.
Refer to Chapter 4 for help with the Deformation tool.
6. If the image isn™t the correct size or rotation, drag the handles
(squares) that appear around the new image to make adjustments.
The image may need some repositioning; if so, drag it from any place
except on one of the handles.
7. Double-click the image, when you™re done sizing and positioning, to
apply the deformation.

Repeat Step 4 to make any additional erasures that you discover are neces-
sary at this point. For example, if Great-Grandma™s head and shoulders are to
appear behind the wedding couple, erase her from the shoulders down.
You™re done! Note that you now have an image with layers, so if you save it,
Paint Shop Pro asks whether you want to merge layers. Reply Yes.

Zapping Zits
One noticeable difference between professionally done portraits and the
ones you (and we) take is that the pros retouch their photos to get rid of
unsightly blemishes. Throughout this book, we describe lots of tools that are
useful for retouching and even devote one whole chapter (Chapter 8) to
removing or adding elements to your photo.

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To get rid of a simple blemish, however, is a matter of a few steps. Zoom in on
the blemish and then try these steps:

1. Choose the Smudge tool (the comet streaking to the upper left) from
the retouch tool group on the Tools toolbar.
(Refer to Chapter 8 for more information about this tool.)
2. Open the Tool Options palette, if it™s not already open.
Press F4 to toggle the window on or off. Refer to Chapter 1 for more
information about this palette.
3. Set the brush size to roughly zit-size on the Tool Options palette.
See the discussions of setting tool options in Chapter 1 for help with
other options.
4. Click just to one side of the blemish, on clear skin of similar (but
unblemished) color.
5. Drag across the blemish.
Dragging along, rather than across, any natural folds or wrinkles is usu-
ally a good idea. Also, don™t drag from one area of unblemished skin
color into a differently colored area.
6. Repeat Steps 4 and 5 from the opposite direction.

Making Gray Skies Blue
Don™t let an overcast day rain on your parade. You can make the skies blue in
a photo, and, even though a snapshot may never look completely natural, it
will probably be more attractive. You can™t make a gray day look too natural
because if it were really taken on a sunny day, the sun would appear to shine
on all the subjects in the photo, casting highlights and shadows. Paint Shop
Pro has several tools you can use. The following steps, however, outline the
simplest approach:

1. Click the Magic Wand tool from the selection tool group on the Tools
2. On the Tool Options palette, set the tolerance to about 20 or 30 for a
typical gray sky.
Press F4 on the keyboard to toggle the Tool Options palette on or off.
Refer to Chapters 1 and 4 for more information about this window and
its options, like brush size.

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3. Click the overcast area of the image, to select it.
If the whole sky isn™t selected, press Ctrl+D to clear the selection and
then try again with a higher Tolerance value on the Tool Options palette.
If more than sky is selected, try again with a lower value. Chapter 3 has
more ways to help you select just sky.
4. Press Shift+U to open the Red/Green/Blue dialog box.
5. Increase the number in the Blue value box.
As you adjust, keep an eye on the right preview window in the
Red/Green/Blue dialog box, which is showing you the new sky color.
Stop adjusting whenever you like the color, and click the OK button.

Making Colors Zippier
As we take a photo, we find that our mind™s eye makes the colors livelier than
they turn out to be in reality, and the photo looks a bit dull. Perhaps it™s just
that our antidepressant doses need adjusting, but if you have the same prob-
lem, try adjusting the saturation (of your image, that is). Take these steps and
don™t call us in the morning:

1. Choose Adjust➪Automatic Saturation Enhancement.
The Automatic Saturation Enhancement dialog box springs into action.
2. Choose the More Colorful option on the left side of the box.
3. If the photo contains a significant amount of skin, click the Skintones
Present check box.
4. Choose the Weak, Normal, or Strong option on the right side of the
box, depending on which choice gives better results in the right pre-
view window.
Click the button with the eye icon whenever you want to see the effect of
your chosen options in the image window.
5. Click OK.

If that doesn™t brighten up your day, check out Chapter 7 or see your friendly
primary care physician.

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Chapter 18
Ten Topics a Little Too Advanced
for the Rest of This Book
In This Chapter
Saving tool and effect settings as presets
Drawing smooth curves
Aligning objects
Distributing objects
Using the Paint Shop Pro grids
Advanced selecting techniques
Creating Web pages
Advanced undos and redos
Using scripts

C hris Rock, a famous comedian, has a routine that discusses creepy guys
who hang around hip nightclubs. “They™re not old,” he says. “Just a little
too old for the club.”

That™s what the ten items in this chapter are: just a little too advanced for the
rest of the book. Thankfully, none of them is difficult (or creepy) ” and, after
you have mastered the essentials of Paint Shop Pro, these ten techniques
save you lots of time.

Saving Tool and Effect
Settings As Presets
Paint Shop Pro has lots of options for each of its tools and effects, and setting
them all by hand can be tedious. If you painstakingly set the opacity, shape,

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blend mode, stroke width, and thickness to get a watercolor-style effect from
the Brush tool, you can save those settings as a single preset. Then, the next
time you want to paint in watercolors, you can load all your carefully tweaked
tool options with a single click. Then, you don™t have to remember each of
the controls™ settings and set each of them individually.

You can find presets in one of two separate places, depending on whether the
settings you need to save are in a tool, like the Magic Wand, or in a dialog box
that pops up whenever you try to apply an effect or adjustment, like the
Mosaic effect or the Automatic Color Balance:

In Effects and Adjustments, the preset controls are along the top of the
dialog box, as shown in Figure 18-1.
For tools, the presets are in the upper-left corner of the Tool Options
palette. Click the small arrow next to the tool™s icon to display the drop-
down Presets list.

Presets menu Save Preset

Figure 18-1:
The Presets
coming to
the top of a
dialog box
near you.

Reset to Default

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To save a particular group of settings, set all the dials, slider bars, menus,
colors, and other options to the settings you want to remember ” and don™t
do anything else! When you have everything tweaked to perfection, press the
Save Preset button (the one with the little floppy disk) and enter a memo-
rable name for the effect. (If you want, you can also add your name, a copy-
right notice, and a description by clicking the Options button in the Save
Presets dialog box.)

Then, the next time you want to call up a group of settings, just choose the
appropriate preset from the drop-down list and Paint Shop Pro automatically
enters all the numbers you saved. If you feel that you have made too many
changes and want things back to the way they were originally, click the Reset
to Default button, which sets the controls back to the way they were when
you first installed Paint Shop Pro.

To delete a preset, click the Resource Manager button, as shown in Figure
18-1, which pops open the Resource Manager dialog box. Select your preset,
click the Delete button, and then confirm the deletion.

The Materials palette has no presets, but you can save textured gradients
and colors as swatches, which are similar to presets; refer to Chapter 10 for

You have probably used masking tape, or at least you admire those people
who do. (They™re so tidy!) Masking tape hides certain areas and lets others
remain visible.

In Paint Shop Pro, masking also hides certain areas while letting others
remain visible. A mask is a special type of layer that turns parts of an under-
lying layer transparent, thus allowing a third layer to show through. (Alas,
the similarities between masking and masking tape end there.)

You can put any image you like on a mask layer. Where the image on the mask
layer is darker, the pixels on the layer underneath it become more transpar-
ent and reveal the background (or perhaps another layer). Where the image
on the mask layer is lighter, the pixels on the layer underneath are more visi-
ble. In fact, you can think of masking as applying a special transparency paint
to a layer.

If you don™t know what layers are, you have gone too far! Quick ” go to
Chapter 11 and get the knowledge you so desperately need!

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But, what exactly can masking do for you that erasing, selecting, cutting, and
pasting can™t do? Here are a few instances where masking may work better
for you than some alternatives:

Brush rather than cut and paste intricate shapes: Rather than meticu-
lously select the area of an image you want to combine with another and
then cut it and paste it as a layer, do this: Paste the entire image or a
roughly selected portion of it as a layer and mask out the portions you
don™t want. This approach lets you brush an area in or out, which is
often easier than trying to carefully select the area.
Create shapes or letters out of an image: If you put letters or shapes on
a mask layer, the background image is blocked except for those letters
or shapes. This process is much like using a pattern to create nice text
(refer to Chapter 12 for details), except that the pattern is a real-life
Gradually feather or fade an image into another image: If you fill a
selected area in an opaque layer with a gradient fill of transparency
paint, you fade the overlaid image smoothly into the underlying image.
Brush or spray transparency in a creative way: You can use any of the
painting, drawing, or shape tools on a mask. For example, you can spray
(using the Airbrush tool) creative transparent (or opaque) images.

The following section shows you two quick ways to use masks.

Loading a premade mask
Paint Shop Pro comes with several mask layers already built-in, which allows
you to create cool effects. To use them effectively, you should have two
layers: the primary layer you want up front and the bleed-through image on
the background layer.

For this example, we use a simple set of layers, as shown in Figure 18-2: a layer
with the text Paint Shop Pro and a background layer of a simple gradient.

Figure 18-2:
Two layers,
waiting for
a mask.

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To add a pregenerated mask, follow these steps:

1. Click the layer you want the mask to affect.
Remember that the mask blocks out certain parts of the layer under-
neath, so make sure that you add it to the right layer.
2. Choose Layers➪Load/Save Mask➪Load Mask from Disk.
The Load Mask from Disk dialog box pops up, as shown in Figure 18-3,
and provides you with several options:
Mask: Click the down arrow in the Mask area and then choose a cate-
gory from the drop-down list in the dialog box that appears. Three basic
sorts of masks are stored within Paint Shop Pro:
Edge Mask: Designed to highlight the center of a picture. Think of
this type of mask as sort of a fancy frame.
If you want a real frame ” one that looks like wood ” around
your image, Paint Shop Pro has a tool to do just that. Check out
Chapter 13!
Texture Masks: Overlay an image with some sort of repeating pat-
tern, like a plaid or brick background.
Masks: A central image, like a sunburst or a set of boxes. This type
of mask isn™t terribly useful, but at least it™s free.
In any case, select your pregenerated mask by clicking it. It™s that easy!
Orientation: Here™s where you decide how big you want your mask to
be (and saved masks tend to be on the small side). You can choose to
fit the mask so that it stretches across your selection (that™s handy if
you™re just applying it to a bit of text), have it stretch across the entire
canvas, or leave the mask™s size as is.

Figure 18-3:
This dialog
box allows
you to
choose from

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Create Mask From: This setting controls how the image on your mask
blots out the layer underneath it.
Source Luminance: In this default setting, darker pixels produce
more of a masking effect and lighter pixels let more of the underly-
ing image show through. (The color of the image on the mask,
incidentally, matters not one whit; only the light and dark values
Any Non-Zero Value: There™s no subtlety with this setting. Any
pixel with a color, no matter how light that color is, blocks out the
underlying layer. Only transparent or nonexistent pixels let the
layer shine through.
Source Opacity: This setting uses the mask image™s opacity, rather
than its color, to control how much of the underlying layer gets
through. Opacity, you may recall, is a fancy word for how dense an
area is; areas of low opacity are near-transparent and show almost
everything, whereas areas with 100 percent opacity (most pictures
by default) block it all out.
Options: You™re given a couple of options to work with, just in case you
feel like getting kooky:
Invert Transparency: If you check this box, Paint Shop Pro
reverses its normal habit of “Dark areas block, light areas show
through” and instead switches to a “Light areas block, dark areas
show through” mode.
Hide All Mask, Yadda Yadda: This area has advanced stuff, and
you really don™t need to know about it. (A quick explanation is that
determines whether the surrounding pixels are white or black or
whether they™re taken from previous mask information. We told
you that this setting isn™t that useful.)
3. When you have selected everything you need, click OK.
The mask is now applied, as shown in Figure 18-4. It™s a simple spiral
mask, but you can see how the spiral mask we have applied to the words
Paint Shop Pro has rendered parts of the words transparent, which
allows the background gradient to show through in a spiral pattern.

Using an image as a mask
If the pregenerated masks don™t sound terribly useful (and they™re not), you
can use any old image as a mask. You need three layers in order to create an
effective mask, each containing a separate image:

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The image you want to have masked
The background image that you want to show through the masked
The image you use as a mask

Figure 18-4:
The words
Paint Shop
Pro are
with a spiral
mask, which
allows the
to show

That™s a little complex ” so to show you how it™s done, we put text on a mask
layer to cut words out of a background. Follow these steps:

1. Select the image that you want to have masked.
This image is blocked out by the mask layer and has the background
image show through it.
2. If the image is on the background layer (as most photos are), choose
Layers➪Promote Background Layer to move it to a separate layer.
As we just said, you need three separate layers to create a mask. This
step makes sure you don™t accidentally swap the background image and
the masked image.
3. Open (or create) the background image, and then paste it into the
canvas as a new layer.
Move the layer containing the background image so that it™s underneath
the layer containing the image that is masked. (If you don™t know how to
move layers around, or how to paste images in as layers, Chapter 11
explains it.)
For this sample masking, we mask a picture of an Amish countryside (as
shown in Figure 18-5). The background layer we use is plain white ” but
it could just as well be another photo, or a gradient, or anything else you
can create in Paint Shop Pro. (It could even be transparent, for that
matter.) The important thing is that whatever is on that background
bleeds through the mask.

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Figure 18-5:
A lovely
shot of an
which we
use as a

4. On a separate canvas, load (or create) an image to use as a mask.
You can use any image you want as a mask ” words, shapes, even
another picture. Just remember that the dark areas on that canvas
reveal the background layer when it™s used as a mask and that the light
areas reveal the masked layer.
In Figure 18-6, you can see the image we have created for our mask; note
how it™s mostly black, with a fuzzy spotlight effect in the center. That™s
because we want to block out most of the Amish countryside.
To invert a picture™s colors with one click, by turning black into white
and vice versa, choose Adjust➪Color Balance➪Negative Image.

Figure 18-6:
Our masking

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5. Switch back to the canvas that contains the two layers. Select the layer
containing the image you want to have masked.
6. Choose Layers➪New Mask Layer➪From Image.
Paint Shop Pro then asks you which canvas you want to use to create
your mask and lists all images you have open in Paint Shop Pro. Choose
the canvas containing the image you want to use as a mask and click OK.
The image is inserted as a new layer, and the image underneath it is
masked, as shown in Figure 18-7.

If you don™t like the way your mask looks, you can edit the mask directly on
the layer. Select the mask layer, and then use the Eraser to remove parts of
the mask so that the masked image shows through. Alternatively, you can
use the Paint Brush tool to add more blocked-out parts to your mask.

Although your Paint Brush tool keeps whatever colors you have loaded, a
mask cannot contain colors. All it has are shades of gray.

Figure 18-7:
The Amish
with the
mask shown
in Figure
18-6 applied.

Drawing Smooth Curves
We show you how to draw single lines and freehand lines over in Chapter 12 ”
but if you™re anything like us, your mouse hand isn™t nearly steady enough to
draw a smooth curve. Fortunately, Paint Shop Pro offers another option for
curve lovers: Bezier curves.

Bezier curves are like a high-tech connect-the-dots ” you click to create a
series of dots, called nodes, and Paint Shop Pro draws nice, neat curved lines
between the nodes. You can use those nodes to adjust the angle of the curve
that connects the two dots, and to change which way the curve turns.
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This capability makes it very easy to create professional-looking curves, and
they™re easily edited, to boot. Is your pretty curlicue absolutely perfect except
for one curve in the corner? Adjusting the one node that controls that corner
section straightens out that segment and leaves the rest of your snaky line

To play connect-the-dots with Paint Shop Pro, choose the Pen tool on the
Tools toolbar, choose your foreground (stroke) and background (fill) mater-
ial, and then follow these steps:

1. Select Draw mode on the Tool Options palette, as shown in Figure 18-8.
(If you don™t see the Tool Options palette, press F5.)

Figure 18-8:
To create
curves, you
need the
Tool Options

2. Also on the Tool Options palette, click the Draw Point to Point button,
under the word Mode.
By default, Paint Shop Pro assumes that you want to draw a two-node
line ” a single curve between two points. If you want to create a
multiple-node line, like a spiral or a curve with several bends, click the
Connect Segments check box.
3. Set the Width value, still within the Tool Options palette, to the
desired width of your line (in pixels).
4. Set the Background and Fill Properties box (on the Materials palette)
to transparent if you want just a line or outline, or select a material if
you want it filled.
To make the line transparent, click the Transparent button on the right
side on the Materials palette, just underneath the Background and Fill
Properties box.
5. Click and drag to set the node™s properties.
Each click you make creates a node, although you still have to tell Paint
Shop Pro how steep the curve™s angle is and which way it™s pointing.
Click where you want to place the node ” as you drag the mouse, you
pull out an arrow by its tip. Here™s how that arrow works for you:

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• As you drag the arrow farther away from the node and make it
longer, the angle of the curve gets sharper as it approaches the
node. If you make the arrow shorter again, the curve becomes
rounder as it approaches the node.
• As you drag the front end of the arrow around the dot, the curve
follows the arrow™s direction as best it can while still ending up at
the node.
Figure 18-9 shows the effect of dragging the tip of the arrow: Even
though the two dots don™t move, the curve that connects the dots
changes radically. On the left, a curved line is created and the arrow
appears for the latest dot. On the right, the arrow™s tip is being extended
and dragged upward a bit. You can see how the curve broadens and
changes its angle to follow the arrow™s direction.
As you create this line, if you discover that you have placed a node in
the wrong position, you can go back and edit it later. (In fact, we show
you how to do that in the following section.) However, Paint Shop Pro
doesn™t show you all nodes as you™re drawing the line ” only the one
you™re working on. If you want to see all previous nodes as you drag
the mouse, click the Show Nodes check box.
6. If you want a shape (with a closed line), click the Close Selected Open
Contours button when you™re done.
The Close Selected Open Contours feature finishes the Bezier curve by
drawing a line between the first and last nodes, which makes it a closed
shape. Your line now appears in all its colorful glory.
If you have selected Connect Segments and you don™t choose Close
Selected Open Contours, you need to tell Paint Shop Pro when you™re
done drawing this particular curve. Otherwise, when you click a new
node into existence, it™s added to the end of the preceding curve. To
stop drawing when you™re in Connect Segments mode, click the Start
New Contour button.

Figure 18-9:
Making a
curved line.
Even though
the two dots
don™t move,
dragging the
changes the
curve that
the dots.

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You™re done! Hopefully, your curve looks perfect. If it™s not, you need to edit
your nodes. Read on to the next section!

Editing Bezier curve nodes
Paint Shop Pro users have an old saying: “You can pick your friends and you
can pick your nodes, but you can™t pick your friend™s nodes.” It™s not true, of
course, but that doesn™t keep users from saying it. You can freely pick, or pick
at, all your nodes ” including your friend™s nodes, if that person gives you a
Paint Shop Pro file with vector lines or shapes in it.

If you want to alter a shape or a line after you have drawn it, you need to get
down and dirty and start changing the nodes.

To start fiddling with nodes, you need to select the Pen tool and click the Edit
button on the Tool Options palette.

To enter Node Edit mode, follow these steps:

1. Select the Pen tool.
2. From the Tool Options palette, choose Edit Mode, as shown earlier, in
Figure 18-8.

After you™re in Node Edit mode, you can manipulate your nodes all you want.
Here are some changes you can make:

To select a node for any action (like deleting, dragging, or changing its
type), click it. You know that you can select it when a four-headed arrow
appears under the cursor; you know that a node is selected when it™s
solid black.
To move a node, drag it. You can move multiple nodes at one time as
long as they™re all selected.
To delete a node, press Delete.
To select several nodes, hold down the Shift key while clicking them.
To select several nodes at one time, make sure that you™re in Node Edit
mode (this action doesn™t work if you™re in Drawing or Knife mode) and
draw a square around the nodes you want to select.
To select all nodes, right-click a node and choose Edit➪Select All from
the context menu that pops up.
To join two line segments that are part of the same object (for example,
if they were created by cutting a line in half with the Pen tool in Knife
mode), select the two ends you want to join by Shift+clicking both of
them and then right-click your image and choose Edit➪Join.

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Note that a line has direction, based on the order in which you create the line.
The control arrow that appears on a node in Node Edit mode points in the line™s
direction. The word Start or End that appears when you pause your mouse
cursor over the end nodes of a line also tells you the direction. A few things you
do may be dependent on direction, such as aligning text to the line or shape.

Slicing shapes in half
The Pen tool is mightier than the Sword tool ” or would be, if a Sword tool
existed. Ironically, though, Knife mode is a part of the Pen tool, and it™s might-
ier than the rest of the Pen tool because it slices in half the lines and shapes
you have drawn.

Select Knife mode from the Tool Options palette and drag a line through your
vector object. This action separates the object into two separate sets of
nodes, cut cleanly where you drew through them with the Knife. Be warned
that even if you separate an image in two with the Knife, both still count as
one vector object.

Aligning Objects
After you have painstakingly added all the text, shapes, and Bezier curves to
an image, quite often you must complete one more step: You want these ele-
ments to line up cleanly. The right edge of the text should match up with the
end of your Bezier curve, or the elements all should be aligned to the bottom,
as shown in Figure 18-10. Fortunately, you can easily align all the objects in
your file.

Figure 18-10:
Both images
and text are
lined up
neatly along
the bottom
in the right-
hand box.

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Unfortunately, one of the sillier things about Paint Shop Pro is that you have
no way (or at least no easy way) to convert a layer or selection into an object.
And, you can use this technique only to align objects. You can™t align, for
example, a pasted-in image with a text object in one click; if you need to do
that, you have to do it by hand. Sorry!

Simply select all the objects you want lined up (refer to Chapter 12 for details
on how to do that) and choose Objects➪Align. You™re presented with a daz-
zling array of options:

Top, Bottom, Left, Right: Paint Shop Pro aligns all the selected objects
along the margin you have chosen. For example, if you choose Right, the
objects are all moved so that their right margins are placed on the same
Vertical Center, Horizontal Center: These items are aligned along their
vertical or horizontal axis.
Center in Canvas, Horizontal Center in Canvas, Vertical Center in
Canvas: These options move all selected items (even if it™s just one item)
so that it™s in the appropriate place in the canvas.

Distributing Objects
When you have several objects on a page, you often want to space them in
some manner ” so that a row of hand-drawn Christmas lights is evenly
spread across the page or items are arranged neatly by their center.

Simply select three or more objects (you can™t distribute just two items!),
and then choose Objects➪Distribute. You™re given a couple of choices:

Vertical Center: The centers of the objects are spaced out evenly along
a vertical axis, as shown in Figure 18-11. Notice that their uneven hori-
zontal positions have been left untouched.
Horizontal Center: The centers of the objects are spaced out evenly
along a horizontal axis.
Vertical Bottom, Horizontal Bottom, Vertical Top, Horizontal Top:
Sometimes, when you have objects of differing sizes, spacing out items
by their centers looks funny, as you can see in Figure 18-12. In that case,
you can space your objects according to where their bottom or top mar-
gins are, which can make things easier.
Space Evenly Horizontal, Space Evenly Vertical: This option spaces the
selected objects evenly across the canvas height or width, depending on
whether you choose Horizontal or Vertical.

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Figure 18-11:
circles are a
little spaced
out, but a
little vertical
them right
up. Notice
that even
though the
circles have
evenly along
a vertical
axis, their
have been

Figure 18-12:
The large
circle and
small circles
here are all
spaced out
evenly by
centers, but
they still look
funny. Using
as an
makes them
look a little

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Using the Paint Shop Pro Grids
If you™re the sort of person who really likes to have your ducks in a row, Paint
Shop Pro can display a grid so that you know precisely where your objects
are at all times. (As an unexpected bonus, it also makes your image look
much like a game of Battleship.) The grid is handy for lining up items.

Furthermore, you can set the grid so that when you drag a selection, object,
or layer to within a certain distance of a gridline, the item™s edge “snaps” to
the grid and moves the edge automatically so that it™s aligned with one of the

To see the grid, choose View➪Grid. A fine tracery of gray lines now overlays
your image; you can™t draw over or erase the grid lines. If you want to have
your selections snap to the grid, choose View➪Snap to Grid.

To adjust the grid™s properties, choose View➪Change Grid, Guide and Snap
Properties, which brings up the not-at-all-interestingly-named Grid, Guide &
Snap Properties dialog box, as shown in Figure 18-13.

Figure 18-13:
The Matrix
has you, but
the grid
helps you
set things
into place.

From there, you can adjust both the default settings for all grids and the set-
tings for the grid in this particular image. In either case, the controls are
fairly intuitive as Paint Shop Pro goes:

Units: In this area of the dialog box, you can decide which style of mea-
surement Paint Shop Pro should use to set grid lines: pixels, centime-
ters, or inches.
Horizontal Grids: This option controls how far apart your horizontal
grid lines should be, as measured in whatever units you choose.

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Vertical Grids: This option controls how far apart your vertical grid
lines should be. (Note that you can set the vertical and horizontal grid
lines to different values, though we can™t imagine why you would want to
do so.)
Color: By default, this option is set to a neutral gray, but you can choose
a vibrant pink or muted yellow for your grid lines, if you like. Clicking
this box brings up a dialog box much like the Color palette, which we
explain thoroughly in Chapter 9.
Snap Influence: This option controls how strong an influence your grid
lines have when you turn on the Snap To option. By default, it™s set to
100 pixels, which means that if a selected item™s edge comes within 100
pixels of a grid line, the edge is automatically aligned with the line. You
can reduce this number, which allows you to move your items about the
grid without always having your items snap to an edge.

When you™re done, click OK. To stop displaying your grid (which also tem-
porarily disables any snap-to settings), choose View➪Grid once more.

Advanced Selecting Techniques
Sometimes, you want to select lots of areas that are the same color, scattered


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