Photoshop CS6 Beta: The Best Features for Portrait Photographers

Free Photoshop Actions and Lightroom Presets by MCP™

Photoshop CS6 Beta: The Best Features for Portrait Photographers

photoshop cs6

Photoshop CS6 is now available

MCP Actions has great news: we have tested all of our Photoshop actions in CS6 and most of them work perfectly. Once the final version is released, we will announce how to re-download any that were impacted negatively.  We also just redid every instructional PDF that we include with the CS versions when you download our Photoshop action sets. If you wish to see these improved instructions, just redownload your actions from the My Downloadable Files section of your account.

Now for the fun stuff – our favorite additions coming to Photoshop CS6:

1. Color range now has skin tones option and can detect faces – this will allow you to isolate the skin more easily This means better skin tones color correction and skin smoothing possibilities – all without impacting the rest of your image as much as in the past.


2. Iris Blur allows you to simulate realistic shallow depth of field in a few clicks. There are also a few other fun blur filters like tilt-shift. Watch below as an Adobe product manager shows how Iris Blur works.


3. Resizing just got easier – bicubic automatic picks the best method for your image.

4. The layers panel has a search and sorting features. If you run actions and want to locate a specific layer, you can search.  As shown here, I ran Fusion’s One Click Color and searched for “Underexposure.”  You can also sort by effects, attributes, modes, etc.  This is especially great for designers but ultra handy for professional and hobbyist photographer too.



5. Change the opacity of multiple layers at once without having to group them.


6.Redesigned crop tool. It works similarly to Lightroom’s crop tool. And it includes a special new crop called the Perspective Crop Tool. You’ll love it!


Here are 10 other exciting additions and changes to Photoshop CS6:

  1. There is more control with the patch tool, which is my favorite retouching tool – including a content aware option.
  2. Brush size is larger now – up to 5,000 pixels
  3. No more tiling, so filters  work in real time – for example no long waiting time for Liquify to work.
  4. Rich cursors – cursors tell you information such as width/height of a selection.
  5. Auto save! If Photoshop crashes you lose all your work. It is so frustrating. Photoshop CS6 now has auto save so you it remembers where you left off. You cannot beat that.
  6. Content aware move tool, which can move items and fill in or expand items.
  7. Copy multiple layers at once (command j)
  8. Masks and adjustments are in the same panel now, called properties. Also, you can resize the panel.
  9. Bridge is now in 64 Bit – this means faster and better performance. Mini Bridge can appear as a film strip.
  10. Darker user interface which looks more similar to Lightroom – but you can change it if you prefer lighter.

*** Disclaimer: Adobe Photoshop CS6 is still in Beta.  The features listed here may or may not actually appear in the final release of the program. 

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  1. October 26, 2013 at 11:52 am —

    Portraits, landscapes, sport scenes, etc will all work for this tutorial.
    If you know little about color theory, Kuler is a fun way to
    learn it. The extension of your file name will automatically change to psd.

  2. Cathy D.
    May 17, 2012 at 11:28 am —

    Wow. I’m also still hanging on to CS4 and never made the leap to CS%. These potential features are making me want to jump up to CS6!! The Iris blur alone has me hooked!!! Thanks for the review!

  3. March 24, 2012 at 4:06 pm —

    I tried upgrading to CS5 from CS4 and CS5 had so many bugs and kept crashing, so I kept up with CS4 …really excited to see CS6, and can’t wait to try it and see if it really lives up to what it promises! 🙂

  4. Cathy
    March 23, 2012 at 8:13 am —


    Great review I am now saving for the upgrade from CS4 to 6. I am interested in what you think about a post workflow using Camera Raw. I have been using LR3 and have not upgraded to LR4 yet. I am considering trying a camera raw to PS workflow.
    If you already have a tutorial on using camera raw for the workflow or if you have any tips or information on this topic it would be appreciated.One thing that is always constant is change : )

  5. Alice C.
    March 22, 2012 at 4:04 pm —

    Oh my gosh! The Auto save!!!!

  6. March 22, 2012 at 10:40 am —

    I’m SO glad I’ve waited to purchase PS! I’ve been working with PE9, but primarily use LR3 now for all my work-I don’t do much “photoshop” changes, like removing things, etc.. so haven’t really felt the need to change over. However, the skin tones thing REALLY has me ready to make the switch! Thankfully MCP gives a discount when you upgrade/change from PE to PS for the actions purchased 🙂

  7. David
    March 22, 2012 at 10:33 am —

    Color range on skin tones!

    Actually, about half of your top 10 list provides reasons to make the jump from Elements…

  8. March 22, 2012 at 9:10 am —

    Auto save !!!

  9. Raelyn
    March 22, 2012 at 12:14 am —

    I’ve also never upgraded from CS4 and these new “potential” features have me slobbering as well! Does anyone know how long it usually takes for the full/purchasable version to be released once the beta is out?? I can hardly wait to snatch it up! Hopefully it’s before my hubby graduates in about a month, so I can still get a student version! 🙂

  10. March 21, 2012 at 11:16 pm —

    I never upgraded from CS4 but I think I’m sold on CS6. Just that itty bitty part about color range skin tones has me slobbering. 🙂

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Photoshop CS6 Beta: The Best Features for Portrait Photographers