For Immediate Release - July 13, 2008
If you're a Mac-based Photoshop users needs to automate your Photoshop production pipeline, you need look no further than the Photoshop Action Pack, a collection of 90 Automator Actions that allow you to script nearly all of Photoshop's functionality from within Apple's Automator.
The new version, which is for Photoshop CS3 adds two new actions: Set Blending Mode of Current Layer, and Copy IPTC to Spotlight Comments. The first lets you change a layer's blending mode, just as you would from Photoshop's Layers palette, while the second lets you automate the process of copying IPTC tags into spotlight comments. With this release, a few other actions have seen feature additions. You can now use multiple copies of Restore Original Image within the same workflow, and Copy Data to IPTC now lets you specify a separator to use when appending data. This release also brings some important bug fixes, most notably to Unsharp Mask, which now works properly.
While Photoshop has its own built-in Actions mechanism for automating repetitive tasks, Automator offers a number of advantages. Because Automator lets you build automation workflows that include more applications than just Photoshop, you can create a single automation that processes images in Photoshop, and then hands the output to another application for additional work. Also, with the Photoshop Action Pack collection of Automator actions, you get logical operations and conditional functionality that you don't have with Photoshop's built-in actions. So, you can build automated workflows that process each image differently depending on its characteristics.
The Photoshop Action Pack is available for free download at www.completedigitalphotography.com/?p=339. If you're still using Photoshop CS2 or CS, then you can download version 3.5 from that same address.
Finally, if you find these actions helpful, and want to see more development on them, or if you're just extremely thankful to be reading about something other than the iPhone, you should consider making a donation using the Paypal button located at the bottom of the Action Pack web page.