Tuesday, May 24, 2011

How to: Create an Account on Facebook - Instructions, Guides, Tips, and Training Video Tutorials

If you want to learn how to create an account on Facebook and you're looking for resources about Facebook - instructions, guides, tips, and training - check out these free Facebook video tutorials below. These are from the Facebook Essential Training Course by lynda.com. It will teach you the basics of creating an account on Facebook and managing it. It has topics on: finding and adding friends, liking pages, reading the News Feed, writing on a friend’s wall, updating your status, posting videos and links, creating a page for a business, protecting privacy and staying secure, deactivating an account, and more. Check out the free videos below to see start learning. To view the entire course, become a lynda.com member or sign up for a FREE 7-day trial.

Friday, May 20, 2011

Flash CS5 Video Tutorials for Beginners Training Course

Here are some Flash CS5 video tutorials for beginners from Flash Professional CS5 Essential Training from lynda.com. This comprehensive beginners training course covers the things you need to know in order to start making your own interactive Flash projects. Topics include drawing in Flash CS5, working with text, creating animation, working with audio & video, adding basic interactivity using ActionScript, integrating Flash with other Adobe applicatons, creating slideshows, and more! There's even a chapter on using Flash to create iPhone applications. Below, you'll find 20+ free video tutorial samples from the course. You can become a lynda.com member or sign-up for a FREE 7-day trial to lynda.com so you can access all the videos and courses on their website.

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Video Editing Courses at Lynda.com

Hi, everyone! I'm still in the process of putting up my video editing tutorial website. So in the meantime, if you're interested in learning all about video editing, you can check out lynda.com. They've got a very comprehensive list of training courses on video editing, from beginner to advanced levels.

Some of the courses they offer are:
  • After Effects CS5 Essential Training
  • Final Cut Pro 7 Essential Training
  • Premiere Pro CS5 Essential Training
  • iMovie '11 Essential Training
  • Motion 4 Essential Training

Visit lynda.com to find out more. And you can also get a 7-day trial so that you can access all of their 1000+ training courses for an entire week for FREE.

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

How to Change the Size of a Movie Clip Using ActionScript 3 - Assigning AS3 instance names and modifying some AS3 movie clip properties

by Alberto Medalla
Lecturer, Ateneo de Manila University

In this lesson, I'm going to discuss the concept of instance names and how they are needed in ActionScript in order to control display objects (objects that can be seen on the stage). Let's say that you've got a display object on the stage (such as an instance of a movie clip symbol that you created), how can you use ActionScript 3 in order to make that object change in size? By the end of this lesson, that is something that you should already be able to do.

Let's begin.

I've mentioned that we can control display objects using ActionScript. Think of ActionScript as the language that we use so that we can "communicate" with these objects and tell them what to do (e.g. change color, change size, change location, become clickable, etc...). We refer to each individual display object on the stage as an instance - it can be a button, a movie clip or a text field. In order to be able to "communicate" with these instances, we must give them names.

When we communicate with real people, we address them by name - "Hey, John. Can you send me that document from our previous meeting?" In ActionScript, to communicate with these instances on the stage, we must address them by their names as well. These names are referred to as instance names.

NOTE: Instances of graphic symbols and static text fields cannot be used with ActionScript, because they cannot be given instance names. But instances of movie clips and buttons, as well as text fields that are of the dynamic, input and all TLF types can be given instance names.

In the following exercise, you will learn how to assign instance names to display objects.

1. Create a new Flash ActionScript 3 document.

2. Draw a circle on the stage.

3. Convert this circle into a movie clip symbol. You must convert the shape into a movie clip or button symbol in order to be able to give it an instance name.

NOTE: The symbol name (the one you type in the Convert to Symbol dialog box) is NOT the same as the instance name.

4. Make sure that the circle is selected, then go to the Properties Inspector.

NOTE: When selecting instances of symbols on the stage, do NOT double-click them. Double-clicking will open up symbol-editing mode. To select an instance, just click on it once using the selection tool (the black arrow).

5. Then in the properties inspector, you will see an input field for the instance name. Type circle1_mc inside the input field.

You've now given the currently selected instance the name circle1_mc. The same step is followed if you wish to give buttons or text fields instance names as well.

6. Add another instance of the circle symbol by dragging it from the library down to the stage.

7. Make sure that this second instance is selected, then go to the Properties Inspector and give it the name circle2_mc.

You now have 2 movie clip instances on the stage, each one with a unique instance name.

And this concludes the first exercise of this lesson.


Instance names are author defined, meaning you decide what names to give them. But there are still some rules that you need to follow. Let's take a look at those rules.

  1. Instance names must be unique. No instances within the same scope should have the same name.
  2. The characters in an instance name can only be made up of: letters, numerical characters, underscores (_), and dollar signs ($). No other characters can be used.
  3. The first character in an instance name can only be: a letter, an underscore (_), or a dollar sign ($). You CANNOT start an instance name with a numerical character.
  4. Instance names are case-sensitive. John is different from john.

Make sure you follow these rules to help avoid some errors.


Now that the instances have names, you will be able to target them using ActionScript. In this exercise, you will add some ActionScript code that will modify some of the properties of the instances on the stage. You will modify the size using the scaleX and scaleY ActionScript 3 properties. You'll also modify the opacity using the alpha property.

1. Create a new layer for the ActionScript code. You can name this one Actions, but it's not required.

2. Make sure that frame 1 of the Actions layer is selected, then launch the Actions Panel by choosing Window > Actions from the main menu.

3. In the Script Pane of the Actions Panel, type in the following lines of code:

circle1_mc.scaleX = 2;
circle1_mc.scaleY = 2;

These lines of code will scale up the circle1_mc instance to 2 times its original size (or 200%). The scaleX property controls the horizontal scaling, while the scaleY property controls the vertical scaling.

4. Then add one more line below the first 2 lines of code:

circle2_mc.alpha = .5;

This reduces the alpha property value of circle2_mc to .5. The alpha property controls the opacity. A value of .5 brings the opacity down to 50%. You can assign a value from 0 to 1 for the alpha property. The object becomes less visible as the value approaches 0.

5. Test the movie by pressing ctrl + enter (pc) or cmd + return (mac) on your keyboard. You should see that the circle1_mc instance is now larger, and the circle2_mc instance is lighter.

What are properties?
In the exercise above, you modified some properties of movie clip instances. Think of properties as characteristics that describe instances (e.g. size, color, rotation).

Some properties of MovieClip instances are:
  • scaleX - scales the instance horizontally by a specified number
  • scaleY - scales the instance vertically by a specified number
  • x - controls the x coordinate of the instance
  • y - controls the y coordinate of the instance
  • rotation - rotates the instance to the angle specified
  • width - adjusts the width of the instance
  • height - adjusts the height of the instance
  • alpha - adjusts the opacity level of the instance

To access a property, add a dot to the end of the instance name followed by the property name. Then use the equals sign to assign a property value.

instanceName.property = value;

*This is referred to as dot syntax, because it uses dots.

circle1_mc.x = 50;
circle1_mc.rotation = 45;
circle2_mc.scaleY = .5;

*Each statement is ended with a semi-colon.

In summation, instance names allow us to target the instances on our stage so that we can control them using ActionScript 3. Each instance name must be unique in order to differentiate the instances from each other, therefore allowing us to target each instance individually. Once an instance has a name, it's properties can be accessed using dot syntax, and can be modified by assigning new values to these properties.

And that concludes this basic tutorial on how to assign instance names in order to control instances using ActionScript 3. I hope you learned something useful. To support this site and expand your knowledge further, sign-up for 10 days of free unlimited access to Lynda.com. This gives you full access to thousands of training videos in the Lynda.com library.

Monday, May 9, 2011

3ds Max 2011 Video Tutorials for Beginners

3ds Max 2011 is a powerful, integrated 3D modeling, animation, rendering, and compositing tool. It's widely used in diverse industries such as architecture, industrial design, motion pictures, gaming, and virtual reality. If you're interested in learning how to use this powerful application, here are some 3ds Max 2011 video tutorials for beginners from 3ds Max 2011 Essential Training from Lynda.com. Topics covered in this course include creating motion graphics, shading objects with materials and maps, setting up camera and scene layout, lighting basic scenes, animating particle systems, and more.

Using Adobe Bridge CS5 and Customizing the Photoshop CS5 Workspace | Video Tutorials

Here are some video tutorials on using Adobe Bridge CS5 to organize images and how to customize the Photoshop CS5 workspace. These Photoshop CS5 video tutorials are from the Adobe Photoshop CS5 Pro User Skill Sets Training Course by the VTC Online University. Click on the movie links below to watch the videos.

The rest of the training course focuses on more advanced Photoshop CS5 tutorials on topics such as using Photoshop CS5 for print and web layouts, painting techniques, the pen tool, and creating special effects. You can access the rest of the training course by signing up for a VTC Online University membership.

About the Course

Course: Adobe Photoshop CS5 Pro User Skill Sets
Author: Geoff Blake
Release Date: 2011-02-03
Duration: 8 hrs

Course Description

Ready to take your Photoshop skills to the next level? Dive in with award-winning software trainer, artist, and designer Geoff Blake, and learn how to take your Photoshop skills to the max. First, you'll see how to sort and organize your images in Bridge and how to customize Photoshop to suit your needs. Then, Geoff will show you how to use Photoshop for both print design and web design, using a step-by-step approach to creating sleek, contemporary layouts. Next, you will master Photoshop's Pen tool and put your new-found skills to use when you learn how to make accurate selections and work along with InDesign. Finally, you'll discover techniques for creating eye-popping special effects and how to output your work in both the print and web environments. To begin learning today, simply click on the movie links.

About the VTC Online University

The VTC Online University is one of the world's leading software training sites. They have been providing top-quality online training since 1999. Their company offers over 900 video training courses on various topics including animation & 3D, game design & development, graphics & page layout, multimedia & video, networking & security, programming, business applications, and more.

Course Topics


Organizing Images with Adobe Bridge
A Look at Mini Bridge
Touring the Mini Bridge Interface
Previewing in Mini Bridge
Mini Bridge View Options
Navigating with Mini Bridge
Touring the Adobe Bridge Interface
Previewing Images
Image Metadata
Keywords & Keyword Searches
Filtering Your Images
Creating Folders & Moving Images
Collections & Smart Collections

Customizing Photoshop
Review: Workspaces
Customizing Keyboard Shortcuts
Customizing Photoshop Menus

If you would like to have access to the rest of the videos, sign up for a VTC Online University membership today! For $30, you'll get one month access to ALL of their training courses. That's over 900 video training courses! No long-term commitment required.

Using Photoshop for Print Layout
Getting Ready for Layout
Setting Photoshops Unit of Measurement
Creating & Managing Guides
Using the Grid & Snapping
Creating the Disc Template
A Trick for Setting Up Guides
Finishing the Template
Inserting Design Elements
Photoshop Typography Options
Typography & Layer Styles
Applying a Saved Style
Illustrator Smart Objects pt. 1
Illustrator Smart Objects pt. 2
Finishing Up the Layout

Using Photoshop for Web Layout
Setting Up a Web Layout File
Inserting the Design Elements
Building a Web Menu
Finishing Off the Layout

Photoshop Painting Techniques
Setting Up Layers for Painting
Using Photoshops Brush Tool
Paint Brush Tool Techniques
Painting with Multiple Colors
Sampling with the Eyedropper Tool
Mixing Colors in the Color Panel
Saving Color Swatches
Mixing with Photoshops Color Picker
Saving & Loading Swatches pt. 1
Saving & Loading Swatches pt. 2
Introducing Gradients
Using the Gradient Editor
Applying a Gradient to the Artwork
Using the Eraser Tool
Creating Custom Brushes

Photoshop Pen Tool Mastery
Understanding Paths & the Pen Tool
Creating Straight Path Segments
Creating Curved Path Segments pt. 1
Creating Curved Path Segments pt. 2
Creating Combination Paths pt. 1
Creating Combination Paths pt. 2
Continuing Paths & Adding Anchors
Manipulating Paths & Anchor Points
Using Paths To Create Selection pt. 1
Using Paths To Create Selection pt. 2
Clipping Paths for InDesign pt. 1
Clipping Paths for InDesign pt. 2

Creating Special Effects
Invert Posterize & Threshold
Creating Black & White Images pt. 1
Creating Black & White Images pt. 2
Creating Black & White Images pt. 3
Creating Duotone Effects pt. 1
Creating Duotone Effects pt. 2
Creating Glow Effects pt. 1
Creating Glow Effects pt. 2
Creating Glow Effects pt. 3
Creating Glow Effects pt. 4
Creating Chiseled Ice pt. 1
Creating Chiseled Ice pt. 2
Creating Chiseled Ice pt. 3
Creating Chiseled Ice pt. 4

Using Photoshop for Print Design
Photoshop Print Workflow pt. 1
Photoshop Print Workflow pt. 2
Photoshop Print Workflow pt.3
Layer Comps with InDesign pt. 1
Layer Comps with InDesign pt. 2

Using Photoshop for Web Design
Understanding Web File Formats
Using the Save For Web & Devices Dialog
Setting JPEG Optimization
Setting GIF Optimization
Setting PNG Optimization
Smart Objects with Dreamweaver pt. 1
Smart Objects with Dreamweaver pt. 2
Creating Web 2.0 Style Buttons pt. 1
Creating Web 2.0 Style Buttons pt. 2
Using Photoshop & Flash Together

Are you ready to watch the entire Adobe Photoshop CS5 Pro User Skill Sets Training Course by the VTC Online University?