Photoshop Crashed Again

November 24, 2008 at 7:09 am (computer art, Digital Art, Photoshop tips and tricks) (, , , , , , , )


This one took 4 days to create

Photoshop Crashed Again

I took a breather durng the card project to work on one for myself. It is so relaxing to begin working without any idea of what the theme would be. I start by just playing with background, piecing bits and pieces, then blending, manipulating until a mood and idea begins to emerge. I had no idea in the beginning that I would make a woman with a bird. Whereas, when I’m working for a client, with a specific theme, it’s much different. When I do art for myself, I just let my hand lead me, instead of forcing the art to comply with a specific idea. It is very relaxing … until …

At 3 a.m. after working for about 6 hours without saving, Photoshop crashed when I tried to distort an object that had a Mask applied plus was linked to several other layers with Masks on them. The Photoshop file was already more than 6 gigs! with about 70 layers, so the calculations for this distortion exceeded the available RAM, so down she went. I remember emitting a loud “NO !” (I hope I didn’t wake my neighbors) ๐Ÿ™‚ There was nothing to do but to redo all that work. I had to redo most of the dress that I had painstakingly worked on for hours, had to redo the bird, the flowers and the woman’s chest and collarbone, which you might think is easy, but the small portion just below her neck alone had taken me more than an hour to complete.

You think I would have learned my lesson by now. Once I lost an entire day’s work when Photoshop crashed and since then I’ve gotten into the habit of saving more frequently. But when the files are 6 gigs unflattened, (169 MB as a flattened Tif), it actually takes 17 minutes for the file to save (I timed it). That’s the reason why when I’m in the ‘zone’, I hate to have to sit and twiddle my thumbs while the file saves. But I sure paid for it, I had to redo 6 hours of work. I was up until 9 a.m. finishing it up (and had worked day and night for 3 days before). This image took me 4 days and nights to complete.

The woman is made from too many pieces to count, ie: the eyelashes from one, irises from another, eyebrows from another, nose from another, hair from several, shoulders from another, and so on. I love this kind of challenge, creating things from bits and pieces. I made the dress in Photoshop, using tiny bits and pieces. I tried so many hand poses, and different birds, eventually settling on this little sparrow, comprised of 3 different images.

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  1. Elisa Day said,

    Once again, I dont know what to say more than thats amazing!

  2. Martin LaBar said,

    Another beauty. I like the tree on the right, and the purple pitcher (?), especially. Sorry about your crash.

  3. Jim Plaxco said,

    Hi Gale,

    That is tragic about the crash and I too have been bitten. I am curious to know what version of Photoshop you are using. I still use CS. I didn’t see a benefit to upgrading to CS2 and heard too many complaints about bugs in CS3. Haven’t really checked on CS4 yet but will probably upgrade as I don’t want to fall to far behind in versions.

    I look forward to the day when solid state drives are common because that will really speed things, like saving, up.

  4. galefraney said,

    Thank you Elisa and Martin ! ๐Ÿ™‚

    Hello Jim,
    I am currently using CS3. I’ve purchased CS4 but am waiting until I finish a project for a client before installing, just in case getting used to the new interface slows me down. I’ve not experienced any bugs with CS3, other than occasional crashes, but when working with enormous file sizes like these huge ones that balloon up to 6 gigs!! when they are layered and at 300 dpi with very large dimensions. Seems to me that when I was using CS, if Photoshop didn’t have enough available RAM to carry out a task, it would just go very slow, get a white screen, then after stalling for ages it would eventually bring up an error box saying there was not enough available RAM, but would not crash. But I can’t know for sure because I was never working with such huge files when I was using CS, so it’s not a true comparison.

    Whenever Photoshop crashes I can usually figure out what caused it, and more often than not it’s something I did, ie: close a file after dragging it into another file before it’s fully opened in the new file. Or in the case of this latest crash, I was distorting a layer that had a mask on it and it was linked to other layers. This creates an enormous mathematical calculation for Photoshop.

    Regarding CS4 versus CS, since Adobe acquired Macromedia, it has completely revamped a lot of interface and internal software programming for many of the products. This would apply mostly to Flash, Fireworks, Dreamweaver and maybe a few others. But even Photoshop has some major changes with this upgrade, including the ability to work with 3D in the Photoshop extended version (not in the standard version).

    However CS remains completely powerful and most of the art that I do in Photoshop can be achieved in CS, or even Photoshop 7, which was the version I began with. I went from Photoshop 7 to CS then to CS3 and now to CS4 Master Suite (because I also use Flash, Dreamweaver, After Effects, InDesign and some of the new functions in Fireworks, etc.


    Gale ๐Ÿ™‚

  5. Jim Plaxco said,

    Hi Gale,

    FYI your recollection of CS regarding the not enough memory error but not crashing is correct. I’ve run into that wall a number of times myself.

    I don’t know what Adobe was thinking when they decided to throw 3D processing into Photoshop. And now if you want to purchase one of the suites, they only come with the Photoshop Extended (read 3D) version. I understand that the 3D functionality of CS4 is greatly improved over that of CS3 but still I would have preferred that Adobe concentrate their efforts on improving the 2D functionality and eliminating bugs.

  6. galefraney said,

    The 3D is likely for mapping images onto objects that are created in other programs, then they’re exported out again.

    But I’ve never encountered any bugs in Photoshop other than the occasional crash when I’m pushing its calculations to the limits on enormous file sizes. It is one of the most reliable and logical programs I’ve ever used. I absolutely love it and there is almost nothing that I would change about it … and each time its capabilities improve, so does the requirement for computer processor power and necessary RAM, which is not the fault of Photoshop.

    I recently attended an Adobe seminar and the Adobe staff suggested that I dedicate one external hard drive for scratch disk use by Photoshop. The told me to put nothing else on that drive, to use it exclusively for scratch disk space, and they think that this will resolve the issue of the program sometimes crashing. I’ve not yet hooked up a dedicated external hard drive, but they are likey correct in this assessment.


    Gale ๐Ÿ™‚

  7. J said,

    Magnifique,de rรชves…

  8. Britti said,

    That was a terrible loss.And it seems you had no backups.At least next time pls make regular backups.It may sound meaningless but backups help a lot mainly if there is a crash.I personally use an online backup for all the backups i need.Well i use safecopy online backup they are cheap and they also offer a free unlimited 5GB trial version..

  9. Deepak said,

    Classic Work …………….

  10. Deepak said,

    Depth of image is to good………

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