1. To convert a PDF file, simply open the file in Photoshop, File > Open. The Import PDF window will open. You can now name the new file if you'd like.
|Photoshop Import PDF Window|
3. Make sure Anti-Aliasing is checked to smooths the edges of the linework. If you don't select it, the imported image will be very grainy.
4. Adjust the Resolution or pixels per inch (ppi). The setting depends on how the final rendering is to be viewed. If viewed 11x17 or smaller a larger ppi is desired for close viewing (200-300ppi). Larger than 11x17 is meant to be viewed from further away (100-200ppi). Unless you are making a poster, use 300ppi.
5. Once completed, hit OK to rasterize the image.
6. When the file is imported, the background is transparent, shown by the checkerboard pattern. To help see the linework and begin the rendering process, create a solid background color. You can either create a new layer and paint it which ever color you would like or create a new solid fill layer Layer > New Fill Layer > Solid Color and select the color you want. Then drag it below the Linework layer so you can see it while editing. You can turn the background layer off before saving so it stays transparent to help you create final boards or your portfolio.
|Create image background and send to back|
Importing Issues and Hints
Sometimes when you import a pdf from AutoCAD and it is in landscape, the proportions will not stay correct and the scale will be off. Photoshop thinks it is in portrait, so it shrinks it to the smaller edge. If you find this is the case, make a new layout in CAD being sure to make it portrait and try again. Remember that the page you make can be much larger than the size you need. This also allows you to erase the 'PRODUCED BY AN AUTODESK EDUCATIONAL PRODUCT' without it affecting your drawing.
If you are looking for a book on computer rendering, Bradley Cantrell and Wes Michaels' book, Digital Drawing for Landscape Architecture: Contemporary Techniques and Tools for Digital Representation in Site Design, even though it is for landscaping outlines the requirements and techniques for Photoshop rendering. I usually buy 'em from an amazon seller for cheaper. Always be sure check seller reviews!