Masterpieces in Minutes in Photoshop

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Finally, pinpoint accuracy
with your edits in Photoshop!

Zone System Express Efficiency


The most efficient system for 
Photo editing ever created.


Edit your images with intention
and remove the guessing games. 

Over the last three years, Blake has been refining his editing process using the Zone Systems.  What started out as an idea evolved into an actionable sequence of layers designed to get you in and out of Photoshop with the best results in the least amount of time.  While time savings was the intention, the resulting Digital Zone System created masterpieces with a fraction of the effort.  

It quickly became apparent that the System was a photo workflow workhorse.  The only real problem was that the system was based on actions in Photoshop.  While actions are powerful, they can be convoluted, confusing to beginners, and daunting to open and close everytime you want to use them.  There was a need for something better, something more efficient, more accurate, and more deliberate.  

I don’t often use Photoshop, but when I need to, I rely on Zone System Express for helping me work faster. I’m a Lightroom guy and I’m used to my own workflow speed. Opening Photoshop normally slows me down. But since using Zone System Express I’m able to maintain my workflow with no more limitations. I can’t believe photographers have been without this panel for so long!

Scott Wyden Kivowitz

This is essential to photo editing. Amazing product matched only by the included training. I can’t recommend this enough. It’s more than game changing. For the serious photographer, this is the holy grail of editing nirvana we’ve been longing for.

Jeffrey McPheeters


I started studying Dan Margulis about 7 years ago. I started studying luminosity masks about four years ago. I have just about every course, action, palette, etc. Wanted you to know that your course videos, panel and approach ties all of them together and is, I believe, the best out there. Thanks much!


Blake, you’ve outdone yourself! You are a master at taking complex tools and making them easy to use. Editing that would have normally taken me 1-2 hours is now done in 15 minutes. This panel is a real game changer! Thank you!

Jim Welninski

It amazes me how Blake manages to continually delve into the workings of PS and produce these truly brilliant results. The Zone System Express is his holy grail of PS add-on’s. My workflow has been so much easier , quicker and more precise since installing it. 10/10 . Highly recommended!

Michael Cross

Archangel Photography

One of my first uses of ZSE happened on an outdoor portrait with massive green reflections in the shadow side of the normally warm sun lite skin tones. It was pretty ugly! I recalled a few of your examples and grabbed the green channel in the zone for those shadows. Shazam! They disappeared! A little bit of mask adjustment and in two minutes it’s fixed. ZSE is Amazing!


Zone System Express Bundle

ZSE Panel Ultimate Bundle

The Zone System Express Ultimate Bundle includes everything you see in the Panel Only Option and more!

Blake has refined his workflow over the years and has it down to an art form.  Three specific areas need attention while you are processing.  They are Tone, Color, and Artistic Effects.  In the bundle, you will receive the Panel as well as the necessary education to master photo post processing.

All of the content in the Bundle has been recorded specifically for the use of the ZSE Panel in mind.  You will receive five educational modules totaling 5 hours in length.  All of the videos have been rendered with quality in mind at 1080p

The Panel

Educational Videos included in the Panel Module

  1. Installing the Panel in Photoshop CC
  2. Installing the Panel in Photoshop CS6
  3. Installing the Panel in Photoshop CS5
  4. The Panel Breakdown
  5. Single Raw File Workflow
  6. The Troubleshooting of the Panel
Tone Module

Educational Videos included in the Panel Module

  1. Understanding Tone
  2. Histogram and Curves
  3. Black and White Conversions
  4. Dodging and Burning
  5. The Basics of the Zone System
  6. Understanding Blend If and the Zone Systems
  7. Intro to the Tone Module on the Zone System Panel
Color Module

Educational Videos included in the Color Module

  1. Intro to Color Theory
  2. Color Interaction and Emotion
  3. Color Theory in Photoshop
  4. Cross Processing and Color Theory
  5. Intro to the Color Zone System
  6. The Color Zone System on the ZSE Panel
Effects Module

Educational Videos included in the Effects Module

  1. Color Grading – Gradient and Solid Color
  2. Matte Effects
  3. Vignettes
  4. Radiance – Making Images POP!
  5. The ZSE Panel and Artistic Effects
Workflow Module

Educational Videos included in the Workflow Module

  1. Introduction to Workflow
  2. Single Raw File Workflow on the Panel
  3. The Black and White Workflow with the ZSE Panel
  4. The HDR Workflow with the ZSE Panel
  5. Quick Tip:  Borrowing Masks
  6. Quick Tip: Large File Sizes
  7. Quick Tip: Modifying Masks
  8. Quick Tip: Mask Groups
  9. Quick Tip: Using Plugins with the ZSE Panel

Minutes of Education

Pages of Documentation

Photoshop Extras

ZSE Panels

If you are a Photoshop Beginner, this is like getting a Ferrari on your 16th Birthday.
For Advanced users, it is that Muscle Car you always dreamt of!

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Workflow at its finest

What exactly is the Zone System Express Panel?

At the root, the Zone System Express Panel is a Photoshop extension.  It has been designed to work in Photoshop CS5, CS6, and CC.  However, it is an extension (or panel) like no other.

The Zone System Express Panel has evolved from the necessity to increase photographic workflow efficiency.  In past years the Zone Systems did an excellent job of speeding up the workflow, but they were based on Actions in Photoshop.  Actions are great, but they require more steps than necessary to accomplish the task at hand.  They also tend to be difficult to find what you are looking for as you may have acquired several hundred actions over time!

Blake realized the necessity for something more, something better, and something more efficient.  The Zone Systems Express Panel is the answer to the Workflow dilemma.  It is faster than the old Zone Systems, more accurate, and much more efficient.

The Zone System Express Panel is not “just another panel” in Photoshop.  It has been expressly designed for accuracy, efficiency, and deliberate editing.  Each item on the panel has been handpicked and carefully selected from years of workflow refinement.  It is not convoluted with items you will rarely use and is laid with Workflow in mind.

Zone System Express Panels

A Complete Workflow Solution

The Zone System Express is more than a panel and training, it is a complete Workflow solution.  The panel has been meticulously designed to ensure maximum efficiency during your workflow.  It is laid out with Blake’s methodically effective workflow: Tone, Color, and Artistic Effects.  You can quickly work your way through each section while editing your images and use the available workflow and layer tools provided for even more control over your post processing efforts.

While other Photoshop Panels in the industry are helpful, they are, unfortunately, convoluted.  There are a lot of helpful buttons and applications included in them, but they are not designed for efficiency and reproducible results.  The Zone System Express is specifically designed to give you what you need when you need it.  It is a one stop shop for Workflow boasting accurate tools, with efficient results, to aid you in deliberate editing.

Convoluted Panel

Refine your Portrait Workflow

While Blake is predominantly a landscape guy, the Zone Systems work on any image.  with a Landscape the editing tends to be pretty heavy on the 0-5 Zones.  In a portrait, however, you may find yourself relying on Zones 5-10.  

This video shows how powerful the Zone System Express is for portrait editing and Color Grading.

Four Zone Systems in one location

The Improved Digital Zone System
The former Digital Zone System that started it all has been improved upon with even more protection features designed to give you the most accurate adjustments without destroying the integrity of your photo.

The Full Zone System, as well as individual Zone masks, are readily accessible.

Improved Digital Zone System

The Condensed Zone System **NEW**
New for the Zone System Express, the Condensed Zone system combines Zones 0&1, 2&3, 4,5&6, 7&8, 9&10. It yields five total Zones for the whole system.  The selections are much larger than the original Digital Zone System.  The combination of zones helps make the workflow more efficient.

You can run the Full Condensed System as well as the Individual Condensed Zones.

Condensed Digital Zone System

The Improved Color Zone System
The new Color Zone System contains six color Zones that are divided into Red, Yellow, Green, Cyan, Blue and Magenta. Included in the zones are added protection measures to ensure you get the maximum effectiveness from your colors without bleeding too far into others.

You have access to the Full-Color Zone system as well as the individual color zones.

Improved Color Zone System

The Analogous Color System **NEW**
An all new Zone System has been added to the Zone System Express panel, the Analogous Zone System. It combines analogous colors into zones which are very helpful for specific situations where more color control is needed.  Some of these situations include sunsets with robust reds and magentas or sweeping fields of green and yellow.

The analogous Zone System is designed for individual use. There is no Full Analogous Zone System option.

Analogous Color Zone System

See the Zone System Express in Action!

In this demonstration, you will notice a timer in the lower left.  While the video is moving very fast, the timer is counting ACTUAL time.  The image you see here was edited from beginning to end using only the Zone System Express Panel in under 8 minutes.


This is not “just another Photoshop Extension”  this is a Workflow Solution designed to make your workflow more accurate, efficient, and deliberate!

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Non-Destructive Photoshop Editing

Every layer created by the Zone System Express Panel is non-destructive.  That means that even with all of these layers stacked up, the original “Background Layer” remains untouched!



Frequently asked questions

Is this an upgrade to the Zone Systems?

It is not necessarily an upgrade.  It is a complete redesign to the old Zone System Actions.  The education has been updated and the system no longer uses Actions as their base.  The panel is based on Javascript and HTML (Flash for CS5 and CS6) which makes it much faster than the old Zone Systems.

What Versions of Photoshop will this system work on?

Unfortunately, the Zone Systems will not Work with Elements.  Some of the training in the tutorial package may apply, but the System will only work in Photoshop.

The systems have been tested on the following platforms:

  • Photoshop CS5
  • Photoshop CS6
  • Photoshop CC 2015
  • Photoshop CC 2017
  • This technique WILL NOT work with PHOTOSHOP ELEMENTS
  • This technique WILL NOT work with Lightroom
  • The panel is in ENGLISH, but is fully functional on all languages of Photoshop

Can the Zone Systems be used with other Plug-Ins? (i.e. ON1)

The Zone Systems work with all Plug-Ins.  While they do not work directly in the plug-in, you may use the plug-in either before or after.  Just to give you an idea, here is my typical workflow.

  • Photomatix for a baseline HDR image
  • Adobe Camera Raw for pre-processing (like Chromatic Aberration, Noise, etc.)
  • Fix small things in Photoshop, like straightening the horizon fixing lens distortion
  • Run the Digital Zone System
  • Run the Color Zone System
  • Use ON1 Plug-ins for the desired artistic effect.
  • This process is covered in more detail in the Education Bundle.

With all the other programs out there why use the Zone Systems?

The Zone Systems are the most accurate, efficient and deliberate editing systems in the industry.  I am an analytical nut and I scrutinize all software that crosses my desk.  While many platforms are efficient and deliberate they fail at being pin point accurate. Even the best programs like Lightroom and Photoshop alone cannot compete with the power of the Zone Systems.

These are rather large downloads!
Please be patient, these are  very large downloads.

The Panel Only:  712 Megabytes
The Full Education Bundle: 5 Downloads for a total of 4.38 GB

All of the videos were recorded at 1080p HD and come with high-res images to work with.

While it is a rather large download, it is being hosted on Amazon S3′s reliable server.  It is highly recommended that you use one of the following browsers to download the file:

  • Internet Explorer
  • Chrome
  • Firefox
  • Safari

How secure is my payment information?

f.64 Elite and Blake do not collect any payment information beyond email addresses.  Your information is secure in the hands of Amazon or PayPal (whichever method you chose to use at checkout).  Beyond that, I would never sell your email address to a 3rd party agency.

You are safe and secure here!

Download the Bonus Content

Where does Workflow Begin?

We often think Photographic Workflow starts in Photoshop but that is not always the case.  In this video, you will see where workflow starts and how to think about your photo before you get on the computer.

Photoshop Unplugged

Learn to use Photoshop for things we usually use Plugins for.  By doing so, you will speed up your workflow giving you much more time to spend in Photoshop instead of bouncing around from plugin to plugin.

Meet Your Instructor

Blake Rudis

Blake is a self-published author and the founder of f.64 Academy. While he loves taking and making pictures, his true passion is in developing and refining the photographic workflow. Most importantly Blake enjoys helping other photographers make images they will take great pride in.     

Blake takes great pride in his Fine Art background. From Acrylic and Oil Painting to Printmaking and Sculpture he has had his hands in just about every art form. This has been paramount in shaping his ideologies on Photography and Post Processing. For Blake, it is not about the act of photography, but the artistic process as a whole.

Million Views on YouTube

Thousand Social Media Followers

Thousand Students Taught

Years of Instruction

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