These days, Photoshop has become a general term used to pertain to photo manipulation. With digital images at the forefront of modern-day marketing, it’s no surprise that many people are trying to learn Photoshop basics. Learning the software has many advantages.
For one, you will be able to create graphics for your Powerpoint Presentations, business logos, pdf documents, and other materials. Secondly, knowing the basic tools of the software can help you make more helpful suggestions if you have a graphic designer. The many benefits of learning the software are more than enough to make you enroll in a course for beginners. But before you go on a free video tutorials download binge, it’s essential to know the Photoshop basics first to decide whether studying it is a good investment for you.
What is Photoshop?
Adobe Photoshop is a software developed by Adobe Inc. It’s used to create and edit raster graphics. The software has become an industry-standard in digital art that the brand has evolved into a verb. For example, saying that a picture is “Photoshopped” means that it looks edited.
There are various free photo editing apps available in the market such as PicMonkey, Canva, and GIMP. Despite the presence of alternative options, however, Photoshop remains to be the most popular editing tool for professionals involved in visual arts. Aside from enhancing photographs, you can also use the program to create materials such as banner designs and letterheads.
Photoshop Basics for Beginners
Whether you’re creating a website banner for a shop or a logo for a school brand, this software can help. But first, it’s essential to know the basic components you can use to make and edit images.
When you open the Ps program, you’ll see various bars on top of the screen. It may look overwhelming at first, but give it some time and you’ll be familiar with the tools. First, at the very top, is the menu bar. This contains the menus for File, Edit, and Image among others. Second and directly below the menu bar is the options bar. Here, you can see the tools you can use to edit the image. At the center of the screen is the document window, showing the image you’re editing. On the left of the screen is the tool panel. General panels, on the other hand, sits on the right. We’ll discuss both components further below.
Photoshop Basic Tools
The tools panel shows the basic instruments you can use to edit the image. Photoshop offers an extensive list of tools such as the following:
- Move. This is used to move the image or elements within it around the document window.
- Rectangular and Elliptical Marquee. Marquee tools are used to quickly select an area within the image. This comes in various shapes: rectangular, elliptical, single row, and single column.
- Lasso. This is also used to select a space within the image. Unlike marquee tools, however, lasso allows the user to create a rough selection. It comes in regular lasso, polygonal lasso, and magnetic lasso.
- Quick Selection. Similar to the lasso is the quick selection tool. This tool allows a user to select a portion along defined edges.
- Crop. This is used to trim the image to the size that you need. You can also use this function if you need your cut various images in the same size.
- Eyedropper. This allows a user to select a color within the image and automatically set it as the foreground color.
- Brush Tool and Eraser. Brush allows a user to write, doodle, or mark an image. Eraser, on the other hand, erases elements and let the background color show through.
- Dodge and Burn. Dodge basically lightens a part of the image. Burn, on the other hand, darkens it. You can adjust the levels of how both tools lighten and darken the image.
- Hand. This functions to move the part of the image you’re viewing at the time.
- Zoom. Use this to zoom in and out of your image.
Photoshop Tools That Make Editing Easier
These tools may not be present in other apps, but they make photo editing a lot easier and less tedious.
- Magic Wand. Use this tool to click an image and select a portion of the same color type. This is useful if you want to adjust the appearance of a specific color or part of the image.
- Magic Eraser. Similar to how the Magic Wand tool functions, this tool allows a user to erase portions of the same color family.
- Clone Stamp. This uses a part of the image and uses it repeatedly to cover other portions.
- Healing Brush. This allows you to select a part of the image and blend it together with another portion within the same layer.
Before you get excited and search for tutorials about Adobe photo effects and other advanced CC and CS6 functions, it’s vital to start the fundamentals.
How to Create a File in Photoshop
Creating a file in Photoshop can involve two options. The first one is creating an image from scratch. To do this, click the File button on the menu bar and select New, and then Blank File. A window will appear where you can select your preferences such as size, color mode, and other settings. Once you’ve done your selection, the program will create a document window.
The second option is to open an already existing image file. To do this, click the File button on the menu bar and select Open. Choose the folder destination of the image or images you’ll be editing. The selected images will then appear on window boxes in the working area at the center of the screen.
Once there’s a photo or a blank image at the document window, you can then try using various tools to get a grasp of how each one functions.
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