Tips from the Team

CREDITS: Nuts About You by Jady Day Studio (TDF#80); Font: DJB Almost Perfect.

I thought it would be fun interview a few of our team members and find out what their favorites Photoshop tips are! I love learning new ways to do things in Photoshop. I hope a few of these tips inspire you to try something new!

JennieV shared how she likes to make her thumbnails larger in Photoshop/Elements. I love this tip so much that it is one of the first things I always set up in my Photoshop preferences when I get a new version! Click on the contextual menu on the layers panel. Choose PANEL OPTIONS. Then select the larger thumbnail. You can also check “LAYER BOUNDS” option if you want the thumbnail to zoom in on the layer object instead of showing the object in position on the page.

Sharon loves templates and shared her process for clipping photos and papers to template layers.

When you’re ready to clip a paper to a layer in the template, place the paper above the layer and while holding the ALT/OPT key, hover between the two layers. A mouse icon changes and when it does, click between the two layers. You can then resize or move the paper around, without moving the template layer. When the layout is finished, merge the paper and template layer by clicking on the paper layer and clicking CTRL/CMD+E. This reduces the file size in the long run. NOTE: The mouse icon looks different in different versions of Photoshop/Elements. It might look like an arrow, interlocking squares or interlocking circles. The key is to watch it change from a mouse pointer to something else. (CREDITS: Feeling Good Template by Tinci; Shore Thing by Chelle’s Creations.)

Vicki loves her opacity sliders. You can type in a number in the opacity box, or simply drag left to right on the word Opacity to “scrub” the value higher or lower.

LulyG shared the 4 steps she uses when saving her layouts.

1. Save as a .psd file straight from Photoshop or Elements. (NOTE: Or use a layered TIF files to save a smaller file.)

2. Flatten the image. Save as a full-size .jpg.

3. Resize (IMAGE>IMAGE SIZE), change to 72 ppi, 600 x 600 pixels. Then I use
Unsharp Mask and save as FILENAME_web. That keeps me from uploading these files for printing.

4. Finally, in case of disaster, I upload a full-size JPG to Persnickety Prints, Shutterfly, Flickr, Google Photos or another online services. That way if my backup fails, the files are at least available for printing.

Toria shared her favorite keyboard commands. These are some of my favorites too!

B = Selects the brush tool

[ and ] = Makes brush bigger smaller

CMDCTRL+PLUS or MINUS = zooms in and out of the page

Cheryle shared her favorite
shadowing tip using the wave filter that is brilliant. I have to say, I’m going to be making use of this tip myself! It is going to revolutionize the way I do my shadows.

Add a layer style. Then release the shadow to it’s own layer. (NOTE: PSE users can use
a special script by Anna Forrest to do this.) Finally, run the Wave filter (FILTER>DISTORT>WAVE). The result is unique on each item, adding dimension and variety. Brilliant!

Finally, my tip of the day is an easy way to duplicate a layer. Hold in the ALT/OPT key and drag your layer on the layers panel up or down. Release the mouse to drop a duplicate of that layer in that spot. So easy and fast! I hope these fun tips inspire you to learn more about Photoshop.

What is your favorite tip? I’m still amazed that with over 20 years of experience with Photoshop, I STILL learn newer or better ways to do things! Scrap on….