Digital Photography Blog


Top Photoshop Tips for Beginners: Part 1

Posted by Fujifilm Australia

Having photography as a hobby is both entertaining and a creative outlet, but sometimes the pictures we produce don’t quite match the artistic dream we had in mind. This can be frustrating when we cannot possibly reproduce the scene we had originally captured.

photoshop tools part 1What do you do when your photo of a sunset comes out more dull pink than vibrant orange? Or when the photo of your angelic baby comes out with red eye? What do you do when you notice you have a very noticeable blemish on your chin in the photo of you and your significant other on vacation?

Do you toss out the only proof of these memorable moments? Do you give up on the photography hobby you love so dearly? If your answer to any of these would be “yes,” stop right there; the solution to your problems is easy— Photoshop!

Adobe Photoshop is a graphics software program for photographers, designers and digital artists. Maybe you’ve heard of it or even tried to use it once or twice but shied away after seeing the complex sets of various tool bars and abundant photo-editing options. Well fear not. Here, we list and explain the most commonly used tools, their functions and how to use them.

Commonly used Photoshop tools:

  • Marquee Select-These tools allow you to select rectangles, ellipses and 1-pixel rows and columns. They are located at the top left of the Toolbox and are available in these four shapes:
  • Rectangle Marquee- This tool creates a rectangular selection. Press down on the shift key to change the selection to a square.
  • Elliptical Marquee- This creates an elliptical selection. Press down on the shift key to change the selection to a circle.
  • Single Row Marquee- Make a horizontal selection 1 pixel high.
  • Single Column Marquee- Make a vertical selection 1 pixel wide.
  • Lasso Select -This allows you to outline certain areas, either by tracing or drawing. This portion will become the selection. There are three types of lasso tools:
  • Magnetic Lasso Tool- This tool allows you to trace well-defined edges in an image. Left-click at the starting point of your selection and move the mouse along the edge.
  • Lasso Tool- This is a freehand tool; simply hold down the left-click button and draw the area you would like to select.
  • Polygonal Lasso Tool-This is also a freehand selection tool. Unlike the lasso tool, you simply left-click on different points to create a selection with a series of straight edges.
  • Crop-The crop tool allows you to select a specific area of an image to keep and discard everything outside this area. It can be found on the left side of the Toolbox, third from the top. To use, suggests:
  • Select the crop tool in the toolbox.
  • Select an area of the image to keep.
  • When you release the mouse button, the area that will remain is highlighted. This is what the new image will look like.
  • You can move or transform the crop area by dragging the selection or the selection handles.
  • Hit your enter key to perform the crop.
  • Healing Brush-This lets you fix image imperfections, such as scratches on surfaces and facial blemishes. By sampling another area of the image or using a predefined pattern, you can blend the imperfections into the rest of the image. To use, suggests:
  • Select the healing brush in the toolbox.
  • Check the settings in the options bar and adjust if necessary. Options include: Brush size, Blending mode, Source (Sampled from the image or pre-defined pattern), Aligned
  • Click and drag over the imperfection. If aligned is selected, the healing brush will remember thestarting point between mouse clicks.

These are just half of the tools you will want to learn before beginning a Photoshop project. Check back next time when we will discuss the remaining tools you need to know to become a photo-editing expert.