Photoshop Basics Training

Adobe Photoshop is a powerful image editing program. This ITS Training article explains how to perform some simple image manipulations using Photoshop.

Goals

Upon completion of this 1-on-1 training, you will be able to:

When Should I Use Photoshop?

You probably have a few different programs on your computer that are designed for editing images. Every Windows computer comes with Paint, which is a great for doing really simple things like drawing simple shapes. If you are taking a screenshot of something on your computer screen, PrintKey has a few simple tools to add borders to an image and other little simple things. Some Luther computers also have Fireworks installed, which is actually very similar to Photoshop in function (in fact, the company that makes Fireworks is now owned by Adobe, who makes Photoshop). The program you use to edit images is completely up to you. This article, however, focuses on what you can do with Adobe Photoshop.

A Few Words About File Formats

When you save a new document in Photoshop, it will want to be saved as a PSD (Photoshop file). Doing this will allow you to keep layers (if any) and other extra data, which is useful if you plan on doing more work on the image later. However, if you want to share the image with a friend, or on the internet, you’ll want to save the image as a GIF, JPEG, or PNG file. GIF files are well-suited for drawings and simple animations. JPEG and PNG files are good formats for saving photos. JPEG allows you to “compress” the image, which causes it to take up less disk space, at the cost of a little bit of image quality (Note: this is not the same kind of compression used in ZIP files). PNG files are lossless which means that no compression is used.

Training

Open Photoshop

  1. Open Photoshop on your computer. If you are on a Windows machine, go to Start > All Programs and find it from there. It will be in a different place in the start menu depending on what computer you are at. On a Macintosh, double click on the Macintosh HD icon, open the Applications folder, and find Adobe Photoshop in there.
  2. Go to File > Open, and find the image that you want to work with.

    TIP: A quicker way to do this is to browse to the image on your machine, right-click (or control-click on a Macintosh) on the icon, and go to Open With > Adobe Photoshop.

Resize an Image

You may want to adjust an image to be smaller so that it fits better on a web page, or so that you can put multiple images in one document.

  1. Go to Image > Image Size.
  2. Under the “Document Size” heading, change the width or height to the new value that you want. By default, the other dimension will change with it to be proportional. If you don’t want to keep proportions, uncheck the Constrain Proportions check box. When you are done, click OK.
Photoshop - 1
Photoshop - 1

Crop an Image

If you want to cut the edges off of an image, you want to use the cropping tool.

1. Open the image that you would like to crop in Photoshop (see above for more info on how to open Photoshop if you aren’t sure).

2. In the toolbar, click on the Crop Tool.

Photoshop - 2

3. Use the tool to create a rectangle around the area that you would like to crop.

4. Adjust the size of the rectangle using the handles until you are satisfied with your selection.

5. Double-click on the selection to crop the image.

Photoshop - 3
Photoshop - 3

Use the Color Replacement Tool to Remove Red Eye from a Photo

1. Open the photo you want to edit in Photoshop. You may want to zoom in so that you can click on the eyeball easier.

2. Choose the Color Replacement tool in the toolbar. It may be hidden by the Spot Healing tool or the Patch tool; if so, right click, then select the Color Replacement tool.

Photoshop - 4
Photoshop - 4

3. Click on the subject’s eyes.

Use the Healing Brush to Remove a Blemish From a Photo

  1. Open the photo you want to remove the blemish from.
  2. Use the Zoom tool to zoom in on the part of the picture you want to fix.
  3. Choose the Healing Brush tool. It may be hidden by the Color Replacement tool or the Patch tool; if so, right click, then select the Healing Brush tool.
  4. Click on the blemish to remove it.
Photoshop - 5
Photoshop - 5

Photoshop - 6
Photoshop - 6

Photoshop - 7
Photoshop - 7

Enhance a Photo

Sometimes when you take a digital photo, it might look too dark, or the colors might not be right. Photoshop has a few automatic enhancement tools that might help. These tools are Auto Levels, Auto Contrast, and Auto Color.

Photoshop - 8
Photoshop - 8

To apply one of these enhancements, go to Image > Adjustments > Auto Levels (or Auto Contrast or Auto Color). If you don’t like the enhancements, you can always go to Edit > Undo to undo the changes.

Add a Border to a Photo

  1. Open the image in Photoshop.
  2. Go to Select > Select All.
  3. Go to Edit > Stroke.
  4. You will be presented with the Stroke dialog box. Change the thickness (width) of the border, and change the color to your desired color. Click OK when you are done.
Photoshop - 9
Photoshop - 9

Circle Part of a Photo

  1. Open the image in Photoshop.
  2. Choose the Elliptical Marquee tool from the toolbar. It may be hidden under another marquee tool; if so, right click on that tool, and then select the Elliptical Marquee tool. Make a circle around the part you want the circle to be on. Hold down the Shift key while doing this if you want a perfect circle, and hold down the Alt key if you want your initial click to be the center of the ellipse/circle (the default is for it to be one corner of the bounding rectangle).
  3. Go to Edit > Stroke.
  4. You will be presented with the “Stroke” dialog box. Change the thickness (width) of the circle, and change the color to your desired color. Click OK when you are done.
Photoshop - 10
Photoshop - 10

Additional Resources

Review the Help within Photoshop

Help is available within Photoshop. Press the F1 key, or go to Help > Photoshop Help….

Review Online Adobe Resources

Online help from Adobe can be found here.

Consult Lynda.com

Lynda.com is a provider of web-based software training videos and resources. If you are interested in access to Lynda.com please contact the Technology Help Desk at [email protected] or 563-387-1000.

Review the Technology Help Desk web site

Contact the Technology Help Desk