Learning Paths

9 life-saving tricks on how to work with Adobe Photoshop faster

Have you ever caught yourself in a mood to start learning Adobe Photoshop techniques but you changed your mind hesitating to get lost in all those layers, patterns, filters, purges, tool boards? Here are some life-saving tricks on using Photoshop faster and better.


1. Forget boring instructions. For a beginner, they are too complicated.

There are a numerous amount of Photoshop instructions available online. However, most beginners, they find them too complicated to use. Our experience in teaching students to use Adobe Photoshop has shown, that the fastest way to master the software is to have someone to show you how it works. Academy Class offers extremely likeable training course on Photoshop “from Zero-to-Hero” which empowers you to learn Photoshop techniques in only five days.


2. Choose a good video tutorial on editing your pictures

If you do want to study by yourself, remember that there are plenty video tutorials available online, which will explain to you how to edit your photos step by step. A good Youtube channel on graphic design tutorials can be found on here.


3. Create your own shortcuts

The use of keyboard shortcuts is one of the fastest ways of editing your images like a pro. The most popular shortcuts are Ctrl+A, Ctrl+C and Ctrl+V (select all, copy and paste). Luckily, you can create your own keyboard shortcuts. Go to Window -> Workspace -> Keyboard Shortcuts & Menus for creating combinations which are suitable for you the most.


4. Create a workspace

Photoshop gives you the opportunity to quickly choose from several built-in workspaces or to create your own. Go to Window –> Workspaces. On the left menu, you’ll see your workspace choices, like these: Essentials, 3D, Motion, Painting, Photography, and Typography.

Click on any one New Workspace and design your own.


5. Even more Undo

By pressing Ctrl + Z in Photoshop you can undo the previous action you made, but when you press the same key combination again, it will redo the previous action. This is quite troublesome as you always need to undo multiple times to get to the state you want.

Luckily, Photoshop has a specific button for multiple undo, and it is Alt + Ctrl + Z. Yes, by using this key combination you can undo multiple times, according to the value of History States you set in Edit –> Preference –> Performance.

If you’re used to common Undo’s key combination which is Ctrl + Z, you can simply press Ctrl + Shift + Alt + K to access Keyboard Shortcut panel and change Undo’s key combination under the Edit section to Ctrl + Z.


6. “Steal” the colour you love

If in any website you see colour you like but don`t have a clue what colour is it used, click on Eyedropper tool or pressing “I” to activate it, then click on the Photoshop’s work screen and drag the Eyedropper icon to anywhere on the monitor screen to get the colour you are willing to use. Also, there is another, way on doing so. Launch a colour picker on your Photoshop, pick the colour and get its hex number, then click on the colour palette in Photoshop, then input the hex number then get the colour and it`s done.


7. Create a flexible guide

Working with Photoshop you have to deal a lot with a guide to position elements correctly to make it pixel perfect. In order to create a guide click on View –> New Guide then decide its horizontal or vertical guide, input its position and click Enter. You can save these works by just pressing Ctrl + R to activate the Ruler tool, click on the tool and drag it down to create a horizontal guide. While dragging a guide with Move tool which can be activated using V key, press and hold Alt key to change the horizontal guide to vertical guide. That trick is often used by Photoshop professionals.


8. Use a purge link

Photoshop stores image data for the Undo, Clipboard, and History features. This data consumes lots of memory. To eliminate that extra image data consuming your RAM, click Edit –> Purge –> (then choose an option).

9. Use a drawing tablet

You can find a computer mouse or laptop trackpad a bit inefficient tool for using Adobe Photoshop, especially when it comes to masking or fine retouching. You should try a drawing tablet – you’ll be surprised how much this can speed up your workflow, plus drawing tablets are not as expensive as you may think.