The Photoshop Guidebook

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The Photoshop Interface …………………………………………………….1-4 Toolbar Basics ………………………………………………………………5-10 Menu Basics ………………………………………………………………...10-12 File Basics and Document Window ………………………………………...13 Arranging and Customizing the Workspace ………………………………..14-16 What is the Adobe Bridge …………………………………………………..17 What are transformation and how to use them? Hidden Right Click Features ………………………………………………..18-19 Retouching and Repairing Tools ……………………………………………20-22 Painting in Photoshop, Introduction to Brushes …………………………….23-27 Working with Layers and Layer Styles ……………………………………..28-30 What are Adjustment Layers ………………………………………………..31-32 The Power of Filters ………………………………………………………...33-34 Working with Selections ……………………………………………………35-36


Learning Photoshop’s Interface…
The most important part of learning any new program will be first getting familiar with the interface. Luckily for us Photoshop has been broken down into 5 separate areas; the menu bar; toolbox; options bar; palettes; and the image area. We will be going into greater detail on each of these areas in later chapters, but for now we will stick to the basics.

1.2 MENU BAR .You will find that the menu bar will be the same for all Adobe products. It
contains all of Photoshop’s options giving you access to the file commands, edit commands, help files, and much more.

1.3 TOOLBOX .The toolbar contains
all of the various tools for editing an image. The toolbar is divided into several similar tools, we will be going into greater detail later in the next chapter.

1.4 PALETTES. The palettes are small
windows that can be turned on or off. They will allow you to have more control over your images, layering, channels, paths, and other important features. From the palettes you can fine tune the majority of the settings for your tools. On a side note, Photoshop opens up with only 3 basic Palettes, your layers, channels, and paths. If you find yourself needing more, go to your menu bar and select “window”. From there you will have access to over 20 additional palettes to extend your capabilities.


1.5 OPTIONS BAR. Your options bar is the toolbar that sits right below the main menu
navigation of Photoshop. Watch this bar closely while switching between tools in Photoshop and you will quickly realize, that each tool has it’s own set of options.

1.6 IMAGE AREA. Your image area is the basic working window in Photoshop. Once you
have selected a tool in Photoshop, you will find yourself moving into the image area to make edits. This is where your digital art, comes to life.


In chapter two we will be going over the basic tools included in Photoshop and their basic features. We will be covering each tools use in greater detail in later chapters, as well as giving you basic tips on their use.
2.1 The very first

tool you will pick up in Photoshop will be the basic move tool. This tool is used to select various elements and move them around.
2.2 Just

under the move tool you have your basic selection tools( marquee tools). By default the square select tool is visible If you click the little triangle on the right corner, you will have access to the 4 others. The rectangular marquee is used to create a rectangular selection; the elliptical marquee creates a circular selection; the single row marquee will select a row 1 pixel high and across your image; and the single column marquee will select a row from top to bottom.
2.3 The lasso

tool is much like the Marquee tool, however the lasso tool is used for making freehand selections rather than a set circle or rectangle. There are three tools in this group, the lasso tool, polygonal lasso tool, and the magnetic lasso tool. The lasso tool is used to make freehand selections where the selection border will be placed around the area, you draw with your mouse. The recommended lasso tool is the Polygon Lasso. Your selections are made up of a series of lines, which are ended by a click in different areas. This makes long straight selections much easier. Wheels and arches are normally selected by making many small straight lines. The final lasso tool is the magnetic Lasso. It automatically clings onto different areas, making easy selections with very little effort.


The quick selection tool is a relatively new tool to Photoshop, it allow you to use a brush in Photoshop and paint your selection.

The next tool on our list is the magic wand. This tool works by clicking in an open area and all of that color will be select. In order to adjust the strengths of this tool you must adjust you tolerance. The Crop tool allows you to select an area of an image and discard everything outside the area.

The slice tool is a tool for web designers it allow you to slice you image into squares. So each individual square can be taken into you web design software. Likewise, your slice select tool allows you to select your different slices. The next tool is the eyedropper tool. This tool is used to select whatever color you hover your mouse icon over.

The Crop tool allows you to select an area of an image and zoom into this area. The notes tool is basically what it sounds like, it allow you to leave yourself notes and store them with you file. The count tool is another tool used for collecting data. This time it is use to count the number of objects in your file. The next series of tools are the spot healing brush tool, healing brush tool, patch tool, and the red eye tool. If you can’t guess by the name these tools are used for image correction.

The spot healing brush tool is best used to remove blemishes from certain areas of your image. The healing brush tool is a mix between the spot healing brush tool and the clone stamp tool, where it will use a predefined pattern to correct areas of your image. The Patch Tool retouches image using sampled pixels or a sampled pattern

The red eye tool is a one click solution to red eye. In short it is best used to remove red eye from your images.

The next tools on our list will be the brush tool, pencil tool, and the color replacement tool. We will be dedicating an entire chapter to the brush tool so we will not be covering it in this section.

The pencil tool is just a small variation of the paint brush, it creates smaller more refined lines. The color replacement tool replaces color you paint on with foreground color without painting over image detail. The next two tools on the list are the clone stamp tool and the pattern stamp tool

The clone stamp tool works by sampling a small square and repeating it wherever you right click the mouse. The pattern stamp tool allow you to paint with a pattern that you selected, from one of Photoshop's stored libraries. Next in line we have the history brush tool, and the art history brush tool.

The history brush in particular happens to be one very powerful tool, it works in conjunction with the history pallet ( you will learn about later). It will allow you to paint an image, but instead of using color it turns that area back to a pre defined state. The art history tool works exactly the same as the history tool but it can be used to produce a more of a stylized stroke. Which can give way to some extremely creative designs. The next tools on our list are the eraser tool, background eraser tool, and magic easier tool.

Anyone who has ever worked in Photoshop has made a mistake that has needed erased, and the eraser tool gets the job done. The Background Eraser tool samples the color at the center of the brush, and deletes pixels of a similar color as you drag around your image The magic eraser tool is a hybrid between the magic wand tool and the eraser tool. It will automatically make what ever color you select transparent.


The next two on the list are probably the simplest tools to use, to gradient tool and paint bucket tool.

The gradient tool will either fill the entire image or just you selection with a gradient. While the paint bucket will fill you entire image or selection with a solid color

If your are anything like me you will find the next three tools to be the coolest things since sliced bread. The blur tool as you can guess is a brush that instead of painting can be used to blur the image.

Like wise the sharpen tool can be used as a brush to sharpen areas of the image. And finally the smudge tool is personally a favorite of mine. It works as a brush but instead of painting it will smudge the colors of your layer together. However you want to be careful not to over use it. Next in our list we have three of the most underrated tools in our Photoshop. The dodge tool, burn tool and the sponge tool.

The dodge tool works by lighting the pixels you paint over. The burn tool like you might think is the complete opposite of the dodge tool, it will darken the individual pixels you paint over. The sponge tool works by adjusting the saturation of a small area of your image. The pen tool is one of the most versatile tools found in Photoshop, especially if you will be exporting your work from Photoshop and finishing it in another program. Another program such as illustrator, 3d studio max, after effects, etc.. And would need to keep your image paths.

The pen tool allow you to draw paths directly on your Image and adjust them. Like wise the other tools in this rollout all help you to control the accuracy of the pen tool. A better way to think of the pen tool is to think of connecting the dots, because you will drawing individual points around your image and Photoshop will later connect them into a path.


Next on the list is the text tool. I will not be spending to much time going over this tool as it is the same text tool in other programs. The only slight difference is you have the option to select horizontal text, vertical text, or use a text mask. A text mask will allow you to use the outline of your text on your images.

The next two tools we will be looking at will be the path selection tool and direct selection tool.

The path selection tool will allow you to select a path and edit it’s attributes using the pen tool options. The direct select tool selects and entire mask and allow you to move or edit the mask, or the shape.

The last tools we will be looking at will be the shape tools. As you can see from the diagram we have the option to create a rectangle, rounded rectangle, ellipse, polygon, simple line, or even a custom shape.

2.19 Everything on

the toolbar doesn’t happen to be a tool, their are also navigation controls included in Photoshop. Just to help you navigate around your image when zoomed in, giving you the option to work on small sections of your image. The first set of tools are for strictly working with 3d models, the two that will be important to note in this group will be the pan tool and the zoom in tool. The pan tool allow you to drag your image from left to right, up and down. Which will really come in handy once you begin working in Photoshop. The Zoom tool allow you to zoom in and out of your image. To help you work on the entire image at once, or all the way own to a single pixel.


The menu bar consists of 11 menus: File, Edit, Image, Layer, Select, Filter, Analysis 3D, View, Window, and Help. I would actually recommend taking a few minutes and playing around with the menu bar. As there are a ton of additional options available to you that we will not have time to cover. If you took my advice and decided to play around with the menu bar you may notice that some commands within the menu bar are followed by extra periods. Whenever you see this it is an indicator that the following command have a dialog box attached to it. A good example of this will be if you click the file menu button. file menu button> new

If you actually clicked on the new button you will be taken to a new dialog box, that gives you options to set a new document up for editing. For the rest of these lesson I will be using the following syntax for navigating the different menus. File > New In addition to some commands having extra periods some commands will have right arrows next to them. These right arrows indicate that there is a submenu with related commands connected to it. If you notice in our next example in the Layer > New an entire submenu will open up giving you additional options .


Unfortunately there

are so many additional options included within the menu bar that I will not have enough time to reveal them all to you. Instead I will give you a brief overview of what each menu element have to offer. However we will not be covering the file menu, or the help menu as they are the standard menu that has been included in every program. Instead we will focus on the options that are Photoshop specific. The first menu that we will be covering will be the edit menu. Your edit menu will give you access to all of your basic options such as edit > Undo as well as your basic transformation settings, and your preferences. Your image menu will give you access to various controls to adjust your image size, rotation, and even your image attributes such as brightness, contrast, hue and saturation. The layer menu will give you access to all of your layer properties, such as creating new layers, and working with adjustment layers. Your select menu will give you access to your selection tools. Such as selecting the entire image, selecting all layers, and even saving various selections to work on later.


You filter menu is one menu you really want to play around with. In fact we will be dedicating an entire chapter to it’s use and capabilities. The analysis menu is an underused menu, it give you access to statistics about your image. It also gives you access to the rule tool and count tool. Your view menu gives you access to all of your navigation options, such as zooming in, panning, and fitting the document to the screen, or viewing it at the actual size. The window menu option gives you access to the additional palettes Photoshop have to offer. You can see from the figure their are far more palettes and tools than you will ever need.



All right before we can continue with learning Photoshop and all of its wonderful uses, we must first take a little time and go over some of the basic. Such as the basic attributes of the various file formats you can work with in Photoshop. Photoshop by itself is the industry standard for imaging editing because it can work with so many file format, and each file format will be unique in it’s use, and capabilities. For this chapter we will look at the 5 basic file formats and their uses. PSD files are Photoshop specific and are the original Photoshop file. Since they preserve layer and channel information, users can continually edit and adjust images using the PSD file. PSD are the files you will be using mostly since they are the only files you can continue to work on after you save it.

GIF CompuServe Graphic Interchange Format: GIF files are most commonly used for Web-based line art such as logos and buttons. Since this format can only support a maximum of 256 colors.

JPEG Joint Photographic Experts Group: JPEG files support full color palettes; therefore, when saving photographic images to use on the Web, the best format is JPEG. A word of caution when using JPEG format: Every time a JPEG file is closed, the file recompresses; therefore, editing and adjusting should be done using the PSD file so image quality is not lost with multiple recompressions.

PNG which just so happens to be my personal favorite. Joint Photographic Experts Group: the important note about PNG files is that a PNG supports an alpha channel. The best way to think of an alpha channel is to imagine a transparent background behind your image.

BMP files or bitmap files are one of the oldest file formats around. They are high quality file formats that have image quality far greater than the average JPEG. However with the high quality comes the added file size, so BMP files should be used Sparingly.



One of the most powerful and versatile abilities of Photoshop cs4 is having the ability to customize your workspace. Customizing your workspace will not only speed up your production by giving you access to tools you use most, but it can also help Photoshop run up to 20 percent faster. On top of all of this it is relatively easy to set up, by default this is the way Photoshop will open up. Please take note of where your layer palettes, history palettes, and tool box are located.

This is not necessarily a bad setup however as you get more advanced in Photoshop you may want to set it up to your individual style. For this short lesson I will show you first how to change a palette and position it, secondly we will take a look at one of my favorite layouts. I will be showing you how to set up Photoshop for an artist, or rather how to set it up for digital painting. The first thing you want to do is right click onto one of the open palettes. Once you do that you will have the option to either close the palette, or you can access Photoshop's interface options.


For the workspace we will be creating I chose to exit all Palettes and start over fresh. Which when we look again we will see a completely blank workspace.

To create our custom workspace we will need to go to the window tab and select layer, color, navigator, adjustments tab, and finally the brushes tab. which will leave us with an interface looking like this, which to say the least, looks even more jumbled than before we started. However with the new Photoshop we can move and dock any palette or panel we see.


In order to move a panel or Palette you need to click in the title bar of that panel, or palette. From there you will have the option to move the Palette/ Panel to any location in the workspace. Lets skip ahead and take a look at where I decide to position my Palettes/Panels. As you can see from the example the Brush Palette, and color Palette are now connected to The actual brush tool. In my opinion it makes painting with the brush tool easier when all of you advanced options are right there in front of you. Once you have a workspace you are comfortable with Click window > workspace > save workspace.


Adobe bridge is a piece of software that will become your best friend as you get more skilled not only in Photoshop, but the entire adobe creative suit. Illustrator, Dreamweaver, flash, image ready, after effects are all part of the Adobe creative suit. No matter the program Adobe bridge is the software to keep all of your assets organized. Don’t just take my words for it the creators of Adobe had this to say about their product. Adobe® Bridge CS3 is a powerful, easy-to-use media manager for visual people, letting you easily organize, browse, locate, and view creative assets. Available in all six editions of Adobe Creative Suite® 3 software and all professional Adobe creative applications, Bridge provides centralized access to project files, applications, and settings, as well as XMP metadata tagging and searching capabilities. Whenever you first open up Adobe Bridge you are provided with a screenshot of your entire desktop and all of the assets available on your computer. From there you have the option to move them from folder to folder. This will become more important as you start to work with larger projects and need help organizing your files, and transferring your files from one program to another..



Transforming changes an object’s appearance by modifying one or more of its physical characteristics. The transform functions in Photoshop include scaling, rotating, skewing, changing perspective, distorting, and flipping. Photoshop allow users to transform entire images, individual layers and/or specific selections. The transforming options are located under the Edit menu in the Transform fly-out menu. To give you a better understanding of the transform functions, I have taken a basic square and applied the various transformations to it.

Basic square







In addition to being able to use Photoshop transformation tools to drastically change your image appearance there is another feature you will need to know. That is the hidden right click features. Depending on which tool you have selected if you right click out onto your canvas you will have options to fine tune your settings. For this example we will be using the brush tool and looking at it’s hidden right click features. Every tool will have it’s own unique right click features and settings. So I would recommend taking sometime and getting use to these features.

For our next example we will be looking at one of the selection tools. I used the magic wand tool as our background was solid white. If you noticed after we clicked, we now have the option to adjust our selection, which will allow us to select additional objects, grow our selection, feather our selection, and even invert the selection. No matter which tool you are using in order to truly master them you will need to master their individual right click features.

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Photo retouching is defined as the ( Treatment of a photograph to remove dust spots or blemishes, or to adjust or remove unwanted elements of the image, or add new elements to an image). Fortunately for us Photoshop is the industry standard for photo retouching and repairs. What that means is that we have a way to restore and improve all of our old Photos. Photoshop has far to many tools, effects, and adjustments for me to go over in one lesson, so instead I will go over the most important tools, and it will be up to you to practice on your own. For our example we will be looking at how to improve an existing photo by removing spider veins, getting rid of blemishes, evening out the skin and finally adjusting the brightness and contrast of the image. We will be using the spot healing brush tool, blur tool, and finally adjusting the brightness and contrast of our image. To begin please select an image you will be happy working with for this lesson.

The original image itself doesn’t look to bad, however if you blow it up you will see that there are spider veins above her eye, and her skin tone could use some small work. If you are really observant you will see a few extra wrinkles just beneath her chin.

In version cs3, Photoshop released a very handy new tool called the Spot Healing Brush. The Spot Healing Brush quickly removes blemishes and other imperfections in your photos. It works by painting with sampled pixels from an image or pattern and matches the texture, lighting, transparency, and shading of the sampled area to the area being healed. We will be using the Spot healing tool to remove the vein above her eye. Select the Spot Healing Brush tool Choose a brush size in the options bar. A brush that is slightly larger than the area you want to fix works best so that you can cover the entire area with one click. However to give you a sense of how the spot healing brush tool works we will be using a slightly smaller size I chose 31 pixels. From there the spot healing tool will work like a regular brush, just slowly mouse over the area you would like to correct. After you are satisfied the vein above her eye is removed move to the lower chin. We will be using the spot healing brush again however this time we will be using a slightly larger brush size. At the moment we just want to lightly touch that area as we will be picking it up later.

Next we want to select the blur tool, and begin smoothing out the cheeks just a bit. We want to be careful at this stage, too much blur can really destroy and image. A better way to think of the blur tool is to think of cove up worn by a model Just enough to hide the blemish, but to much can be distracting. At this point in time we just want to lightly mouse over the small blemishes on her face with the blur tool. If you find that the blur tool is set too strong you can always adjust its strength in the options toolbar.


The next tool we will be picking up will be the color dodge tool, this tool works by lighting up small areas of your image. The most important thing to note about the color dodge tool, is that it will leave all of your texture, color, and patterns the same. With the color dodge tool selected we want to slightly touch key areas to make highlights, such as the eyes and whitening the teeth. If you have been taking the time to follow along the steps you should have successfully removed the veins above her eye, blemishes from her cheeks, excess wrinkles from the skin, and whitening the teeth and eyes. Now we will apply a filter to the entire image to bring everything together. I will going over how to apply an adjustment in a later chapter However this is the original image versus our corrected image.





Although this chapter is titled an introduction to brushes, it will really be a tutorial on the hidden power of the brush tool. If your wondering why we decided to spend an entire chapter on the brush tool when Photoshop has some many other tools to offer? It’s because if you learn how to use the basic brush tool you will learn how to use almost all of Photoshop other tools. The majority of the other tools in the toolbox happen to work around the brush tool. To begin this chapter we will start with a new document that is 640 x 480 and a blank white background. The first thing we will do is select the very basic brush tool, and begin to just play around on the canvas.

By that I mean just makes some scribbles don’t try to be creative just yet. Right now we are just focusing on getting use to paining with the mouse.

From here we will begin to look at some of the basic brush tool features. We have to get through the basic if we want to get to the good stuff. If you would like to change the size, shape and type of brush you must click the on the options bar. From their you will be taken to brush sub menu. Please if you do anything else take some time and experiment with this sub men.


If you actually followed my advice and click the arrow you should be looking at the brush sub menu. We are going to take just a little time and go over what each of these options mean. I have marked the major areas of interest that will really have an impact on the way our brush. works.

The first and most basic option that we have is the ability to change the size and thickness of the brush that we will be using. We also can change the hardness which is how hard the brush will strike the canvas. The higher the hardness number is set to the darker the center of the brush will appear on the canvas.


The next options and one of the most important is the ability to change the brush shape. As you can see by the default menu we have a very large selection available to us Photoshop also allow us to create our own brush and save it as a preset. The beauty of saving a brush as a preset is that we can use it for any of our other tools, such as for making selections, erasing, color correcting, etc.. For now please select one of the other brush preset and play around on the canvas and look at the difference between the new shape and the old brush we used earlier.

For this example I choose to use the maple leave preset and just played around with the canvas. As you can see each brush has it’s own special characteristics and shape.

There is also one more very important option tat we have available to us. That is the ability to change the opacity of each our brush. By masterfully controlling the opacity of our brush we will be able to blend colors, and painting with far more control. If you would please take a little time and see how different brushes at different opacities can greatly effect our image.


One other very important feature we will be covering in this lesson will be how to control the brush color. You may have already guessed this but down in the right hand corner of the toolbox, is the color tools. If you would like to change the color please click on one of the squares, you have your choice of foreground color and background color. Once you click one of the squares you will be taken to the color picker sub menu. You literally have over 1 million different color options to choose from. All you have to do is decide upon which color you would like and click ok. You can even use this color picker tool to select a color from an image.


Chapter nine part 2
Fine tuning your brush settings. All though we covered quite a lot of the features that the brush tool have to offer, we still only scratched the Surface. So far we learned how to change the brush shape, size and color. Not bad, but if you really want adjust your brush then you will have to access the brush palette. For this please go to workspace, and select your brush palette or hit F5. If you followed along with the directions you should be looking at the brush preset sub menu, right off the bat you should be able to see a few special choices. I will try and give you an overview of what each of these options are capable of. However I would really recommend taking some time and playing around with these different options. I scribbled a few things on the canvas using the standard maple leaf brush to give you a sense of what the different features are capable of.





Color Dynamic

Other Dynamic 28


Layers are like transparent sheets stacked one on top of the other. Each layer can have different images and effects. When the image is viewed it will look like all of the various layers are one single image. The images show in the order you stack them, where the top layer shows first and the bottom layer becomes the background. Using layers in your workflow will allow you to work on various parts of your image without effecting all of the image. Such as the example I am working with if we just wanted to move over the long rectangle using a layer all we would have to do is select that layer with the move tool and slowly move it over. As we stat to get into the later chapter working with adjustment layers it will become extremely important as you have the option to apply effects one layer at a time. Not only effects but all of your other adjustments a well.. There are however just a few more things we will need to cover in this basic layer lesson. If you look at the layer palette you will notice a few icons that stick out. The icon next to the number 1 looks like a little lock. If you click the lock what ever layer you have select will become locked. Which means that layer will not be able to be selected or edited until you unlock it. The icon next to the number 2 looks like an eye, this means that the current layer is visible. If you didn’t want the layer to be visible click the eye and that layer will become invisible. The layer next to the number 3 looks like a small trash can this layer will delete your selected layer. The layer next to the number 4 will create a new blank layer. Number 5 is connected to your blending modes. Right now it is set to normal which mean their are no special layer effects attached to it. we will be covering the various blending modes in a later chapter.


Lastly in this chapter we will be looking at layer styles and how to apply them. A layer style is a special effect that is applied to an entire layer and all of it’s content. Including drop shadows, beveling and contorting, applying textures and patterns to your image. Accessing your layer style menu is quite simple just double click what ever layer you would like to apply your effect to.

To give you a better example of how layer styles work I will apply various layer style effects to our test image. At this time I would recommend taking some time and playing around with the various layer styles.




Adjustment layers are special layers in Photoshop that let you apply an adjustment onto its own layer. A better way to think of it, is a glass sheet you place over top of your image. You then can make all your adjustments on top of the glass, if you are unhappy with the result simply delete the glass and the original image will not be affected. There are many adjustments you can make to a layer, such as, color balance, levels, hue/saturation, brightness, contrast, etc. You should create an adjustment when you feel an image needs to be modified. Adjustments can quickly enhance your digital or scanned images, and are used frequently to create great layer based designs. Applying an adjustment layer First select a basic image you will be happy working with.

Click the new adjustment layer icon on the layer palette

Once you click the new adjustment layer icon you will be given the adjustment layer submenu. As I said in the above paragraph adjustment layers differ from normal adjustments as they do not effect your original image. However if you followed along you should be looking at the adjustment layer sub menu which gives you the option to adjust the brightness and contrast, levels, curves, exposure etc.. Sadly there are far to many adjustments for me to display in this lesson, so to give you an idea of their power I will apply the simple adjustment posterize to my image. Remember if I don’t like the settings I can always just go back an delete the adjustment layer..





Photoshop has a wide range of filters that you can be used to add special effects to your images. To use a filter, Select the layer or selection you would like to apply the filter to. Pull down the Filter menu. The menu consists of a list of filter types you can choose from.

Each menu selection see picture to the right represents a family of filters; each has a sub menu that allow you to select the filter you want. For example, below is the Distort sub menu, listing all of the possible distortion effects you can choose from.

Sadly there are far to many various filters for me to be able to go over in this chapter, so instead I hope that you will take it upon yourself to actually try and apply each different filter to your image. For the sake of this chapter I will show you some vary basic examples of what filters are capable of.



Dark Strokes



The selection tools allow you to select a portion or an area of an image to work on. Most of Photoshop’s other tools, effects, and filters can then be applied to the selected area changing its color, shape, texture, position and other attributes, while leaving the rest of the image untouched. If you remember from lesson 2 Toolbox basic, Photoshop offers 3 basic type of selection tools. The Marquee Tools , Lasso tools, and the magic wand. Each type of selection tool has its own special attributes and settings, it will be up to you to select the best one for the job. The Lasso Tool and Polygonal Lasso Tool lets you draw a border around the area you are trying to select, primarily freehand. Use the lasso tool if you want to draw your selection entirely by hand. If you want your selection to be primarily straight edges then use the Polygonal Lasso Tool. With the Magnetic Lasso Tool, you can draw the selection border, and it will automatically snap to a high-contrast edge in the area graphics. To use the Lasso Tool: Select the Lasso Tool from the Toolbox. Set any desired options in the Options Bar. To draw a freehand selections, simply drag the mouse around the area you would like to select. To begin drawing straight-edged lines of the selection, hold down the Alt key and click at the beginning and end points of the segment. To close the selection border, let go of the mouse button To use the Polygonal Lasso Tool: Select the Polygonal Lasso Tool from the Toolbox. Again set the desired options in the Options Bar. To draw straight-edged lines of the selection, click at the desired beginning and end points of the line you which to create. If you would to draw freehand lines hold down the alt key as you mouse around the area.


How to use the Magnetic Lasso Tool Select the Magnetic Lasso Tool from the Toolbox, and again select the options you would like. Click to set the endpoint of the selection. To draw a freehand segment, move the mouse pointer along the edge of the area you want to select. As you move the pointer around the image, the selection lines will automatically snap to the strongest edge in the area around the pointer. If you want to switch to either the Lasso Tool or Polygonal Lasso Tool, hold down the Alt key. From there you can draw either freehand or straight edges. Again you close the selection by double clicking the mouse. Hw to use the Magic Tool: Select the magic wand tool from the toolbox, and click your desired options. The magic wand tool is a little different from the other selection tools, as it is the easiest to use and the hardest to master. First and most important you must set you tolerance 0 to 255. Basically the magic wand works by selecting all similar colors to the color you select. So you must be careful the higher the tolerance level is set the broader the range of colors you will select. Similarly the lower the tolerance level the more accurate the selection will be. There is one more important setting to note when using the magic wand tool. The “Contiguous” option, Check or un-check the Contiguous option. If Contiguous is not selected, all pixels that are the same color as the pixel will be selected no matter where they are. Otherwise, only adjacent pixels of the same color will be selected.

This is the End of The Photoshop Guide Book
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