How to Use Photoshop

There is an efficient way how to use Photoshop. Adobe Photoshop training needs to have the right sort of structure to make the learning process convenient and more of a pleasure than a struggle.

The first group of tutorials on this site covers some of the basic Photoshop tools that are required. Below is a description of more essential tools and functions a user of PS will need to be familiar with.

Crop Tool

crop tool icon

The Crop Tool is used to trim an image and remove areas which are not required.

It can also rotate and straighten an image and can be used to increase an image's canvas size.

rotating image

Spot Healing Brush

spot healing icon

There are a number of very powerful tools for cleaning up images. The Spot Healing Brush works like a more intelligent Clone Stamp. Click over a dirty mark and the tool reads the information around the mark and it creates a repair which merges in with the surrroundings.

The Content-Aware function for this brush can easily remove irritating wires across a picture.

spot healing

There are circumstances where the Spot Healing Brush won't be successful but the result is often very good.

Patch Tool

patch tool icon

The Patch Tool does the same thing on a larger scale. The area to be cleaned up is selected, the selection is moved over to a good area and this good area replaces the first portion.

patch repair

Once again, a very useful tool and there are ways around its limitations. 


curves symbol

When learning how to use Photoshop, Curves is the most useful of the functions for adjusting tones and colour corrections in images. The whole image can be made lighter or darker. 

curves adjustment

Contrast over the whole image or just a section of the image can be adjusted. A colour cast can be corrected. Colour can be adjusted in a small section of the image.


brushes icon

The Brush Tool has an armoury of adjustments, in size, shape, texture and the way it can apply the colour.

Sharp, soft, bristles, flat, round, square, watercolor, oil, airbrush, crayon, pastel, chalk, star, scattered, charcoal, sponge and any shape you care to invent. 


Pen Tool

pen tool icon

The Pen Tool is used for drawing lines or paths around an object. Although a bit tricky at first, after practice it is an invaluable tool for selecting subjects.

Complicated objects can be outlined quickly and effectively then cut out from their background.

path example


blur effect

There are many different types of Blur.
Blur can be used to create motion or zoom. It can create a softness or be given any particluar shape.

Lens blur can replicate the effect from an out of focus lens or mimic the type of blur created by view cameras.

runner breaking tape

Text and Text Effects

text symbol

Learning how to use Photoshop text can give tremendous scope to creative use of graphics.
Effects can be put on text, such as shadows, bevels and embossing. 

Kerning, leading, justification and styles work like in regular word processing.

text effects

Pixels and Resolution

pixel symbol

Digital images are made up of pixels, small squares of digital information with a colour value.

It's useful to understand a little of how pixels work and their relationship with resolution.


filters symbol

Filters are both essential and fun.
They can create a subtle improvement or a dramatic graphic effect.

Distort, add textures, add graphic effects, make an image liquid or correct lens aberrations.

filter effect

Hue & Saturation

hue symbol

Hue & Saturation is a powerful facility for making
a large shift in colour.
The saturation or richness of colour of the whole image or individual colours can be adjusted.

Black and white images can also be toned.

hue & saturation

Blending Modes

blending symbol

Blending modes control how a layer or part of an image reacts to the image below it. They can help to merge images together and create more impact.

Modes become an important function in creating the final result. 

clock blending modes

For people who prefer Photoshop training videos, this could be just what you are after, whether you have the latest Creative Cloud edition or an earlier version.


sharp symbol

Scanning film, some digital capture and resizing an image all introduce a degree of softness into the pixels.
This needs to be recognized and assessed, then an image needs to be sharpened the correct amount and at the right time. 

unsharp mask

The Sharpening functions can also be used for special effects if they are abused enough.

History Brush

history brush icon

Make a mistake or change your mind and through the list of past actions in the History panel, you can move back to a previous position.

Used to its full potential, the History function has definite time-machine qualities.

Making Shapes

shapes symbols

From set shapes such as Rectangle, Ellipse and Polygon to individually drawn designs, any shape can be made for use in graphics or on websites.

chrome effects

A great way to learn Photoshop is with instruction videos made by an expert.

Find out more and try sample videos here

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