Photoshop Tutorials for Beginners

The first of the free Photoshop tutorials for beginners starts with the Brush Tool and follows with the Color Picker.

Manuals for Adobe Photo shop are written by experts and checked by experts. What they never do is grab a complete newbie and say "please learn the programme from this new manual and see how you get on". If that were done, most manuals would end up in the trash before they got printed.

With Adobe Photoshop being such a gigantic programme and somewhat overwhelming for the beginner, this Photoshop-for-beginners site aims to make that learning process as painless and easy as possible.

How should beginners start?

I find the best way is to start with exercises using the basic tools. These early tutorials for Photoshop for beginners will get you using some simple functions and help familiarity with some of the features.

In many cases, these free Photoshop tutorials for beginners come with images which can be downloaded.
It can be more interesting to work on your own pictures, however, so feel free to use them if you prefer.

The sample images are in a zip package.
To download the samples, please Click Here .

Some computers will start to open a zip file immediately; with others, a double-click can be necessary.

Within the instructions in these Photoshop tutorials for beginners, PC keystrokes are given first, then those for Mac.
Control + Alt + D will be written Ctrl + Alt + D.
Command or Apple + Alt + D will be written Cmd + Alt + D.
On older Macs, the Alt key was called Option.

The whole instruction will read Ctrl + Alt + D / Cmd + Alt + D.

Have fun.

On Opening Photoshop

When Photoshop is first opened, the screen is covered with stuff and it can look very confusing.
There is an Options bar across the top, Tools on the left and a mass of palettes on the right.
Many of these panels will not be used for some time; some of them may never be used. The first move is to clear them all out of the way and then add them one at a time as required.

Go to Window and you will see a tick next to every panel that is open. Drop down to each of these items one at a time and release the cursor; the panel will be removed from the screen.

When the screen is clear of them all, move on to the next section on the Brush Tool.

The Brush Tool

The first of our Photoshop tutorials for beginners deals with the Brush tool which is one of the most essential tools in the toolbox.

Firstly, we will need to check that the cursor gives us the most convenient symbol when we use the brushes.

  • In the top menu bar, on a PC go to Edit, while on a Mac go to Photoshop; then drop down to Preferences.
    In some earlier versions of Photoshop on Mac, Preferences are under Edit.

    In the small menu that appears, go to Cursors.
  • Under Painting Cursors click on Normal Brush Tip.
    So the path is:-
    Preferences > Cursors > Painting Cursors > Normal Brush Tip.
  • Under Other Cursors click Standard. The cursor will now adjust in size according to the size of brush chosen. The other settings have their uses but not right now.

create new image
  • Go to File > New.
  • Create a new file with:
    Width 600 pixels;
    Height 500 pixels;
    Resolution 300 pixels/inch;
    with a white Background, as shown. Click OK.
  • Save this file in a convenient location and call it Sample 1.

  • Select the Brush Tool by clicking on the Brush icon on the main toolbox.
  • Click on the very small black and white squares in the toolbox to set the large squares on the default of black and white with the black on top. The top colour is for the foreground and the lower colour is for the background.
  • A Brush will always use the uppermost colour.

  • Across the top of the screen, you will see the options bar.

options bar

brushes panel
  • To open the Brushes panel, go to Window > Brushes.
  • Click on number 19 on the top row and draw the word FUN.
  • Change the brush by selecting number 27 on the second row.

    Draw the word FUN on the background again.

    The first brush was set to maximum hardness, while the second brush is set at maximum softness.
  • To clear off what you have written in order to make a fresh start, click on File in the top menu bar a drop down to Revert (File > Revert). The image goes back to the previously saved version.
  • In the top options bar, click on the black dot next to the word Brush to bring up the dialogue box relevant to this brush.
  • Adjust the size of the brush by dragging the Master Diameter slider.
    Adjust the hardness of the brush by dragging the Hardness slider.
  • Draw some doodles and try different brush sizes with different amounts of hardness.
  • To go back to a white page again, click on File in the top menu bar a drop down to Revert (File > Revert).

Colours are chosen in the Color Picker which is the next of the Photoshop Tutorials for Beginners.

Brush Tool
Color Picker
Clone Stamp Tool
Marquee Tools
Lasso Tool
Magic Wand Tool


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