Photoshop is a great tool for many different jobs and needs.
In many of our courses Photoshop is used, especially in our Digital Design course, Animation course and Game Development, so we thought we needed to clear a few things up.
We have put together some mistakes we often see happening and how YOU can avoid them to make your life easier, smoother and more successful. Well, when it comes to Photoshop anyway!
Not using shortcuts
Photoshop shortcuts can save so much time and clicking and they are really not as difficult to learn as you would think. It can be so much quicker to press ‘Command A’ than using your mouse pad to go to ‘Select’ and then ‘All’. It doesn’t sound important or like clicking ‘Select’ and then ‘All is a difficult task, but it is just much quicker using the shortcuts.
Rookie error, but a surprisingly common one. Don’t be the horror story. Save every 5 minutes if you need to, you don’t want to lose all your hard work!
Also, just to make saving quicker, hit Command, S.
Not using layers and folders
With such in depth work that can be done in Photoshop, not using layers and folders can make it all a lot more complicated and messy. If you need to edit your image, it is much easier and safer to create a layer for each edit, rather than doing it all in one layer. Folders are then the best way to organise your layers properly to keep track of your edits and save you time and hassle in the long run.
For Black & White Images
When wanting to convert images to black and white, choosing the Image>Adjustments>Desaturate function in Photoshop does exactly what it suggests and destaurates all the colour from an image. However, this can often result in a flat, lifeless photograph.
Instead, you can create a much richer image by choosing Image >Adjustments>Channel Mixer. Check off Monochrome and then adjust the Red, Green and Blue channel sliders until you achieve the desired result.
Always using CMYK
A lot of designers think CMYK is the way to go when designing for print, but that’s not always the case. Using CMYK during design can sometimes be limiting and the file size will be bigger. Sometimes working in RGB mode with colour proofing on is a better way to work to optimise your print colours and then the file can be converted to CMYK closer to the final stages.
Don’t overuse your filters
Don’t over-edit your images. Photoshop is a great tool and can do wonders for your images, but we have all seen the evidence of over editing.
Not using Guides and Grids
As a professional Photoshop user, you should not longer be relying on being able to “eye” things up. The guides and grids are there for a reason, so use them. To align objects, you can combine the Grid with the Snap feature to help align objects with the grid lines and along the subdivisons. You can set up grid preferences to suit your working conditions, in cm, pixels or any other standard units of measurement.
Find out more about studying Digital Design or enquire about any of our courses.