Getting the most out of Adjustment Layers in Photoshop

An Adjustment layer provides you with a non-destructive way of altering your images. You can apply Levels, change the Saturation and even add a Pattern or Gradient Map to images without disturbing pixel information. This gives you the freedom to experiment without risking your image. One of the most powerful…

Photoshop: Layers for beginners

What are Layers? Within Photoshop, Layers are used to separate and organize different components of an image. This makes the whole activity of manipulating, or arranging photographic elements a lot easier. Elements that have been partitioned on to distinct layers can be moved, removed, duplicated, mirrored, rotated, scaled, as well…

Managing colour in Adobe Photoshop

Understanding how to create, change or mix colours within Photoshop is an essential skill. Fortunately colour management, in general is not a complicated element and there are a few methods at hand to help. Before we take a look at managing colour, it is important to understand the various colour…

How to use Curves in Photoshop – The complete tutorial

Within Adobe Photoshop, Curves provide a superb method for controlling colour and contrast in a similar, but complimentary to Levels. The difference being, with Curves we can tweak and alter any point along the tonal range. This gives us the opportunity to precisely target colours or tones for exact adjustments. Curves…

Photoshop: Basic photo retouching

As you may have noticed, Photoshop has a very wide range of tools and dialogue boxes. To master photo retouching, you may only need a hand full of methods to achieve professional results. Essential tools of the trade The Clone Stamp Tool This is  probably the most heavily used retouching tool,…

Selection with Color Range

Adobe Photoshop’s Color Range dialogue box (menu)->Select->Color Range, gives you the ability to generate a selection (mask) from a specific colour or colour range. This can be applied to either the entire image or within a previously defined selection. The resulting mask will be created across all layers and cannot…

Photoshop: What is a selection?

Many of my Adobe Photoshop beginner students ask this question. I usually start by describing a selection as a mask for applying an effect or a method for isolating a region of an image for copying, moving or deleting. The truth is, they have many uses and selections play a…

Tools for retouching: The Brush Tool

The Brush Tool works in a similar way to a conventional paint brush or air brush. You select a colour, opacity, brush size and paint. It’s uses are varied; from painting and bleaching out through to using along side the myriad of masking techniques within Adobe Photoshop. I quite often…

Tools for retouching: Clone Stamp Tool

The Clone Stamp is one of my personal favourite tools as well as being probably the most useful gadgets for restoration and retouching. It allows you to paint image information via a brush. The Clone Stamp does this by copying or ‘sampling’ a range of targeted pixel information using a brush. This…

5 things to avoid in Adobe Photoshop

Let’s get things straight from the outset. Adobe Photoshop is an amazing, creative application and continues to be the very best photo-editing tool available. However, over the years I have noticed a few tools, options and techniques that aren’t going to be that helpful to the budding creative, like yourself….