Top 10 Tips For Photoshop Beginners – 1
TIP 1: AUTO-SELECT
Photoshop’s layer system takes a while to get used to, and without the use of Auto-Select, they can drive you crazy. Its default tool when you open a new document is the Move tool. This tool allows you to select anything and move it around the canvas.
If you’re used to a pointer, you will see that way down the list of tools, under the name ‘Direct Selection tool’, is your standard pointer tool. Do not be fooled, this will not do what you’re expecting, as it only works with a certain type of object, known as a vector.
Whenever you add a new layer to a Photoshop document (by going to Layer> New> Layer, or clicking on the new layer icon in the Layers panel) it will stack on top of whatever layer is currently selected. These layers can start to build up pretty fast and it can get messy if you don’t organise them efficiently.
This is where the Auto-Select option can really save time. It is only available to activate if you are using the move tool, so select it, (or press V, if you’re feeling shortcutty!) and make sure that the ‘Auto-Select’ tick box along the top toolbar is selected.
Also, unless you are using lots of layer groups, make sure that the dropdown menu next to ‘Auto-Select’ is set to ‘Layer’.
This should make selecting layers a lot easier and more intuitive.
This also works in reverse: should you select something in the layers panel that you want to move, but Auto-Select is hindering you, uncheck the box, select your layer and the move tool will only work on this layer.
Utilising the two functions that this option supplies is one of the easiest ways to work your way around Photoshop as a beginner.