Introductory Photoshop Skills for Beginner Photographers

  1. Non-Destructive Editing in Photoshop


In Photoshop, there are two types of editing for photographers and designers. One is destructive editing and the other is non-destructive editing. Destructive editing does not mean that it will destroy your artwork or a photograph. It means once you have edited your original picture, you will never modify it at a later time. In version 3.0, the method of adding a new layer introduced in Photoshop. That will help you to edit your photos non-destructively. In non-destructive editing need to copy your original photo and complete the editing over copied layer and new layers that can be adjusted far along.

Now we will choose a file and open it into adobe Photoshop.




Now we have opened a photograph of nature. You need to unlock your background layer in layers panel (on down right corner) by double-clicking on it. A window will open press OK! Copy your original background layer by pressing ctrl+J. Now lock your background layer and start working on background copy layer. At every step, take a new layer from layer menu when you add something to your picture. This will add a new layer to your layers panel. Rename and select the new layer.



In this manner, you can edit your work non-destructively at any time by adding or deleting the layers. You can work with different tools, adjustments and digital paint your artwork by the method of adding new layers. I will explain this further in the next steps.



  1. Discover Adjustment Layers


You can adjust the brightness, contrast, colours, shadows and highlights of photograph non-destructively. Go to Image – adjustments and curves or press ctrl + M.



You can move the curve and improve your image’s quality and display by selecting any option, you can also go to adjustment layers from below the icon in layers panel.



  1. Instant Automatic Fixes


In adobe Photoshop, you can quickly and automatically fix the colours, tone and contrast of your photograph.


You can press Shift+Ctrl+L for Auto Tone your picture and Alt+Shift+Ctrl+L and Shift+Ctrl+B for Auto Contrast and Auto Color.


  1. Make Your Photos Pop with Levels


If you want your picture to look professional you need to go Image – adjustments – levels or press ctrl+L. For your image look more real move the three sliders mentioned in below picture and adjust where it looks good.




  1. Clean Up Shots with the Spot Healing Brush


If a person wants to remove or delete any part of the picture without damaging your taken photograph then you can use a spot healing brush tool. In that manner, select a spot healing brush took from tools panel on the very left side of Photoshop. It’s the seventh tool in tool panel. Or you can simply press J from your keyboard. Make sure that you have selected Content-Aware from the top below main menu panel. After fulfilling the above two conditions, click on the part of image you want to remove and let the magic happen with your picture. You can change the size of spot healing brush tool by pressing brackets [ ] keys from keyboard.




  1. Remove Objects: Healing Brush or Content-Aware Fill


If you want to remove or replace an object in a picture you need to work with healing brush tool or content-aware. For healing brush tool you have to select the tool then press alt and click on a specific part of image, the brush will select that part. Then click on the portion of image you want to remove. One can select sample or texture options from the top panel.

You can delete an object from foreground by using a content aware tool. Pick a rectangular or elliptical marquee tool from tool panel on left side or press M from keyboard. You can also select an object by using Magic Wand or Quick Selection or pen tool. Draw a dotted shape on the object you want to remove. When you have selected an object press Shift-F5 a window will open select Content-Aware in Use option. And press OK.








  1. Make Your Shots Black and White


If you want your photograph to look black and white go to Image – adjustments – Black and White or press Alt+Shift+Ctrl+B. A window will open having six coloured sliders, you can move the sliders and adjust your photograph in black and white tones.





  1. Crop Your Photos


The fifth tool in tools panel is Crop tool, press C for the selection of crop tool. Once you have selected the tool click on your photo a grid will create on your picture. You can crop the specific part of photo or can rotate your picture for cropping.


  1. Add a Frame


For adding a boarder or frame around you photograph. Go to Image – Canvas size or press Alt+Ctrl+C. A window will open with the sizes of your canvas.



Increase the height and width size and press OK. The canvas size will increase on all sides of your picture. Draw a rectangle of any colour you want your frame to be. A new layer will create automatically above the layer of your photograph. Drag the layer of rectangle down to your original photo and a frame will create around picture.




  1. Save in the Right File Format


Once you have completed your non-destructive editing save your picture in a right format. Go to file – Save as. A window will open with the formats. You can save in your desired format.



Mostly images are saved in jpeg file format. But can also save in PNG or PDF or TIFF file formats. TIFF is used for bigger sizes of images for printing a Panaflex or a billboard. If you want to edit your image later you can save in PSD and you can reopen your file with the layers for further editing.

Author: Tehrema Khalid

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