Photography & Digital Arts


Photoshop CS 2 Tutorial Beginners Guide

These days everyone is getting on the Photoshop bandwagon. And why not Photoshop is an excellent tool to be used for drawing, photo manipulation, or photo fixing. Unfortunately I've noticed that the number and quality of Photoshop tutorials out there hasn't grew as fast as the popularity of the program. In this tutorial I want to cover some of the basic tips I recommend on how to get used to Photoshop and things to take note of.

When learning this Photoshop you are almost assured to be really frustrated at first, but just keep at it. The way to learn this program is by being willing to read through the menus, and be patient, and most of all practice. Although Googling can help a lot of things one can find out by simply playing or picking up a book at the library. This beginning Photoshop tutorial is aimed to Photoshop CS2 users.

The first thing when opening Photoshop for the first time is familiarize yourself with the layout. Look at the tools, mouse over the tool icons and it will pop up to tell you what the tool name is. Then take a quick look over the drop down menus.

I recommend that starting with a project. Bring in a photo from somewhere random such as Google or one of your own. Practice drawing using the paintbrush tool first. Click on it and notice how the menu below the top drop downs change. Don't forget about this area. This is where a lot of the tools can be customized. As you can see for the brush there's a circle and a little arrow pointing down if you have CS2. These little arrows mean that if you click there that area can be expanded. So click it, see how you can change brush sizes and shapes? Very useful. You'll also see an opacity and flow. This changes how the paint comes out, and can also be used with the eraser tool. Both are good to know for subtle effects, especially when painting.

A huge tip is, create lots of layers. Layers help keep your areas separate and if you make a mistake you can easily erase just a portion of what you did. Most people suggest creating a layer right away when opening something up even if you are only duplicating the first layer by dragging it onto the little icon in the bottom of the layers palette which is at the bottom right of your screen as default. If its not there, go up to windows and make sure layers is checked. This is an important area to remember if a tutorial or guide mentions a window you don't have up.

Another thing people like to use a lot are the filters. That in fact in Photoshop CS2 is one of the main menus at the top. Filters apply fun effects to your pictures. There is a filter gallery that lets you see your picture with a preview of what you are doing with it. In order to apply multiple filters you have to apply then go back in again. Filters are only applied to the active layer in Photoshop.

If you bring a picture into Photoshop and it won't let you do anything to it, you may have to change the color mode. This is beneath Image. Color modes are printing settings for professionals RBG is for screen and CMYK is for print. LAB is used temporarily by Photoshop when switching between the two color modes. If something isn't working I usually work in RBG, which seems to allow more choices.

Photoshop also handles rotation and stretching objects odd. You have to go up to Edit > Transform or Free Transform. Otherwise the changes you make will apply to the entire canvas.

In order to change colors your using double click on the little top color box in the left menu. This will bring up a color box you can play in and change colors or then use the dropper tool by mousing over something in your picture and "picking up" the color out of it.

A lot of the rest of the stuff is pretty self-explanatory. The main thing is to not be afraid to click, and if you have gotten somewhere good SAVE ANOTHER VERSION. That way before you do something and if it doesn't work you haven't lost all your work you can just reopen the old version.

So here's a low down version of the basics you need to start using Photoshop and having tons of fun with it. The main thing is to just get ideas and play that way you slowly expand your knowledge of the tools. Although these are by far the most often used, and when used together can create stunning effects.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Subscribe Now