Woah, it has been a while since our last Photoshop Basics Tutorial! If you need a refresher on the Layers series, check out part 1 (Introduction to Layers) and part 2 (Touring the Layers Panel) by clicking on the links.
Part 3 of the Layers series for beginners is all about the Background layer.
First things first, open up an image in your Adobe Photoshop.
This is a hand-drawn-then-digitised vector of a hydrangea flower that I was working on for an art print.
Now, take a look at the Layers Panel. It should only contain one layer (your image) and the layer has been automatically named Background by the programme.
Photoshop names the bottommost layer – which tends to be the first thing you opened up, be it an empty canvas or an image – Background as it serves as the new document’s background. A document can only have one Background layer and every additional new layer that is added will appear above the Background layer.
As the Background layer is intended to be the base of your document, there are a few things you are prevented from doing with it.
Welcome to part 2 of the Layers series!
The first tutorial was an introduction to layers. Today, we will be taking a closer look at the Layers Panel.
The Layers Panel is the headquarters of all things layers-related and it is the most frequently-used panel in Adobe Photoshop. The Layers Panel houses all the layers, layer groups, and layer effects of your document.
By default, the Layers Panel should automatically be displayed and located at the lower right of your screen every time Photoshop is launched. If it is not, go to Window > Layers or press F7 to open up the panel.
First of all, open up an image in Photoshop. Pictured here is a flattened pdf of our Tranquility art print. Right off the bat, you will be able to notice that your image is added to the Layers Panel, and it is called “Background“.
Upon closer observation, you will also be able to see that the Layers Panel is separated into six sections. Here is an overview of what you can do in the Layers Panel.
Time for another lesson in the Photoshop Basics series! If you are very new to Adobe Photoshop, you may not understand the function of layers.
What are layers, and why do we need to use layers?
Layers are the most important function of Photoshop. They are the building blocks to your work. You can add, delete, name, rename, move, adjust, mask, show, hide, blend, merge, lock, unlock, group, ungroup, and add cool effects or change the opacity of layers. If that long sentence just gave you a “huh?” expression on your face, don’t worry! Layers are not complicated to understand and master.
The easiest way to understand layers is by first doing something in Photoshop without layers. So let’s get started.
Step 1: Open a new document.
Go to File > New. A dialog box will pop up. You can enter any width or height or resolution. The Background Contents option should be set to white. I am just using my last-applied settings (that was for editing some pictures for Instagram). Click Ok.
“How do you digitise your hand-lettering?” is one of the frequently asked questions at our booth and also via email and Instagram direct messaging.
There are actually a lot of different ways to digitise anything, so I am going to teach you the simplest and most effective method that I use the most. Once you get the hang of it, you will be able to digitise your hand-lettering in minutes! The end result is a vector which means you will be able to scale your work to any size without losing image quality. Yay!
For this tutorial, you need your completed piece, a scanner or camera, Adobe Photoshop and Adobe Illustrator. You can also use any photo-editing software in replacement of Photoshop, however I still find Photoshop the best for prepping anything that is about to be worked on in Illustrator.
After my first Adobe Photoshop tutorial post, we were surprised to receive emails from readers requesting for a series of Photoshop tutorials for beginners. I wasn’t really sure where to begin for this series, but I noticed a few requests pertaining to resizing of images for Instagram. So yes, your request is my command!
Resizing images in Photoshop is really easy. I am going to use Instagram photo dimensions as an example in this post, but the steps to resize images for anything is basically the same.
If you were wondering how to resize an artwork to fit into Society6’s dimensions for certain products, you would find this tutorial useful as well! There are other steps that I use to resize and reconstruct honey&gazelle’s designs for Society6, but that would be a tutorial for another day (if anyone is even interested).
Let’s get started with this basic resizing tutorial!
My friends are always asking me to teach them some tips and tricks in Adobe Photoshop and/or Adobe Illustrator. Most recently, a friend asked about creating shapes and texts with images within them. I am not the greatest teacher around by miles, but I thought I would share a simple tutorial on how to create a clipping mask in Photoshop.
This technique allows you to fill a layer in Photoshop with another layer to create interesting masking effects, e.g. an image showing through text or silhouettes of images within another image. The possiblities are endless; you can get super creative and make numerous effects for your graphics.
You really only need two layers. The bottom layer becomes the masking agent in your Photoshop file.
Please note: I am assuming that you have knowledge of the basic tools of Photoshop such as Type, Move, and Crop. You should also know what are layers and how to use layers, as well as how to open files. If you don’t know these things and would like a beginners guide to Photoshop or Illustrator, do let me know!