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In Painter 11 Essential Training, John Derry, one of the original Painter authors, demonstrates basic and advanced creative techniques that can get beginners up and running. He also shows old hands the new features that can get a creative vision out of the head and onto the canvas. John demonstrates how to establish an easy workflow in Painter by using a Wacom tablet, and he explains how to create, edit, and publish projects. Exercise files accompany the course.
Download the Painter/Photoshop Consistent Color Management PDF and the Brush Troubleshooting Checklist PDF from the Exercise Files tab.
Another way to do some customization in Painter is with keyboard shortcuts, and if you are like me, I'm a very heavy keyboard shortcut user. I find it to be a very efficient way to navigate around the interface without that extra interface time of your going up, finding a particular command within a menu and just you start using a lot of that time up. It becomes a little less than productive. So keyboard shortcuts are great productivity enhancer and for a lot of people that have used Photoshop, as I have, there is a bunch of keyboard commands over there that I already know.
I find it much easier to take keyboard shortcuts I already know from another application and apply them, in this case, to Painter. So we'll open up our Preferences, which is under the Corel Painter 11 menu on Mac and under the Edit menu in Windows, and right here we see Customize Keys. So let's open this up and I specifically want to go to Layers. So I pop that open, and this gives me a list of all of the various keyboard shortcuts that are currently assigned, and I'm also seeing places where it's not.
Now in Photoshop, moving up and down in the layers works very well with the combination of the Command or Ctrl key plus the left and right bracket keys to move up singly, up and down in a layer stack. And if I apply the Shift key as well, that lets me move all the way up or all the way down in a stack, and I just find that to be a very quick navigational way to move layers around. So I want to do the same thing here. So let's start with Move Down One Layer. You will see that's highlighted now. So I can apply the command, which is Command or Ctrl and the Left bracket key, and you will see it says in this case this key combination is already in use by the Set Shape Attributes Command.
Accepting the change will remove the shortcut from Set Shape Attributes. You know what? I didn't even know that Set Shape Attributes had a shortcut, and I really don't care about it. So I'm going to accept it. It's just that I'm getting rid of a keyboard command I never use and I'm putting it in its place a highly useful keyboard shortcut that I use all the time. Now let's go to Move Up One Layer and that's going to be the Command or Ctrl and the Right bracket key. See once again, here it's already in use by the Duplicate Command.
I have never use that command. I don't care about it. So I'm going to go ahead and remove it. Let's go to Move to Top, and that's going to be Shift+Command+Right bracket and Shift+Ctrl+Right bracket. So that one wasn't in use, goody-goody. Let's go to Move to Bottom that's going to be the same combination with the Left bracket key. So now I have got those keyboard shortcuts in place and if we say okay, and go to Layers, sure enough there are my commands. So that I can now move layers in a Photoshop style using the keyboard.
So keyboard shortcuts are a great way to reassign functions. I have even found them useful for little work around so you have to do. Here is one, the Color palette automatically shows up with the sliders adjusted to RGB. I don't really think all that much in RGB color. I think in the HSV colors that's what I would prefer to be there. But unfortunately, Painter does not remember this. It's not a sticky command. Next time I come into Painter, when it starts up, it's faithfully going to come back up with RGB showing again.
And it just becomes -- it's a little nit, but it's something that's annoying, and that every time I launch Painter, I have to go through this and switch this over HSV. And again, it's more navigation time and it bugs me. So I do have a little fix for that. Once again keyboard shortcuts comes into play. So I'm going to go back to Customize Keys and you will see Application menus are everything that's up here on the menu bar, but I can go in, and I can get things off of palette menus, the tools and then there is even something even more arcane stuff that's in Other.
I am going to go to the palette menus, I'm going to go to the Colors, and I'm going to go right here to Displays as RGB. I'm going to take that and I'm just going to put Option+C, which wasn't in use for anything, and now I can say OK. Now when I come in, you can see here how I use Option+C and watch up here. See, how it's toggling back and forth. So when I launch Painter now, all I have to think about doing, as I quickly grab the keyboard shortcut and switch at HSV, and I'm done. If I do want to go to RGB, it also prevents me from going up here and having to do this, just to have that keyboard command mapped.
I tried to do it logically, C for Color and Option+C, so it's not one of the main ones you'd use like Command+C or Ctrl+C, which would be to Copy. Option+C is kind of out there and not use. So you could start to develop your own little sort of rule set that you want to apply to various keyboard commands, to just really create a lot of enhancement in all of the ways that you take advantage of the keyboard. So, don't overlook keyboard shortcuts, they are great way to swap out functionality. If you don't use it for functionality, you do want to use or just overwrite things that you know, you are never going to use which functionality or even do little fixes, like I did here in the Colors palette.
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