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Photoshop CS6 One-on-One: Fundamentals is a concise and focused introduction to the key features in Photoshop, presented by long-time lynda.com author and Adobe veteran Deke McClelland. This course covers the image editing process from the very beginning and progresses through the concepts and techniques that every photographer or graphic designer should know. Deke explains digital imaging fundamentals, such as resolution vs. size and the effects of downsampling. He explains how to use layers to edit an image nondestructively and organize those edits in an easy-to-read way, and introduces techniques such as cropping, adjusting brightness and contrast, correcting and changing color, and retouching and healing images. These lessons distill the vast assortment of tools and options to a refined set of skills that will get you working inside Photoshop with confidence.
Now there is a fair amount going on inside this composition. We have a total of eight layers. We'll be applying some blend modes as well as some layer effects, we will even employ a couple of clipping masks, which is my way of saying, I don't expect you to understand every single little bit of minutia, nor is it important that you do understand it at this point in the game. I just want you to have a feel for how layered compositions work inside Photoshop and I want you to leave this chapter with a sense of accomplishment. We're going to start things off by combining this image, which is called Big swirls.tif and combining it with this red and yellow artwork, which I am calling Paper art.tif.
They're both found inside the 04-layers folder. Now one way to combine two images together is to just copy and paste. And let me show you what that looks like. We'll start inside the Big swirls image. Go up to the Select menu and choose the All command, which you can also access by pressing Ctrl+A or Command+A on the Mac, which is a fairly common keyboard shortcut. Then I'll go up to the Edit menu and choose the Copy command, which has the familiar shortcut of Ctrl+C on the PC or Command+C on the Mac. Now that we have the image in the pasteboard, I'll switch over to the Paper art image and then I'll go up to the Edit menu, and I'll choose the Paste command, which you can get by pressing Ctrl+V or Command+V on the Mac.
And the image comes in on an independent layer as you can see over here inside the Layers panel. So Photoshop always creates a new layer when you combine two or more images together. Now obviously the layer is too big to suit its new home, so we need to reduce its size and we can do that by scaling it. I'm going to back out a little here by pressing Ctrl+- or Command+- on the Mac, and then I'll go up to the Edit menu, which is where you will find your Scaling Options. You can choose Transform to bring up a list of the various transformations available inside Photoshop and then choose the Scale command.
But I'd like you get in the habit of choosing this next command up, which is Free Transform. It allows you to apply any of Photoshop's transformation functions, including Scaling, and it has a keyboard shortcut of Ctrl+T or Command+T on the Mac, the T being for Transform. So now, I'll go ahead and choose the command and I end up with this bounding box surrounded by these corners and side handles. I can drag any of these handles in order to scale the layer like so. And you have one Undo by the way.
You can press Ctrl+T or Command+T one time while you're working inside the Free Transform mode. If things go too haywire for you, then just go ahead and press the Escape key in order to escape out. Anyway, things are fine for me. I'm going to go ahead and drag this corner handle here. Notice that you can scale the layer non- proportionally as you see me doing now. If you want to scale it proportionally, you press and hold the Shift key as you drag a corner handle. Now if you take a look up here in the Options Bar, you'll see that I so far have scaled my layer by 67%.
Your results will vary of course. And notice that both the Width and Height values read 67%, because after all I have the Shift key down and I applied a Proportional scale. However, I want to scale this artwork non-proportionally and I just happened to know the values I want to enter. If you click on a letter such as the W there for width, then you'll select the entire value, and I'm going to dial in a value of 70%. Then I'll press the Tab key to advance to the H value for Height and I'll change it to 59% and then I will press the Enter key in order to accept that value.
Then to accept your transformation, you press the Enter key again, that would be the Return key on the Mac, and you have now scaled your artwork. All right, I'm going to zoom back in. Now the problem at this point is that my new layer is off center. You can move a layer by switching over to the Move tool, which you can get by pressing the V key, and that's a useful keyboard shortcut to bear in mind. Notice that the cursor looks like a little arrow. Well, just some back story here. If you wanted to switch to the Arrow tool, which serves a totally different purpose, it allows you to select the path outlines, you press the A key for Arrow, which makes sense, or you can think of the V key as an upside down arrow, which is why it's a keyboard shortcut for the Move tool.
And then I could drag this layer wherever I like and I see this little Heads Up Display also known as a HUD, which is telling me the coordinate position of my artwork measured from the upper left-hand corner of the image. You might find that helpful or perhaps not. What I really want to do is absolutely align this artwork. Notice that we have these Alignment options that are available to me now up in the Options Bar. And the options in the Options Bar change according to the selected tool. But I can't get to them currently because they're dimmed. Well, here's what you do.
You go up to the Select menu and once again, choose the All command to select the entire image. And now, you have access to the Alignment options. I'll click on the Align Vertical Centers icon, the second one in, to align the layer vertically inside of the artwork, and then I'll go to that fifth icon, Align Horizontal Centers to align the layer horizontally. Now I can deselect the image by going up to the Select menu and choosing the Deselect command, which also has a handy keyboard shortcut of Ctrl+D or Command+D on the Mac.
And that's how you add, scale and align a new layer here inside Photoshop.
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