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Photoshop CS4 offers an abundance of helpful shortcuts and hidden tricks that allow designers and photographers to get more done in less time. In Photoshop CS4 Power Shortcuts, Michael Ninness reveals hundreds of tips to boost productivity, including the top 20 power shortcuts every Photoshop user must know. He covers strategies for better document and panel management, and offers techniques for becoming quicker and more nimble when using layers, adjustment layers, and layer masks. Exercise files accompany the course.
Download the keyboard shortcut guide from the Exercise Files tab.
The Tools panel in Photoshop can be customized a bit. You can't necessarily rearrange the tool order or anything like that but you can convert it from a single column to a double column. By default now, the Tools panel is shown as a single column configuration. If you click the little double chevron up here, the double triangle, you can convert it back to the legacy mode, the Noah's Ark 2x2 mode if you will. Some people just like familiarity and if you want that, great. I like the vertical single column just because it takes less screen real estate. If you want to float it, you certainly can. Just grab the double line of dots there and rip it out and it's now a floating panel. If it's floating, you may want to convert it back to double and you can move this anywhere you want.
You can move it to another monitor if you wish or what some people will do now is they'll actually dock it to either their main panel dock, either to the left of the panel dock or even to the right of the panel dock, just to put all the interface elements on one side of the screen. For that matter, you can do the same thing for the main panel dock as well. You could decide to move all these panels all the way over here if you prefer everything to be on the left hand side. So it's completely up you just small little tip that you can reposition that Tools panel if you so desire. You can actually even create a little flotilla with the Tools panel. So let's say that I want to use the tool Presets panel and attach it to the floating Tools panel. So if I go back to Tools Presets and open that as a separate panel, let's collapse that down to an icon, you stretch this out, you can see the label again if you stretch the side. Let's collapse that down to an icon and then let's reattach that to the actual side of the Tools panel.
So now we have created this little flotilla, where I can position anywhere on my screen if I want. If I want to make the Tools panel not be so tall, let's take it back to double wide. And now if I want to, this can be set to drawer mode. Perhaps you want to expand the Tool Presets panel and now we have got this floating docked panel, a flotilla. And as I switch from tool to tool, I can see any presets that are assigned to that particular tool all in one floating panel. So a little unconventional but, hey, you can do it if you like it.
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