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Photoshop has become an indispensible tool for photographers, designers, and all other creative professionals, as well as students. Photoshop CS4 Essential Training teaches a broad spectrum of core skills that are common to many creative fields: working with layers and selections; adjusting, manipulating, and retouching photos; painting; adding text; automating; preparing files for output; and more. Instructor Jan Kabili demonstrates established techniques as well as those made possible by some of the new features unique to Photoshop CS4. This course is indispensable to those who are new to the application, just learning this version, or expanding their skills. Example files accompany the course.
One of the things you'll find yourself doing all the time particularly when you're painting is using the Fill command. You can fill an entire layer with color. You can fill a selection with color. You can even fill an area on a mask with gray, black or white. And by a mask I mean a layer mask or the mask on an adjustment layer or even the mask on a smart filter. Let's say that I want to select one of these balloons and fill it with a different color. I am going to get my Quick Selection tool here and I'm going to click-and-drag over the green balloon.
To fill this balloon, I'll go up to the Edit menu and that's where I'll find the Fill command. In the Fill dialog box, you can choose to fill with Foreground Color, which means whatever color is here in the foreground color box in the toolbox, or you can choose to fill with the Background Color, which is the color that's in the background color box in the toolbox. If you've forgotten to choose a color before you open the Fill dialog, you can go to Color and you can choose your own color from the color picker. You also can choose to fill with black, white or gray and these other options, but these aren't used very often.
So I am going to choose Foreground Color and I'll click OK and that fills my selection with this solid color. Filling with the foreground color is something you do so often that it's worth remembering the shortcut for that and that's what I'll show you next. I am going to press Command+D on a Mac, Ctrl+D on a PC to deselect that balloon, and I'm going to select this purple balloon with my Quick Selection tool. I am holding the Option key on a Mac, the Alt key on a PC to run over the sky to eliminate that from my selection.
Now with this purple balloon selected, I am going to fill with the foreground color. Let me switch these colors so that orange is now my foreground color. I did that by clicking this double pointed arrow or pressing X on the keyboard. Now here is the shortcut for filling with the foreground color. On a Mac, you'll hold down the Option key and press the Delete key. On a PC you'll hold down the Alt key as you press the Backspace key. I am going to do just that. Option+Delete on my Mac and I filled that selection with the orange that's in the foreground color box.
I'll press Command+D on my Mac, Ctrl+D on a PC to deselect again, and I want to show you one more thing. Filling with the solid color gives a graphic look like this. But what if you want to fill in a way that retains the shading in the underlying image. For that you have to go back to the Fill dialog box. So for example, with the Quick Selection tool, I'm going to select this yellow balloon then I'll go up to Edit, and I'll go down to Fill. Here, I am going to choose my own color by going to the Use menu, clicking Color to open the Color Picker and I'll just accept this blue that's already here, and click OK.
Now here is the trick. You have to go to the Blending Mode menu and from there, go down and choose Color. You have seen blending modes elsewhere in Photoshop. There are layers blending modes in the Layers panel for blending the colors of one layer with colors on the layers below. There are also blending modes in the Brush Tool Options bar to use when you're painting. And now you see blending modes a third time when you're filling with color. So if I choose this blend mode Color and I click OK, my balloon fills with the selected color but it retains the underlying shading in the balloon.
Command+D or Ctrl+D, you can see that I have a highlight here and I have a little bit of dark area here, and that looks different then these plain solid color fills. So that's all there is to filling. You use it not only to fill with color but also when you're feeling a mask with black white or gray. So try to remember where the Fill command is under the Edit menu, and when you are ready to fill with the foreground color, remember the shortcut Option+Delete on a Mac, or Alt+Backspace on a PC.
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