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Photoshop is the world’s most powerful image editor, and it’s arguably the most complex, as well. Fortunately, nobody knows the program like award-winning book and video author Deke McClelland. Join Deke as he explores such indispensable Photoshop features as resolution, cropping, color correction, retouching, and layers. Gain expertise with real-world projects that make sense. Exercise files accompany the course.
Download Deke's free dekeKeys and color settings from the Exercise Files tab.
In this exercise, I'm going to have you load up some custom keyboard shortcuts that I've created for you. And these shortcuts are known as dekeKeys. I've been providing them for years and years now, only I changed them. I modified them quite a bit for CS5 and my rationale is this. First of all, I want you and I to be in the same page. So we should have the same keyboard shortcuts as we work through this series. But also, as you become more experienced inside of Photoshop, I want you to be able to move through the program very fluidly without having to hunt for a lot of different commands.
In that way, you can expand your creative energies on the task at hand. Now the reason I modified the keyboard shortcuts this time around, I used to be pretty careful about not stepping on any keyboard shortcuts that Adobe had already assigned inside of Photoshop. This time I decided to pick a few keyboard shortcuts that I don't think are very useful that Adobe has pre- assigned and assigned them elsewhere. So I've actually done some juggling of the keyboard shortcuts. And to great effect I think, as I'll explain to you.
You can always send them back though if you disagree with me later, so it's very easy to do. So here's what I want you to do. If you're looking at your exercise_ files folder, go into the 00_setup folder, therein you'll find a subfolder called dekekeysPsCS51on1, go ahead and double-click on it, and you'll see three files, two HTML files, we'll come back to those, and this .kys file. This is the one that we are going to open up inside of Photoshop. It's called dekekeysPsCS51on1.kys. It is the keyboard shortcuts file. Now if you can see Photoshop in the background with that gray application frame covering up everything, then you can just do a drag and drop, but it only works this way on the Mac if you have the application frame turned on under the Window menu.
But anyway, here's what you do you grab the keyboard shortcuts and you just drop them in there, so just do a drag and drop and that will copy the keyboard over. Another way to work is to just double- click on the file, but if you double-click on the file it could open in Premiere, if you have that application installed. So it's probably not a good idea to just double-click, better, just to make sure it opens up inside of Photoshop, is to right-click on the file and then choose the Open with command. And you may see a list of applications and you could just choose Photoshop, or if it brings up a dialog box, try to find Photoshop in here, it's very easy for me to find.
It's my one and only recommended program. You might have to click this down pointing arrow head to see other programs, whatever, and then you would just go ahead and click OK, after you specify that Photoshop gets to open the file. Now you might get a warning at this point that says, hey, do you want to save the changes to your previous keyboard shortcuts, and then you would say yes, and update your changes, so that you don't lose anything while you open up mine. However, if you've never changed a keyboard shortcut before you won't see anything, it's as if Photoshop just totally ignored you. But you can confirm that something happened by going over to the File menu and check out this Place commanded.
It's dimmed, but you should see a keyboard shortcut of Control+Shift+Alt+D. And I read the shortcuts in the opposite order that they appear in your menus, forgive me for that, but Adobe's wrong, is basically what it comes down to. Everybody out there says Control or Command first, Shift second, and Alt or Option third, but anyway, that's the standard convention. But they appear backwards here. That's okay. So it's Ctrl+Shift+Alt+D or Command+ Shift+Option+D on the Mac, as long as you see that keyboard shortcut, you've loaded dekeKeys. Now we need to go ahead and name the keyboard shortcuts.
So go up to the Edit menu and choose the Keyboard Shortcuts Command, which has its own shortcut. This is assigned by Adobe, Ctrl+Shift+Alt +K or Command+Shift+Option+K on the Mac. And by the way, when you're pressing keyboard shortcuts, you press all those keys at the same time, but you go ahead and press the modifier keys typically first, so you'd mash your fist down there on Ctrl+Shift+Alt, and then hit K to bring up keyboard shortcuts or Command+Shift+Option, then K on the Mac. But you basically want to have all keys down simultaneously. Then notice up here inside the keyboard shortcuts dialog box that we have set, set to Photoshop defaults modified, or it may say your keyboard shortcuts modified, whatever it says, you want to click on this little floppy disk icon, the small one, which does the Save As, and that's going to bring up this dialog box right here.
By default, Photoshop is going to put you inside of a Keyboard Shortcuts folder that's nested several folders deep inside of your system. That's great. That's where you want it. Now let's go ahead and name this guy, and I'm going to rename this file dekeKeys, but you can do as you want, you can call them anything you want. PsCS51on1, and there it is, and we're good to go. Click Save, and now you can see that that's the name of your set, and you can take a look at your keyboard shortcuts. You can riff on them. You can change them.
You can do whatever you like. You can even come over here and click on the Summarize button, which will go ahead and save out an HTML file that lists all your keyboard shortcuts if you like, but you don't have to, because I have already gone and done it for you. And I've done something a little better incidentally, so I'll click OK in order to accept those changes. And now if we switch back to that folder, you'll see those two HTML documents. One ends in Mac, and the other ends in Windows. So we've got the Macintosh keyboard shortcuts in one file, and the Window shortcuts in another file.
I've already open those up inside of my Web browser right here, and that brings up in my case, Firefox, and I'm looking at the contents of both of these HTML document. So right now what I have open in front of me is the Macintosh keystrokes, and the other file right there is the Windows keystrokes. So when you first open the file, you'll see it that it says dekeKeys for Photoshop CS5 All keyboard shortcuts are listed in the document. My revised keyboard shortcuts are in red, and if you scroll down you'll see that the first revised keyboard shortcut is indeed Control+Shift+Alt+D or Command+Shift+Option+D for the Place command.
Now something I want you to see, those of you who are a little bit familiar with Photoshop know a thing or two about the program, that one of the things I'm really proud of here is that I've given the main Adjustment layers keyboard shortcuts. So not only can you press Ctrl+L or Command+L on the Mac to bring up the static levels command or Ctrl or Command+M for Curves or Ctrl or Command+U for Hue/Saturation, longtime old -school keyboard shortcuts, but if you just throw Shift into the mix now, you'll create an Adjustment layer as well.
Now that does mean I stole the keyboard shortcut from another command, so if we were to go back to Photoshop, and I went to the Image menu, you'd see that Auto Tone no longer has a keyboard shortcut of Ctrl+Shift+L or Command+Shift+L on the Mac. Now I don't think it deserves a keyboard shortcut. I don't know when the last time I actually used that command was. I teach it a lot, but I don't use it on a regular basis. And I doubt you will either. It's an interesting learning tool that's about it. Now if you disagree, if you use that command all the time and you miss that keyboard shortcut, you can always reassign it by going to the Edit menu, choosing the Keyboard Shortcuts command, then you would just have to twirl open the Image menu by clicking on the triangle, just to the left of the word Image.
And you're going to have to go down the list quite a bit. You have to get beyond the Color Adjustments, and you'll see Auto Tone right there, click in its shortcut, and you could re-establish Ctrl+Shift+L or Command+Shift+L on the Mac. Now it's going to tell you that that's already in use for New Adjustment Layer > Levels. However, if you just go ahead and accept this modification by clicking on the Accept button, then you'll override my keyboard shortcut. Totally up to you. The other thing you can do is you can go back to Photoshop Defaults if you like. You can just switch back to the way Photoshop was when it was first installed.
This is telling me, hey, did you want to save your changes, because I just made a change there, to the Auto Tone command? And I am going to say, No, but you could say Yes or anything you want to at that point, and that's going to reestablish all of your keyboard shortcuts once again. I'm going to Cancel out, because I am happy with dekeKeys. I find them to be very helpful. In the next exercise, just for Macintosh people, I'm going to show you Mac folks how to change some system level keyboard shortcuts, so that they don't conflict with Photoshop.
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