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Photoshop CS5 for Photographers provides comprehensive Photoshop training targeting the needs of photographers. In this course, author Chris Orwig demonstrates the fundamental skills used to enhance digital photos, including managing and correcting color, sharpening, making selections and adjustments, retouching, and printing from Photoshop. In addition to teaching the techniques that enable photographers to refine and publish their photos, the course includes live-action segments that encourage thinking photographically and shooting with Photoshop’s capabilities in mind. Exercise files are included with the course.
Throughout this chapter we've learned a handful about layers. What I want to do here is introduce a couple of more shortcuts as well as review some of the more important shortcuts that we've learned in regards to layers. Well, here you can see in my Layers panel that I have a background layer of the wall and then I've a couple of other layers. I'm going to turn on this layer of Sophia here, my youngest daughter, and then the top layer, which has a circle in it. Now, the circle is currently covering Sophia. Now if I want to reposition this or move this so that the circle is behind Sophia, I can of course click and drag underneath that, or I can use the shortcut that we've already learned.
It's Command on a Mac, or Ctrl on a PC plus the left bracket key. That will then reposition the layer order, that will move it. Press it one more time and now it's all the way down at the bottom. Press Command or Ctrl and right bracket key, and that will then move that up near at the top. All right! Well, so far so good. We also took a look at another shortcut, and that shortcut was that if we have an image on top of something like a shape, or type, or something like that, we can create what's called a layer clipping mask.
So we turn on the visibility of the top layer, hold down the Option key and hover between these layers. When we see the new icon of the two circles, we click. Now this image right here is just filling in that circle and it's called a layer clipping mask. If ever we want to undo a layer clipping mask all that we need to do is hold down the Option key on a Mac, Alt key on a PC, hover over between these two layers, and click and voila. That has been turned off. All right! Well, there is another shortcut which is kind of helpful, and this shortcut has to deal with when you have one layer like this one here.
And let's say you want to duplicate version of this layer. What you can do is you can either click and drag this to the New Layer icon. Now I have two duplicate layers. We can see those side-by-side. Or-- press the Delete key here. We can use the shortcut. The shortcut is Command+J on a Mac, Ctrl+J on a PC. Think of it as jumping the contents to a new layer. I'll press Command+J or Ctrl+J, and that will jump those contents on to a new layer. I now have a duplicate version of that layer. All right! Well, to delete the layer all we need to do is press Delete or a Backspace.
Well, what about creating new layers? You may remember that we talked about the shortcut to create a new layer, which is Shift+Command+N on a Mac, or Shift+Ctrl+N on a PC. That gives you the ability to create a new layer and to name the layer so I'm going to go ahead and give it a name and then click OK. There's my new layer. Well, there's one more shortcut that I haven't shared with you yet. Here it is. If you press Shift+Option+Command on a Mac, Shift+Alt+Ctrl on a PC, plus the letter N, what it will do is it will create a layer without giving you the ability to name it.
Sometimes this is incredibly helpful especially if you're working quickly and especially if you're working in a way where naming your layers doesn't really matter. All right! Well, now that we've gone over all of these shortcuts you may be thinking, Gosh, all of this is just blurring or blending together. How can I make sense of these different shortcuts? Let's review a few of these one more time. I'm going to go ahead and minimize my interface and zoom in on this. Let's walk through a couple of these shortcut so that we can really learn them.
The first one that I want to highlight is Command or Ctrl+J. This allows you to copy whatever you have on one layer to another. Think of jumping that content up to a new layer. The next shortcut that I want to highlight has to deal with reordering or selecting different layers. You can press Command or Ctrl and a bracket key to reorder a layer. You can press Option or Alt and a bracket key to select or to target a different layer. Next one is that if you hold down the cursor between two layers and you Option+Click or Alt+Click you can create what's called a layer clipping mask.
This next shortcut helps us out in organizing our layers. Remember that what you can do is select multiple layers, and then press Command or Ctrl+G. It will then put those layers inside of what's called a layer group. These layer groups are just really helpful because they help us to have a sense of organization so that ultimately we can access those files and we actually know what is where. The next two shortcuts have to do with creating new layers. We have two options. We can either press Shift+Command or Ctrl+N which will create a new layer and give you that dialog so you can name it or add a blending mode, or we can add Option or Alt to this same shortcut, so that on a Mac it's Shift+Option+Command, on a PC Shift+Alt+Ctrl plus the letter N. That will then create a new layer without that New Layer dialog. All right! Well, here is the last shortcut I want to share with you.
You know occasionally what you'll do is you'll minimize your interface and you can do so by going to the Full Screen View mode by pressing the F key. But let's say in this context we really want to bring back our Layers panel. All that we need to do is to press the F7 key. That will then reopen our Layers panel. Press F7 again, and it will close that Layers panel. All right! Well, at this juncture, we have covered quite a bit of content in regards to layers. Now, if you're feeling overwhelmed, don't be dismayed.
One of the things that will happen with layers is that the more that you use them, the more you'll become familiar with some of these different shortcuts. And also keep in mind that if you don't like shortcuts, don't use them at all. There are always ways to do these same things without shortcuts. And some of the stuff that we're digging into here is really quite advanced. So, again if you're new to layers, don't worry too much about this, but at least you know that these shortcuts exist and perhaps maybe you'll come back to these videos later and watch them again when you have a little bit better understanding of layers, and then perhaps this content will sink in even more.
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