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The course begins with a look at how to import your photos into Elements, and then dives right into editing photos with the Photo Fix, Quick Edit, and Guided Edit workspaces. Jan also introduces the Expert Edit workspace, which provides tools for making selections, retouching, compositing, adding text, and more. Finally, the course reviews the Elements 11 sharing features, including crafting photo creations like greeting cards, emailing photos, and sharing photos on Facebook.
- What is Elements?
- Working with catalogs
- Importing photos from your computer, camera, or iPhoto
- Applying one-click photo adjustments in the Organizer
- Using Quick Edit and Guided Edit in the Editor
- Retouching with the Healing Brush tools
- Correcting skin tones
- Editing automatically with actions
- Organizing photos by people, places, or events
- Sharing photos by email and on Facebook
Skill Level Beginner
Elements is two programs rolled into one. There is an Organizer for managing your photos and video clips and the Editor for correcting and enhancing your photos. Each of these two main components has multiple workspaces for performing different tasks. In this movie I'll introduce those workspaces and show you how to move from one to the other. I started by launching Elements here in Windows by clicking the shortcut key on my desktop and that opened this screen called the Welcome Screen. If you're on a Mac go to your Applications folder to your Adobe Photoshop Elements 11 folder, and there click on the shortcut for Adobe Photoshop Elements 11.
You may want to put that icon in your dock for quicker access later. The main purpose of the Welcome Screen is to give you quick access to either the Organizer or the Editor. If you'd rather not see the welcome screen when you first launch the program, you can click this gear icon and here change the On Start Always Launch menu from Welcome Screen to either Organizer or Photo Editor. I'll just leave that at Welcome Screen for now and I'll click Done. I often do want to go to the Organizer in order to view my photos and find the photos that I want to open up for editing into the Editor.
So I'll click on the big Organizer button here in the welcome screen. This is the Organizer opened to one of its views, the Media view. If you've already brought photos into an Organizer catalog as I have here in this catalog of my personal photos, you'll see thumbnail sized copies of each photo in this grid. Right now the organizer is showing me all the media files in this catalog as it says right here. If I want to see just the files in a particular folder I can go over to the My Folders panel on the left and click on a folder.
If I want to go back to see all the media files in this catalog I'll go to this arrow labeled All Media and click that. If I scroll down you can see that I have some thumbnails in this catalog that are not photos. These thumbnails represent audio files. If you don't want to see audio files like this, you can go up to the View menu and down to Media Types and uncheck Audio files or any of these other file types that Elements Organizer supports, which includes not only photos and audio files but video files, PDF files, and special Elements projects.
So I'm going to disable Audio and those audio thumbnails disappear from the catalog, although the audio clips are still in my catalog. The main function of the Organizer is to help you manage your photos, but you can also do some basic photo editing from right here in the Organizer. So if you're in a hurry or you're working with snapshots and you just want to fix them a bit, go down to Task pane at the bottom of the Organizer, which is this bar here and over on the right side you'll see an Instant Fix icon. Click that to open the Photo Fix Options right in the organizer and you can select one or more photos and click one of these to automatically apply an instant photo fix.
But most of the time when you're editing photos, you'll want to take them into the Editor. To do that I'll select one or more photos here in the Organizer. I'll click on this one and then I'll hold down the Ctrl key on the PC or the Command key on the Mac and I'll click on this one too, so both are selected. Now to get those into the Editor, I'll go down to the Task pane and I'll click the Editor button. That will launch the Editor which is actually a separate application, so it may take a second to launch. If your Editor window isn't taking up your entire screen you can maximize it by clicking the Maximize button here on Windows or the green button at the top-left of your Mac screen.
There are three edit workspaces. The Quick Edit workspace, the Guided Edit workspace, Expert Edit workspace. The first time that the Editor opens it will open to the Quick Edit workspace. In the future it will open to whichever of these workspaces you've last used. We'll be looking at each of these workspaces in depth in this course. So I won't spend a lot of time on them here other than to say that the Quick edit workspace offers the same kinds of controls that we saw in the Photo Fix area of the Organizer, except you get a little more control here. So if I were to click the arrow to the right of the Exposure controls I get a slider and some preview buttons.
Now let's say that I decide I want to do more editing to this photo. So I want to take it into one of these other workspaces. To move these photos into the Guided Edit workspace for example I'll just click Guided here. In the Guided Edit workspace there are a number of different techniques and tools with step-by-step instructions. And if I wanted to take these photos into the full-featured Expert Edit workspace, then I would click the Expert button at the top of the Editor, and the two files are opened in the document window here. Now let's say I'm all done editing.
I've saved the files if I need to and I'm ready to go back to the Organizer, perhaps to do some photo management tasks or to find some other photos to open into the Editor. I'm going to close these photos. I'll do that by going to the File menu and I'll choose Close All. I don't want to save these right now. Now to get back to the Organizer from the Editor, I can go to the Editor's task pane at the bottom of the screen, and there is an Organizer button. I'll click the Organizer button and that switches me back to the Organizer.
Here I can see all my photo thumbnails again. Now there is one more place you might want to go and that is you might want to go back to the Welcome Screen. To do that from either the Organizer or the Editor go up to the Help menu and choose Welcome Screen, and that opens the Welcome Screen again. This overview of Elements' main components should give you a general sense of what each part of this program is for and how to move from one part to the other. We'll be looking at each workspace in the Editor and the Organizer in more depth as the course moves on.