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- Arranging the panels and interface
- Cropping and resizing photos
- Creating new layers
- Refining selections
- Hiding content with a layer mask
- Using adjustment layers
- Correcting color, lighting, and contrast
- Converting a color photo to black and white
- Creating a panorama from multiple photos
- Retouching blemishes and wrinkles
- Making adjustments in Camera Raw
Skill Level Beginner
In this course, we'll be focusing on the Expert edit workspace here in Elements' Editor, but there are other places where you can go to edit your files, and I just wanted to introduce you to those before we get started with the Expert edit workspace. Here in the Editor, there are actually three different editing workspaces. In addition to Expert edit, there is a Guided edit workspace that walks you through step-by-step techniques and the Quick edit workspace for applying quick and easy edits to your photos. Here I have a photo opened in the Expert edit workspace; to switch to the Guided edit workspace with the same open image, I'll click the Guided tab at the top of Elements Editor.
Here in the Guided edit workspace, there is a column on the right that lists specific techniques that I can choose from. If I click on a technique here, that opens instructions for how to perform that technique in the column on the right. And I can just walk through these instructions and use the tools provided in the column. So that's the second editing workspace in the Editor. The third editing workspace here is the Quick edit workspace. I'll click the Quick tab at the top of the Editor, and that jumps me over to the Quick edit workspace with the same open image.
This workspace is well-named because it does offer just some quick editing options. For example, if I wanted to change the exposure of this image, I could click the arrow to the right of the Exposure option and that would reveal a slider that I can drag to the right to increase exposure or to the left to decrease exposure, along with some preset buttons. Clicking one of these buttons automatically applies the corresponding level of exposure to the photo. So those are the three editing workspaces in Elements' Editor. Elements actually is two programs in one; in addition to the Editor, there's also an Organizer.
To move from the Editor into the Organizer, I'll go down to the Taskbar at the bottom of the Editor and I'll click the Organizer button, and that switches me over to the Organizer. Now this course doesn't cover importing media into the Organizer. If you're interested in doing that, you may want to listen to my introductory course about Elements 11, Up and Running with Photoshop Elements 11. There I'll explain how and why to import photos into the Organizer part of Elements. We won't be using the Organizer for the rest of this course, but I do want to show you one thing in the Organizer, and that is that you can actually edit your photos right here in the Organizer. And that's done using the Photo Fix Options.
To access those, I'll go down to the Taskbar and I'll click Instant Fix. That opens these few Photo Fix Options. Now these really are automatic fixes. There are no options or controls or choices to be made. All I have to do is select an image in the Organizer, and then click on one of the Photo Fix Options. For example, I'll click on Contrast; keep your eye on that photo, and you will see a change. What's actually happened is that the Organizer has made a copy of the original photo and it's renamed the copy, adding the word edited at the end of the filename.
It applied the Contrast Fix to this copy, and then it saved the copy for me automatically and put it in a group with the original. If I click this arrow, I can see the original here and the instantly edited copy right next to it. So this isn't a place to do very complex editing, but when you're in a hurry, it's a great place to instantly apply some common photo fixes. From the Organizer, I can go back to the Editor by going down to the Taskbar and clicking the Editor button. And that takes me back to the Editor, where I'll take this image back over into Expert Edit mode by clicking the Expert tab at the top of the Editor.
And here I have access to the full- featured Expert Edit interface, with all the tools, options and techniques that I'll be showing you in the rest of this course.