Getting Started with Corel Paint Shop Pro Photo X2
In Getting Started with Corel Paint Shop Pro Photo X2, David Rivers shows novices and pros alike how they can use this powerful application to organize, edit, and share digital photos. He teaches easy ways to perform common tasks, such as repairing red-eye, removing scratches, and adjusting lighting, color, and tone. David also demonstrates how to add text, borders, effects, and decorative frames to photos, and how to effectively organize photos and share them with friends, family, and clients. The training also covers the key new features in Paint Shop Pro Photo X2, including the new Express Lab and HDR Photo Merge. Exercise files accompany the training videos.
Download the free exercise files from the Exercise Files tab.
Exploring the user interface
- Hi, and welcome to Corel Paint Shop Pro Photo X2, I'm David Rivers. This latest version of Paint Shop Pro Photo is loaded with new and enhanced features, and as we spend some time getting started with the software here, we'll be making sure to take a look at many of them. We'll begin by exploring the user interface, so let's get started. Now, you can see I've already loaded Corel Paint Shop Pro Photo X2, its shown right up here in what we call the title bar at the very top of the screen. So, that's the application I'm working in.
And over to the far right on the title bar, like in the other title bar, we've got the minimize, restore, and the close button up here that will take you right out of the application. We'll save that for much later on. Now, this may be a bit of a review for some but there are some new features I want to talk to you about as well. Right below the title bar we've got the menu bar. Now the menu bar, you can see has menu headings like File, Edit, View, all the way over to Help at the far right hand side. Each of these headings, when you click on them shows a menu, so if I click File I see the File menu.
So, what I'm going to get are a number of commands related to working with files like creating a new file, opening an existing file. There's close, now notice that close is not accessible, it's dimmed out, that's because I haven't opened anything, I haven't started any work yet. There's nothing for me to close. So, this command, this particular command is not available to me. A little further down, you can see some save options, that's related to working with files. There's a Delete, there's an E-mail option, and it has a little white arrow next to it and you can see that means there's a sub-menu, so there's some other hidden treasures there under E-mail, like emailing the active image, all open images, or selected items.
There's Print, right now nothing to print, so it's dimmed out, and all kinds of other file-related commands. Now, as I move up to the Edit menu you can see Edit commands, like Undo, Redo. There's Cut, Copy, and Pasting. Under the View menu, you can see here's where I set the zoom levels. We've got something called Express Lab that we'll look at later on. I've also got a couple of items that have check marks next to them, like Guides, for example. Now when we open up an image, we'll see Guides that will help us line things up, if we wanted to work with, let's say, objects and text in an image, having the Guides on is going to be very useful.
And we know that they're turned on by this little check mark. So if we look a little further down the View menu, you can see we've got Use Graphite Workspace Theme. This is brand new to version X2 of Coral Paint Shop Pro Photo. The Graphite Workspace Theme is what you're looking at over here, so we've got all of these different grays, so it's a different color scheme. And the Workspace Theme, that shows up by default in this new version, is what you see here, the Graphite Workspace Theme. Obviously, if we wanted to turn that off and go back to the way we're used to working, you simply come in here where we see the check mark, and click on it.
So, you can see what happens, I've gone back now to the previous color scheme, and this might be more familiar to you folks who've used previous versions of Coral Paint Shop Pro Photo. Now, to set that back, let's go back to the view menu. If we go down to Use Graphite Workspace Theme, you can see the check mark's gone, but by clicking on it we set it back to that new theme, which is kind of cool looking. So, we're going to leave it like this as we continue on through this title. Now, just below the Menu bar, underneath File, Edit, View, et cetera, is what we call our standard tool bar.
Now, the standard tool bar is going to have a number of shortcut commands that we saw in some of those menus. For example, this first one I'm hovering over is the New button, now we saw that under File. So, it's a little bit quicker if I want to start something new by clicking this button, rather than having to go up to File and then click on New. Of course, there are keyboard shortcuts as well. CTRL + N means holding down the Control key on the keyboard and pressing the letter N, as in new, will do the exact same thing. Then, I've got the Open button. You can see here I've got an Organizer button, a Scan Image button, there's Save and Save As, these come from the File menu.
There's the Print button as well, that also comes from the File menu. Undo, Redo, some of those come from the Edit menu. Then we get into resizing, you can see rotating as well over here. Those fall under the Image menu, so we get a number of more commonly-used commands showing up on the standard tool bar that come from the various menus up top. Now, we can totally customize this tool bar if there are certain buttons here that we don't use, we can remove them, if there are others we'd like to see there, we can put them there.
So, that's something you need to know in the back of your mind, this is totally customizable. One part that's customizable, too, is where the tool bar shows up. Right now you see it underneath the menu bar, and that's by default, but if I go way over to the left there's a little separator here, and when I hover over it, I see the four-sided arrow. That means I can click and hold my mouse button down, and just drag it across the screen to float that or place it somewhere else on my screen. You can see as I move it over here, it kind of docks vertically next to my tools, a tool bar that we'll talk about in a moment.
I can go back up to this little divider here and drag it over and up if I wanted to. Now it shows up across the top of my image window, this is the area where we work on our images. If I want to put it back, I simply click and drag it back. I can move it across and over, and I'm going to move it up and let go. So, you saw how it was kind of snapping into position, if you don't like that snapping action, no problem. When you go to move it, hold down your Control key on the keyboard, which I'm doing now. And as you click and drag, you'll see, it's not actually going to snap into position.
So, you can get close to where you want to go, move it into position, release your mouse button, and you got it right back where we started. Next to the standard tool bar, you see this Yahoo symbol over here. That's the logo for Yahoo, and we do have a Yahoo tool bar. So, it's built right into Paint Shop Pro. I can move that one around as well by clicking and dragging, I'm going to leave it up there. You can see how it snapped into position, so holding Control would have been good. Same thing here, snaps into position underneath, and there's where I want it to go.
Now, if this is something you don't use, if there are any tool bars you never use, you can turn these on and off, and we've already seen some options from the View menu. Let's go back now, if I click on View, and this time go down to Toolbars. You'll see the toolbars that are currently turned on have check marks, the Standard toolbar, there's a Status toolbar down at the bottom, we'll talk about that in a minute. There's the Tools toolbar, that we'll also talk about, and there it is down there, the Yahoo toolbar. If I never use this, I click on it and you can see it just disappeared from my screen.
Now, if you go to an empty spot where a toolbar might go, and you right-click, you'll notice that you can also access that toolbar's menu as well. And, instead of going to the View menu it's a little bit of a shortcut. I can go back down here and turn it on by clicking it again. So, the Yahoo toolbar is now back. Now, right below this Standard toolbar is what looks like another toolbar, but it's not really, it's a Palette. And we are going to talk about Palettes, including this Tool Options Palette, that you see here, in a moment.
So, let's stick to toolbars for now, which means moving down to this area right here. This is what we call the Tools toolbar. So, here are a number of tools that we're going to use when working with an image, so if I want to crop an image, if I want to fix red eye, if I want to erase part of an image, I've got all of these tools sitting here in the Tools toolbar. Now, right now none of them are accessible, why? Because I don't have an image opened up over here in my image window, so maybe we should do that. Now, we'll talk about opening up images a little bit later, and getting them from a scanner or a camera.
Right now, I'm just going to come down here to this Palette, which we call the Organizer Palette. Not really a palette, but in palette-mode. And I'm going to double-click that. We have a whole lesson devoted to the organizer, so don't worry too much about what I've just done. If you have an image down there, double-clicking it will bring it open. Now, another way to open an image obviously, we saw, there's an Open button. And from the File menu, there's an Open option here as well. Control + O on the keyboard will do the exact same thing. So, if you want to follow along, and you've got the exercise files, go to the Open option and navigate to your 01_start folder, and find the one called flowers.
Clicking Open, will open it up on the screen like I have here. I'll hit cancel. Alright, with an image actually open, you can see now that the tools over here on the left on my Tools toolbar are all available. I can crop this image if I wanted to now, if I wanted to erase parts of it I could. So, all of these tools are at my fingertips. Right down the left hand side of the actual image itself. Now, down at the very bottom of the screen we have something called the Status Bar. And you can see right now it says, Pan Tool: Click and drag to pan images larger than the window.
So, if this flower's image was larger than the window you see here, I would use this Pan Tool to move it around and focus on the area I wanted to work on. Well, that's the Pan Tool right up here, selected. Watch what happens when I just hover over the next button which is the Pick Tool. Down at the bottom on the status bar, it now says Pick Tool: Use to select, move, resize, reshape, and rotate layers and vector objects. So, I get a quick lesson down below on my status bar as I hover over the various buttons like the Selection Tool.
What on Earth would I use the Dropper tool? Well it tells me down there: to select active forground and background colors, interesting. The Crop tool, yeah, use that to eliminate or crop areas of an image. So, the status bar is very handy. Now, watch what happens when I actually click on one of these tools. I want you to start looking at some of the Palettes here on this screen. Here we've got a Tools Options Palette, so the options that you see here right now relate to my Pan Tool. This is a context-sensitive bar, that's going to give you the tools you need when you need them, in other words, if I come down here and click on the Pick tool, look what happens.
All of these options just change, and they're totally related now to my Pick tool. Also, down at the bottom on the status bar it now says Pick Tool. Look what happened over here, on another Palette that we call the Learning Center. It's now talking about the Pick tool. As long as the Learning Center is open, I've got lessons showing up here, basically, on the left hand side of my screen instructing me on how to use a tool. Now, I can do a lot more with the Learning Center as well. So, let's talk about this Palette for a second.
Because I clicked the Pick tool, I'm getting information about it in the Learning Center, but I've also got, like a browser, a Home button that will take me to the home page, and a back button if I want to move back through the various pages that I've been to. Clicking this takes me to the home page, and this is what we saw when we first launched the application. I've got buttons for getting photos, adjusting, retouching and restoring, and so on. In other words, if I'm not familiar with all of the tools in Paint Shop Pro Photo, I can come here to get started.
For example, if I need to get photos from a camera or a scanner or something, I can click on this button and you can see I can do that through the organizer, I can download them from a camera or a scanner. If I was going to scan them, I might click the scan button, and by clicking this button I'm going to launch the actual command, so I could have went and found that command up in the menu bars or in the tool bars, but by clicking it here in the Learning Center it actually launches the command that will allow me to scan an image. So, I'm going to click Cancel down here, I'm not quite ready to do that.
So, the Learning Center is a great way to get familiar with the application if you're brand new to it, obviously this tutorial is going to take you through a number of exercises, but it's a great way to learn the application inside and out when you feel like an expert you can simply close it here. And you also know that from the View menu, you can go down to Palettes down here, and turn on and off any of the Palettes you like including this one here, called the Learning Center. We'll leave it on for now. So I'll just click over here in my image window to continue on.
Now, the last section I wanted to talk to you about, and we will go into great detail is this Organizer. The Organizer that you see here looks like another Palette, just across the bottom of the screen. The Organizer's not really a Palette though. Right now, it's in Palette mode, and that's the default. But we'll check into that a little bit later on. And we'll devote an entire lesson to using the organizer for finding files and images, for opening them up right from the Organizer, for previewing them, all kinds of cool things that we can do right in the Organizer itself.
But for now, that covers a brief overview of the user interface. Next, we're going to look at how we download photos from your camera.
Find answers to the most frequently asked questions about Getting Started with Corel Paint Shop Pro Photo X2 .
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- Q: When I press the red eye button it gives me a small circle, and I am unable to adjust the size of the circle. What could be causing this problem?
- A: First, make sure you’re working with an image file. Zoom into the eye itself first. Try using the arrows to change the size up or down. If that doesn't work, try clicking the dropdown arrow next to the up and down arrows and drag the slider left or right. Or, you can simply try typing in a number in the size field. One other option is to hold down your Alt key and then click and drag over the eye to select a size. If none of these work, try contacting Corel's tech support team to see if you're software has a bug.
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