Join Chad Chelius for an in-depth discussion in this video Add shapes and graphics to an image, part of Learning Photoshop Elements 2018.
- [Narrator] The Elements Editor allows you to easily add shapes and graphics to your photos, and offers a lot of choices when doing so. Let's take a closer look at adding these elements to your photos in the Elements Editor. So, I'm beginning here in the Elements organizer, and I'm going to start with this photo, once again. And I'll go ahead and click the editor button to go open that in the Elements Editor. Now, shapes can be added by coming down here in your tools panel and clicking on this button right here.
Now, your button actually initially may look like this. And when you choose that, you're going to notice that down here in your tool options, is where you get to choose from a number of different choices within your tool options. So, for example, in this case, I think what I'd like to do is add a rounded rectangle. So I'm going to go ahead and choose that option. And then what you could do, is you could adjust the radius of the corners on that object.
So I'm going to set mine to about 60. And then you can also choose the color that you'd like to apply to it. So what we could do is click on this and we can pick a color, either from the list of choices here, or you could click on the color wheel to bring up your color picker. And one of the nice things about the color picker is that you can then move your cursor over your image, and pick a color from that image. So I'm going to pick this purple color here. And I'll go ahead and click okay.
And that's now the color that's going to be applied to that layer. You can also apply a style to it at this point as well. But I think for this example I'm going to leave the style set to none. So I just go ahead and click on that. Now, down here, you can also choose whether you want it to be unconstrained, or you want it to be a square, a fixed size, or just be proportional. You have plenty of choices. And even if you keep it at unconstrained, what you can do is as you're clicking and dragging, if you want it to be constrained, you could just hold down the shift key on your keyboard , and that'll make it a constrained object.
Basically a perfect rectangle, or whatever shape you're drawing. Now, this has now created a shape layer. You'll notice over here in your layers panel, you now have a new shape that was created. And a shape layer's kind of a unique object because it's actually a path, if you will. If you come down here and click on this guy right here, which is the selection tool, you can then click on the edge of the object and adjust it, if you wish. So you can move it around, you can change it, but you can accomplish that using the move tool because it is it's own layer.
You can move it around that way as well. So let's go ahead and go back there. Go back to my shape tool. And I'm going to grab a rounded rectangle again, and maybe now this time I'll choose a different color. Now what you can also do, I'm just going to go ahead and click and drag another one. Okay, and if you want to change the color after the fact, you could still click on your color picker here. And now I can use my eyedropper and pick up a different color. And that will change the existing color.
Here's another tip though. Let's say you wanted both of these shapes to be the exact same size. What I'm going to do, is I'm going to click on shape two, and I'm going to click on the trash can in the upper right corner to delete that layer. Just going to go ahead and say yes. The other thing you can do to create a copy of a layer very easily, is using the move tool, you can just hold down your alt or option key and drag on that object to make a copy of it. And now you can do the same thing as you did before. Now I have a shape one copy layer.
But not what I can do is if I double click on that, I can also grab the color picker right away, and I'll come down and choose a color, like an orange color here. There we go. And now I have a copy of it with a different color applied. Now, you have plenty of shape options here. You can create a star, you can create a polygon, an ellipse. This guy right here is the custom shape tool. And when you choose this, you can then click on this drop-down menu and choose from a number of different default shapes that you might want to use as well.
So for example, in the drop-down, I can choose from a number of different categories. So maybe I'll want to go to symbols, and this will show me a number of different symbols that I can choose. I can choose flowers. So if I wanted to do something like that, I can choose the flower object. And now when I click and drag, again, if I want to constrain it I can hold down the shift key. Now I have a flower that was created using the shape as well. So maybe I'll click on the color picker here and go to my color wheel.
Maybe I'll grab like this green color from over here. Just kind of sampling some colors from within the photograph here. Now, the other thing I'd like to show you is down here at the bottom, in the lower right corner, you also have a graphics button. And there's some similarities to using the custom shape tool, but in your graphics you have a lot more choices here. You can see that as I scrub through here, there's just a ton of options to choose from. And so if I was looking for something maybe a little more grungy, I could grab like maybe this object.
And I just click on that. And it's going to add that object, once again, to the layers panel as a shape layer. So you have so much control here and so much flexibility. I'm just going to go ahead and change the color of that. Maybe pick up another color that I want to sample in this document. They're just trying to compliment each other here. And again, all of these can be scaled down. You can drag these, you can play around with these, and adjust them any way you wish. The other nice benefit about this is that any of these, you can really create some interesting visual effects.
Let me just scale this up a little bit here. With any of these selected, you can adjust the opacity of the layer, to make them semi-transparent to allow the elements to show through one another. So you can really create some fun artwork here as you're adjusting the opacity and kind of changing how these elements are interacting with one another. So really, you have a lot of control. And if you wanted to move all of these together, you can just click on one layer. Shift-click on the other. And now you can just kind of reposition them all to a new location.
A lot of flexibility here when working with these shapes. So, the next time you want to add some visual interest to a project using a graphic or a shape, remember how many options you have within the Elements Editor 2018.
- Working with the Elements Organizer
- Creating a new catalog
- Importing photos
- Backing up your catalogs
- Managing photos
- Fixing photos with improved Instant Fix
- Sharing photos
- Exporting photos to different formats
- Working with the Photoshop Elements Editor
- Getting familiar with Guided Edits mode
- Expert Mode
- Selections and the selection tools
- Making the most of Adjustment layers