Join Taz Tally for an in-depth discussion in this video Accessing color correction tools with the keyboard, part of Photoshop CS4: Color Correction.
In this section I'd like to talk about how to quickly and easily access all the various tools you and I need to correct color images. Through our previous section we talked about using the standard Photoshop Tool panel and then the Options panel, which allows us to modify and format those tools. The Info panel, which worked hand in hand with the Color Sampler Points that we can place on images, and then the Adjustments and the Layers panel which work hand in hand. The Channels and then the Histogram.
The things that really make it easy for us to access this is keyboard shortcuts. First, let's review the keyboard shortcut for just accessing these normal tools. Let's go to the Preference panel. Do you remember the keyboard shortcut for that? It's Command+K on the Mac, Ctrl+K on Windows. Remember that works throughout the Creative Suite. The important selection here is to turn off the Use Shift Key for Tool Switch. When we set that, that allows us to access any of these keys with the single alpha key keyboard shortcuts, like L for Lasso.
So, we when go L for Lasso it goes to the Lasso tool. When we go V to the Move tool, it goes to the Move. It's how I remember it. Moo-va. C for the Crop tool, T for the Type tool, B for the Brush tool. And remember, if you see a little tick box to lower right-hand corner it means there's multiple tools. And you can access these multiple tools, like here's the Lasso tool. That has multiple Lasso tools, the Lasso, the Polygonal, and the Magnetic. Watch what happens when I just toggle, I keep hitting the L key, L, L, L, see how it goes through, and toggles through all the various Lasso tools.
You don't have to hold down the Shift key. So, that's the first keyboard shortcut to remember. The next one is, remember when we talked about just all the basic tools, and we were talking about the Options panel, and the Options panel is right here and that allows you too configure whatever tool you have selected here. If you select a tool like the Magic Wand tool, W, and there's no Options panel here, don't worry about coming up underneath Window and going Options. All you have to do is hit the Enter key, boom! And it automatically brings up the Options panel.
Of course, when you change tools, like M for Marquee, V for Move tool, B for Brush tool, it changes what you have up here in terms of your option controls. Let's go back to Lasso and notice many of these option panels have data fields in them, which you can configure too, like Feather is a very common one. Instead, if you're getting the mouse up here to click on that, just hit the Enter key, boom! If I want to go from a two pixel feather to a one, I just type in from my keypad 1, and then just hit the Enter key again, boom, and it applies it. So Enter, 2, and Enter to apply.
Works just like a champ. So you always hit the Enter key to either bring up the Options panel, or access the very first data field that you have there. And if you have multiple data fields, then you can just Tab from one field to the other and it works just like any other Tab sequence of dialog boxes. Okay, so there's accessing the tools and the options for those tools. Let's talk about accessing the Frame panel, because that's one you would like to be able to turn off and on. And we'll look down here underneath Window. Notice that it says Application Frame.
So what I can do is I'll just go Tab here to hide all of my panels, not turn them off, but hide them. I can turn that Background Frame off and on very quickly and easily. And there are times when I want to have it on and times when I want to have it off. But I'm less likely to use it if I have to come down here all the time. So, how did I assign that keyboard shortcut? It's easy. Go underneath the Edit menu. I'm going down here to Keyboard Shortcuts. Once again, it's one of those K settings. We have Command+K for preferences, all right, for just basis preferences, Command+K. And then the Command+ Shift+K or Ctrl+Shift+K for Color Settings.
And then Trashcan K here for going to Keyboard Shortcuts. Command+Option+Shift+K, Ctrl+Alt+Shift +K. And then you can choose to apply keyboard shortcuts to either menu items, and now you can do panel menus and of course individual tools. Here, we're going to go to application menus and we'll come down here to the Window menu and then you just scroll down until you find the application frame and just click here to activate that and just look underneath Shortcut and then Command+Option+Shift+F. If you were to assign a keyboard shortcut such as Command+Shift+F or Ctrl+Shift+F, and it's already in use, it will tell you it's already in use and this will be removed from the Edit > Fade if it's accepted.
So you could just keep trying other keyboard shortcuts that you like or what you think you can remember, until you get one that does not conflict with one that already exists and you just click Accept. So you can go to any menu item that you want to and underneath the Window menu, note if I've got all sorts of keyboard shortcuts assigned. Now, F7 for Layers and F8 for the Info panel, those are assigned actually in Photoshop. In fact, those are common throughout the Creative Suite. F6 as well. That brings up the Color panel. F6, F7, F8 so don't reassign those to anything else.
But F11 for the Histogram, that's one that I've assigned. F9 for Channels, that's one I've assigned as well. And for the Adjustments panel, Option+F7. Now, let me just explain a little bit of my method to my madness here. Option+F7. Remember I mentioned that the Adjustments and Layers work together? I've F7 applied to Layers, well Photoshop does, so I just went Option+F7 for Adjustments, so it's easy for me to remember those two together. So I've come in here and I've assigned keyboard shortcuts to those things that I use all the time.
And let's just take a look. F8 will show and hide my Info panel, and then F7 with my Layers, and then Options+F7 for my Adjustments, and then I have F9 for my Channels, and I have F11 for my Histogram. So all of these together could be brought up and either hidden or shown as result of keyboard shortcuts assigned to them. Remember that the Enter key will allow you to access the very first field of your Options panel. By using some of the built-in keyboard shortcuts that exist throughout the Creative Suite, such as F7 for Layers, F8 for Info panel, or some new ones that you will create, such as mine that I use Option, and then F7 for the Adjustments panel, or F11 that I've assigned to my Histogram, I can access any of these panels and use them at anytime that I want to, quickly and easily.
- Fundamentals of digital color: Understanding bit depth, channels, resolution, grey scale and color
- Exploring the difference between color correction and image adjustment
- Choosing and using the best tools for color correction
- Exploring RGB vs. CMYK corrections
- Evaluating the histogram’s display of color
- Using Adjustment layers to affect editable corrections
- Saving time using keyboard shortcuts
- Preparing color images for output on various devices