I have been an avid fan of Photoshop since before the turn of the century! That sounds like I am a lot older than I am, but really that just means since 1998! There are so many tricks that this program is capable of, even after 20 years of using it, I still have regular “a-ha” moments when I learn something new. So, today I am going to share my top 5 favorite “go-to” shortcuts in Photoshop. These are the keystrokes that I use every single time I am utilizing this program and they are huge time savers when it comes to photo editing and digital or hybrid scrapbooking.
1. Zoom In or Zoom Out
Yes, you can do this with keystroke only: Ctrl with the plus or minus sign for PC or Cmd with the plus or minus sign for Mac. But an even easier option out there for those of us with a scrolling wheel on our mouse is to hold the Alt for Pc or Option for Mac button while dragging the wheel up or down. This enables quick scrolling in and out of whatever canvas is on your screen.
2. Select All, Copy, Paste
Lifesavers! Especially when using multiple digital files. My right hand can stay on the mouse while my left speeds through the three keystrokes. Easy peasy!
- Select All: Ctrl + A (PC) or Cmd + A (Mac)
- Copy: Ctrl + C (PC) or Cmd + C (Mac)
- Paste: Ctrl + P (PC) or Cmd + P (Mac)
3. Transforming Size
Once you have pasted a second layer into a canvas, resizing the new layer becomes easier with keystroke options. Once selected, you can click and drag the layer to resize. Bonus Hint: If you hold the shift key while dragging, the layer keeps its original proportions!
Ctrl + T (for PC) or Cmd + T (Mac)
4. Brush size
You an adjust the brush size and hardness when painting or using the eraser tool with keystrokes. So much easier than extra clicks!
With the painting or eraser tool selected: Alt + Right Mouse -drag left right to decrease/ increase brush size and up/down decrease/ increase brush hardness
For PC; Control + Option – drag left/right in order to decrease/ increase brush size. Control + Option (Mac) – drag up/down to decrease/ increase brush hardness (for Mac)
This is a definite favorite for me. I may be a little old school with loaded actions in Photoshop, but there are some go-to’s I have used for years that are still my staples. I use them on every photo, so I have set up function keys to easily play the actions when I am photo editing.
To set the function key for an action, double click on the space next to the action on the actions panel. This brings up a window with a drop down option for setting up which function key to use. You can also add in Shift and Ctrl (pr Cmd for Mac) combinations to give you an increased number of options. Bonus hint: You can also record multiple actions that you run together often and set up a keystroke for running the recorded action all together.
Once set up, hit F1 (or whatever number you have assigned to that action – for PC), or Fn + F1 (or whatever number you have assigned to that action – for Mac)
There are so many more handy shortcuts at your fingertips! To see more, you can get a full listing right in Photoshop by selecting Alt + Shift _ Ctrl + K (for PC) or Option + Shift + Ctrl + K. I hope these help you speed through your process too!
Once you have a chance to read the article I’d love to hear your thoughts on the topic in the comments section below.
What’s the single Photoshop shortcut you use all the time? And which of these five shortcuts you think will be the most useful for you next time you open your Photoshop software?