The Photoshop Elements interface
The Photoshop Elements interface holds a treasure trove of tools and commands for users at all skill levels. Here’s a primer in what the most important ones are.
Photoshop Elements is a great little program if you’re just starting out with image editing. This is because it has all the tools that you need to make any edits to your image right in front of you in easy to find locations. It also has a loads of automated options, which let the program do the hard work for you.
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On these pages we mainly look at the Edit options, as these are the ones that you will be using time and time again. This is where the magic happens, as it were, with all the tools that you will ever need in one handy toolbar down the left-hand side. Along the top are the menu options that you are working with, organized into palettes.
However, there are two other interfaces that you can enter. In the top-right, next to edit, you will see another tab called Create. This is where you can make creative projects using your images, such as photo books, collages, slideshows, and so on. The Share option which sits next to this does what it says on the tin; it enables you to share your edited photos with the wider world, by enabling you to upload to Facebook or Flickr, for examples. You can also print and email images from directly within the elements interface as we’ll be looking at these options in more detail throughout this book, so for now, let’s just take a closer look at the main interface.
“This is where the magic happens with all the tools that you will ever need in one handy toolbar”
Use this to navigate around the workspace. You can scroll vertically as well as horizontally. Click and drag a bar to move it, or click on the arrows.
Edit offer the full range of tools. Quick is perfect for complete newbies as it condenses all of the major edits into a series of sliders. Guide walks you through key edits to help you learn the tools better.
If you see a small arrow in the bottom-right of the tool icon, it means that there are other tools hidden behind the main one. To access these, simply click and hold your mouse button to make a fly-out menu appear. Keep your mouse button held down, and move to the tool you want. Let go of the mouse to select.
This is where a lot of the major tools in Elements live. To select a tool, simply move the cursor over to the tool you want and then click.
02 Menu bar
Click on one of the menu headers to see the list of commands held in there. Scroll down and click the mouse again to select the command you want.
03 Editing Window
Elements offers users a choice of areas to edit in, which are accessible from here. Simply click the tab to enter that space.
This is where all of your editing takes place. When you load or create a new file, it will appear in here. You can open more than one image
Palettes are docking areas for various commands and task. To access a palette, click on it. To see more, click Window and scroll to the one you want.
06 Project Bin
This allow you to see all of the images that you have open at once. Click on one of the thumbnails to open it up in the main workspace.