Photoshop tools and techniques

photoshop-tools-and-techniques

As a designer, I’m always looking for new ways to improve my workflow. In this month’s blog post I touch on three essential tools and techniques that you can implement to enhance your working practices inside Photoshop.

Grid layout

Creating grids in Photoshop is important to ensure proper spacing and layout to your visual designs, however, the process can be painstaking as well as very time consuming. For this reason, I use the Cameron McEfee’s Photoshop extension GuideGuide, which draws multiple columns and gutters using Photoshop’s guides. Depending on the framework outlined by the developers, I make this the first priority when opening up a new comp for pixel accurate columns, rows, midpoints and baselines.

Colour palette

As with any project, referring to a brand style guideline, whether its on paper or a PDF document can slow you down. Top speed things up, I either use Adobe Kuler to create a swatch palette by uploading a document full of brand colours which will then allow me to create a .ASE to be imported into Photoshop, or, I could also manually create a swatches palette inside Photoshop. By adding swatches to your project, you can quickly select the colors that you use most frequently and add them to any text or vector shapes.

By adding swatches to your project, you can quickly select the colors that you use most frequently and add them to any text or vector shapes.

Character style

Using paragraph and character styles can save you time when formatting a lot of text in Photoshop since you’re able to assign the font style, size, and colour as style presets. From the Paragraph Style panel, click on the menu and select New Paragraph Style. You can also click the Add New Style button at the bottom of the Paragraph Styles panel. Then, from the Paragraph Style Options dialog box you can set the type formatting attributes. This is especially useful to ensure your designs are consistent and accurate.

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