Rafiul Islam in Tutorial
Publish Date - 18/02/2017

Essential Keyboard Shortcut Tips for Photoshop (Part 01)

Adobe’s software and tools enable the creation of amazing digital works, whether you're using Photoshop to whip up multi-layered visuals, putting together a print magazine. When working in Photoshop, simple tasks can become a hindrance to your workflow. So to help out, we've got a great selection of Photoshop shortcuts right here, all guaranteed to speed up your workflow once you get the hang of them. These keyboard shortcuts will keep your fingers flying from the moment you create a new file until you make the final touch-ups on your image. So let’s start.

Essential Keyboard Shortcut Tips for Photoshop (Part 01) | By Graphiccomb

Getting Setup

You'd think setting up your content in Photoshop would be second nature; but oftentimes, the shortcuts to change the background size or zoom in to your project aren't what you think. Here are some of the most crucial shortcuts to know.

Create New Document

Mac: Cmd+N                                     Pc: Ctrl+N


This shortcut will help you to create a new document frequently in Photoshop.

Use the Spacebar to Navigate

While holding down the Spacebar and clicking and dragging with the left mouse button, you can pan around the canvas. This way, you won’t have to use the red box in the Navigator panel, or the scrollbars around the canvas to move around.

Hide Selections and Guides

Mac: Cmd+H                                     Pc: Ctrl+H


You can toggle the visibility of all your guides and currently active selections by pressing Ctrl+H (that’s Cmd+H on the Mac). It’s a good way to check your artwork without all the disturbing lines here and there. Press Ctrl+H to toggle them back again.

Undo More, Redo More

Mac: Cmd+Opt+Z                            Pc: Ctrl+Alt+Z


You must know that Ctrl+Z (or Cmd+Z) undo the last step, but you maybe don't know that hitting Ctrl+Alt+Z will undo more steps. It can definitely save you a lot of time by not having to hit the Step Backward command in the Edit menu. And it works in reverse by hitting Ctrl+Shift+Z, which will Redo one step. These two must be your most used shortcuts.

Rotate Canvas

Rotating the canvas can come very handy for designers using graphic tablets. By hitting the R key and then left-clicking-and-dragging, you can rotate your document on the canvas. You’ll see a compass with the red side pointing upwards when doing so.

Copy as Merged

Mac: Shift+Cmd+C                         Pc: Shift+Ctrl+C


If you wanna copy all layers without merging, then you should use Shift+Ctrl+C instead of Ctrl+C. This will help you a lot when you wanna copy your work without affecting any layers.

Paste in Place

Mac: Cmd+Shift+V                           Pc: Ctrl+Shift+V


Press Ctrl+Shift+V instead of the normal Ctrl+V command to paste your copied selection in place, e.g. to the exact same position where you copied from. You can not only paste in place in the document you copied from, but in new ones as well.

Free Transform

Mac: Cmd+T                                     Pc: Ctrl+T


By pressing Ctrl+T, you can transform any layer, shape or objects. You can resize also by using this shortcut. This shortcut won't resize your canvas, only resize the image.

Reset Dialog Boxes

When you open up any dialog box, make some changes but want to revert all of them, we would all click Cancel, and reopen the dialog box.

Let me tell you a secret. If you hold down the Alt key (Option on Mac) while a dialog box is open, the Cancel button will automatically transform into a Reset button.

Change the Image Size

Mac: Cmd+Opt+I                          Pc: Ctrl+Alt+I


When you need to resize the image size, you can use this shortcut. It will change your canvas size if the canvas size is greater than image size.

Change Canvas Size

Mac: Cmd+Opt+C                          Pc: Ctrl+Alt+C


if you wanna change your workstation without changing your image size, then you should change your canvas size. To change the canvas size, you can use this shortcut.

Zoom In and Zoom Out

                  Mac: Cmd++                             Pc: Ctrl++                                    Mac: Cmd+-                              Pc: Ctrl+-                  


There are two ways to zoom in or out in Photoshop. One is with keyboard and other is with the mouse wheel. Hitting Ctrl++ to zoom in and Ctrl+- to zoom out is handy, but I'll also show you how you can zoom in or out with mouse wheel. To do that you have to change some settings in Preference Panel. So go to Edit->Preference Panel or press Ctrl+K, then click the General option and check the zoom with scroll wheel. 



Show and Hide Guides

Mac: Cmd+;                                     Pc: Ctrl+;


Toggling this shortcut will help you to show or hide your all guides which are used to guide your work better.

Change Guide Orientation

Think you select Horizontal ruler to create a Horizontal Guide. But in the meantime, you remember that you need Vertical Guide. So then what can you do? Just hold down the Alt (or Option) key on your keyboard while dragging out a Guide, and it will become perpendicular to the ruler bar.

Quickly Close Documents

Mac: Cmd+W                                     Pc: Ctrl+W


Pressing Ctrl+W will close the currently active document. Pressing Ctrl+Shift+W will close all open windows. You can also close all documents by Shift+clicking the X’s on the right side of the document tabs.

Choosing the Right Tools

Now I'm gonna show you the shortcuts for Photoshop tools. These shortcuts will activate the previously selected tool in the group of tools. For example, if you have last used the Magic Wand tool under the selection tools, the "w" shortcut enables the Magic Wand tool, even though it's not the default selection tool. But, if you haven't used any tool in the group, it will enable the default tool. To cycle through tools that share the same shortcut, press Shift + the shortcut key. Or, hold Alt (Option on a Mac) and manually click on the tool in the toolbar. 

Tools Name Keyboard Shortcut Image
Move Tool V Move_Tool_graphiccomb_blog
Magic Wand W Magic_Wand_graphiccomb_blog
Rectangular Marquee M Rectangular_Marquee_graphiccomb_blog
Lasso L Lasso_graphiccomb_blog
Eyedropper I Eyedropper_graphiccomb_blog
Crop C Crop_graphiccomb_blog
Eraser E Eraser_graphiccomb_blog
Rectangle U Rectangle_graphiccomb_blog
Horizontal Type T Horizontal_Type_graphiccomb_blog
Brush B Brush_Marquee_graphiccomb_blog
History Brush Y History_Brush_Marquee_graphiccomb_blog
Spot Healing Brush J Spot_Healing_Brush_graphiccomb_blog
Gradient G Gradient_graphiccomb_blog
Path Selection A Path_Selection_graphiccomb_blog
Hand H Hand_graphiccomb_blog
Rotate View R Rotate_View_graphiccomb_blog
Pen P Pen_graphiccomb_blog
Clone Stamp S Clone_Stamp_graphiccomb_blog
Dodge O Dodge_graphiccomb_blog
Zoom Tool Z Zoom_Tool_graphiccomb_blog
Enable 3D Object Tools (in Photoshop Extended only) K  
Enable 3D Camera Tools (in Photoshop Extended only) N  


These are the essential keyboard shortcuts in Photoshop which are used frequently by the designers. But there are more shortcuts in Photoshop and I'll show them in next episode. Thanks for reading through these tips and shortcuts, I hope you’ve learned something new from these. 

The essential keyboard shortcut tips for photoshop (part 02)

The essential keyboard shortcut tips for photoshop (part 03)


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