Paint and Edit Tool Basics

Here it is, Chapter 5, and I'm finally getting around to explaining how to use Photoshop's painting tools. You must feel like you're attending some kind of martial arts ritual where you have to learn to run away, cry, beg, and attempt bribery before you get to start karate-chopping bricks and kicking your instructor. "The wise person journeys through the fundamentals of image editing before painting a single brushstroke, Grasshoppa." Wang, wang, wang. (That's a musical embellishment, in case you didn't recognize it. Man, I hate to have to explain my jokes. Especially when they're so measly.) Now that you've earned your first belt or tassel or scouting patch or whatever it is you're supposed to receive for slogging this far through the book, you're as prepared as you'll ever be to dive into the world of painting and retouching images.

You might think these tools require artistic talent. In truth, each tool provides options for almost any level of proficiency or experience. Photoshop offers get-by measures for novices who want to make a quick edit and put the tool down before they make a mess of things. If you have a few hours of experience with other painting programs, you'll find Photoshop's tools provide at least as much functionality and, in many cases, more. (The one exception is Painter, which is several times more capable than Photoshop in the painting department.) And if you're a professional artist — well, come on now—you'll have no problems learning how to make Photoshop sing. No matter who you are, you'll find electronic painting and editing tools more flexible, less messy, and more forgiving than their traditional counterparts.

In This Chapter

Exploring Photoshop's paint and edit tools

Painting straight and perpendicular lines

Smudging colors

Adjusting saturation and contrast with the sponge tool

Selecting brushes and tool options from the Options bar

Saving and editing custom brush sets in the Preset Manager

Creating lines that fade away or taper to a point

Working with pressure-sensitive drawing tablets

Selecting brush modes from the keyboard * * * *

If you screw something up in the course of painting your image, stop and choose Edit ^ Undo (or press Ctrl+Z). If this doesn't work, press Ctrl+Alt+Z to step back through your paint strokes. (These shortcuts assume that you haven't changed the default Redo Key setting in the Preferences dialog box; see Chapter 2 for more information.) You also can select a previous state in the History palette, as explained in Chapter 7. The History palette lists brushstrokes and other changes according to the tool you used to create them.

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Responses

  • Beth
    What the options of the paint andedit tool?
    2 years ago

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