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Adobe Photoshop - Top Ten Tips

written by: Laura Jean Karr•edited by: Daniel P. McGoldrick•updated: 6/27/2011

A look at the top ten tips for using Adobe Photoshop, whether you run CS2 or CS3. Photoshop is the standard-bearer in desktop publishing software applications. Learn the top ten tips in image manipulation in this article.

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    Adobe Systems shipped the first edition of Photoshop in 1990, and the design application quickly became the standard in desktop publishing both for professional and home-based users. Many revisions and updates have been released since then and the Photoshop family of capabilities has continued to grow beyond the current market needs. Here we are going to take a look at the top ten tips that you can use with your Photoshop application, whether you run CS2 or CS3.

    1. Lighten and Darken: Many people go straight for the Lighten and Darken commands but there is a quicker way to lighten and darken an image that will give you more control than using the presets. Use the Levels commend instead. Click on Image, Adjust and then Levels. Then drag the middle gray triangle around in the image until you get the desired effect.

    2. Neutralize: This is an easy way to develop color matching and control your white balance. Click on Image, Adjustments, Match Color and then scroll down to select the Neutralize option.

    3. Color Balance: Click on Image, Adjustments and select Color Balance. Use the sliders against the color graph to chose your balance.

    4. Remove Scratches and Dust: To get rid of scratches and dust in an image first start by making a duplicate layer. Next, de-select the eyeball on the top layer and select it on the bottom layer. Click on Filter, Noise and select Dust and Scratches. Now, you need to reselect the eyeball on the first layer and use the eraser tool to go over the top layer. This will get rid of the “dust” left over on your image.

    5. Lighten up Shadows: To give some light to those dark shadows in your image, just click on Image, Adjustments and select Shadow/Highlight. Move the slider around for the effect you want.

    6. Color to Black and White: Instead of using the auto black and white function, try using grayscale. Click on Image, Mode and then select Convert to Grayscale. This tip will give your image more depth than a typical flat look when converting a color image to black and white.

    7. Correct Lens Distortion: A quick and easy way to correct lens distortion from your photo images is to click on Filter, Distort and then select Lens Correction. Move the slider around until you reach your desired effect.

    8. Sharpen an image: When your image is almost perfect but you want a bit more definition you can sharpen it. Click on Filter, Sharpen and then select Unsharp Mask. Plat round with the radius until you reach your desired effect.

    9. Dropper Tool: If you have an area in your image that you would like to change to complete white, gray or black you can do so easily. Under Levels, click on Image, Adjustments and select Levels. Look for the eyedropper in the adjustment panel, select the dropper and drag it to your image. Click on the area you want to color and that's it.

    If you would like more information on Adobe's Photoshop or if you just want to stay updated on the newest features and version patches available, then visit the Adobe Photoshop site here: