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Learn Adobe Photoshop - Panel Customization

Check out Bas Rutten's Liver Shot on MMA Surge: Mahalo expert Gene Shaw gives a comprehensive Photoshop tutorial on panel customization. About Panel Customization --------------------------------------------------------------------- Think of the panels in Photoshop as mini-workspaces. The Swatch panel is where you keep all of your paints. The Color panel is the palette where you mix your paints. Each of these options is accessed through the Window menu and you can organize your work in any way that you choose.? For the purposes of this tutorial, we will be focusing exclusively on the Swatches panel, so keep in mind the below suggestions can be implemented with any of the other panels you will be working with.? Step 1: Customizing Your Colors --------------------------------------------------------------------- You will rarely ever need all of the Swatches made available. You can trim these down to the smallest panel you can find, which in this case would be Photo Filter Colors. Let's say you want to paint an image exclusively in shades of grey and black.? 1. In the Color Picker (Foreground Color) window, you may switch over to Web Color by checking the corresponding box below the color section.? 2. You may select every shade of grey here, ending in black. Then click Okay with the first shade. You will notice that 20% grey has become your active color, and you can now add a Swatch. 3. Repeat the above, now choosing 60% grey and click Okay. Add another Swatch and end at black by adding yet another Swatch. You will have generated light grey, dark grey and black. Go ahead and delete any other colors you will not be using in the Swatches panel.? 4. Now you should select Swatch 1 (light grey) and right-click to rename it. Do the same for the remaining two Swatches, in this particular case: 20% Flat Grey, 60% Grey and the last one is obviously Black.? 5. With the?20% Grey?selected, there are two other options you may want to have open. If you wanted a slightly warmer grey, you will want to un-check?Web Only?colors in the?Color Picker?window and increase the red by changing the number in the corresponding field.? 6. Click Okay. Choose another Swatch, and name this one "20% Warm Grey" and once again click Okay. Repeat this process for the 60% grey, and then with your cool colors.? 7. To create cool versions of the warm greys, you will increase the blue for each one and rename them accordingly (ie, "20% Cool Grey").? Step 2: Streamlining Your Workspace --------------------------------------------------------------------- With all of the new, free space in the Swatches panel, you can now drag the Character and Layers panels up to condense your workspace. You can close the Styles and Info panels to streamline this area even more.? 1. To completely free up the area, click the tiny, double-arrow icon in the upper right corner of the Swatches panel. Doing this will now have your work take up only as much space as the Tool bar.? 2. To go into Full Screen Mode, press F twice. Your workspace will now be surrounded by solid black, but you may still access your Tool menu on the left and your Panels on the right by hovering your cursor over those areas. Full Screen Mode is useful in that there are no visual distractions within your workspace, but you still have all the convenience to access necessary tools and panels. Feel free to delete any unneeded Brush Presets as well.? 3. To do this, just go up into the Window menu, choose Brush Presets, highlight the desired Preset and click the Trash can icon. It will ask if you want to delete this preset and click Yes. You can always reset these Preset items later. You can even drag the entire Preset Brushes panel over to the right side of your screen and it will turn into a simple icon along with your other panels. Remember, all of the above is meant to serve as an example. Each project you work on will demand its own unique set of preferences. The above tips are some useful ways to streamline your workspace, minimize visual distractions and allow you to expedite your creative process.? Read more by visiting our page at:
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