7 Ways for Photographers to Improve Their Photoshop Game

Photoshop is an incredibly powerful tool for photo editing, and initially, Photoshop was not thought of as a design program, but as a photo manipulation suite.  With a wide array of color correction tools, exposure editing tools, manual editing tools, filters and adjustment layers, Photoshop is still one of the premier choices for photographers, along with Adobe Lightroom.

However, many photographers find Photoshop to be a challenging and frustrating program with a large learning curve.  Although nothing substitutes for learning the basics, there are some simple steps you can take to improve Photoshop’s performance and also improve your Photoshop abilities.

If you are interested in more of the best Photoshop tutorials, check out these posts:

Hope you find these tips useful!

1) Get Your Computer In Shape!

Update drivers, get a faster CPU, and let Photoshop use a lot of RAM (~1GB). This will increase the program’s performance and give you a better canvas in which to perfect your masterpiece!

2) Don’t Always Lighten: Darken Instead!

When you want to lighten a specific area in a photograph you’ve taken, your first instinct is to just do that: lighten that area with reckless abandon! This, however, can be detrimental to the photograph, because it causes pixel breakdown and deterioration in image quality in general. Darkening the surrounding areas instead will accomplish your goal more efficiently, without ruining that beautiful photograph.

3) Imitation Is The Best Form Of Flattery!

Try finding a work by another Photoshop user that seems challenging to you, and seeing if you can recreate the effects yourself. This will help broaden your skill set with the program. Now don’t go off claiming the idea and concept as your own, as stealing is immoral and highly frowned upon. Beware of bad karma!

4) Fight for your right…to Photoshop!

Competitions are a great way to improve your Photoshop skills, since you’ll be pushing your limits each time you’re up against someone of equal talent. Winning a sweet prize shouldn’t be your goal; getting better should be. Prioritize!

5) Wax On… Wax Off.

Find an expert Photoshop user, and follow their work. Asking (not begging) for guidance and tutelage from an expert photographer can be an easy way to step up your game. The student may even surpass the master, one day… Just make sure to use your powers for good.

6) Don’t Jump The Ship Right Away!

New versions of Photoshop are plentiful, with new looks, new features, and new ways of doing things. But don’t install it right away; there’s no need to be hasty if you’re getting things done on an older version. Read feedback from other people concerning the new version before you hop on the next train to Update-ville.

7) Don’t Be A Stranger!

A fledgling photographer’s first instinct is to spam various forums, begging for help to get some Photoshop project done. That doesn’t mean seasoned pros should avoid forums; finding equally skilled peers on forums and trading Photoshop war stories is probably the greatest way to broaden your understanding of the program.

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