Earth-Shattering, Life-Changing Photoshop Shortcuts

Useful Photoshop ShortcutsGather round kids! It’s everyone’s favorite time of the day. Time to learn new Photoshop Shortcuts! These nifty tricks will improve your workflow, save you time, and help you lose 10 pounds. Not really… but they are cooler than a popsicle.

Many of these shortcuts come from a fabulous (oldie but a goodie!) article Titled “Photoshop Secret Shortcuts” over on the Web Designer Wall. I found the article to be incredibly useful, but arguably more useful than the article were the comments left by designers who read it. These people who are way smarter than me left a whopping 33 pages of neat tricks. Here are a few of my favorites listed in the order of my opinion of usefulness. Who knows, these may even become your favorites too!

  • With the Selection Tool (V) selected hold CMD (Apple) and click in your artboard to select any layer in your layers pallet. Woah! Super time saving. I don’t know how many times I get stuck fishing for a layer in the layers pallet. This way,  text, shapes, anything really on your artboard will easily be selected in your layers pallet. If your object is grouped, however, Apple Clicking will take you to the group instead of the individual layer.
  • CMD [ or CMD ] – This will move a selected layer up or down one spot in your layers pallet.
  • CMD SHIFT [ or CMD SHIFT ] – This moves selected layer all the way to the top of the layers pallet or all the way to the bottom.
  • SHIFT CMD N – Creates a New Layer
  • In layers pallet, hold ALT and drag to copy fx from one layer to the next.
  • CMD J– Duplicate Layer
  • CMD 0 (zero)– Fits Window to Screen
  • *Mind Blow Alert! This is one of my favorites.*
    Select Color Picker Tool (I) drag on your artboard or even outside of your photoshop window. Grab colors from your desktop, your browser window, anywhere and see them show up in your foreground color box. Woah!
  • CNTR OPTION CMD – This will bring up your color picker wheel in CS5
  • With Color Picker selected (I) right click to copy a colors Hex Code. Super nice for web designers!
  • Select Crop Tool (C) and hold SHIFT and drag to increase canvas size
  • CMD E – Merge selected layers
  • CMD Enter – Closes text box when typing
  • Use ALT and UP/DOWN/RIGHT/LEFT ARROWS when typing to increase the leading between letters and kerning between lines. Say what?! The image below should help. Letter or lines you want to affect need to be highlighted.
  • CNTRL TAB – Switches between document windows in Photoshop
  • SHIFT and ARROW UP or DOWN – Increases moving things around by 10px. This also works on increasing your font size when you have your cursor in the font-size box.

Also, for review of a couple handy shortcuts, and perhaps some you may not know, here is a video with 10 essential shortcuts in 60 seconds.

What about you? Do you have any cool time-saving shortcuts? Leave em in the comments below.

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