5 Must-Know Photoshop Keyboard Shortcuts

For those who spend a significant amount of time retouching images in Photosho, keyboard shortcuts are life-savers. They not only reduce the use of the mouse or light pen but also make the whole process of editing images a good deal faster. In this video, Aaron Nace from Phlearn demonstrates five essential Photoshop keyboard shortcuts that every photographer should know:

1. Zoom in and out

Photoshop shortcuts

Simply click the Spacebar + Ctrl / CMD keys on your keyboard, which will bring up the zoom icon. Next, click and drag to zoom in and out of your images.

2. Change brush size and hardness

To change the brush size on a Mac, hold Control + Option, then click and drag. On Windows, hold Control + Alt and then right-click and drag.

Photoshop change brush size and hardness shortcut

To change the hardness of the brush, do the exact same thing, except instead of clicking and dragging left to right, drag up and down on both Mac and Windows.

3. Change layer opacity

Photoshop layer opacity shortcut

To change layer opacity, simply press any number on your keyboard. Let’s say you want to change the opacity of a selected layer to 50 percent. Simply, hit the number 5 on your keyboard. Make sure, however, to have the layer mask selected and not any other tool.

4. Create a layer mask

Essential Photoshop keyboard shortcuts

By default, Photoshop does not have a keyboard shortcut to create layer masks. But given the incredible number of ways that you can customize Photoshop, you can always create one to speed up your work. This is how to do it.

Go to Edit > Keyboard Shortcuts > Layer > Layer Mask > Reveal All.

Click on Shortcut and use the keyboard shortcut you would like to use for creating a layer mask. Click Accept and OK. Voila! You now have a keyboard shortcut for creating layer masks.

5. Export your images for the web

Photoshop keyboard shortcuts

File > Export > Save for Web. This is usually the process that we repeat every time we export images in JPEG or other formats for the Web. But there’s a shortcut to this which makes it easier, and faster: Shift + Alt / Optn + Ctrl / Cmd + S

Using this command, you can bring up the familiar export window and choose your preferred format to export the images.

Did you know about these shortcuts already? Do you have a shortcut that you would like to share with us? Go ahead and tell us.

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