(Photo is Copyright 2009 Nicole S. Young – All Rights Reserved)

By Nicole Young

Nearly every photograph of mine you will see has been processed in Photoshop, and because I spend so much time in this program I find that it is best to use my time wisely. The fewer taps I have to make with my Wacom pen (or clicks of your mouse, if you so prefer) the better, so I try to memorize as many keyboard shortcuts as possible. My basic rule is that I should be using both my hands when I am processing photos … one on the keyboard and one holding my Wacom pen.

To help out my fellow photographers and Photoshop users I thought it would be useful if I gave you a list of my most-used and favorite Photoshop keyboard shortcuts. Keep in mind that the these are keyboard shortcuts that I actually use, and not just a random list of some I found online that I though might be useful. Also, all keyboard shortcuts are also very customizable but these below are, as far as I know, the default shortcuts that ship with the CS3 and CS4 versions of Photoshop.

F = Toggles the screen mode to different views
B = Brush tool
T = Text tool
V = Move tool
S = Clone stamp tool
J = Healing brush tool
X = Switches your foreground & background colors
D = Sets your foreground/background colors to their default of white/black
W = Wand tool
C = Crop tool

CMD + (Mac) or CTRL + (PC) = Zoom in
CMD – (Mac) or CTRL – (PC) = Zoom out
CMD 0 (Mac) or CTRL 0 (PC) = Zoom to fit in screen
CMD OPT 0 (Mac) or CTRL ALT 0 (PC) = Zoom to 100%
CMD T (Mac) or CTRL T (PC) = Transform
CMD [ (Mac) or CTRL [ (PC) = Decrease brush size
CMD ] (Mac) or CTRL ] (PC) = Increase brush size
1, 2, … 0 (when in the brush or clone tool) = Changes your brush/clone stamp opacity to 10%, 20%, … 100%

SHIFT + and SHIFT – (while in the move tool) = Cycles through the different layer blend modes

CMD OPT SHIFT E (Mac) or CTRL ALT SHIFT E (PC) = Creates a separate merged-and-flattened layer from all visible layers in your layers panel, while still keeping the original layers intact.

This post sponsored by the Digital SLR Store