Adobe Photoshop is probably the most popular photo editor, but technically speaking it's actually a raster graphics editor. But that definition doesn’t do justice to the capabilities of the software that is used for everything from editing images, to designing graphics, to painting digital art, and a lot more.
The award-winning software has a strong user base across diverse fields including photographers, designers, web developers, filmmakers, and more.
The software has a rich set of editing tools and each progressive release of Photoshop adds more useful tools to the mix. The app has a busy interface that will surely intimidate first timers, especially if they don’t understand the use of the tools at their disposal.
The courses in this guide will help you get the most out of Photoshop, whether you are just starting out or even if you have been using it for several years.
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Best Photoshop courses - at a glance
So you work with images and have heard good things about Photoshop, but don’t know how to get started? The Get Started with Photoshop series of video courses from Adobe, the makers of the software, are perhaps one of the best introductions to Photoshop.
Using a mix of screencasts and text, the tutorials start by familiarizing you with the app’s interface and tools layout. You are then introduced to commonly used functions and features such as working with layers, and making selections.
The lessons round up by putting the new skills to practice to retouch images, and some other tasks. Along with the instructions, each lesson also has downloadable assets to help you duplicate the instructions on your own computer.
When you are done with the basics, move on to the tutorials on the website to get a deeper understanding. There’s a beginner course on photo editing, another on making selections, and another on layer masking, and several more.
Once you have mastered the basics and can trot about the interface pretty confidently, it’s time to get more efficient. The Adobe Photoshop CC – Advanced Training Course will help you take your Photoshop skills to the next level. In over 13 hours of video lectures, the Adobe Certified Instructor helps you discover a better, faster and more efficient way of working with Photoshop.
As you can make out from its name, the course expects you to have a working knowledge of Photoshop. The course has over 100 lessons in which it covers virtually all aspects of the software.
In addition to all sorts of image adjustments and enhancements, the lessons on working with skin and mastering teeth and eye corrections are really useful. You’ll learn to work with all kinds of fonts and recreate trending visual styles. In addition to images, you’ll also learn how to edit video and create Parallax animations and Cinemagraphs.
The best thing about the course is that it uses real-world projects and you get class projects at regular intervals. During the course, the instructor will help you master artboards and develop a habit of creating a workflow for your Photoshop projects. The course is built in Photoshop CC 2018 so don’t expect all of it to work in older versions.
If you are a photographer interested in Photoshop, the Photoshop and Photography Digital Art Compositing Course gives you the best of both worlds. Led by a photographer and a Photoshop expert, the course will take you on four different photoshoots where you’ll learn about the different aspects of setting up and capturing the shots including coaching the models and an introduction to using props.
Post-production work for each of the shots happens in Photoshop. You’ll learn about the different Photoshop tools at your disposal and when to use them by working on the images from the different photoshoots to create the levitation effect employing different techniques.
The 3.5 hour course has some 38 lectures and includes all the images from the shoots and the PSD layered image files from Photoshop to help you follow along. There are also helpful handouts, such as a small guide on photography fundamentals and a PDF of common Photoshop shortcuts.
One of the best things about the course is that it makes very few assumptions and will be useful to you even if you are new to photography or Photoshop.
While Photoshop is pretty popular among photographers, many consider it an overkill for web design. That’s mostly because people fail to discover all of Photoshop’s web-based features that you can use to streamline your workflow and save time. If you wish to use Photoshop to improve your web design skills, the Photoshop for Web Design course is a good place to start.
Don’t judge the course content based on its runtime of only about 2.5 hour. In that short time, the instructor covers a lot of ground. You’ll learn how to use libraries to manage project assets, and even use artboards to create multiple versions of a design simultaneously. The instructor uses real-world examples and usage patterns, which is a real plus.
The course starts by looking at how to optimize the workspace for web use and also looks at responsive design and shares techniques to help you overcome layout challenges and for other aspects of web design as well. During the course, you’ll create moodboards, and wireframes and the instructor expects you to have working knowledge of Photoshop and some familiarity with web design. Besides Photoshop, she’ll also use some plugins Fontea, and the unsmart Magic Script.
Besides Photoshop another favorite tool for image editing is Adobe’s Lightroom. If your job involves tweaking images, take a moment to check the Ultimate Adobe Photo Editing Bundle. For $29 (about £24) the bundle includes 8 courses with a combined runtime of over 41 hours. Of the 8, two courses are based on Lightroom (including a beginners course) and one helps you master both Lightroom and Photoshop in a week.
There are five courses that focus exclusively on Photoshop and you can expect some repetitions in the content. That said between them you’ll gain everything there is to know about the tools at your disposal.
A majority of the courses lean towards new users though after introducing some of the commonly used tools the courses all tend to focus on different aspects, from image editing to retouching images to working with text and creating flyers, and more. There’s also a course that teaches the techniques used in beauty advertisements.
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