Audio Editing for Beginners in Adobe Photoshop | Isaiah Cardona | Skillshare

Playback Speed

  • 0.5x
  • 1x (Normal)
  • 1.25x
  • 1.5x
  • 2x

Audio Editing for Beginners in Adobe Photoshop

teacher avatar Isaiah Cardona, Art Director & Motion Designer

Watch this class and thousands more

Get unlimited access to every class
Taught by industry leaders & working professionals
Topics include illustration, design, photography, and more

Watch this class and thousands more

Get unlimited access to every class
Taught by industry leaders & working professionals
Topics include illustration, design, photography, and more

Lessons in This Class

8 Lessons (26m)
    • 1. Intro

    • 2. Project Overview

    • 3. Audio Basics

    • 4. Finding Audio

    • 5. Adding Audio

    • 6. Editing Audio

    • 7. Exporting

    • 8. Wrap Up

  • --
  • Beginner level
  • Intermediate level
  • Advanced level
  • All levels
  • Beg/Int level
  • Int/Adv level

Community Generated

The level is determined by a majority opinion of students who have reviewed this class. The teacher's recommendation is shown until at least 5 student responses are collected.





About This Class

Learn how to add music or sound effects to your video projects!

Have you ever wanted to spruce up a video project with music in Adobe Photoshop? It’s actually pretty simple! In this class, you’ll learn how to add and edit audio using the Video Timeline Tool in Photoshop.

I’ve designed this class to help designers, content creators and others interested in video creation learn how they can take advantage of sound to elevate their videos. 

What you'll learn:

  • Fundamentals of audio storytelling
  • How to find royalty-free music 
  • Basics of adding and editing music in Photoshop

To help beginners understand the basics of audio editing, I have chosen to teach this class using Adobe Photoshop as it's a program many students are already familiar with so we can focus on the principles and techniques.

What you'll make:

At the end of this class, you will have created a video clip with audio, as well as gained some useful techniques and ways to approach sound, which you can apply, beyond this course, to future video projects.

What you'll need to complete class:

  • Adobe Photoshop (free trial of the software program at
  • Your own video asset or the provided sample file from the resources section

Additional resources:

Hungry for more? Check out my other Photoshop classes,

Animation in Adobe Photoshop: Create a Social Video to Promote Your Brand and Hand Drawn Animation in Photoshop to learn how to add motion and animation to your videos!


Looking for more inspiration? Head here to discover more classes on animation.

Meet Your Teacher

Teacher Profile Image

Isaiah Cardona

Art Director & Motion Designer


I'm a senior art director and motion designer from Kansas City with several years of experience in the advertising industry. And I enjoy bringing my energetic and playful animation style to client projects. Outside of work I enjoy exploring various illustration styles.

I've grown my skills over the years from learning from others and have always enjoyed sharing my knowledge with friends and colleagues. And now I get to share that knowledge with the Skillshare community.

Instagram | Pinterest | Dribbble | Giphy

See full profile

Class Ratings

Expectations Met?
  • Exceeded!
  • Yes
  • Somewhat
  • Not really
Reviews Archive

In October 2018, we updated our review system to improve the way we collect feedback. Below are the reviews written before that update.

Why Join Skillshare?

Take award-winning Skillshare Original Classes

Each class has short lessons, hands-on projects

Your membership supports Skillshare teachers

Learn From Anywhere

Take classes on the go with the Skillshare app. Stream or download to watch on the plane, the subway, or wherever you learn best.


1. Intro: Are you new to video creation and wanting a spruce up of video project with music or sound effects? If the answer is yes, then this class will be a perfect introduction to editing audio using Adobe Photoshop. Hey, I'm Isaiah Cardona and I'm an art director and motion designer with several years of experience creating video content for clients. My work has ranged from short form product testimonials to social media content and I developed a reputation for bringing energetic and playful animation style to my videos. When I first started out, I fixated a lot on how the video would look and oftentimes I would completely ignore how the sound could play a part in the storytelling process. If you relate with that, then this class is perfect for you as I've designed this class to help designers, content creators, and [inaudible] interested in video creation learn how they can take advantage of sound and elevate their videos. To be specific, this class will walk you through the fundamentals of audio storytelling, how to find audio and music, the basics of adding and editing music in Photoshop and how to export your video. I've chosen to teach this class using Photoshop as I believe it's easier to learn the basic skills in a program that a lot of students are already familiar with. Then these skills can be applied to other video editing programs in the future. I can't wait to see what you create, so let's discuss your project in the next lesson. 2. Project Overview: For this project, you will be adding music and the sound effect to an existing video asset. To help you get started, I have supplied a sample file and audio assets but I do recommend trying to follow the techniques from this class with your own video as it will really help you see how you can fully use these skills in real life application. Then your final video can be uploaded to a video platform like YouTube and shared with a link in the project section, plus add a sentence or two about your project. I always enjoy reading the personal story behind projects. In order to create your project, you will first identify your project needs, find music, add audio to your file, adjust audio around footage, and lastly, export your video. What's needed for this project? You will need Adobe Photoshop. If you don't have Photoshop, you can get a free trial, the software program, at For each lesson, I'll explain exactly what to do and how each step is going to help you in developing your audio, storytelling, and editing skills. To get started, gather your video assets or download the sample file from the resources section and I will see you in the next lesson. 3. Audio Basics: In this lesson, we will be discussing the basics of sound and its role in video. When it comes to video creation, it's common to fixate on how a video looks, that we often forget to think about how a video sounds, but sound plays a vital role in storytelling. It's said that 50 percent of your viewing experience is audio. A nice way I like to think of it is that the visuals tell a part of the story, but sound tells the audience how they should react to what's happening on screen. Audio also elevates the footage and adds emphasis and depth to on-screen events. There are three main types of audio and video. The first one is human voice, or a voice over is the spoken narration of your video story. Why is it important? Onscreen texts can tell the story you are showcasing, but verbal narration adds context as you can hear the excitement or seriousness in a person's voice. In my professional experience, I've seen how a message is strengthened by having a more personal touch that the audience can connect and empathize with. Music can be used as the feature audio or as a subtle backing that adds polish to a video and fills gaps in between talking, which I think is really important as we've probably all seen a video involving someone talking and seeing those long pauses of awkward silence when there was no music to help fill out that space. Outside of elevating the audio quality, music can be an important element as it can trigger a memory and resonate emotionally. The soundscape can paint the audio picture of a setting. Here's a great example. The video comes to life by the sounds of the city in traffic, and that's the job of sound effects to help bring to life environments or onscreen action. Pro tip, just as the use of sound impacts a viewer's experience, the lack of sound can be just as impactful when used wisely. Obviously, as mentioned with the music, having those awkward gaps of silence is not going to be a great experience, but utilizing silence strategically can actually help bring emphasis to the action happening on camera. To recap, we just discussed the three types of sound and how they are used. Having an understanding of the audio types and how they complete the full story of your video, not only will help you with our class project, but will be useful for all your future video projects. Now that you know the different kinds of audio, take a moment to review your video assets and list out the types of audio you need for your project. In the next lesson, I will break down how to find legally safe audio to use in your videos. 4. Finding Audio: In this lesson, I will break down music licensing and how to find safe music to use in your videos. When I first started creating videos for YouTube, I remember getting the copyright music notice and having my video restricted. After that, I learned about what music was safe to use in my videos. There are four kinds of music that you can use in your videos. The first one is stock music, which is recorded music that you can license for use in your video projects. Professionally, I use stock music the most, I use it for client video projects as these assets are credible and I don't have to worry about any restrictions or issues that my clients might run into. Next, you have licensing popular music. A lot of times big brands will purchase the rights to use popular songs and commercials. I worked at an agency that had big clients in the food service, in movie theater industries, and we would create national TV spots. That agency had a whole department that worked on getting licensing for media. Obviously, this group of music you'll probably won't be using for your projects, but it's good to know what all the options are. The third one is going to be Creative Commons. This is free music that allows you to legally use some rights reserved music in your videos. Typically, it requires you to credit the musician in the track. Next, we have public domain music, which is music to which no exclusive intellectual property rights apply and you're free to use in your video projects as you want. It's important to call out that this is going to be a very small collection of music and a lot of countries have different laws for public domain music. Typically, your two that you're most likely going to use are going to be Creative Commons or stock music. In the resources section, I have listed some sites you can use to find music or sound effects for your project. My favorite site to use is Mixkit. It has video, music, and sound effects that you can use in your personal or commercial projects. A watch out, for each site you use, it's important to verify the license and restrictions and not just the site, but each song or asset. Why? Because some sites like Mixkit, for instance, will offer a catalog, audio, but different conditions or restrictions. Where most may be completely free to use as you want, some come with restrictions like requiring [inaudible] are not allowed for commercial use. A pro tip, when looking for sound effects, sometimes you find better options when you consider and search for the sound mechanics versus looking for a specific subject. A great example is that for my class example, I wanted to find a sound effect for the delivery drone. But when searching drone, I was getting sounds for spaceships and large tactical drones. I thought about the actual sounds of a drone. Which were the spinning propellers, the humming sound, the sound of their small engine. Using those, I was able to find a great option using the keyword spinning. To recap, we discussed the four categories of music you can use, and what sets them apart. This is so helpful to understand your options as the more tools in your arsenal, the better you will be at creating unique videos. We also discussed some tips for searching for the right sound, by thinking of a different keyword. These search tips also help when it comes to searching for visuals on stock sites. Sometimes it just helps to think of different ways of describing what you're looking for. With all of that, now you're ready to find music or download assets from the resources section for your class project. In the next lesson, I will demo how to add music to your Photoshop file. 5. Adding Audio: So far, I've been providing you with the foundational knowledge of audio production. But in this lesson, I will walk you through the video timeline tool so you can start confidently adding music to your video project. To start out, go and open the video file asset you have in Photoshop. By opening up the video file directly, you get to skip the extra steps of having to set up your file and import the video. If you don't have the timeline panel setup, you can get to it by going to Window and then down to timeline. Next, I'm going to show you some of the key aspects of timeline tool that will be helpful to know. First, you have the play controls, which will be useful for playing back the video and audio. You have the global volume on an off button. Obviously for this project, you will want to make sure the volume is enabled. Then you have the gear which gives you the playback quality for video and allows you to loop the video. I like to check looping so I can rewatch the clip multiple times to check for adjustments. Next you have scissors icon, which cuts video and audio clips. Then lastly, you have the crossfade icon, which adds fade transitions to be your layers. Then going down to the audio track, we have some options which will be very useful for our project. But what is an audio track? It's the holder of audio clips. If you plan to have multiple audio clips and secession, you can have them all in line and one audio track. But if you plan to have audio clips overlap each other, then you will want to add more audio tracks. Now, let's take a look at those audio options. Each track will have a volume button to turn on and off the audio for that specific track. Then you have the music note, which starting at the bottom allows you to delete track, add a new audio track, replace, delete or duplicate an audio clip. Lastly, to add an audio clip. Let's go ahead and add our music clip using the audio option. First, I'm going to add the balls drop sound. Then I'm going to add the spinning rattle noise sound then the urban park and traffic sound clip. Then lastly, I'm going to add the comical, upbeat music track. You may be asking yourself, why didn't we just place the music file like we would with an image or video layer? The answer is that if you try placing audio file, it will be imported into the document as a smart object and you won't be able to make audio adjustments. You have to use the add audio option through the timeline panel. Pro tip, I always recommend reviewing audio files before importing them to figure out what portion of the audio you will want to use as playback and editing programs can be slow and sound can be distorted. I just walked through the video timeline tool in showed you some techniques and tips for adding your audio to video. Now it's your turn to grab your music assets or use the assets from the class resources and add them to your video file. If you run into any problems along the way, feel free to post questions in the discussions forum and I'll be happy to help you out. In the next class, I will share my strategies for adjusting your music to correspond with your visual. 6. Editing Audio: In this lesson, we will edit our audio so it aligns with the video. Before we get started, it's important to think how you want your music to align with the events of the video. For example, if you have an animation of a girl blowing her nose, you would want the sound to correspond with the tissue blowing in the animation. You would also have the volume rise as she blows harder, and fade out as she begins to slow down. Take a moment to think through when you want your sounds to come in, and how long you want them to play. One strategy you can use to help you work through aligning the audio with the video is to focus on aligning the shortest clip to the video and then working your way up to the longest audio clip you have, like bricks of a pyramid. I personally follow this process as it helps to align the short clips first, to better see what adjustments you'll need to make for a clip, that will play the full duration of a video. For example, if you have clips with people talking, you may need to fade in and out the music to multiple points around the talking clips. For my demonstration, I'll start by aligning the ball bounce clip to right before the package hits the floor. Next, I go to the start of the animation to a point when the drone enters the frame, and align the sound as I want to make sure the sound is playing when the viewer would be able to see the drone. If I start it before the drone was visible, it would be confusing to the audience. Next, I'm going to trim my clips to just the parts of the audio that I need for my video. A good example is that the box drop is going to be a very quick sound, so the audio clip will need to be shortened. To trim or shorten a clip, go to the clip you want, hover over one of the edges until you see the trim symbol. Click that edge and drag as needed. As shown here, trimming is going to be useful skill for all projects involving audio, as most of the time, you will need to trim an audio clip to fit your use. Next, I'm going to play through the video till the drone has flown out of frame. I know that I want the audio to no longer play after you stop viewing the drone. I'm going to clip the end of the audio here, and then I'm going to playback a little of the video to make sure everything is aligning as I want. This is a great practice as you may trim too much audio at first, and this practice allows you to catch that and make those corrections. I'm going to quickly trim the end of the music to the end of the video clip. I realized here that there's no action for the last bit of the video, so I want to actually trim the work area in the clips so that they end right after the drone completely exits frame. If you want to set the end of a play area to your current play spot, go to the timeline menu here, and then to the work area, and then set end at playhead as shown here. This is really helpful to quickly adjust the endpoints of the playable area of the timeline. Next, I'm going to trim the urban park and traffic audio clip. This is a great example of why it's helpful to listen to your audio ahead of time and plan out what portion of the audio clip you want. From listening to my clip, I know I want to actually remove a couple of seconds of the start of the clip. As you can see here, as you're dragging the edge of the clip, you'll get this overlay showing the start and duration, which helps me know when I trim down the clip to the point I want. Next, I'm going to show you how to split an audio clip. This technique is so useful for situations where you want to customize parts of an audio clip or you want to split a clip so you are playing part of the clip during one part of the video, and the other part during another. My urban part traffic clip starts out with noises from the city, which is perfect for the city scene, and then later in the clip, add some bird sounds, which I think will be nice for the home scene. In my example, I'm going to split the layer, so I can have the urban noises in the start, and have a brief break as the drone is in between the scenes, and then pick up with the more natural-sounding part of the clip when we get to the home scene. To split a clip, first, I'll select the layer and then click the scissors icon. Now I'm going to move the second part of the clip to the four seconds and fifth frame mark. Then last step is to trim the end of the second audio clip, as I want all my sound to be played during the right moments of time with the action. I don't want my music to just start and stop instantly, as it will sound very jerky. I also don't want all the audio clips to be the same sound level, as then they will all be competing with each other, and maybe hard to hear certain sounds. To avoid that, I'm going to adjust the audio clips' individual volumes, and add fades to them so the sound fades in and out, creating a more seamless audio experience. This step is going to be really helpful, and it's going to help elevate your video projects and help you have a more polished final piece. If you click on a clip and right-click or command and click the clip, that will bring up specific audio clip options. This is going to give you the option to adjust the volume, as well as adjust the fade in and fade out of the audio. This gives you the ability to mute this specific audio clip. I'm going to demonstrate adjusting the volume and fade in and out of my audio clips. I'm adding a fade in and out for all of my audio clips, except the package drops down as that audio clip already has a realistic start and stop, so all the sounds are audible. I will actually go in and reduce the volume of the drone, the music, and the urban part second clip by keeping the city sound and the package drop at a 100 percent. All my sounds are playing at a realistic tone throughout the video, and each sound can be heard. To recap, I walk through several processes for editing and aligning audio to video, and why they will make your audio flow better and sync professionally with your visuals. This included a way for laying out audio clips in your file, as well as methods for trimming and splitting your audio chips. While every video editing program is going to be different, these editing principles can be applied universally to your editing workflow. Now it's your turn. Using the audio files you've added to your files, start to edit your clips and tracks to align your sound up with your visuals. If you run into any problems along the way, feel free to post questions in discussions forum. I'll be happy to help you out. In the next lesson, I will walk you through exporting your project. See you then. 7. Exporting: In this lesson, I will show you how to export your video. There are to ways to export or render your video. You can either go through the Timeline menu, or File menu at the top, each will lead to the same render video pop-up so it's a personal preference, but I would recommend using the Timeline menu over the File menu as it's easier to get to, and fewer steps to export the video. After choosing your preferred way, you will get the render video pop-up. In here, you will want to make sure you have the correct name that you want, as well as selecting the location you want your video be saved to, and then all you have to do is hit that Render button. Now you know how to save out your final project in Photoshop. It's important to mention that every program has different options and steps to export video. Now it's your turn to export your project using your preferred method, and then upload your video to a video platform like YouTube or Vimeo, and copy the link to the video and add it to your project on Skillshare. Then I'll see you in the final lesson to wrap up this class. 8. Wrap Up: Congratulations on finishing this course. I really appreciate you taking the time to take my class and I hope that the exercises we walk through and the discussions that we've had have opened up some new ideas for you to integrate into your video creation practice. Through these lessons, we have discussed how to craft the audio story, how to source audio for your videos, and how it bring together the sound and video. Altogether, this gives you the basic techniques in ways to approach using sound in your video, which you can use in other video projects and with other video editing programs. I'm very excited to see what you create, so be sure to post your work to the project section of this class. Sharing your project with the Skillshare community is a great way to help inspire each other and continue growing. You can also find more of my work over on Instagram at isaiahcardonakc. If you're posting a project on there, feel free to tag me in your post or use hashtag Isaiah Cardona so I can also see it. If you would like more classes to help you learn motion graphics, then follow me on Skillshare and check out some of my other classes on motion design and animation. Thanks again for taking this class. I really appreciate you taking the time to learn these skills with me and I hope to see you again in another class. See you later.