Fundamentals of Photoshop: Getting Started with the Interface, Tools, and Layers (Photoshop I)

Meg Lewis, Designer at Ghostly Ferns

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20 Videos (1h 16m)
    • Trailer

    • Intro to Resolution

    • Resolution & Designing for Print vs. Web

    • Intro to Workspaces

    • Workspace

    • Intro to Tools Exploration

    • Toolbar

    • Intro to Windows

    • Windows

    • Intro to Layers

    • Layers

    • Intro to File Types

    • File Types

    • Intro to Canvas Size

    • Canvas Size

    • Intro to Zooming

    • Zoom

    • Intro to File Naming

    • File Naming

    • Collage Project


About This Class

In collaboration with Adobe, we're excited to announce a free 5-class series on Adobe Photoshop CC for Beginners that'll run from March 1 – March 31st 2015. Each week, you’ll create projects in Photoshop and submit your work on Skillshare for feedback from your classmates, pushing your skills even further.

If you complete all course work before the final deadline, you’ll be eligible to receive a free voucher to take the Adobe Certified Associate exam in Photoshop (a $95 value). The top student chosen by the class teaching assistants (TAs) will also be awarded 1 free year of Creative Cloud membership. Judging will be based on quality of projects submitted and student participation.

This is the first class in the 5-class series.

View the syllabus for more details and a list of the key dates.

Important Notice

A trial of Adobe Photoshop CC or Creative Cloud membership will be needed to get the most out of this course. If you’re not a Creative Cloud member we recommend that you download a free 30-day trial of Adobe Photoshop CC when you start the course.

→ Click here to start your 30-day free trial of Adobe Photoshop CC

→ Click here to purchase a Creative Cloud membership


Welcome to the first lesson in this five-part series of Photoshop classes. Throughout this series we'll cover everything you need to know to become a Photoshop pro. Knowing how to use Photoshop is an incredibly useful skill and is commonly used by anyone from photographers to graphic designers and illustrators. It is such a robust program that can be extremely overwhelming. I'll do my best to make you feel comfortable while I teach you the ins and outs.

This series is perfect if you're slightly familiar with yet aren't completely confident in your Photoshop skills. If you have never opened Photoshop and are feeling brave; this class is great for you too! It’s absolutely fine if you’ve never opened Photoshop until now.

Photoshop is such an exciting program as it allows you to produce so many kinds of beautiful things. Anything from beautiful business cards and stationery to websites tailored just for you can be created in Photoshop. The goal of this series is to get you to expert level so that your imagination can go straight to Photoshop’s canvas

What You'll Learn
In this class (Photoshop I) you'll learn the fundamentals of Photoshop's interface. I'll help to show you exactly what you're dealing with when you first launch Photoshop. Topics in this class include:

  • Resolution. We’ll learn what resolution is and what it means. Together, we’ll take a look at various compositions and devices and learn the standard resolution size for those formats. I’ll give a special emphasis on resolution sizes for web and mobile, as those dimensions are always very specific.
  • Photoshop Workspaces. We’ll open Photoshop together and take a peek around to see what’s going on under the Photoshop hood. I’ll show you exactly what you’re looking at so that you feel comfortable as we move forward.
  • Tools and the Photoshop Toolbar. I’ll briefly show you the handiest of tools and give you a few toolbar tips and tricks along the way. We’ll study tool options and bonus surprises that each tool has.
  • Photoshop Windows. There are so many Photohop windows that it’s hard to know which ones you’ll need. I’ll show you around the default windows, which are generally the most important, and tell you how they work. We’ll specifically learn about the color window, the type windows, the layers window, and a few others.
  • Layers. Layers are such an important part of Photoshop. I’ll show you everything you need to know about layers to become a Photoshop pro. We’ll create layers, duplicate layers, and get them all organized into groups! It may boring, but if you’re an organization fiend like I’ll love it.
  • Saving Files and File Types. There are a lot of ways to save your Photoshop files. I’ll do my best to show you the most important ways to do so. We’ll learn what exactly a PSD file is. How to save PDFs in Photoshop and the various image types that you can save to.
  • Adjusting your Canvas Size. Your Photoshop canvas is like a window into the soul of your project. And it can be quite frustrating when the size of your canvas is holding you back. I’ll show you how to adjust your canvas size most effectively and let you know when the right time to adjust the size of your canvas is.
  • The Zoom Tool. I’ll show you the quick n’ dirty tips and tricks of the zoom tool and how to zoom most effectively.
  • Best File Naming Practices. Knowing how to name your files is incredibly important if you want to keep them organized. It’s easy to haphazardly name your files and not be able to find them again. I’ll show you my favorite methods for naming my files and organizing them into folders.

What You'll Make

At the end of the class you'll be able to apply all of the skills you've learned to make a bold and bright geometric collage. Use color, shapes, and layering to design a truly unique composition.


Required Class Supplies

Adobe Photoshop. If you don’t have the program you can download a 30 day free trial here. All class tutorials are recorded on a Mac using Photoshop via Adobe Creative Cloud. You do not need a Mac or the most recent version of Photoshop to follow along. Most of the tools are consistent across all versions of Photoshop. 

Please note: Photoshop Elements is a limited version of Photoshop and is not recommended for this course.

Other Classes in This Series:

663 of 675 students recommendSee All

Great refresher !
Easy to follow and great for complete beginners to photoshop.
Meg explained everything very simply. She was easy to understand and interesting to listen to. I also really liked the intros to each section. I'm looking forward to taking her other classes!





Meg Lewis

Designer at Ghostly Ferns

Meg Lewis is the owner and designer at Ghostly Ferns, a web design, branding and illustration studio based in New York City. She designs for early-stage startups and small businesses. Meg has personally worked with 60+ companies to establish a visual representation for their product and company culture. Meg founded Ghostly Ferns to spread the message of personable, clean design. She works solely with clients that are passionate and energetic about their product. As a former writer for Apartment Therapy, Meg comes from a blogging background and enjoys educating readers about various topics relating to design. She has taught numerous beginners design one-on-one and small class courses.

As adjunct faculty at Parsons The New School for Design teaching Interaction, Meg has an education background and absolutely love teaching all of my students!