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Managing your Photoshop workspace

Hi there and welcome to this tutorial. I’m going to show you some quick and dirty tips on managing your webspace in Photoshop (CS but it also applies to other versions such as the upcoming CS2 and the older ones). We’re gonna go over managing pallettes, saving and resetting them to their defaults, using the file browser and different workspace view modes.

Alrighty, let’s start…

If you double-click on the name of the palette (in our case history) it will minimise it thus saving you precious space on your work area.

You can also combine the pallettes one under the other by dragging one of the pallettes under the other. You will see a thick black line (above on the left) and once you release it (right) it will combine into a grouped pallete set which you can freely move around. Remember that you can minimise the above or below one as needed.

You can of course group several either one-on-one or one-by-one. The combinations are endless.

Once you’re done customizing it to your needs go save it if you change something or if one of the people working on your computer customizes it to his or her preferences. You can also reset the pallettes to their default location from this menu.

Once you choose to save the workspace put the name of it into the dialog and it will then be available on the menu once you click on the save button.

Remember you can also use the pallete dock located at the top right of Photoshop. You can drag and drop the pallettes and store them there. This is useful especially for the huge brushes pallette.

To access the file-browser in Photoshop CS click on the icon highlighted with the dark circle on the top of Photoshop next to the pallette dock. If you click on the icon it brings up the huge image browser dialog. So … you want tricks?

Here’s one:

If you hold down control (command for macs) while clicking on the icon it will open up the browser on the whole screen – hiding the toolbars and pallettes. You can also hide them manually of course by hitting the tab key or shift+tab to hide the pallettes only.

Now on to a bit about the screen modes. This one, the normal one, is commonly used when you open up any file. It’s nice and everything but if you are in need of more screen estate i suggest the two full screen modes:

The first one is called full screen with menu bar – and you can activate it either by hitting the f key from the notmal mode of by clicking the icon in the dark circle on the left (screenshot above)

The last one is the complete full screen. Both are very useful in combination with the pan tool (try it out, you can pan the image silly) and the tab key which hides the pallettes. This will really bring out the maximum screen real estate your monitor has to offer.