ASK DN: What Photoshop trick do you think more people should know about?

34 points about 1 year ago from Dan S., Product Designer at Prolific

Some personal examples:

-Select a layer, hit cmd+A, and click the center align button will center the layer to the canvas.

-With the eye dropper tool, click anywhere on the canvas and drag off screen to select a color from outside of Photoshop.

-cmd+] takes layer forward, cmd+[ takes backward. cmd+shift+] takes a layer to the front, cmd+shift+[ takes it to the back (I use this way more than I thought I would).

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Julien D., Product Designer

I donn't know if you've heard about this: but this rocked my world...

5 points about 1 year ago Reply

[Dragging a guide + alt] certainly saved me countless trackpad gestures on big screens where I had to go all the way left to grab one.

2 points about 1 year ago Reply
  • Considering your last tip, you can use alt - ] and alt - [ to select instead of move layers. Add shift to select layers

  • CMD-click to select a layer. CMD-ALT-click to select a locked layer.

  • I have made a rename layer / group shortcut. Very handy. Press [tab] to cycle through layers. Combinations of these pages makes it easy to rename / order layers.

  • When working with loads of layers, I CMD-click to select a layer. Press V for move tool. Move them once, and the layer panel will show the layers highlighted. Saves scrolling in the panel, if you get what I mean.

1 point about 1 year ago Reply

There's character & paragraph styles as of CS6 (I believe) and other than not being able to reorganize them in the window, they're great.

Also: Smart Objects; everyone should be into that :)

1 point about 1 year ago Reply
Radu C., UI Designer & co-founder of

Something I started using a lot since CS6 for fine-tuning icons: ?+K is a shortcut to Preferences > General where you can find the "Snap Vector Tools and Transforms to Pixel Grid" checkbox.

If you want to add a raster mask on a shape layer with blending effects, the "Layer Mask Hides Effects" checkbox from Blending Options > Advanced Blending could come in handy and save you some extra work.

ALT + moving the selected layer with the mouse duplicates it but if you also press SHIFT it will constrain the movement of the new layer to the x or y axis

Don't use Strokes on anything rounded if you want pixe-perfect results. They're messy.

This: (Fireworks workflow legacy)

And finally, something I noticed few people know: you can duplicate a layer directly to a new document. No need for drag & drop...

1 point about 1 year ago Reply
Christian B., UX Designer/Developer at Symplicity

Control + Tab: Rotates through open document tabs.

1 point about 1 year ago Reply
Kamil K., Graphic designer

Quickmask mode for isolate shape editing: hit Q when working with path — it'll “lock” your path, so you can click anywhere — you'll not accidentally select other shape layers (not sure if it works in CS6 though)

(I also have a blog post with few more tricks here: )

1 point about 1 year ago Reply
Marc E., Founder at Bjango

I didn't know about that Quickmask trick. That's GREAT. Thank you.

0 points about 1 year ago Reply
Stephan J., Partner/Designer @newnow_

I have a custom shortcut for "Copy Layer Styles" and "Paste Layer Styles" - CMD+Alt+C resp. CMD+Alt+V which comes in handy all the time

0 points about 1 year ago Reply
Dan S., Product Designer at Prolific

Same here, I use it all the time

0 points about 1 year ago Reply

Enable 'Extras' (View > Extras) to show lines like this when you're moving objects:

0 points about 1 year ago Reply

Directly Selecting Layers without having "Auto-select" ticked.

• Cmd + Click = What I call "partial Auto Select". If there are no groups, it selects the object under your cursor, however as mentioned above if there are groups, it selects the group that object is associated with.


• Ctrl + Opt + Cmd + Click = "Full Auto Select" which actually works like ticking the "auto select" tickbox. This means that you can select the individual object even if it's within a group. Obviously, the cursor needs a clear shot at the layer...


Adding "Shift" into the mix allows you to add and remove multiple layers into your selection. Awesome for cleaning up those layers!

This is one of my all-time favourites that I stumbled upon.

0 points about 1 year ago Reply

This is one I posted on the Photoshop Secrets tumblr mentioned in an earlier post. Thought it was worth sharing... It's a huge time-saver and file-cleaner.

0 points about 1 year ago Reply
Pascal G., Freelance Product Designer

I just figured out that you can change the behaviour of what you call partial Auto Select - whether it selects the group or object - by changing it in the drop down ( It also works if you don't have the Auto-Select-Box ticked.

0 points about 1 year ago Reply

Window > New Window for [file.psd] Arrange > 2-up Horizontal/Vertical

Be the devil.

0 points about 1 year ago Reply
Rob H., Designer at We Make Awesome Sh

Select the top layer in a photoshop doc and press CMD+At+Sift+E - This copies all visable layers, flattens them and puts into a new layer. Surprisingly useful!

0 points about 1 year ago Reply

Not sure how common this one is, but filling a layer with foreground/background colour. Cmd+delete or Opt+delete. Use it a ton.

0 points about 1 year ago Reply
Dan S., Product Designer at Prolific

Found some keepers here as well:

0 points about 1 year ago Reply
Drew R., Art Director at BBG

• ALT + Click between layers to create a Clipping Mask! • New Layer + Image>Apply Image to create a screenshot of your canvas as a new layer!

0 points about 1 year ago Reply

Command + Option + Semicolon lets you lock/unlock all the guides on the page. Super useful.

0 points about 1 year ago Reply