Photoshop Tips for a Faster Workflow

When you aren’t as versed as you want to be with Adobe Photoshop, it may be challenging to actually speed up work but at the same time keep the work’s quality. Since over 25 years from its release, Photoshop has been the go-to software of designers, including our team at MicroCreatives. We have been working on Photoshop, along with other Adobe programs including InDesign, Illustrator, and After Effects, every day that each of us already has a certain technique to be more efficient and to speed workflow without compromising quality.


Same thing happened with Thomas Scholes. In 2015, he challenged himself to create an image a day; and the more he spends time on Photoshop, the more he was able to explore the software and discover new ways to use Photoshop more efficiently. Scholes shares some of his tips on how to save time and also be more proficient in using Photoshop.


Work with a limited palette

Simple shapes and simple places work best as the perfect “primer”. The basic thought behind this tip is to just reuse and not waste any part of your work. Think of the whole process as playing with building toy blocks where you need the small parts to make the bigger picture. Work with simple shapes, placed on simple places to establish a simple yet surprising outcome.


Take advantage of the Clone Source panel

The Clone Source panel has been around since Photoshop CS3 but is often overlooked. Painting using the Clone Source panel actually produces more texture and a variety of strokes; just set the magnification between 300 and 400%. The Clone Source panel allows for a dynamic and instant access and control over the magnification of the cloned source. It also can be used for horizontal and vertical mirroring and rotation.


Use Adobe Bridge

Scholes advises to keep a bulk folder in Adobe Bridge for your work and studies. This is so that you can easily manage your creative assets, allowing you to have a centralized access so you can browse and quickly find something useful. Using Adobe Bridge is also efficient in switching works; when you used up your energy for the day in a certain work, you can easily switch to another work in progress and begin working on it instead, then just go back to the other one when you gain your motivation and energy back.


Explore and even re-explore your work

Keep work fun by playing around to discover and unleash the potential of what you’re working on, as you continue to create. Follow an image’s natural potential even if it deviates from your expectations or goal. That way you may unlock more interesting and exciting outcomes.


Work in greyscale

Play around with the Threshold level to reduce an image to black and white or anywhere in between. The Threshold tool is one of Scholes’s favorite Photoshop tools to experiment with. The Threshold tool lets you make black and white images or just adjust enough to the midpoint mark to make a midtone variety of your work. Play around with the value, hue, and saturation, to make the image’s lights and shadows work for you.


There are many more tips and tricks we can discover in Photoshop to save time in working, and allot the extra time for coming up with and producing more creative concepts. Tell us in the comments below your favorite time-saving Photoshop techniques!