Photoshop Beginner Basics Video Tutorial

There are a myriad of video tutorials online that show you how to use Photoshop to perfect skin, clean up unwanted elements, composite images together, color grading, how to create countless special effects, and more. But what if you've literally never used Photoshop and want to learn?

As a retouching educator, if there is one thing I never take for granted, it's that there is always, and I mean always, someone new out there completely alien to Adobe Photoshop, but wanting to learn how to use it for portrait retouching. The thing is, Photoshop is extraordinarily complex in general, but even more so for the uninitiated. Over the years, I have experienced numerous students who had used Photoshop for a short time, attempting retouching methods they heard about but in a wrong (or wholly inefficient) manner, not because they aren't capable of becoming highly skilled in retouching with practice, but simply due to having never been shown the fundamental basics of Photoshop and how they relate to portrait retouching.

Showing someone how to dodge and burn to perfect skin, for example, is an exercise in futility if they don't know what an adjustment layer or masking is. 

To that end, I've pared down the functions of Photoshop into what I believe are the core fundamentals a newbie should know about first, all in a new video tutorial series called "Photoshop Beginner Basics".

The video shown above is the first in the series and reviews the following:

  • What's a layer?
  • What are adjustment layers and why do I need to use them?
  • What are layer masks and how do I use them?
  • What are brushes and why do I need to know?

This video series will continue for the rest of 2019, showcasing what a Photoshop newbie should know first, and slowly leading you in the direction you want to go towards becoming an amazing portrait retoucher. 

Are you a Photoshop neophyte? Let me know in the comments what you feel is your biggest struggle, and I will see what the next videos in the series can do to help demystify Adobe's flagship application for you!

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Larry Wynkoop's picture

I've saved this video to watch later. Thank you so much, I have been looking for something like this for a long time. I can get around in LR pretty well, but PS baffles me. The trouble I have with most tutorials is that the person will say something like "Just grab tool -X- and change it's setting, opacity...." etc and I'm still trying to figure out where the hell I find tool "X". So I do a google search for Photoshop tool "X" and next thing you know it's 3 hours later and I'm so far down the rabbit hole that I forgot what I was trying to learn in the first place! I look forward to watching this series.

Nino Batista's picture

Thanks Larry – the series continues soon!