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Photoshop CC: The Missing Manual by Lesa Snider

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Guides, Grids, and Rulers

Placing all the components of your design in the right spots can be challenging, and if you’re a real stickler for details, close isn’t good enough. This section teaches you how to use Photoshop’s guides, grids, and rulers to get everything positioned perfectly. Adobe calls these little helpers extras, and you access them via the View menu.

Rulers and Guiding Lines

Properly positioning objects on your canvas can be the difference between a basic design and a masterpiece. The quickest way to position and align objects is by drawing a straight line to nestle them against. You can do just that using Photoshop’s nonprinting guides—vertical and horizontal lines you can place anywhere you want (see Figure 3-15).

The easiest way to add guides is to drag ’em into your document, but before you can do that, you need to turn on Photoshop’s rulers by pressing ⌘-R (Ctrl+R); you can also turn them on by choosing View→Rulers. Whichever method you use, the rulers appear on the top and left edges of the document window.

Once you’ve turned rulers on, you can add a guide by clicking either the horizontal or vertical ruler, and then dragging the guide into your document as shown in Figure 3-15 (you won’t see the guide until you start dragging). After that, you can do any of the following:

  • Move the guide by grabbing the Move tool (see Appendix C, online) from the Tools panel or by pressing V, and then dragging the guide to a new position (your cursor turns into a double-sided arrow ...

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