Chapter 1. Examining the Photoshop Environment

In This Chapter

  • Starting Photoshop

  • Working with panels

  • Examining the Photoshop desktop

  • Investigating the Menu bar and the Options bar

  • Discovering the new Application bar

As environments go, the Photoshop working environment is pretty cool: as inviting as a landscaped backyard and not nearly as likely to work you into a sweat. Each of the many tools in Photoshop is custom-designed for a specific chore — and chock-full of more options than a Swiss Army knife. When you're familiar with your surroundings, you'll be eager to make like Monet in his garden, surrounded by panels, brushes, buckets of paint, and swatches of color, ready to tackle the canvas in front of you.

Examining the Photoshop Environment

Launching Photoshop and Customizing the Desktop

You start Photoshop just as you launch any other program with Windows or the Mac OS. Like with other programs, you can choose the method you find the easiest and most convenient. In Windows, you can launch programs from the Start menu or an icon on the taskbar. In Mac OS X, you may have a Photoshop icon on the Dock. In either Windows or Mac OS X, you can double-click a Photoshop shortcut or alias icon if you have one on your desktop. Finally, you can double-click an image associated with Photoshop, which then launches Photoshop along with the file.

When you launch Photoshop, the desktop workspace, shown in Figure 1-1, appears. Like the ...

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