Photoshop can be used for different types of projects from graphic design to digital photography, from basic photo editing to fine art painting. With each new version, Photoshop becomes more powerful and includes more tools. The key to using Photoshop is learning where the tools are located, how they can be customized, and how to set up Photoshop’s interface to suit you.

With so many tools and panels, your screen  can become cluttered. You may prefer to see only some panels and not others. You may also prefer certain tool settings to others. Customizing Photoshop’s menus and tools to work for you makes the program more useful and fun.

Photoshop CS6 adds new options for customizing the interface. You can now select the color of thebackground for viewing your projects. You can simplify your screen and keep only the tools you need available. You can make your own gradients, set up your own shortcuts, and load and save your own brushes. You can set up your workspace with only the panels and the tools you want for one project. You can also set up multiple workspaces, each with different tools for different projects, and then switch between workspaces.

By learning to customize the interface, setting your monitor to reflect more accurate colors, and exploring the range of tools in Photoshop, you not only gain familiarity with the application, you also become more productive as you work through different projects.