Essential time-saving Photoshop tips

One of the hallmarks of mastery is the ability to get more done with less effort. It can be a treat to watch somebody work with a tool or do an activity that they are truly fluent in – no superfluous movement or wasted energy.

In this article, I’ll share 5 shortcut tips and tricks that I use every day to streamline my workflow. The goal of these shortcuts is to allow editing to progress in a smooth, uninterrupted fashion. Whenever I need to click into a menu – or, worse, dock my stylus in order to type something with both hands – it’s like hitting a speed bump. It kills my productivity.

To maintain efficiency, I keep one hand on the mouse or tablet stylus as much as possible, and use the other hand to update tools, settings or contexts via keyboard shortcuts – I call this “fluent editing.”

Here are the shortcuts that I find most useful, along with tips for combining them in a fluent manner. While many of these shortcuts and techniques may be familiar to you already, they can be combined to minimize context switches for maximum efficiency.

1. Scrubby zoom

While using zoom (magnifying glass) tool: click and drag left or right

Scrubby zoom is a feature that some users find annoying until they start using the “fluent editing” (one hand to mouse / one hand to hotkey) approach. To use this feature: while using the zoom tool, click and hold the mouse button, then drag the mouse left to zoom out or right to zoom in – no extraneous clicks and no extra keys to zoom out. Just click and drag until you reach the appropriate zoom level.

2. Scrubby hand

In any tool, hold space bar and drag the image

I don’t know if this feature has a proper name – I call it “scrubby hand” since it feels similar to scrubby zoom to me. Regardless of the name, it’s incredibly useful when you’re working on an image at a high zoom level.

Rather than mousing over to the scroll bars or switching to the hand tool to pan your image, just hold down the space bar – your pointer will turn into the “hand” tool icon; you can now simply click anywhere in the image (while continuing to hold the space bar) and move the visible part of the image, similarly to how you would move an image on a tablet or smartphone.

3. Temporary tools

Hold any tool shortcut key

Let’s say that you’re using the paint brush tool to paint on a layer mask, and you want to change zoom level before continuing to paint.

The non-fluent approach requires 3 steps:

  1. Type (z) to switch to the magnifying glass
  2. Use scrubby zoom to change the zoom level
  3. Type (b) to go back to the brush tool

It’s even worse if you’re not yet familiar with the tool hotkeys.

The fluent approach: just hold down z and drag to use scrubby zoom.  When you release z, Photoshop will automatically return you to the brush tool.

This technique works for temporarily changing to any tool, not just zoom. Simply hold down the hotkey for the tool you wish to use temporarily.

4. New layer

With options dialogue: Ctrl+Shift+N / Cmd+Shift+N
Without options dialogue: Ctrl+Shift+Alt+N / Cmd+Shift+Option+N

On many of the images I edit, this is the first command I execute. I often start with a new empty layer for baseline retouching. I use a non-destructive editing workflow, which means that I make changes to my images in a way that allows the edits to be tweaked or reverted at a later time. This is useful for situations where you learn a better way of doing something, or the capabilities of the software you’re using improve.

For example, after I started using the color blending mode to adjust odd skin tones, I was able to go back and update photos on which I’d originally used a less-effective combination of hue/saturation and curves adjustment layers, but I didn’t have to start from scratch.

5. Merge stamp visible

Ctrl+Alt+Shift+E / Cmd+Shift+Option+E

Once you have a pile of layers and adjustment layers, it is sometimes necessary to composite them together (e.g., to apply a filter to the overall image). This command is a one-handed shortcut that creates a new layer comprised of all of the currently visible layers in your layer stack. I don’t know how I survived before learning this one.


It takes some practice to stop mousing over to tool palettes and use the keyboard hotkeys instead. Investing the effort pays off in the long run – you can save a lot of time while editing images by getting to know the hotkeys for actions you perform frequently, and getting into the habit of leaving your non-primary hand on the keyboard so that you can access those hotkeys quickly. These tips are time-savers that I use every day, and I hope they are useful for you as well!

Basic Photo Restoration: How to Restore Old Photos Using Photoshop

Do you know that strange red tint on all of the photos in your family albums? It has a name – it’s called a color cast. Most old pictures have one, and if you can and upload them to Photoshop, you can easily do away with it.

Essentially, though, what Matt means is that to get the best results you’ll close the gaps between the edge of the range for each of the channels: red, blue, and green. It’s a simple technique that just requires a little slide of the mouse. And even though it’s a simple action, the results are impressive

Steps to Restoring Old Photos in Photoshop

To enhance your old photos, we’ve listed down several steps you should follow. These steps apply to digital photo restoration using the latest version of Adobe Photoshop.

  1. Digitize your old photo.
  2. Open the image in Photoshop.
  3. Crop, straighten, or rotate the image.
  4. Make the necessary adjustments to your image.
  5. Apply a filter to reduce noise.
  6. Save the newly restored image.

Digitize your old photo

a scanned film photo of a family


The first step is to scan the photo to get a digital copy. You can use a regular photo scanner, take a photo using a digital camera, or use a scanner app on your smartphone.

Whichever method you use, make sure that it will yield a large, high-quality copy of the photo to make it easier to work with.

Open the image in Photoshop

Next, open the digital image in Photoshop. Then create a second copy of the image. You’ll want to keep an original copy for reference, so you’ll be working on altering the second copy.

How to create a duplicate copy of an image in Photoshop:
  • Select a layer in the Layers panel.
  • Drag the layer to the Create a New Layer button, or select the Duplicate Layer option from the Layers menu or Layers panel menu.
  • If you’ve selected the Duplicate Layer option, give your layer a name, and click OK.

Crop, straighten, or rotate the image

Before you can begin making any adjustments, make sure that you’re working with a clean, properly oriented image.

If there’s any unwanted white space (or any kind of space that shouldn’t be there) around the edges, you can simply crop all of that out.

How to crop your image:
  • Click on the Crop icon on the toolbox (on the left side of Photoshop’s default workspace).
  • Draw a new cropping area or drag the edges of the crop box to the desired positions.
  • Press Enter (Windows) or Return (Mac OS) to crop the image.

f the scan of your image is a bit crooked, you can straighten it out using the crop tool.

How to straighten a crooked image:
  • Click on the Crop icon, then click the Straighten icon on the toolbar.
  • Drag a line along a horizontal or vertical element in the photo.
  • Let go of the mouse so that Photoshop can rotate your image and crop its uneven edges.
  • Once you are satisfied, press Enter. Photoshop will also remove the excess image if you’ve enabled the Delete Cropped Pixels checkbox.
How to rotate your image:

Photoshop CC lets you rotate your image through its Image Rotation setting or the Transform function in the Edit menu.

To rotate your image using the Image Rotation option:

  • Click on Image in the taskbar.
  • Select Image Rotation.
  • Choose your preferred rotation.

To rotate your image using the Edit menu:

  • Click on your image to select it.
  • Click on the Edit menu, then choose Transform.
  • Choose your preferred rotation.

Make the necessary adjustments to your image

There are two ways to do this step in Photoshop: adjusting your image’s color and fixing its damaged spots.

Make color correction adjustments.

Old photos are usually faded, but if you want to improve the tone, color, contrast, and overall vibrancy of the photo, Photoshop can do these, too.

If you select Image from the taskbar, you’ll see a drop-down menu that will pretty much give you everything you need for some basic color correction. Under Adjustments, you’ll see three options: Auto Tone, Auto Contrast, and Auto Color. Try these out first and see if these automatic corrections deliver your desired effect. If not, you can do these corrections manually.

It’s a good idea to learn how to read the histogram so that you can make highly accurate adjustments. From there, select Adjustments and use the different functions under this menu option. There are basic adjustments such as Brightness, Contrast, Exposure, and Vibrance, or the slightly more in-depth adjustment tools such as Curves and Levels.

Depending on the condition of your photo, the best thing to do is to play around with these different adjustment tools to get the right tone, color, and contrast.

If your image has a color cast, here are a few steps to follow to correct the effect:

  • Highlight your duplicate layer, then click on the adjustment layers icon under the Layers panel.
  • Choose Levels from the adjustment layer options.
  • To adjust your photo’s RGB (red, green, and blue) levels, click on the dedicated tab. A RGB menu will appear.
  • Click on any of the color options, then bring the white and black sliders to the histogram’s upward line.
  • Once you’re done adjusting the RGB levels, click on the Layers panel to exit.
  • Highlight your duplicate layer and your adjustment layer, then right click on the area and select Merge Layers to combine both layers.
Fix the damaged spots.

This part is where it gets a bit tricky—you’ll definitely need an eye for detail and a whole lot of patience! If there are any scratches, stains, and other unwanted marks on your photo, you can use a few beginner-friendly spot correction Photoshop tools: the Spot Healing Brush, the Patch Tool, and the Clone Stamp.

How to use the Spot Healing Brush:
  • Click on the Spot Healing Brush icon (the one that looks like a band-aid) on the toolbox.
  • Choose your desired brush size in the options bar.
  • Choose between the Proximity Match, Create Texture, or Content-Aware Type options. Any of these options should work for what you’re trying to achieve.
  • Select or deselect the Sample All Layers option if you want to sample data from all layers or one active layer.
  • Click on the spot you want to fix, or click and drag the brush over imperfections in a larger area.
How to use the Patch Tool:
  • Select the Patch Tool.
  • Select the area you want to repair by dragging, then select Source in the options bar. You can also select your sample area by dragging and selecting the Destination option.
  • Adjust your selection by using the Shift-drag, Alt-drag/Option-drag, or Alt+Shift-drag/Option+Shift-drag combinations.
  • Select Transparent if you want to extract a transparent texture from your sample area, or deselect it to put the sample area over the target area.
  • Adjust the Diffusion slider.
  • Place the pointer inside your selection, then drag it to your sample or patch area.

Apply a filter to reduce noise

You can’t magically get rid of the dust and scratches with just a press of a button—you’ll have to do it manually. However, you can make that job easier by using Photoshop’s Filter functions to reduce some of that unwanted noise.

Save the newly restored image

Once you’re happy with the image, delete the unedited layer (the original reference layer) or right-click the edited layer and select Flatten Image (make sure that your edited layer is on top). After that, just follow the steps below to save your photo.

Photography business

Tips For Developing Your Photography Business

It’s the drive to showcase their innovation or helping people eternalize what is special to them, that tempt photographers to turn their passion into a business. If you are running a photography business or plan for a photography startup, it pays to know what can be done to ameliorate your enterprise so you can establish a firm foothold in the photography industry

#1. Act Like A Professional

Growing your photography business requires a lot of hard work, determination, commitment, and enthusiasm. Professionals follow through on their allegiance and deliver their products and services on time. They show up on time and always deliver great customer experiences.

They answer their phone on time, return calls and are easily accessible. Mentor young people and provide internships with professionalism, this is the only way to generate good reviews and future business.

#2. Write A Business Plan

A successful business begins with building a perfect plan, a design draft that will guide you in creating a strong foundation of your firm which is a solid support. The simple act of writing down your vision and working on it accordingly gives you a outline of how the business will operate.

It is very helpful to assure that your idea is conveyed more effectively and all your customers are on the same page. You will find a clear path to your destination, if you set your business goals and work according to that outline .

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#3. Have A Professional Looking Website

Once you’ve come up with a idea to start a photography business, you’ll need an attractive and impressive website as your website is like your store front. So, it’s best to take guidance from professional web designers as they have a huge amount of innovative and creative photo website design templates that better suits your photographic style.

Your website is like a showcase of your work which your customers will visit to see your sample work. It should include samples of your work and a page that describes your background and experience. It’s a good idea to list your pricing details. It will help in managing customer expectations and keeps people from trying to negotiate for a lower price. Contact information is also mandatory.

Your photography website is the most powerful tool to propagandize your brand to a global audience. In today’s digital era, usually most of the clients will find out about your business and interact with you through your website.

#4. Engage In Social Media Marketing

Social media is the best platform for promoting your brand especially when it comes to photography so you must add a social icons at the top of your website. Social media is a best platform where you can join social media groups and online forums that are involved in your industry so that they can help you in promoting your business and reach new heights of success. Apart from posting your own work, you can hire a graphic designer to create amazing social media content for your business.

You can also learn a lot from fellow photographers and other experts of your industry and you can use that knowledge to further take your business to next level. You’ll be astonished to know that many people in the social groups are actually eager to know you. Introduce yourself, share your working experience, give some useful photography marketing tips, provide exhilarated opinions, or connect with industry experts all over the word.

#5. Expand Your Network

Expand your network of customers, experienced photographers, and other people engaged in the field of photography. They offer indispensable help in the form of knowledge, constructive advice, referrals, and much more. You can expand your network by attending valuable seminars, joining photography networking events and photo shoots.

You can also grandstand your work by organizing a photo exhibition, whether on your own or with a group of photographer friends. Exhibitions attract a lot of forthcoming clients and professionals whom you could add to your network.

#6. Clearly Define Your Service

A mistake that most embryonic photographers make is that they fail to identify themselves as experts in one circumstantial niche. Always Remember that potential clients need to know the type of photographer you are, your photography style, what kind of best mirrorless cameras you use and your ability to aspire their specific needs.

#7. Come Up With A Pricing Plan

The most challenging question for every photographer is- How much will you charge for your services? Especially when you have just started your Photography business. Figure out the worth of one hour of your time.

For every hour you spend while shooting, you’ll spend about three hours editing the photographs. You need to include all the factors in your pricing. Of course, your pricing pattern is your own, this is just a way to come up with a starting point. Therefore, Clearly state the price of your service in your photography to avoid any future complications.

Wedding photography business

How to Start a Wedding Photography Business In Pakistan

As it is all the more a known fact that with the passage of time the demand and popularity of the photo shoot business is getting high in success and popularity! Almost each single wants to know that how you can easily get on with the starting of the business on the easiest terms that is related with the photo shoot.

Well, when establishing the photoshoot business, there are so many minor and major things that you do need to keep in mind. You should know that whether you want to start the business from home or from the assistance of the team members. This is an important question to learn it all through!

Right below we will be explaining out with some of the important guidelines which you should be discussing around when it comes to the start up of the photography wedding business in Pakistan.

Types of Services You Will Offer

You should know the varied types of the services that are to be given away in the wedding photography business. Almost all the business sectors and so as the individuals are always in want to get the photographer services as meant best for so many of the reasons. Business sectors do want to take the services of the photographers just for the purpose of promotion of their products for the side of the brochures. Most of the time realtors also take the services of the photographers too as where they can find it easy to sell their homes.

Create a Business Plan

In the next step, you should be heading on with the creation of the business plan to bring the development aspects in it. You should be adding the business plan with the features of the services you are offering, details about your business and financial aspects too. You should be highlighting your mission and vision too. You should not be missing out giving a quick timeline details about the pricing structure as well. This is an important thing to look out for!

Create an Attractive Business Name

Now it’s time to give a name to your business! Always remember that your brand name is very much important in order to make your business identified inside the marketplaces.  You should be setting it with something that is really inspiring and should be targeting the audience too.

Start Establishing your Business Officially

In the next step it’s time when you should be thinking about giving your business with the establishment of being official on terms. As you are all set with the name of the business and so as its settings, you should obtain business license or permits as required by your city or county. You should be clear much in giving your brand name with the legal registration inside the marketplaces.

So, these have been few of the important and main points which you probably do need to keep in mind when it comes to the successful establishment of the photography business in Pakistan.

Follow the guidelines carefully! All the Best!

photography gears Pakistan

Photography as a Business in Pakistan

Starting your own photography business is a great way to add a second income or a main income if you work hard. While the photography market in Pakistan is competitive, many photography business owners have been able to find their niche and build a sustainable career. Like most creative endeavors, you need to balance your passion for photography with real business skills in order to be successful.

To build and grow your business, you need both raw talent and a knack for marketing. You should continually be working to improve your craft and evolving your product and work consistently on your own branding, online marketing, and people skills. Without the two, the results will likely just be an expensive hobby rather than a viable full-time business.

The Cost to Start a Photography Business in Pakistan

The cost varies greatly as a photographer whether you’re starting out or looking to grow your existing business into something larger.  

According to professional photographer Austen Diamond, “building slow and smart” will help you stay nimble. Allow the organic growth of your business to fund gear improvements, and avoid debt if possible, he said.

You should make budget for these checklist:

  • Two cameras
  • Multiple lenses
  • Two flashes
  • Multiple memory cards
  • Two external drives
  • Computer or laptop with sufficient memory
  • Website
  • Business licenses:
  • Business cards

Optional expenses:

  • Business training
  • Photography workshops and classes
  • Stylish camera bags and straps
  • Second computer
  • Printed marketing materials
  • Studio and office space

Other things you’ll need to do (that may be free or low-cost):

  • Market your business via social media (Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram, to start)
  • Create your business name and logo
  • Research the best business structure (LLC, S corporation, or other)
  • Acquire sales tax permit and employer identification number (EIN)
  • Set up business bank accounts
  • Find a way to manage client contact information and emails
  • Choose a spreadsheet and scheduling solution (Google Docs is free)
  • Establish a referral program

1. Choose your Photography Startup Idea

Every successful startup needs a unique business idea. But photography is a broad niche. So, if you want to start a successful photography business with no money and experience?

You will have to explore several best photography business ideas and target the specific niche.  Here are some photography startup ideas you can think about.

  • Wedding Photography Business
  • Lifestyle Photography
  • Tourism Photography
  • Pet Photography Business
  • News Photography
  • Aerial Photography
  • Real Estate Photography
  • Photography in Trade Shows
  • Stock Photography
  • Freelance Photography

After selecting your specific niche, now you will have to name your startup company. In order to name your startup, you will have to do some brainstorming and think about unique photography business names.

Explore different photography business name ideas and select the right one that exactly matches with your niche.

2. Creating a Photography Business Plan

For many people, writing a business plan is a complete waste of time. But several biz professionals have already recommended that startup business planning always helps the aspiring entrepreneurs to set the specific goals and objectives.

With the help of startup plan, you can easily fulfill startup dream and reach the final destination. All you need is to write a one-page startup business plan and answer the main questions such as your

  • Goals and objectives
  • Strengths, weakness, skills and experience
  • Targeted ideal clients or customers
  • growth hacking strategies
  • Financials, startup expenses, and revenues

Don’t waste your time in writing a 5-year detailed business plan. Just go for a 1-page photography business plan and cover the main things.

3. Choose your Business Location

Right business location always plays an important role in business growth and sales. If you want to start this business in your local area then you will have to select your specific location so people can easily find and hire you.

Alternatively, if you have a low budget and can’t afford an office, then you can use the internet to start a business online.

To get potential clients, you will have to join social media sites and freelancing platforms. Furthermore, you can also start a website/blog to showcase your skills and attract customers online.

4. Get Photography Business License

In some countries, registration and licensing are mandatory for some businesses. Registration or getting a license is also a good way to secure a startup business.

If you want to secure your business and get started legally, you will have to register your sole proprietor business. All you need is to visit your local registration office, submit your startup details and get the license.

5. Startup Financing

Financing is a bitter reality of every startup business. To run your business successfully, you will have to do some financial planning. Calculate how much money you need to start your business. For example, calculate your projected

  • Expenses
  • Sales
  • Revenues for next twelve months

If you have enough funds then it’s great. But if not think about how much money is required and how you will raise it?

Writing a Financial plan summary will help you to manage and control expenses in the initial startup phase. You can also track your financial performance on regular basis. If you find something wrong. You can fix it easily.

How to Promote Your Business in Pakistan?

To some extent, promoting a photography business is little bit a difficult task. But thanks to the social media sites, you can promote your startup to thousands of online audience.

Join these sites especially Instagram, Facebook and Twitter and create official pages to promote your startup. Further, you can also promote your photography business via sharing wedding invitation with photos.

After following all the aforementioned steps, hope so you will be able to launch your new photography business easily. Launch it and track your progress.

photography business

Thinking To Start Photography Business?

If you are thinking about starting a photography business, then first of all congratulations you have made a good decision but you have probably got a lot of questions in your mind.

What are the pros and cons of the photography business? Is this career worth the work? How much money can you make? What equipments you need? Should you specialize in a specific type of photography? How can you run it successfully to get clients? There are lot of aspects to cover and things to consider.

If you love taking pictures and you are willing to start it as a career then it is possible to earn a good out of your passion. In this article, we will help you go through how to start a photography business step-by-step.

Advantages & Disadvantages

5 Advantages of Starting a Photography Business

1. Make Money from Your Fascination

If you choose to start a photography business, you will have the opportunity to spend a lot of your time doing the thing you are passionate for i.e. taking photographs.

2. Find Meaning in Your Work

Photographers; job is to capture and save special moments forever with their clients. Whether the subject is family portraits ,nature, sports, weddings, or etc, photographers will find much meaning in their work.

3. Meeting New People

If you are a social bee then this job is fun. Whether you meet people at studio, wedding or on location while taking wildlife images, photography can be a good way to meet lots of new people daily. Most studios even have active meet up groups, where they meet regularly to socialize.

4. Flexibility

Unlike a traditional nine-to-five job, running a photography business can provide a lot of flexibility in work as you are in complete control of your work schedule. This makes it easier for you to prioritize your work and personal life balance like childcare, vacations, and time.

5. Travel Opportunities

Are you the person loves to travel and experience new places every now and then? Traveling is a regular part of photographers work.

5 Disadvantages of Starting a Photography Business

1. Expensive Equipment

Photography business needs equipments that need investment. Depending on which equipment you already have, it can be costly to purchase everything from start if you need to start a photography business.

2. Fickle Customers

Some clients can be difficult to handle or drain your energy. Also, some events can be burdenized and bring out the worst of people. Example, if you decide to cover weddings, you may come across the wedding “bridezilla.”

3. Unsociable Working Hours

Where time flexibility is there, but in many photography events happen out of normal working hours like during the evenings and weekends.

4. Inconsistent Income

Any small business does not promise consistent income, and it takes time to build a regular flow of income and work. In starting, you will likely experience dips and surges in your income.

5. Passion can be Spoiled

As we know, business and hobbies differ in many ways. Converting  your hobby into a business can take the fun out of it, and photography could end up feeling like pressurized and tedious work.

The planning stages

1. Write a photography business plan

Any entrepreneur will guide you that you need to organize your thoughts on paper. This detailed document will describe your roadmap, what your business is and how it will be successful. It also breaks down items like expenses,  cash flow, investors, and competitors.

2. Assess your photography business startup costs

As part of photography business planning process, you will also need to calculate your startup costs. What are the essentials that you will be needing before you can formally and officially launch your business?

Also, do you plan to start with a particular studio space or work from home? If you need dedicated space, then investigate rental properties and figure out the expenses accordingly.

3. Secure startup funds

You may not need to borrow money from your circle if you have enough money in the bank account to start your business successfully. But many entrepreneurs need financial assistance. People who are starting a business for the first time initially ask for financial aid.

4. Buy photographic gear

When it comes to the camera or photographic gear, you will need two cameras, two flashes, two high-quality lenses, and Photoshop and Lightroom for editing the images.

5. Create your own brand

You need to create brand of yourself apart from others. Start by identifying your passion and target market. Do you prefer to do wedding shots? Newborns? Senior portraits for high wildlife photography? 


You will have ups and downs with any new start-up business, but if you are passionate about your work to give each customer a great and new experience, you will definitely gain a solid reputation as a go-to photographer of people.

For more guidance on this topic or camera gear please contact us at: [email protected] or call: +923122951169.