Whether it’s your first time in Photoshop or you’ve been at it for years, keyboard shortcuts are sure to save you some serious time in the program. With so many shortcuts to choose from, it’s hard to know exactly which ones you should know about. Especially since you may not actually use some of them.
That’s why I wanted to put together this list of must-know keyboard shortcuts that you will actually use. All of the shortcuts below are broken up into their specific uses. For example, document-related shortcuts, Tool related shortcuts, and more. That way you can easily find the section that’s most applicable to you!
So, let’s get started!
Document Shortcuts In Photoshop
There’s no better place to start than the File Menu. These shortcuts allow you to easily perform the File functions in photoshop without having to access the File Menu. You’ll learn how to create a new document, open a file, save a file, and more, all without accessing the File Menu.
1. New file
Windows: Control + N
Mac: Command + N
Creates a new document in Photoshop.
2. Open a file
Windows: Control + O
Mac: Command + O
Opens an existing file in Photoshop.
3. Browse In Bridge
Windows: Alt + Control + O
Mac: Option + Command + O
This opens Adobe Bridge, making it easy to browse for your files.
4. Open As
Windows: Alt + Shift + Control + O
Mac: Option + Shift + Command + O
You can use this shortcut to open a file in your desired format in Photoshop.
5. Edit in ImageReady
Windows: Shift + Control+ M
Mac: Shift + Command + M
This allows you to access the ImageReady editor and use it to edit your photos.
6. Close file in Photoshop
Windows: Control + W
Mac: Command + W
Close a single file with ease in Photoshop using this shortcut.
7. Close All
Windows: Alt + Control + W
Mac: Option + Command + W
This allows you to close all the opened files in your Photoshop session.
8. Close and Go To Bridge
Windows: Shift + Control + W
Mac: Shift + Command + W
You can close your files and open the Bridge at the same time using this shortcut.
9. Save a file in Photoshop
Windows: Control + S
Mac: Command + S
Save your work using this quick and well-known shortcut.
10. Save As
Windows: Shift + Control + S
Mac: Shift + Command + S
Save your work and choose the desired file type with this shortcut.
Tools Shortcuts In Photoshop
Photoshop has a number of tools that you can use to perform a variety of tasks. While working, you’ll need to access them to carry out various functions such as painting, zooming, erasing, and more. Here’s a list of keyboard shortcuts to quickly access Photoshop’s tool while working:
11. Move Tool (Pointer) – V
Allows you to move a selection or layer.
12. Object Selection Tool – W
This allows you to select an object or part of an object in an image.
13. Rectangular Marquee Tool (Select Tool) – M
You use the rectangular marquee tool to create rectangular selections of any size.
14. Lasso Tool – L
The Lasso Tool allows you to create free form selections.
15. Eyedropper – I
The eyedropper tool samples color from an image.
16. Crop Tool – C
Trims or expands the edge of an image. Learn how to crop in Photoshop here.
17. Eraser – E
Erases an image by changing the pixels to the background layer or making them transparent.
18. Shape Tool – U
Allows you to draw rectangles, ellipses, polygons, and custom shapes which are created as a shape layer.
19. Text Tool – T
The text tool enables you to create text in Photoshop.
20. Brush – B
Used to paint custom brush strokes.
21. History Brush – Y
Allows you to restore parts of an image to prior states.
22. Spot Healing Brush – J
Used to remove blemishes and marks.
23. Gradient Tool – G
Used to create a gradual blend between colors.
24. Path Selection Tool – A
Allows you to select a whole path.
25. Hand Tool – H
Used to pan over different areas of an image.
26. Rotate View – R
Allows you to rotate the view of an image.
27. Pen Tool – P
Used to make or change paths or shapes with anchor points and handles.
28. Clone Stamp – S
Allows you to paint with pixels from another part of the image.
29. Dodge – O
Used to lighten areas of an image.
30. Zoom Tool – Z
Magnifies or reduces the view of an image.
31. Default Foreground & Background Colors – D
Restores the foreground and background colors to their default state, black, and white.
32. Switch Foreground & Background Colors – X
Allows you to switch between the foreground and background colors.
33. Edit in Quick Mask Mode – Q
Allows you to quickly make selections and modify existing ones.
34. Change Screen Mode – F
Used to easily toggle between the three Photoshop screen modes.
Brush Tool Shortcuts In Photoshop
The Brush Tool (B) is one of the most important tools in Photoshop. Whether you’re doing digital painting, photo editing, or even graphic design, you’ll be using the brush tool. Here are some shortcuts to help you better master the Brush Tool in Photoshop.
35. Previous or Next Brush Style
Windows & Mac: , or .
This allows you to easily swap between brush styles without having to access the Brush Tool’s menu.
36. Choose The First or Last Brush Style Used
Windows & Mac: Shift + , or Shift + .
This shortcut makes it easy to switch to the first or the last brush style you used during your session.
37. Toggle Airbrush Option
Windows: Shift + Alt + P
Mac: Shift + Option + P
Allows you to easily toggle on and toggle off the airbrush option for the brush tool.
38. Show/Hide Brush panel
Windows & Mac: F5
Easily access Photoshop’s brush panel by tapping the F5 key.
Windows & Mac: ] or [
When you’re working, you rarely ever need one brush side. Increase and decrease your brush size with ease using the ] or [ keys.
Windows & Mac: Shift + F5
Fill a layer with color by holding the Shift key and tapping the F5.
Photoshop History & Edit
Nothing is more sacred than the undo button. As many creatives say, “Control/Command+ Z is your best friend” and they’re right. But it’s not the only great shortcut in Photoshop that can make things easier for you. Read on to see the shortcuts you’ll need to streamline your design and editing process in Photoshop.
Windows: Control + Z
Mac: Command + Z
Allows you to revert the last action taken.
42. Step Forward
Windows: Shift + Control + Z
Mac: Shift + Command + Z
This allows you to redo an action that was previously reverted.
43. Step Backward
Windows: Alt + Control + Z
Mac: Option + Command + Z
Enables you to revert multiple prior actions taken during a session.
44. Free Transform
Windows: Control + T
Mac: Command + T
Allows you to apply transformations to an image. These include transformations include rotate, skew, scale, distort, and perspective.
Windows: Shift+ Control + F
Mac: Shift + Command + F
You can use this shortcut to fade the effects of an adjustment or filter that you applied to your image.
Windows: Control + X
Mac: Command + X
This simple shortcut allows you to cut an image or object in your image to paste elsewhere in your document.
Windows: Control + C
Mac: Command + C
This well-known shortcut allows you to copy an image or an object in your image to your clipboard for pasting.
48. Copy Merged
Windows: Shift + Control + C
Mac: Shift + Command + C
As you know, Photoshop works with layers, the copy merged function copies all the elements from a selection from all present layers, not just the active one.
Windows: Control + V
Mac: Command + V
Another well-known shortcut, this one allows you to paste the copied/cut objects.
50. Paste Into
Windows: Shift + Control + V
Mac: Shift + Command + V
This is a special type of pasting in Photoshop which allows you to paste a copied selection into another image o another part of your image as a new layer.
Layer Shortcuts In Photoshop
Layers are everything in Photoshop. Mastering layers is a key step in becoming a Photoshop Master. Here are the shortcuts you need to know to help you become a Layer Master.
51. Create New Layer
Windows: Shift + Control + N
Mac: Shift + Command + N
Create a new layer with ease with this shortcut.
52. Duplicate a Layer
Windows: Hold Alt and drag
Mac: Hold Option and drag
When you want to duplicate a layer, hold down the Alt/Option key, then click and drag the object on the layer. This will duplicate the layer.
53. New Layer via Copy
Windows: Control + J
Mac: Command + J
Copy the contents of a selection onto a new layer with this shortcut.
54. New Layer via Cut
Windows: Shift + Control + J
Mac: Shift + Command + J
This shortcut allows you to cut the contents of a selection onto a new layer.
55. Create/Release Clipping Mask
Windows: Alt + Control + G
Mac: Option + Command + G
You can use this layer to quickly create or release a clipping mask.
56. Group Layers
Windows: Control + G
Mac: Command + G
Group your layers with ease with this simple shortcut.
57. Ungroup Layers in Photoshop
Windows: Shift + Control + G
Mac: Shift + Command + G
If you’ve grouped your layers and want to ungroup them, then this is the shortcut to use.
58. Bring Layer to The Front
Windows: Shift + Control + ]
Mac: Shift + Command + ]
This puts the selected layer at the top of the layer panel.
59. Bring a Layer Forward
Windows: Control + ]
Mac: Command + ]
Easily shift a layer upward with this shortcut.
60. Send a Layer Backward
Windows: Control + [
Mac: Command + [
Instead of moving a layer upward, send it down the line with this shortcut.
61. Send Layer to The Back
Windows: Shift + Control + [
Mac: Shift + Command + [
This shortcut allows you to send a layer to the bottom of the layer panel.
62. Merge Layers
Windows: Control + E
Mac: Command + E
Use this shortcut to merge all of your existing layers together.
63. Merge Visible Layers
Windows: Shift + Control + E
Mac: Shift + Command + E
Instead of merging all of your layers, use this shortcut to only merge the visible ones.
64. Create a New Layer Behind Selected layer
Windows: Command + New Layer Icon
Mac: Command + New Layer Icon
When you create a new layer, it is typically created above the selected layer. Use this shortcut to create it behind the selected layer instead.
65. Fill a Layer
Windows: Alt + Delete (foreground) or Control + Delete (background)
Mac: Option + Backspace (foreground) or Command + Backspace (background)
Fill a layer with any color you desire with this shortcut.
66. Flatten layers
Windows: Control + Alt + Shift + E
Mac: Command + Option + Shift + E
Use this shortcut to flatten all of your layers into one image.
67. Stamp down selected layers
Windows: Control + Alt + E
Mac: Command + Option + E
This function creates a new layer with the merged contents of two or more selected layers. It’s a great way to have a merged layer without losing your original layers.
Blending Options Shortcuts In Photoshop
Blending modes are used to affect how two layers blend together in Photoshop. They are used to achieve a multitude of effects. Here are the shortcuts that can help you easily access Photoshop’s Blending Modes and improve your workflow.
68. Cycle Through Different Blending Modes
Windows & Mac: Shift + + or –
This shortcut allows to cycle through the different blending modes with ease.
69. Normal Mode
Windows: Shift + Alt + N
Mac: Shift + Option + N
Applies the default blending mode to an active layer in Photoshop.
Windows: Shift + Alt + I
Mac: Shift + Option + I
Applies the dissolve blending mode to an active layer.
Windows: Shift + Alt + K
Mac: Shift + Option + K
Applies the darken blending mode to an active layer.
Windows: Shift + Alt + G
Mac: Shift + Option + G
The active layer’s blending mode is changed to lighten.
Windows: Shift + Alt + M
Mac: Shift + Option + M
Allows you to easily apply the multiply blending mode to an active layer.
Windows: Shift + Alt + O
Mac: Shift + Option + O
Applies the overlay blending mode to the selected active layer.
Windows: Shift + Alt + U
Mac: Shift + Option + U
Allows you to apply the hue blending mode to a selected layer in Photoshop.
Windows: Shift + Alt + T
Mac: Shift + Option + T
Applies the saturation blending mode to an active layer.
Windows: Shift + Alt + Y
Mac: Shift + Option + Y
This applies the luminosity blending mode to the active layer in your document. The luminosity blending mode blends the lightness values while ignoring the color information.
Adjustment Shortcuts In Photoshop
When you’re working in Photoshop, you often find yourself needing to adjust your image’s size, color, brightness, and more. The shortcuts listed will show you how to easily access the image adjustment functions necessary to bring your vision to life.
Windows: Control + L
Mac: Command + L
Opens the levels panel for your image, which allows you to move or stretch the brightness levels of the image’s histogram.
79. Auto Levels
Windows: Shift + Control + L
Mac: Shift + Command + L
This allows you to automatically adjust your image’s levels.
80. Auto Contrast in Photoshop
Windows: Alt + Shift + Control + L
Mac: Option + Shift + Command + L
This shortcut automatically adjusts your image’s contrast for an improved look.
81. Auto Color
Windows: Shift + Control + B
Mac: Shift + Command + B
Automatically adjusts the color of your image
Windows: Control + M
Mac: Command + M
This opens up the Curves panel for your image, which allows you to change points throughout your image’s tonal range.
83. Color Balance
Windows: Control + B
Mac: Command + B
This access the Color Balance panel. You can use it to correct color imperfections in your image.
Windows: Control + U
Mac: Command + U
The Hue/Saturation panel allows you to tweak the colors of your image based on their hue, saturation, and lightness.
Windows: Shift + Control + U
Mac: Shift + Command + U
This shortcut desaturates your image, muting the colors and making your image appear gray.
86. Image Size
Windows: Alt + Control + I
Mac: Option + Command + I
The Image Size function allows you to change the size of your image, the dimensions used are height and width.
87. Canvas Size in Photoshop
Windows: Alt + Control + C
Mac: Option + Command + C
The Canvas Size function allows you to change the size of your canvas in Photoshop without affecting any existing images.
Selection Shortcuts In Photoshop
Selections are a must in Photoshop. They make editing a lot easier and are another thing to master if you want to become a Photoshop pro. Here are selection shortcuts to take you to the next level in Photoshop.
88. Select All
Windows: Control + A
Mac: Command + A
This shortcut selects everything on the active layer.
Windows: Control + D
Mac: Command + D
Use this shortcut to cancel any existing selection.
Windows: Shift + Control + D
Mac: Shift + Command + D
This allows you to reselect your most recent selection.
Windows: Shift + Control + I
Mac: Shift + Command + I
This shortcut inverts your selection. That means that everything except what you originally selected falls into the selection.
92. Select All Layers
Windows: Alt + Control + A
Mac: Option + Command + A
This selects all the layers that you created in your document.
Windows: Alt + Control + D
Mac: Option + Command + D
Opens the feather selection dialog box, so you can apply a feather effect to your selection.
There you have it, 93 shortcuts to help you streamline your workflow in Photoshop. Although it’d be nearly impossible to remember all of these at once, feel free to bookmark this page and implement these different shortcuts gradually into your projects!