The toolbox in the Quick mode contains a small set of easy-to-use tools. The tools available in this mode are Zoom, Hand, Quick Selection, Eye, Whiten Teeth, Straighten, Type, Spot Healing Brush, Crop, and Move.
A. Zoom tool B. Hand tool C. Quick Selection tool D. Eye tool E. Whiten Teeth tool F. Straighten tool G. Type tool H. Spot Healing Brush tool I. Crop tool J. Move tool
In the Expert mode, the toolbox is richer than the toolbox in the Quick mode. The tools are organized in the following logical groups:
A. View tools B. Select tools C. Enhance tools D. Draw tools E. Modify tools F. Color
Zoom tool (Z)
Zooms in or zooms out your image. The related tools shown in the Tool Options bar are Zoom In and Zoom Out. For more information about the Zoom tool, see Zoom in or out.
Hand tool (H)
Moves your photo in the Photoshop Elements workspace. You can drag your image using this tool. For more information, see Viewing images in Expert or Quick modes.
Move tool (V)
Moves selections or layers. For more information, see Move a selection.
Rectangular Marquee tool (M)
Selects an area in your image in a rectangular box. Hold the Shift key to make the selection a square.
Elliptical Marquee tool (M)
Selects an area in your image in an elliptical shape. Hold the Shift key to make the selection a circle.
Magnetic Lasso tool (L)
Selects part of an image by selecting the high-contrast edges around a shape.
Quick Selection tool (A)
Makes a selection based on color and texture similarity when you click or click-drag the area you want to select.
Refine Selection Brush tool (A)
Adds or removes areas to and from a selection by automatically detecting the edges. For more information on this tool, see Edit and refine selections.
Auto Selection tool (A)
Automatically makes a selection when you draw a shape around the object you want to select.
For more information on selection, see Use tools to make selections.
Eye tool (Y)
Spot Healing Brush tool (J)
Removes spots from your photos. For more information about this tool, see Remove spots and unwanted objects.
Healing Brush tool (J)
Removes spots from your photo by selecting a part of your photo as the reference point.
Detail Smart Brush tool (F)
Paints the adjustment to specific areas of a photo just like a painting tool.
For more information about Smart brushes, see Adjust color and tonality using the Smart Brush tools and Apply the Smart Brush tools.
Clone Stamp tool (S)
Paints with an image sample, which you can use to duplicate objects, remove image imperfections, or paint over objects in your photo. You can also clone part of an image to another image. For more information, see Clone images or areas in an image.
Pattern Stamp tool (S)
Paints with a pattern defined from your image, another image, or a preset pattern. For more information, see Use the Pattern Stamp tool.
Blur tool (R)
Softens hard edges or areas in an image by reducing details. For more information, see Blur or soften edges.
Sharpen tool (R)
Sharpens a photo by focusing soft edges in the photo to increase clarity or focus. For more information on sharpening, see Sharpen an image.
Smudge tool (R)
Simulates the actions of dragging a finger through wet paint. The tool picks up color where the stroke begins and pushes it in the direction you drag. For more information on the tool, see Use the Smudge tool.
Sponge tool (O)
Changes the color saturation of an area. For more information on how to use the tool, see Adjust saturation in isolated areas.
Dodge tool (O)
Lightens areas of an image. You can use the tool to bring out details in shadows. For more information on the Dodge tool, see Quickly lighten or darken isolated areas.
Burn tool (O)
Darkens areas of the image. You can use the tool to bring out details in highlights. For more information on the Burn tool, see Quickly lighten or darken isolated areas.
Brush tool (B)
Creates soft or hard strokes of color. You can use it to simulate airbrush techniques. For more information about the tool, see Use the Brush tool.
Impressionist Brush tool (B)
Changes the existing colors and details in your image so your photo looks like it was painted using stylized brush strokes. For more information about the tool, see Use the Impressionist Brush tool.
Color Replacement tool (B)
Simplifies replacing specific colors in your image. For more information about the tool, see Replace color in an image.
Eraser tool (E)
Erases the pixels in the image as you drag through them. For more information about the tool, see Use the Eraser Tool.
Background Eraser tool (E)
Turns color pixels to transparent pixels so that you can easily remove an object from its background. For more information about the tool, see Use the Background Eraser tool.
Magic Eraser tool (E)
Changes all similar pixels when you drag within a photo. For more information, see Use the Magic Eraser tool.
Paint Bucket tool (K)
Fills an area that is similar in color value to the pixels you click. For more information about the tool, see Use the Paint Bucket tool.
Pattern tool (K)
Applies a fill or a pattern to your image, instead of using one of the brush tools. For more information, see Fill a layer with a color or pattern.
Gradient tool (G)
Fills in an area of image by a gradient. For more information, see Apply a gradient.
Color Picker tool (I)
Copies or samples the color of an area in your photo to set a new foreground or background color. For more information about the tool, see Choose a color with the Eyedropper tool.
Custom Shape tool (U)
Provides different shape options for you to draw. When you select the Custom Shape tool, you can access these shapes in the Tool Options bar.
The other shape-related tools available in the Tool Options bar are:
- Rounded Rectangle
For more information about creating shapes, see Create shapes.
The other type-related tools available in the Tool Options bar are:
- Vertical Type
- Horizontal Type Mask
- Vertical Type Mask
- Text on Selection
- Text on Shape
- Text on Custom Path
For more information about adding and editing text on your image, see Add text.
Pencil tool (N)
Creates hard-edged freehand lines. For more information, see Use the Pencil tool.
Crop tool (C)
Trims the part of an image according to the selection. For more information about the tool, see Crop an image.
Cookie Cutter tool (C)
Crops a photo into a shape that you choose. For more information about the tool, see Use the Cookie Cutter tool.
Perspective Crop tool (C)
Transforms the perspective of a picture while cropping it. For more information about the tool, see Perspective Crop tool.
Recompose tool (W)
Content-Aware Move tool (Q)
Selects an object in your photo and moves the selection to a different location, or extends it. For more information about the tool, see Move and reposition objects.
Straighten tool (P)
Realigns an image vertically or horizontally. For more information about the tool, see Straighten an image.
To use a tool in the Quick or Expert mode, first select the tool from the toolbox. Next, use the various options in the Tool Options bar to accomplish your task.
Do one of the following:
- Click a tool in the toolbox.
- Press the keyboard shortcut for the tool. For example, press B to select the Brush tool. The keyboard shortcut for a tool is displayed in the tool tip. You can also find a list of helpful keyboard shortcuts in Keys for selecting tools.
You cannot deselect a tool—once you select a tool, it remains selected until you select a different tool. For example, if you’ve selected the Lasso tool, and you want to click your image without selecting anything, select the Hand tool.
The Tool Options bar appears at the bottom in the Photoshop Elements window. It displays the options for a selected tool. For example, if you select the Crop tool from the toolbox, you find related tools (Cookie Cutter tool and Perspective Crop tool), and other options in the Tool Options bar.
Click here to watch a video on how to use the Crop tool. The video explains the options available in the Tool Options bar for the Crop tool.
If the Tool Options bar is not visible, click the tool icon in the toolbox or click Tool Options in the Taskbar.
A. Active tool icon B. Related tools C. Additional options
You can modify the default preferences for tools. For example, you can hide the tool tips or change the appearance of a tool pointer.
- Set one or more of the following options:
- Select Show Tool Tips to show tool tips.
- Select Use Shift Key for Tool Switch to cycle through a set of hidden tools by holding down the Shift key. When this option is deselected, you can cycle through a set of tool options by pressing the keyboard shortcut (without holding down Shift). For example, pressing B on your keyboard repeatedly cycles through all the Brush tool options (Brush, Impressionist Brush, and Color Replacement tools).
- Select Select Move tool After Committing Text to select the Move tool after you use the Type tool to add text to your photo.
Select a setting for the painting cursors:
- Standard Displays pointers as tool icons
- Precise Displays pointers as cross-hairs
- Normal Brush Tip Displays pointers as circles at 50% of the size you specify for the brush
- Full Size Brush Tip Displays pointers as circles at the full size you specify for the brush
- Show Crosshair In Brush Tip Displays cross-hairs in the circles when you choose either Normal Brush Tip or Full Size Brush Tip
You can resize or change the hardness of a painting cursor by dragging in the image. As you drag, you preview both the size and hardness of the painting tool.
To resize a cursor, right-click + press Alt, and drag to the left or right.
To change the hardness of a cursor, right-click + press Alt, and drag up or down.