Basic Photoshop Tools

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Creating images is a huge part of content creation. Whether they be photos or graphics, images help tell a story for brands using social media, PR, email marketing, blog posts, and more.

Photoshop is one of the most used photo-editing software that can be used for most image creation needs, but it can also be a very intimidating program unless you understand some of the basics. Read below to learn the basics of the Photoshop toolbar and its functions. These tools will help you to create your next masterpiece.

Move Tool

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The move tool simply lets you move objects in a given layer around the Photoshop canvas. To use it, click anywhere on the canvas and drag. As you drag, the Photoshop layer will move with your mouse.

Quick Selection Tool


There are two ways to use the Quick Selection Tool. One is to simply click on different areas of the image just like you would with the Magic Wand. The most common way is to click and drag over the area you need to select as if you were painting with a brush. As you drag, Photoshop does its best to figure out the object that you're trying to select, often with precise results. To remove an area from a selection temporarily, select the "Subtract from selection" option in the Options Bar. You’ll need to remember to switch it back to the "Add to selection" mode when you're done or you’ll lose the tracing that was completed.

Crop Tool


The crop tool is used to (you guessed it!) crop your pictures. You can specify the exact size and constrain the crop tool to those proportions, or you can just crop to any size.

Paintbrush and Pencil

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The paintbrush is a tool that mimics a paintbrush and the pencil is a tool that mimics a pencil, naturally. The paintbrush; however, can be set to many different kinds of brushes. You can paint with a standard paintbrush and airbrush styles, or even paint with leaves and other shapes as well.

Eraser Tool


The erase tool is almost identical to the paintbrush, except it erases instead of paints.

Type Tool


The type tool will allow you to type horizontally. Tools hidden beneath the horizontal type tool will let you type vertically and also create horizontal and vertical text masks.

Try these basic Photoshop tools to get started creating your marketing images.