Adobe Photoshop CC 2015

Say hello to Adobe Photoshop CC 2015 – an update packed with new features, improvements, and Photoshop magic! Let’s take a look at what’s available right now!

Artboards have come to Photoshop! If you’re also an Illustrator user, you likely know how artboards work, otherwise, this may take some time to get used to.

What is an artboard?

As a Photoshop user, you’re likely familiar with your canvas – the area in which all the elements of your document are contained. Now imagine being able to create and access several canvases within a single document. In a nutshell, that’s what artboards will allow you to do.

Creating artboards

There are several ways to create an artboard in Photoshop!

  • When creating a new document (File > New), you can now choose to start with an artboard, and select from the many preset artboard sizes.
  • artboardtoolArtboards can also be created on existing documents using the new Artboard Tool, found with the Move Tool. This will let you create, move, and resize your artboards.
  • Finally, you can create an artboard from an existing document by selecting your layers, right-clicking on any of them, and choosing Artboard from Layers…

When you first open up the new Layer Styles dialogue box, you may have a moment of confusion. Plus buttons?! In Photoshop CC 2015, you can now add multiple Strokes, Inner Shadows, Overlays, and Drop Shadows. This will let you get further creative with your layers, without having to duplicate, or place them within a group just to add more styles.

The text above contains two Strokes, and Inner Shadow, and 5 Drop Shadows – all applied to a single layer!

This next feature you may have seen Terry White give a sneak peek of! As you can imagine, this feature helps remove any haze that may be present in your photos. When I first heard about this feature, I figured it would reproduce what a few of the basic sliders would be able to accomplish, but I’ve actually been quite impressed with the results. The photo below I took while in the Eiffel Tower, and as you can tell, it’s quite hazy in the distance.

Dehaze is only available within Camera Raw, so you’ll either have to open a raw file, or use the Camera Raw filter to access the new slider. Traditionally, I would start fiddling with the basic adjustments to try and reduce the haze. Drop the highlights, shadows, and whites, increase the contrast and clarity, and maybe even drop the exposure a touch, but it likely won’t give you the result you’re looking for.

Let’s see how this compares with the Dehaze adjustment, which is found within the Effects tab. You may notice that the slider is set to 0, in the middle. If you had a need to, you can introduce haze to a photo by dragging it to the left, but we’re not looking to do that. Pulling the slider to the right will start to reduce the haze in the photo, and does a pretty decent job! Of course, if there’s an insane amount of haze, there’s only so much it’ll be able to remove. You may also notice that it’s not just reducing the heavy haze, but also equalizing out the rest of the scene.

The additional styles you add can also be rearranged using the new arrows at the bottom of the window.

The next two highlights are improvements to Content-Aware and Healing. First off, Content-Aware Move isn’t just for moving anymore! Now, in Photoshop CC 2015, when you go to relocate an object using Content-Aware Move, the heal won’t take place right away. Instead, Photoshop will give you the chance to transform it, as well! This is perfect if you’re looking to not only move an object, but also change its size to give it a new perspective.

Next on the healing front, Adobe has made some major improvements to a few of the healing tools you use in your day to day work. The Patch Tool and the Spot Healing Brush will now heal your images almost instantaneously, and the Healing Brush heals in real time. No longer do you have to wait for Photoshop to ‘process’ the heal. It just, works!

Smart Objects received a small but handy update in Photoshop CC 2015. You now have the ability to apply adjustments directly to a Smart Object, similar to how you would clip an Adjustment Layer. This will allow you to apply adjustments to a single layer, rather than to the full document.

About the Author

Howard Pinsky

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Howard Pinsky, an Adobe Community Professional, has been creating Photoshop video tutorials on YouTube for over 8 years, and has been using Photoshop for over 13. Through IceflowStudios.com, Howard provides written and video Photoshop tutorials, as well as similar applications.