How to Customize the Interface in Photoshop CS6

The Interface preferences deal with the “look” of Photoshop CS6. You can change these so that you can use Photoshop in a way that is easiest for you. Here’s the scoop:

  • Screen Modes: In the Color Theme settings, you can choose from four shades of gray for your overall UI. You can also select the color of the background around your image for each screen mode. Finally, you can also select whether your image edge is surrounded by a line, drop shadow, or nothing at all.

  • Auto-Collapse Iconic Panels: If selected, panels automatically collapse down to just their icons when you click somewhere else within the Photoshop application.

  • Auto-Show Hidden Panels: If selected, this option automatically shows any hidden panels.

  • Open Documents as Tabs: Selecting this option opens documents tabbed to the Application Frame. If you deselect this option, images float, like in previous versions of Photoshop.

  • Enable Floating Document Window Docking: Lets you dock floating document windows as tabs when dragging one document window to another document window.

  • Show Transformation Values: Enable you to view the contextual transformation (on your image) in the top-left/right or bottom-left/right of your cursor location. Or you can choose None to have them not display.

  • Show Channels in Color: When selected, this option tells Photoshop to show each of the color channels (for example, Red, Green, and Blue; or Cyan, Magenta, Yellow, and Black) in their respective colors in the Channels panel.

    In most cases, you don’t want to use this feature. You need to be able to see the channels in their grayscale form to perform image-editing tasks such as converting from color to grayscale or channel masking, or for selective sharpening on certain channels.

  • Show Menu Colors: Check this option to have the ability to view customized menus in color.

  • Show Tool Tips: Photoshop can display little pop-up reminders about tools and other objects on your screen. If you find these reminders distracting, deselect this check box to turn off tool tips.

  • Enable Gestures (Mac only): Enables you to use your Macintosh trackpad for controls such as rotation of the document canvas. If you are annoyed by the inadvertent rotation of your canvas, deselect this option.

  • Enable Text Drop Shadow: Decide whether to use shadows for the text on your panel labels.

  • Restore Default Workspaces: Click this button to reset all of your workspaces back to their default settings.

  • Text Options: Specify the size of the text displayed in dialog boxes, panels, and so on. Select from Small, Medium, or Large.

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