Navigating the Adobe Photoshop Menu Bar

Smiling graphic designer working at computer in office
Hero Images/Getty Images

Let's get started by exploring the basic elements of the Photoshop workspace. There are four main counterparts to the Photoshop workspace: the menu bar, the status bar, the toolbox, and the palettes. In this lesson, we'll be learning about the menu bar.

The Menu Bar

The menu bar consists of nine menus: File, Edit, Image, Layer, Select, Filter, View, Window, and Help. Take a few moments now to look at each of the menus.

You may notice that some menu commands are followed by ellipses (...). This indicates a command that is followed by a dialog box where you can enter additional settings. Some menu commands are followed by a right-pointing arrow. This indicates a submenu of related commands. As you explore each menu, be sure to take a look at the submenus as well. You'll also notice that many commands are followed by keyboard shortcuts. Gradually, you'll want to get to know these keyboard shortcuts as they can be incredible time savers.

As we make our way through this course, we'll be learning the most useful keyboard shortcuts as we go along.

In addition to the menu bar, Photoshop often has context sensitive menus for accessing some of the most likely commands depending on which tool is selected and where you click. You access the context sensitive menu by right clicking in Windows or pressing the Control key on a Macintosh.

One of the most convenient contextual menus can be accessed by right clicking/ Control clicking on the title bar of a document for quick access to the duplicate command, image and canvas size dialogs, file information, and page setup. If you already know how to open an image, go ahead and try it now.

Otherwise, you'll learn how in the next section.