Photoshop CS6 Essentials - Type Tool - I

27 January, 2013

Photoshop provides a completely flexibility with Type tool. Everytime you create a New type, a dedicated layer creates along with it. This will help you to change the font family, font size, color, alignment, anti-aliasing, make all text to caps, underline, strike-through, spell check, find and replace, converting horizontal to vertical and more...

Types are created with vector-based outlines and completely resolution independent. Just like any other shape layer you can scale them freely without loosing quality. In Photoshop cs6 we have a dedicated Type Menu.

Because types are vector-based graphics you can save as PDF or EPS and even take a print with postscript printer. This will maintain the same quality and detail.


When you create type in Indexed Color, Multi-channel or Bitmap mode, the text is created on a same background layer and not in a separate layer, because these modes doesn't support layers and creating text in these modes will rasterize them on the same layer, meaning you cannot edit after you commit the type.

(fig 1.0)

I have selected the mode to Multichannel (fig 1.1) and notice none of the options in the layer palette is active. And if i create a simple text, the edit will be in a quick mask mode and commit will release the mask and rasterize on a same layer.

(fig 1.1)

Three ways you can create types inside photoshop. Point type, Paragraph type, and Type on path.

Point Type: Default type where you click and start typing
Paragraph Type: Will create a bounding box which wraps the text
Type on Path: Text will flow on a path outline

Point Type
Point type can be created by placing the Type (I-beam) cursor wherever you want and start typing. when you start typing you can see a line below the text, its called 'baseline'. After you commit the text the line will disappear, its more like a guide.

Baseline will help you to know, whether you are in the Edit mode or not.

(When you are in type tool, your mouse cursor will turn into a small arrow with dotted rectangle and inside the rectangle you see the 'I-beam'. With this cursor you can create Point type or Paragraph type.)

(fig 2.0)

In Point type, if your text is longer than the work area, it will go outside the document.

(fig 3.0) the first image is where the text goes outside the document, just to illustrate this i have included the canvas area (blue color). To break this text, i have placed the insertion point after 'AND' and pressed 'Enter' (Windows) 'Return' (Mac OS) key.

You have to use the 'Enter' (Windows) 'Return' (Mac OS) above the Shift key. Not the 'Enter' from the Number pad.

Your canvas color might not be in blue. 
Learn more about changing your canvas color >> How to Change your Canvas Color

(fig 3.0)
If you are interested you can buy this keyboard [here]

To commit the text, press the Number pad Enter key from the keyboard (fig 4.0). Pressing 'Enter' (Windows) 'Return' (Mac OS) above the Shift key will break the line (fig 3.0).

(Mac Users, use the Enter key from the number pad. If you are using laptop, you can use Command + Return to commit the text.)

Once you commit the text you won't see the baseline, and a new layer will be added to your layer palette.

(fig 4.0)

If you want to cancel the operation and clear the text you have made on the screen, press 'Esc' from the keyboard or press the 'Cancel' button in the options bar (before the commit (tick) icon).

This works only if you have created the text and still in the edit mode.

After you commit the type and going to edit mode by placing the insertion point in between any of the word and pressing 'Esc' will only release from edit mode. If you want to delete the text after you have commit the type, press 'Delete' from the keyboard, make sure the Type layer is selected in the layer palette.

(the Options bar will be explained later in this essentials)

(fig 5.0)

Try it out  - Select 'Type Tool' from the tool bar
- Type something (maybe your name). Keep an eye on the layer palette.
- After you finish typing, you can either press 'Esc' from the keyboard or click the cancel button in the options bar.
- The layer which created while typing will no longer be there in the layer palette.

When you create a text for the first time, a layer creates along with it (fig 6.0).

After you commit the text, the layer in the layer palette will have the same text name you have created in the work area. You can also rename the layer manually in the layer palette, doing this won't change your original text. 

(fig 6.0)

Try it out
- Type anything on the screen, keep an eye on the newly created layer name
- You can type any alphabets, numbers or characters
- Commit the text and notice the name of the same type layer

If you want to have another type in a different layer, move the cursor away from the existing text so that your cursor looks like a type tool and not an I-beam. Everytime you create a new text, a temporary layer will create automatically. Once you commit the text, the temporary layer becomes permanent.

Editing the Point Type
Select / Move / Transform

If you want to edit an existing text, select the type tool and click anywhere inside the text. When you bring the cursor closer to the text, it will turn to I-beam and clicking anywhere will add an insertion point. If you want to add text to an existing type, just place the insertion point wherever you want and start typing. The new text will create from the insertion point.

(fig 7.0)

You can also move the insertion point with the keyboard arrow key. Press the Left arrow to move the insertion point towards left and Right arrow will move towards right, and pressing Up arrow will send it to the beginning of the text and pressing Down arrow will send the insertion point to the end.

Remember, this up and down arrow will work only if you have single line of text.

If you have Multiple lines of text and pressing up or down arrow will move the insertion point to next/previous line. After you commit the type, pressing any of the arrows will do nothing. You should be in edit mode, because the insertion point works only in edit mode.

(fig 8.0)

You can also highlight any letter(s) with the same arrow key from the keyboard. Keep the insertion point wherever you want and hold the 'Shift' key and press the right arrow to highlight forward or left arrow to go backward. You can also highlight text with mouse by placing the insertion point and click and drag towards left or right.

I have placed the insertion point before the letter 'P' (fig 8.1) and the 'Shift' key is pressed in the keyboard and hitting the right arrow 5 times will highlights the word POINT. If you press the arrow one time it will select only one letter.

(fig 8.1)

You can also select a word, by pressing 'Ctrl + Shift + right arrow' (Windows) Command + Shift + right arrow (Mac OS). You can also double-click with your mouse to select that word.

(fig 8.2)

If you have multiple lines and holding the 'Shift' key and pressing up/down arrow will grow the selections to the next line.

I have six lines of text here (fig 9.0 - 1) and i have placed the insertion point before the word 'Photoshop' (first line). Holding the 'Shift' key and pressing the down arrow once will select all the text in the same line, and also moves to next line (fig 9.0 - 2).

In the next line notice the highlight stops at 'LOREM'. This is because of the insertion point placement above. If you keep pressing the down arrow, the selection keeps growing line by line.

(The text below is a photoshop version of lorem ipsum. Just a placeholder text.)

(fig 9.0)

You can also highlight only one line in a multiple lines of text.
Here (fig 9.1) i have placed the insertion point before the 'Photoshop' word. Holding Ctrl+ Shift + Down arrow (Windows) Command + Shift + down arrow (Mac OS) will highlights only the first line. If you press the down arrow again, it will highlight next line.

When you are in the edit mode and pressing 'Ctrl' (Windows) 'Command' (Mac OS) will display a transformation box around the text. We'll discuss more about this in the next essential of this series.

(fig 9.1)

Once you have highlighted the text, changing font, color, style, size, anti-aliasing method and other any other options from the character panel will reflect on the highlighted text.

I have selected few text and changed its font family, color, font style, and also underline the text (fig 10.0).

(fig 10.0)

Two way you can change all the text at once.
When you are in the edit mode, place the insertion point anywhere in the text and press 'Ctrl + A' (Windows) 'Command + A' (Mac OS) to select all the text and change any of the type options. or
When you are not in the edit mode, simply changing the options from the options bar or characters panel will change all the text. Make sure 'Text' layer is selected.

Next essential >> Essentials for Type Tool - 2

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