Photoshop, is to designers what a stethoscope is to doctors. Adobe’s design tool has been instrumental in creating many impressive designs and breath-taking visuals. And every year, they release an updated version of the tool that lets designers explore the platform’s potential and their creativity to the fullest. As part of our “Know Your Design Softwares” series, in this blog, we try to understand 11 New Features in Photoshop 2020. This would be just the first blog in the series of many more articles to follow under the header.
11 New Features in Photoshop 2020
Launched in October 2019, designers are still exploring and experimenting with the hoard of features that have been added to Photoshop’s new version. We noticed 20 impressive features and have decided to list them out in a two-part blog series. So, read on to know the top 11 New Features in Photoshop 2020. The next blog will discuss in detail the next ten important features in this designing tool.
1. Object Selection Tool:
Photoshop 2020 provides an update to object selection which makes it easy for the designers to select only certain portions of the image without much ado. In the earlier version, one would have to use the quick selection tool, carefully select the portions needed and ensure that the edges are smooth and fine. But the recent update lets you click on a certain object or element in the image and select it instantly. This saves a lot of time and effort and also gives a flawless finish.
2. Faster New Document:
Creating a fresh new document or file just got simpler. Unlike the previous versions where the tool got slow when a new document was opened or the user tried to open a preset dimension. The new version has fixed that and also enabled the easy opening of recently used templates. This apart, the designers will also be able to play around with 17,000 fonts of Adobe that they have access to with Photoshop 2020.
3. Pixel Layer Properties:
The new pixel layer properties feature comes with Background removal feature. The new version also has many user-friendly additions like the possibility to adjust the size of using transform at the top. You can now align the objects with your canvas, distribute the spacing around the objects on the canvas in a proportional fashion. These apart many additional features appear when you click on any specific layer and the option to access your pixel properties now appears on your properties panel itself. In short, the new Pixel layer properties feature ensures that you can get more done with fewer clicks.
4. Zoom to layer:
Zoom to layer is a feature that, as the name suggests, lets you zoom in to a specific layer of the image file. This means that you can make those intricate edits with ease. Earlier the user would have had to struggle to zoom in and get to the item they are working on. This would require multiple zoom in and zoom out attempts to get the desired layer and proportions. However, that challenge is not resolved and the user can access the workspace with ease using the name Zoom to layer feature.
This feature can be accessed with a simple mac: command or win: ALT + the layer that you would look to zoom in and start working on. You can navigate through your entire canvas without zooming in and zooming out and repositioning. This includes the dots and text selected.
5. Customizable Wraps:
The new image wrap function is a great addition to the free transform function. This allows the user to envelop all the distortions and change the shape of an object to suit your design needs. Until now, it has always been a 3*3 grid which means that the user had limitations on how they could wrap an image, change its shape, and use it to suit their design ideas.
The new feature is called Wrap and has just for control handles, which are placed in each of the four corners of the image, which allows the user to alter the wrapping and adjusting of the image to suit their needs.
6. Updated Content-Aware Fill:
Selecting and deleting unnecessary elements from your images just got simpler with this new feature. Content-aware fill is a three-button addition that is probably one of the most useful features added to Photoshop 2020. It enables the designer to use the lasso tool for selecting the sample area to perform various functions. This selection includes three categories, which are as follows:
Auto – software/algorithm takes the surrounding area and replicates it in the selected
area. Think of it as a stamp tool that does all the work for you.
Rectangle – makes a rectangle around the selected area and samples from there.
Custom – you pick the area it samples to replace the selected area.
7. New Text Layer Properties
A new addition to the Photoshop 2020 tool is the text layer properties. This feature enables the user to access all the character properties from one place. Meaning, the designer can now fix everything from the size, font, and color of the text from the same panel. The text layer properties panel also has the option to align the paragraphs, type options, and much more, all of which was a daunting multiple-step process in the previous versions.
It also has two new buttons which are “convert to frame” and “convert to shape”. The convert to shape feature enables the user to transform the shape into a vector, which can be used to adjust the fonts within the illustrator. In short, the options that were split across multiple tabs and property bars are now available in one place.
8. Save as GIF:
You can now save those creative and engaging GIFs that you create with ease. A new safe as GIF option has been enabled. The user can simply save the multiple layers of images created during the file export as GIF.
If you are new to using Photoshop, you might not be aware that earlier the designer had to go through a multi-step process where they had to click on export or save for web before seeing the option to save a file in a GIF format. Now, this can be done directly with just one click.
9. Convert Smart Object Back into Layers:
The most creative designs usually have several layers. Great composites or retouching of photos require the user to make multiple adjustments in the layers and when we select multiple layers the challenge as the designer would have to save multiple files before going forward. Earlier, you had to select multiple layers at the same time and then go on to convert them into smaller objects.
This was time-consuming as the user would then have to copy the files back manually or duplicate them into the document. However, now the function can be done by simply clicking on the option “grouped layer” and selecting the option “convert to layers.” This saves the designer a lot of time, the scope to get creative, and also reduces the risk of missing out on elements in the process of multiple conversions.
10. Updated Lens Blur:
The lens blur feature works faster, unlike the existing filter feature which takes anywhere around 15 seconds to one minute based on the device speed and file size. If you are using a high-resolution image this might take longer and thereby affect your workflow too.
The new lens blur feature, on the other hand, comes with features like the focal point that enables the designer to select portions of the image that you want to focus while blurring out the rest of the image. A popular style in professional photography to create an emphasis on the primary object of focus. The lens blur feature can be customized to create the intensity of the blur in the images too. This can be used to manipulate the impact it leaves on the viewer of your end output.
11. Improved Properties Panel:
The new properties panel is now the go-to location for designers and users of Photoshop 2020 as it has a host of content specific enhancements. A lot of quick actions can be performed with ease from the properties panel, which earlier required multiple navigations and clicks. For instance, the user can perform everything from masking a background to creating new layers, text panels, general and specific image selection, and much more from a single point.
We hope you enjoyed reading the first part of our blog series on Know Your Design Softwares, the second part of this blog would soon be published with 9 other features you might not know of, that exists in Photoshop 2020. Do share your thoughts on what you think about this post, 11 New Features in Photoshop 2020 in the comments section.