Learn How to Use Photoshop Elements


Lesson Info

Smart Tags Overview

There's one other thing that I'm gonna show you which is also, I believe this is also a new feature. I've never seen it before, which is pretty amazing. It's actually called smart keywords. So if you're looking at all of this and you're thinking ah that's really handy but I do not wanna spend even 10 seconds creating a keyword. There's something called smart keywords and I'm gonna go back to the whole catalog here. And to access your smart keywords you're gonna come to the 'search' up here in the top right-hand corner. And when I click on that little 'search' icon I get this magical workspace with all these different filters, really, on the left side. So, we have smart tags up here we've got the people tags, places, and dates and your folders and some of this is redundant like keywords, right, so we already know we have these keywords we've already placed those. Albums we haven't done yet, or events, but we'll get there. We can filter our images by their star ratings or, we can filter ...

by different media types. But right now I just want to show you the smart tags option. Because this is, I think this is really unbelievable. So smart tags, look at this. We've created some of those keywords, but look what's here. I did not create these. I did not tag these images. I did not label them with all of these keywords. Elements did that for me, and it did a pretty exhaustive. Look how many keywords, alright I don't even know how many that is. That is a ton of keywords and it did this by actually analyzing the images upon import. So when I first imported this, when we did this yesterday in class we did that initial import and we didn't talk about it yet but, behind the scenes, Elements was analyzing the content of all of our photos and running it through object recognition. And then it applied keywords. And, they're not perfect, not at all. But they're pretty incredible. So let's just take a look I was browsing through this earlier and I was really impressed at what it was able to figure out. So for example, winter, right so I'm gonna click on this keyword that Elements added, not me, winter. And when I click on it, and I click over here so I can see ... it really, I mean, these are the images that it labeled with winter. Now I wouldn't choose necessarily to do that, but it actually got it right. So here I think it chose this because it knew we were wearing something on our heads like a hat. Turns out it was really just headbands, this is from a half-marathon we did so it wasn't winter but I can see why Elements thought that it was. This was winter. This was a very cold day and we all have hats and scarves and we're bundled up. This is a picture of my son in that crochet hat that I made with the scarf. And Elements recognized that. These are some little treat bags, they are just crochet things. I think maybe Elements thought that these were hats or something so that's probably why it applies the tag here. And then these images of course have snow, so that's what made it do that. I mean it's just amazing. To clear this and go back then to the tags over here I'm gonna just click the 'x' to get rid of that smart keyword tab. So let's go back and take a look at some more smart tags. I mean I just think that this is amazing, for example, it found all the images, I think, I don't know if it really got all of them. But, if I click the animal tab, and then I'll move over out of the way here. It tagged all of these different ... It even knew that this mermaid, was a (chuckles) a mermaid, I mean I just think that's amazing. It recognized the dog, the penguin, the teddy bear, which technically I guess, is an animal even if it's a stuffed one. I just think that that is some really advanced stuff. These are Hershey's Kisses, or supposed to be like little crochet kisses I don't think I'd count that as an animal. But I can see why maybe Elements thought that. So it did a really incredibly robust job even if it wasn't entirely accurate. So I think that this is a fun little exercise even just when you import your images. If you pop over into this smart tags window I think you'll just be shocked what it pulls up. I mean some of these ... Like here this castle image it labeled it as castle. But it also added château. (chuckles) I just think that, that's a trip. So you never know what it's gonna add but that's a really cool place if you're the kind of person that's like I will never add keywords cause I just I will just never do that. You, I guess, really don't have to because Elements now does that for you. So that is a pretty cool thing called smart tags. So to get back to the rest of our catalog we would just go ahead and click this grid button again. That gets us out of search, so again we got there by clicking this little 'search' icon which brought us into that panel where we can find our smart tags. The smart tags don't show up here. These are the tags that we manually either created or that are just here by default, but they're not applied to anything. And, at first I thought well that's annoying if you're gonna have these smart tags, you know, why not just make them accessible here so I don't have to go digging in the search menu? But then once you see how, first of all, plentiful they are, I mean, the keywords that they come up with I don't think manually if I sat down to keyword those images I would even think to include all of those. So it really is quite extensive, it's very impressive. But it does make some mistakes, it misunderstands some things, in a very intelligent way but it still is a mislabel. And I think it would just be kind of annoying to see all of that stuff crowded in and mixed in with keywords that were deliberately created. So, in reflection then, I think it's actually a good place that they kind of have it tucked. So you can go find it if you want it but it's not, you know, crowding your screen space over here unnecessarily. So that's a bit about keywords. I think the thing to keep in mind with keywords is to just be consistent. They're only gonna be as useful as you are consistent in your application of them. So if you consistently keyword things, then you'll consistently be able to find those photos. If you start out being excited about it and then sort of taper off and don't really follow through on all of that then it won't be quite as useful but, that might mean you need to just adjust your system. Maybe you're trying to keyword too many things, you know, I mean like it labeled the one picture of the castle it labeled it as a château and that's fun but I don't, I'm probably never gonna search my own image collection to find a château. So, I wouldn't label it that. But you can, you know, just invest as much time as is gonna be useful that's gonna give you a return on that time.

We all have hundreds of images on our smartphones and cameras that we never do anything with. Adobe Photoshop Elements is the perfect tool for beginners to use for organizing and editing those images. Khara Plicanic will show you the practical ways to use this software by using step-by-step projects you can follow along with at home. You’ll get hands-on practice at making selections and working with layers, doing simple retouching, and adding text to your images.

You’ll also learn: 

• Basic adjustments to color and adding contrast to photos 
• Understanding resolution and image resizing and how to use the crop tool 
• Simple retouching and image compositing

No Photoshop Elements class would be complete without shedding light on file saving and organizing your images for a complete workflow! By the time you’re finished with this class, you’ll be creating beautiful images to share with your family and friends.

Software Used: Adobe Photoshop CC 2015.5.1


Class Introduction
Understand How Elements Works
Importing Images
Workspace Basics: Organizer
Workspace Basics: Editor
Tonal Adjustments in Quick Fix
Color Adjustments in Quick Fix
Apply Black & White Filters
Sharpen an Image
Fix Red Eye & Pet Eye
Straighten an Image in Quick Fix
Explanation of Photoshop Elements
Basic Cropping in Quick Fix
Guided Edit Overview
Guided Edit: Tilt Shift
Ways to Save Files
Layers & Simple Selections
Combine Images with Layers
How to Use Layer Styles
Make Selections with Layers
Make Selection with Lasso
Compositing with Multiple Images
Refine Edge Selection on Image
Use Refine Edge on Images
Create Gradient in Image
Gradient Map Differences
Options for Saving
Brushes Overview
Creatively Use Brushes
How to Change Brush Settings
Use Shape Tool with Brushes
Work with Multiple Shape Layers
Finish Image with Custom Shape Tool
How to Load Brushes into Elements
Add Layer Style to Image
Clip Image to Shape & Use as Template
Retouching Overview
How to Use Content-Aware Fill
How to Use Content-Aware Move Tool
Spot Healing Brush on Blemishes
Remove Frown Lines with Retouching
How to Remove Tattoos
Remove a Gap in Teeth
How to Whiten Teeth
Adjust Facial Features
Working with Type Overview
Match Type for Image
How to Manipulate Type Layers
Create Postcard with Type
Add Type on a Path
Organizing Images in Elements
Add Keywords to Images
Smart Tags Overview
Using Albums in Elements
Places Workspace Overview
Use Event Tags on Images
Timeline for Image Organization
Recommended Workflow


  • Just watching this class live. It's my first class with Khara; she is a wonderful teacher, moving at a steady speed but always being careful to let us know what she's doing in the moment. I would classify myself as intermediate in terms of PSE but I've learned lots of little things that will make further use even easier and more fun. I really appreciated her descriptions of the difference between PS and PSE and her encouragement in using Photoshop Elements and all that it can do.
  • I have only been able to watch portions of this class but every single part that I have watched has been technically clear and inspiring to me. Based on this experience and the thorough, 58 item list of lessons, I will surely be buying this class soon! Thank you Khara and Creativelive for making a class on this topic and making it be super!!
  • Great course. You can tell she knows the programme inside out.