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What is the Photoshop Line Tool?

Photoshop is known for its dramatic photo filters and editing capabilities, but it's possible to use the software to draw simple lines as well. The Line tool is one of the oldest features in Photoshop's toolkit, and even though it's not the most impressive aspect of the software, almost every creative project can benefit from a tool that draws lines quickly and easily. In this practical guide, we've shared how the Photoshop Line tool can be used to create lines (and arrows) of any thickness and style. 

Drawing a Line

  1. 1. To access the Photoshop Line tool, you'll need to click and hold on the Rectangle tool, which will bring up a submenu with other drawing tools. You can also select any of the shape tools, and then find the Line tool on the top options bar. 
  2. With the Line tool selected, you have the option to create a shape layer, a path, or immediately fill the shape with pixels. These choices can be found on the far left of the options bar, as well as a few other options that define how your lines will look. This includes "Weight" (i.e. the thickness of your line), "Opacity", and "Anti-alias" (the smoothness of your line). 
  3. When you're happy with the line options, you can start drawing on your image and create a line in any direction. If you'd like the line to be perfectly vertical or horizontal, just hold down the Shift key while drawing. Drag the line until you're satisfied with the length and angle, and then let go of your mouse. 

Making an Arrow

Before drawing a new line, you can tweak the options so that your creation includes arrowheads on either or both sides. To access the Arrowheads box, go to the options bar and click on the drop-down arrow to the left of the "Weight" option. Here, you have the ability to add arrowheads at the start or end of your line, as well as set the arrows' width, length, and concavity. 

Arrow width and length is measured as a percentage of the line's width, so just play around with the percentage values until you're happy with the arrows' size, relative to your line. Meanwhile, the Concavity value can range from -50% to 50%, and it controls the curve on the bottom of your arrow. For example, a large positive value will make your arrow look like a spear, whereas a negative value will make it look more like a canoe paddle. For a basic arrow with no curve, just set the Concavity to 0%. 

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