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When you open multiple photos into the Expert edit workspace, by default you'll see just one of the photos at a time in a single document window, as we saw earlier in this chapter. But there will be times when you want to view multiple photos all at the same time, maybe to compare different exposures of the same scene or when you're making composites of multiple photos. When you do want to see multiple open photos at once, go down to the Layout button in the taskbar at the bottom of the Expert edit workspace, and click that button to see a menu of different layouts that you can choose from.
Each of these layout options displays multiple document windows in different tiled patterns, like this, or this, or this, or this. If you've got a lot of photos or if your photos are large, you won't be able to see the full photo when you tile them into multiple windows like this. One solution is to zoom out on all the photos, and the most efficient way to do that is to zoom out on one of the photos and then automatically match the other zoom levels.
If you look closely you can see that right now the document tab for this photo of trees is the active photo. It's a little bit brighter than the other document tabs. So I'm going to zoom out on the active photo by holding the Ctrl key and pressing the - symbol a couple of times. On a Mac you'll hold the Command key and press the - symbol. That zoomed me out to 50%, which is far enough for me to see this entire photo. Now if I want to zoom the other windows to the same percentage so that I can see all of this photo as well, then I'll go up to the Window menu, and down to Images, and I'll choose Match Zoom. And that takes all three windows to 50%.
If I want to take them all back to 100%, maybe to compare the sharpness among the photos, I use the shortcut to go to 100%, which is to double-click the Zoom Tool, and that takes the active photo to 100%. And then again I'll go to Window>Images>Match Zoom. Rather than try to view a lot of images or particularly big images in one of these fixed layouts, some people prefer to view each photo in a separate floating window. One advantage is that floating windows can be freely moved around the screen. Another advantage of floating windows over tiled layouts is that you can more easily drag layered content between floating windows when you're making a composite.
To use floating windows, you need to turn on a preference in the editor's General preferences. The preferences on Windows are located under the Edit menu. On a Mac, they are located under the Adobe Photoshop Elements menu up here in the menu bar. I'll go down and choose Preferences>General. And in the Preferences dialog box. I go to this option, Allow Floating Documents in Expert Mode, and I'll check that option and then I'll click OK. Now I can take any one of these documents, click on its tab, and drag to move it out of the fixed layout and into a separate floating window like this.
I can click-and-drag on the title bar of this window and move it wherever I want on my screen. If I want to put all of the open documents into separate floating windows, I'll go down to the Layout menu and here I have a new option that wasn't available before I enabled that preference, All Floating. I'll click on that and now I have three separate floating windows and I can click on the title bar of any one of those and move it wherever I want on the screen. I can even create multiple tabbed documents within one of the floating windows, by clicking the title bar of one of my floating documents and dragging it into another. And then when I see that blue highlight around the inside border, I'll release my mouse, and I'm starting to build a new tabbed document within this floating window.
This could be a useful way to organize a lot of open documents at once. Finally, if I want to return all the open photos to a single window with tabbed documents, which is the default view with which we started this video, I'll go down to the Layout menu and I'll choose Default.
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