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Loading, selecting, and transforming layers

From: Photoshop CS6 Essential Training

Video: Loading, selecting, and transforming layers

As you get more comfortable working with layers, there are some shortcuts that you can use to open multiple layers at one time into the same image. So let's scoot over to Bridge by choosing File>Browse in Bridge and I want to select all four of these images. Instead of just opening them each as individual documents and then having to drag-and-drop them into the composite that we've already started, I'm going to choose Tools>Photoshop and then I'm going to load these files into Photoshop layers.

Loading, selecting, and transforming layers

As you get more comfortable working with layers, there are some shortcuts that you can use to open multiple layers at one time into the same image. So let's scoot over to Bridge by choosing File>Browse in Bridge and I want to select all four of these images. Instead of just opening them each as individual documents and then having to drag-and-drop them into the composite that we've already started, I'm going to choose Tools>Photoshop and then I'm going to load these files into Photoshop layers.

Now it's not going to add them into the opened document, but at least I have all four of these layers now in a single document so that I can quickly show both documents by tiling them. And then on the Layers panel instead of dragging each one individually I will select all of the layers by selecting the first layer, holding down the Shift key and selecting the bottommost layer, and then dragging and dropping those on top of my composite image. I'll hold down the Shift key before I release the mouse so that they will be centered.

Then, I no longer need this layer so we can close it. You can see how much quicker that was than opening each one individually and dragging-and-dropping them. Now if we look at our Layers palette, let's take a look at what just happened. We dropped in those four layers and they appeared right here in the layers stack, the reason that they appeared there was because I had the water layer targeted and whenever you drag-and-drop layers from one document to another they will always drop right above the targeted layer or the selected layer.

If I want to reposition these, all I need to do while they're still all selected is click-and-drag them above the Cloud layer. Let's go ahead and select the Logo.psd layer and I am going to drag that at the very top and just hide its visibility for now. One of the things that you might have noticed is that all of these layers came in already named and they are named the same name as the file name. If it bothers you, you could double-click on any of the names to remove that .JPG extension, but I actually don't mind it at all because it tells me exactly which file I opened from Bridge.

Now I want to transform these images that I just brought in, the Delta image, and the Ice and the Sand image. But I am not sure again how large I want them. So I want to convert them into smart objects. We can select the menu by going to Layer>Smart Objects and then Convert to Smart Object, but it's a lot faster if you simply right-mouse click on the layer. You don't have to target the layer just right-mouse click on it and then choose Convert to Smart Object. If you don't have a two button mouse, there will be the Ctrl key and choose Convert to Smart Object.

So now all three layers are smart objects, and they are all sitting right on top of each other, right? If I hide the visibility, we can see the Sand layer, and the Ice layer, and the Delta layer. Now certainly, I could select one of these layers and use Free Transform in order to make it smaller. But since I know I want all three layers to be transformed, why not select them all? So I'll hold down the Command key and choose Ice and Sand, and then use Cmd+ or Ctrl+T for free transform. I will hold down the Option and the Shift key to make them smaller and then tap the Enter key or the Return key in order to apply that transformation.

Now most people spend a lot of time selecting their layers on the Layers panel. But you can imagine if you had say a hundred layers in your image you are going to have to sit and scroll through the Layers panel in order to find the layer that you want, so there are some quicker ways and some shortcuts that we can use to select our layers. First of all we could use our context- sensitive menus so we could right mouse click anywhere in the image and wherever we click Photoshop will tell us the name of the layers that appear below the area that we clicked.

So I could go to Cloud or I could go to my Water layer here, I also have the option to link my layers, but I don't want to do that. Watch what happens if I click over here. I get just the Water layer and if I click right here now I have the option to choose the Delta layer, the Ice or the Sand. So I will select in the Sand layer and you can see on my Layers panel no longer are all three layers selected, only the Sand layer is selected. Now this is where it gets confusing when you are just learning Photoshop because I can see the Delta layer, but if I click here and reposition it, it's not going to move that Delta layer.

It's going to move the Sand layer because that's the layer that's selected in my Layers panel. Now another way that we could quickly select our layers is to have the Move tool selected and then turn on Auto-Select. Now by default it's going to Auto select a group but we can change that so that it auto selects a layer. Now no matter what layer I click on, Photoshop will automatically select that layer. So it's selected the Cloud layer, or the Water layer, or the Delta layer. The only thing that's difficult in this case is if there is a layer directly under the Delta layer, for example that Ice layer if I wanted to target that then I would need to use the context- sensitive menus or right mouse click.

But otherwise this is a great way to quickly move around your image and as long as the layer is visible, Photoshop can auto-select it for you. So I will just reposition this one over here, and let's take a look at one other shortcut because some people don't like to have Auto-Select layer turned on all the time. We can toggle that off and as long as we have that Move tool selected, we can temporarily toggle the Auto-Select functionality by holding down the Cmd key and then clicking on an image.

As soon as I let go with the Cmd key or the Ctrl key on Windows, then I toggle off that functionality. But now I've got the Ice layer selected so we could scoot it over here. Now I would like to have all three of these layers actually be aligned and evenly distributed, and there is a number of ways you can do that. One of the ways you could do it would be to turn on the View menu, come down to Show and turn on your Smart Guides, but this really only works if all of your layers are of the same size.

You can see now as I start repositioning my layer in the image, Photoshop tries to draw the guides to tell me when my images are aligned. So that's one way to do it. If you prefer to leave your Smart Guides off, which I'll turn off by simply selecting the option again, then we can use the Alignment and Distribution options with a Move tool. Right now they're all grayed out because I only have one layer selected, but if I select all three of these layers, now not only can I align them, I can also distribute them.

So let's align them all along the left side and then we will evenly distribute them based on their centers. So now I have an even space in between them and they're all aligned along the left. At this point since we've done a number of things to our image, I am going to go ahead and do a quick File. I will do a Save As, so that I can save this as a separate image from the last one and we'll just call it WindowSeat01. I'll save it to my layers folder as a Photoshop document with layers and click Save.

I will click OK to maximize the compatibility. What this does is, it saves not only the layered document but inside that layered document it saves like a flattened version of the document so that if you were to place this image into say a non-Adobe application and if that application didn't understand layers at least it could use that flattened version that's inside the same file in order to show you a preview. So I like to keep this turned on.

You also need to have this turned on if you're using Lightroom and you want Lightroom to show you, your Photoshop documents.

Show transcript

This video is part of

Image for Photoshop CS6 Essential Training
Photoshop CS6 Essential Training

148 video lessons · 97513 viewers

Julieanne Kost
Author

 
Expand all | Collapse all
  1. 1m 42s
    1. What is Photoshop?
      1m 42s
  2. 1m 11s
    1. Welcome
      1m 11s
  3. 32m 15s
    1. What is Adobe Bridge?
      2m 49s
    2. Getting photos from a camera
      4m 27s
    3. A tour of workspaces in Bridge
      5m 32s
    4. Customizing how thumbnails are displayed
      3m 44s
    5. Changing file names and batch renaming
      2m 58s
    6. Adding basic metadata with metadata templates
      5m 10s
    7. Creating and applying keywords to images
      4m 58s
    8. Viewing images in Full Screen Preview mode
      2m 37s
  4. 27m 1s
    1. Using Review mode to filter out rejected images
      4m 18s
    2. Saving images in collections
      4m 23s
    3. Rating and labeling images
      3m 46s
    4. Using the Filter panel to view different subsets
      4m 16s
    5. Using smart collections
      4m 18s
    6. Viewing final selects in a slideshow
      2m 21s
    7. Organizing groups of images into stacks
      3m 39s
  5. 32m 8s
    1. Comparing RAW and JPEG files
      6m 10s
    2. Starting in Camera Raw instead of Photoshop
      3m 12s
    3. Touring the Camera Raw interface
      9m 13s
    4. Previewing before and after adjustments
      3m 58s
    5. Toggling onscreen shadow and highlight clipping warnings
      3m 11s
    6. Choosing output settings
      3m 36s
    7. Saving a copy without going to Photoshop
      2m 48s
  6. 38m 37s
    1. Using the nondestructive Crop tool
      4m 42s
    2. Correcting a horizon line with the Straighten tool
      2m 41s
    3. Fixing color casts with the White Balance tool
      3m 50s
    4. Fixing blown-out highlights
      2m 56s
    5. Revealing hidden shadow details
      3m 7s
    6. Correcting lens distortion
      3m 25s
    7. Making perspective corrections to images
      2m 40s
    8. Removing color fringing and chromatic aberrations
      2m 28s
    9. Sharpening the details
      7m 45s
    10. Making an average photo great
      5m 3s
  7. 51m 2s
    1. Using the Graduated Filter tool
      6m 57s
    2. Making local adjustments with the Adjustments Brush
      10m 19s
    3. Retouching blemishes with the Spot Removal tool
      3m 41s
    4. Exploring a quick portrait retouching technique using Clarity
      4m 31s
    5. Converting to black and white
      2m 36s
    6. Editing images directly with the Targeted Adjustment tool
      3m 21s
    7. Creating selective color effects with the Adjustment Brush
      6m 5s
    8. Using sepia and split-tone effects
      3m 33s
    9. Adding digital film grain texture effects
      2m 20s
    10. Adding vignettes and border effects
      3m 59s
    11. Saving variations within a single file with the Snapshot command
      3m 40s
  8. 15m 13s
    1. Copying and pasting settings across files
      2m 4s
    2. Processing multiple files in Camera Raw
      3m 22s
    3. Saving and using the library of Camera Raw presets
      6m 48s
    4. Using Image Processor to batch process files
      2m 59s
  9. 30m 24s
    1. Opening files from Bridge
      2m 7s
    2. Opening files from Mini Bridge
      2m 51s
    3. Customizing the Mini Bridge panel
      3m 59s
    4. Using the Application frame
      3m 34s
    5. Managing panels
      5m 14s
    6. Switching and saving workspaces
      4m 39s
    7. Switching tools using the keyboard
      2m 47s
    8. Customizing the keyboard shortcuts
      5m 13s
  10. 10m 25s
    1. Working with tabbed documents
      1m 34s
    2. Arranging documents
      1m 52s
    3. Stopping Photoshop from tabbing documents
      1m 32s
    4. Panning and zooming
      3m 14s
    5. Cycling through different screen modes
      2m 13s
  11. 15m 44s
    1. Understanding file formats
      4m 36s
    2. Choosing the resolution you need
      4m 39s
    3. Understanding Resize vs. Resample
      4m 11s
    4. Working with print sizes and resolution
      2m 18s
  12. 32m 53s
    1. Using Undo and the History panel
      3m 7s
    2. Using crop options
      3m 54s
    3. Understanding Hide vs. Delete for the Crop tool
      1m 46s
    4. Bringing back hidden pixels with Reveal All
      40s
    5. Making the canvas bigger with the Crop tool
      3m 31s
    6. Making the canvas bigger using the Relative option in the Canvas Size command
      2m 18s
    7. Using the Perspective Crop tool
      1m 27s
    8. Straightening a crooked image
      2m 29s
    9. Scaling, skewing, and rotating with Free Transform
      5m 46s
    10. Making nondestructive transformations with Smart Objects
      2m 34s
    11. Warping images
      2m 48s
    12. Preserving important elements with Content-Aware Scale
      2m 33s
  13. 30m 41s
    1. Exploring layer basics
      11m 16s
    2. Loading, selecting, and transforming layers
      8m 4s
    3. Organizing layers using layer groups
      5m 3s
    4. Merging, rasterizing, and flattening layers
      6m 18s
  14. 43m 11s
    1. Using the Marquee and Lasso tools
      5m 43s
    2. Combining selections
      4m 4s
    3. Converting a selection into a layer mask
      5m 29s
    4. Using the Quick Selection tool
      4m 35s
    5. Selecting soft-edged objects using Refine Edge
      9m 42s
    6. Touching up a layer mask with the Brush tool
      7m 22s
    7. Changing the opacity, size, and hardness of the painting tools
      3m 17s
    8. Blending images with a gradient layer mask
      2m 59s
  15. 34m 36s
    1. Introducing adjustment layers
      3m 47s
    2. Starting with a preset
      2m 18s
    3. Improving tonal quality with Levels
      5m 31s
    4. Increasing midtone contrast with Curves
      6m 44s
    5. Removing a color cast with Auto Color
      2m 30s
    6. Changing the color temperature with Photo Filter
      2m 29s
    7. Shifting colors with Hue/Saturation
      4m 41s
    8. Making washed-out colors pop with Vibrance
      2m 48s
    9. Converting color to black and white
      1m 47s
    10. Controlling which layers are affected by an adjustment layer
      2m 1s
  16. 19m 33s
    1. Adjusting shadows and highlights
      5m 44s
    2. Replacing color using Selective Color
      3m 49s
    3. Using fill layers to create a hand-painted look
      6m 5s
    4. Using a gradient fill layer to add a color wash
      3m 55s
  17. 52m 9s
    1. Removing blemishes with the Spot Healing Brush and the Patch tool
      12m 42s
    2. De-emphasizing wrinkles with the Healing Brush
      4m 52s
    3. Smoothing skin and pores with the High Pass filter
      6m 19s
    4. Making teeth bright and white with a Hue/Saturation adjustment layer
      3m 21s
    5. Brightening eyes with Curves
      7m 0s
    6. Taming flyaway hair with the Patch tool
      3m 44s
    7. Removing unwanted details with Content-Aware Fill
      5m 49s
    8. Body sculpting with Liquify
      8m 22s
  18. 24m 12s
    1. Creating panoramas with Photomerge and Auto-Blend
      4m 48s
    2. Combining multiple frames in an action sequence
      8m 44s
    3. Swapping heads in a family portrait
      10m 40s
  19. 38m 26s
    1. Overview of filters
      2m 52s
    2. Applying filters nondestructively using Smart Filters
      5m 18s
    3. Creating a soft glow with the Gaussian Blur filter
      3m 35s
    4. Creating an infrared look with Diffuse Glow
      2m 14s
    5. Adding noise with the Add Noise filter
      6m 27s
    6. Sharpening an image with Unsharp Mask
      5m 11s
    7. Giving an image texture with the Texturizer filter
      1m 49s
    8. Using the Field, Iris, and Tilt-Shift Blurs
      6m 1s
    9. Creating a painting with the Oil Paint filter
      1m 34s
    10. Applying a filter to multiple layers
      3m 25s
  20. 22m 16s
    1. Cycling through the blending modes
      6m 42s
    2. Adding a lens flare effect with Screen
      2m 40s
    3. Scanning or photographing paper to add a deckled edge
      3m 1s
    4. Making a cast shadow more realistic with Multiply
      5m 21s
    5. Sharpening an image with High Pass and Overlay
      2m 26s
    6. Adding a realistic off-center vignette
      2m 6s
  21. 20m 9s
    1. Exploring character (point) type
      7m 6s
    2. Adding paragraph (area) type
      3m 38s
    3. Adding type on a path
      4m 44s
    4. Clipping an image inside type
      3m 3s
    5. Warping type
      1m 38s
  22. 15m 57s
    1. Adding a drop shadow effect
      6m 15s
    2. Adding edges, textures, and color overlays using layer styles
      4m 27s
    3. Creating a transparent logo or watermark
      2m 42s
    4. Knowing how and when to scale layer effects
      2m 33s
  23. 15m 45s
    1. Creating contact sheets
      2m 49s
    2. Using the Output workspace in Bridge
      5m 32s
    3. Exporting web photo galleries
      4m 20s
    4. Saving for the web
      3m 4s
  24. 23m 38s
    1. Working with video clips
      9m 29s
    2. Adding special effects to video
      5m 45s
    3. Adding pans and zooms to still images
      8m 24s
  25. 1m 10s
    1. Goodbye
      1m 10s

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