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Working with multiple layers

From: Photoshop CS4 Essential Training

Video: Working with multiple layers

When you're building a layered file with lots of elements on different layers, you may find yourself with lots of layers to deal with. I'd like to show you some ways to handle multiple layers in the Layers panel. I am going to cover selecting multiple layers, grouping layers, and linking layers in this movie. When you have related layers, you may want to move them or change their size or rotate them or do something to all of them at the same time. When that's the case, you can select multiple layers in the Layers panel. So for example, let's say that I would like to move the entire cup with the logo and the numbers and the whipped cream and the cup together.

Working with multiple layers

When you're building a layered file with lots of elements on different layers, you may find yourself with lots of layers to deal with. I'd like to show you some ways to handle multiple layers in the Layers panel. I am going to cover selecting multiple layers, grouping layers, and linking layers in this movie. When you have related layers, you may want to move them or change their size or rotate them or do something to all of them at the same time. When that's the case, you can select multiple layers in the Layers panel. So for example, let's say that I would like to move the entire cup with the logo and the numbers and the whipped cream and the cup together.

I am going to go to the Layers panel and I will click on the logo layer, then I'm going to hold the Shift key and I'm going to go down and click on the cup layer. Holding the Shift key selects all the layers in between and now if I were to get my Move tool for examples and drag, all of those layers would go together. I will undo, Command+Z on a Mac or Ctrl+Z on a PC. Now I am going to click on just one of those layers to deselect the multiple layers. Now what would happen if I wanted to move just the logo and the circle together? They are not next to one another in the Layers panel, so I have to select them another way.

First, I will select the Logo layer by clicking on it and then I'm going to hold down the Command key on a Mac or the Ctrl key on a PC as I click on the circle layer. That's how you select noncontiguous layers in the Layers panel. Now if I drag with the Move tool, only the content of those two layers will move. Again, I am going to undo with Command or Ctrl+Z. Selecting multiple layers the way I just showed you is just a temporary way of putting layers together. As soon as I click on some of other layer, the multiple selection goes way, but there will be times when you want to connect layers one to the other in a more permanent fashion.

There are two ways to do that. One thing you can do is to create a layer group. So let's say for example that I want to put together the logo and the circle in one group. First, I need to have them next to one another in the Layers panel. So I'm going to take the logo layer and click-and-drag it just on top of the circle layer here. Then I am going to hold down my Shift key or my Command or Ctrl keys to select the circle layer. Now to make a group from the selected layers, I'm going to go to the Layers panel menu up here and I'm going to go down and choose New Group from Layers.

I will just call this Group 1 and say OK. I no longer see either my circle layer or my logo layer. Where did they go? They're inside of this group. I am going to click this arrow to the left of Group 1. That expands Group 1 and you can see my layers indented inside of Group 1. If I select Group 1, I can then move these layers together or I could add a layer mask that affects all the layers or I could change a blend mode that affects all the layers and more. Groups are also useful for organizing your Layers panel particularly when you get lots of layers there, because you can collapse any group by just clicking its arrow.

There is one more situation you may run into when you want to connect two layers, but they are not next to one another in the Layers panel and they can't be. That's the situation here. Say, I want to connect the whipped cream to the cup, because I want to scale them both down together, but I can't put them in a group because I need to have the logo in between the whipped cream and the cup so that it appears under the whipped cream in the image. In that case, I am going to use the Link function. I am going to click on the whipped cream layer. I am going to hold down the Command key on the Mac or the Ctrl key on a PC and click on the cup layer.

Then I'll link them together by going to the bottom of the Layers panel and pressing this little Link icon. Now each of them has a Link icon on it, and if I were to move them or scale them or do something else to them, they would go together. I will undo that change, Command+Z or Ctrl+Z. If you want to unlink linked layers, you select and then you go to the bottom of the Layers panel and click the Link icon. So those are some ways that you can connect layers to one another so that you can scale them or move them or otherwise work on them together.

You can either multi-select them for a temporary connection and just do what you have to do and then deselect them, or for a more permanent relationship between layers, you can put them together into a group or you can use the Link icon to link them together.

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This video is part of

Image for Photoshop CS4 Essential Training
Photoshop CS4 Essential Training

103 video lessons · 67525 viewers

Jan Kabili
Author

 
Expand all | Collapse all
  1. 2m 31s
    1. Welcome
      1m 27s
    2. Using the example files
      1m 4s
  2. 25m 14s
    1. Touring the interface
      4m 25s
    2. Working with tabbed documents
      5m 15s
    3. Using tools efficiently
      3m 51s
    4. Arranging panels
      3m 53s
    5. Customizing keyboard shortcuts
      2m 50s
    6. Saving a custom workspace
      3m 0s
    7. Changing screen modes
      2m 0s
  3. 19m 3s
    1. Touring the Bridge interface
      6m 31s
    2. Opening images from Bridge
      1m 20s
    3. Reviewing images
      4m 42s
    4. Finding images
      6m 30s
  4. 44m 53s
    1. Setting preferences
      4m 23s
    2. Choosing color settings
      8m 11s
    3. Zooming and panning
      5m 27s
    4. Resizing and image resolution
      3m 17s
    5. Adding to the canvas
      2m 2s
    6. Rotating the canvas
      1m 44s
    7. Choosing color
      4m 49s
    8. Sizing a brush tip
      3m 4s
    9. Undoing and the History panel
      5m 0s
    10. Saving and file formats
      3m 29s
    11. Creating a file from scratch
      3m 27s
  5. 37m 58s
    1. Making geometric selections
      6m 14s
    2. Modifying selections
      4m 43s
    3. Combining selections
      3m 16s
    4. Using the Quick Selection tool
      5m 34s
    5. Refining selection edges
      4m 12s
    6. Using Quick Mask mode
      2m 18s
    7. Selecting with the improved Color Range command
      4m 32s
    8. Selecting with the Magnetic Lasso tool
      2m 28s
    9. Using the Background Eraser tool
      3m 7s
    10. Saving selections
      1m 34s
  6. 39m 56s
    1. Understanding layers
      5m 43s
    2. Creating layers
      5m 12s
    3. Working in the Layers panel
      2m 19s
    4. Locking layers
      4m 17s
    5. Working with multiple layers
      4m 6s
    6. Merging and flattening layers
      3m 55s
    7. Adding a shape layer
      4m 43s
    8. Basic layer masking
      4m 23s
    9. Using layer blend modes and opacity
      5m 18s
  7. 23m 19s
    1. Cropping
      3m 26s
    2. Straightening
      3m 17s
    3. Transforming
      4m 42s
    4. Working with Smart Objects
      6m 48s
    5. Using Content-Aware Scaling
      5m 6s
  8. 1h 10m
    1. Reading histograms
      4m 21s
    2. Using adjustment layers and the Adjustment panel
      6m 4s
    3. Adjusting tones with Levels
      7m 49s
    4. Limiting adjustments with layer masks
      5m 40s
    5. Using masks in the new Masks panel
      6m 9s
    6. Limiting adjustments by clipping
      3m 6s
    7. Adjusting with Shadow/Highlight
      5m 7s
    8. Adjusting with Curves
      7m 37s
    9. Adjusting with Hue/Saturation
      3m 42s
    10. Adjusting with Vibrance
      2m 16s
    11. Removing a color cast
      4m 26s
    12. Using the Black & White adjustment layer
      2m 39s
    13. Using the Dodge Burn and Sponge tools
      4m 11s
    14. Reducing noise
      2m 39s
    15. Sharpening
      4m 42s
  9. 38m 0s
    1. Using the Spot Healing Brush tool
      5m 17s
    2. Using the Healing Brush tool
      5m 51s
    3. Using the Patch tool
      4m 52s
    4. Using the Clone Stamp tool
      4m 8s
    5. Enhancing eyes
      9m 29s
    6. Changing facial structure
      5m 0s
    7. Softening skin
      3m 23s
  10. 44m 38s
    1. What's a raw image?
      4m 25s
    2. Touring the Camera Raw interface
      7m 35s
    3. Working in the Basic panel
      7m 54s
    4. Working in the Tone Curve panel
      2m 21s
    5. Working in the HSL/Grayscale and Split Toning panels
      3m 46s
    6. Looking at the other Camera Raw panels
      3m 45s
    7. Using the Adjustment Brush tool
      4m 2s
    8. Using the Graduated Filter tool
      3m 56s
    9. Working with multiple files
      6m 54s
  11. 21m 6s
    1. Using the Brushes panel
      8m 30s
    2. Filling with color
      3m 49s
    3. Replacing color
      4m 14s
    4. Using gradients
      4m 33s
  12. 16m 55s
    1. Working with point type
      9m 59s
    2. Working with paragraph type
      3m 17s
    3. Warping text
      3m 39s
  13. 25m 23s
    1. Adding a layer style
      4m 6s
    2. Customizing a layer style
      3m 35s
    3. Copying a layer style
      3m 5s
    4. Creating a new style
      3m 32s
    5. Using Smart Filters
      5m 22s
    6. Working in the Filter Gallery
      5m 43s
  14. 13m 14s
    1. Auto-blending focus
      4m 47s
    2. Creating Photomerge panoramas
      4m 2s
    3. Combining group photos
      4m 25s
  15. 23m 27s
    1. Creating an action
      7m 16s
    2. Batch processing with an action
      6m 36s
    3. Using the Image Processor
      9m 35s
  16. 29m 20s
    1. Printing
      11m 32s
    2. Making a contact sheet from Bridge
      6m 12s
    3. Creating a web gallery from Bridge
      7m 17s
    4. Preparing photos for the web
      4m 19s
  17. 30s
    1. Goodbye
      30s

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