Photoshop has different ways of placing assets from other files into a project. In this video, learn how linked and embedded layers affect the size and organization of your projects differently.
- [Narrator] All right. This is a file that I'm going to collaborate on. Another designer has sent me this file, planetcard.psd, that I'm previewing here in Finder, and I'm going to open that in Photoshop. This dialogue right here is one of the primary difficulties in collaborating in Photoshop. "Cannot locate linked assets." Each of these resource icons, is a separate external Photoshop file, that's been placed into the Planet Card.
Now the reason that the designer has done this, is because, that way, there's only one version of each of those icons, and it can be reused across all of the cards in the game. Unfortunately, they forgot to send that along. So, let's pretend that I contacted the designer, they sent that along, and now, I can re-link that. It's in the 02_01 Linked Assets folder. Now Photoshop is smart enough, that if I choose one of these files, it's going to automatically find the other three, and it's given a check mark here.
And if I click OK, now, those linked files will be placed and linked up correctly. I'm going to ignore the Missing Fonts dialogue, we'll talk about that in the next video. If I expand the Text and Icons section, and I come down here to Water, the Resource Icon - Water, you'll notice that there's a linked icon over the thumbnail. In many ways, this behaves like a smart object. However, if I double-click it, what I'm actually doing, is editing that file, the one in the Linked Assets folder.
And so if I change something, for example, disabling a layer, and saving it, it actually saves that Photoshop file itself. And when I close the file, it's also updated our Planet Card file, and any other file that links to the Resource Icon for water. So I'm going to go ahead and re-enable that layer. This can be a really handy way to save storage space, or if you're working in a team, and you have a lot of files up on a network, you can all point to the same place.
Sometimes that's not what you want to do, however. I'm going to create a new file, and I'm going to paint that, a default black, and now I want to show you the different Place options. There's Place Embedded and Place Linked. We've already seen what Place Linked does. Let's choose Place Embedded. If I place the gas.psd file, it's going to create a new Smart Object based on that Photoshop file.
However, if I come in and edit this, let's say, disable a couple of layers, and then save it, it's changed in the new file we've created; however, it hasn't changed the original file itself. What that means is, if I want to place another copy of that same file, I can do that, and each one of those is maintained independently. This can be really useful, if what you're trying to do is have multiple variations on the same file. However, because each of those layers in the Smart Object is contained inside of your file, your file will get larger very quickly.
I'm going to go ahead and close this. The one last thing that I'd like to show you, is, let's say you have linked to many other files in many other locations, or, you just want to make sure that what you've linked is all in one place. The easiest way to do this, from the File menu, is to choose Package. What this will do, is it will save a copy of the file, and I'm going to just choose Desktop here, and it will also save all of the accompanying linked files, in a folder right next to it, called Links.
So here, in the Planet Card folder that it just created, we have the Planet Card file, and the four linked files. As you're working on your own projects, you may find that linking is going to save you a lot of time and hassle. In other cases, you might want to embed those files. In any case, you need to know the difference and understand when to use each of them.
- Being consistent
- Naming and organizing layers
- Linking assets
- Using CC Libraries
- Identifying unlabeled layers