October 8, 2010
When creating Smart Objects, Photoshop stores the information (pixels) that make up the Smart Object within the file (lets call this “embedded” information). If you select a Smart Object in the Layers panel and use the keyboard shortcut Command (Mac) / Control (Win) + J or Option (Mac) / Alt (Win) -drag the Smart Object to create a duplicate layer, both of those layers (the original and the duplicate) are referencing the same “embedded” information. Therefore, if you edit the contents of one of the Smart Object layers (Layer > Smart Objects > Edit Contents), then both layers will be updated upon saving the edits.
On the other hand, if you select a Smart Object in the Layers panel and choose Layer > Smart Objects > New Smart Object via Copy, then the “embedded” information is duplicated. Selecting Layer > Smart Objects > Edit Contents will only edit the targeted Smart Object layer.
October 7, 2010
Any filters applied to a Smart Object are automatically “Smart Filters”. Change the filter parameters at any time by double clicking on the filter name in the Layers panel (that’s what makes them smart, they’re nondestructive). Change the Opacity and Blend Mode of the Smart Filter by double clicking the Filter Blending Option (two small lines with triangles under then to the right of the filter name in the Layers panel.) Paint in the Smart Filter mask just as you would any layer mask.
September 17, 2010
Control (Mac) / Right Mouse (Win) -click on the Background layer in the Layers panel to convert the Background to a Smart Object in one step.
September 16, 2010
When working with Smart Filters, double click on the small icon to the right of the filter’s name in the Layer’s panel (the one that looks like two lines with the arrows) to display Blending options (Blend Mode and Opacity) for the filter.
August 12, 2010
PSCS5 – To use Puppet Warp non destructively, convert the layer(s) into a Smart Object before applying the warp.
June 22, 2010
When in Adobe Camera Raw, clicking the link at the bottom of the dialog displays the workflow options where you can check/uncheck the option to “Open in Photoshop as Smart Objects”. However, to quickly toggle this option on/off, without displaying the workflow options, simply hold the Shift key and the “Open Image” button will toggle to “Open Object” and vice versa.
June 9, 2010
PSCS5 – When placing files from Bridge (File > Place…) and/or dragging and dropping from Mini Bridge into an already open document, Photoshop CS5 will conveniently place the newly added layer as a Smart Object as well as resize it to fit within the originating image’s canvas size. This was a much requested feature but if you prefer the legacy behavior, there are preferences to turn off both under Preference > General > Place or Drag Raster Images as Smart Objects and Preference > General > Resize Image During Place.
June 8, 2010
PSCS5 – On Windows, simply drag and drop an image from Mini Bridge into the Photoshop work area. On Mac, select Window > Application Frame and drag and drop an image from Mini Bridge into the work area to open it. If there are no other files open Photoshop will open the dropped image as a new document. However, if there is already an image open and you drag and drop an image from Mini Bridge on top of that open file, Photoshop will place the dropped file as a Smart Object (as it’s own layer) and will automatically resize it to fit within the canvas. If you prefer to Drag and Drop an image from Mini Bridge (and there are additional files open), and so that it opens as it’s own document, drag and drop the file in the Tabbed area at the top of the open documents.
November 26, 2009
When using the File > Place command (invoked from either Photoshop or Bridge) the placed document is automatically converted into a Smart Object. Not only does this work when placing images, but also logos/artwork from Illustrator into Photoshop.
November 25, 2009
To create an “unlinked” copy of a Smart object, select Layer > Smart Objects > New Smart Object via Copy. This copy will reference it’s own embedded file. If you edit the contents of the Smart Object only that instance will be updated.
November 24, 2009
Multiple instances of the same Smart Object can be created by selecting Layer > New > Layer Via Copy or by Option (Mac) / Alt (Win) dragging the Smart Object in the Layers panel. Editing the contents of any of the instances of the Smart Object will update ALL placed instances of that Smart Object.
November 23, 2009
To Edit the Contents of a Smart Object, double click the Smart Object’s thumbnail in the Layer’s panel.
April 1, 2009
Quickly select all of your Type layers by targeting one in the Layers panel and then choose Select > Similar Layers. This also works with Adjustment layers, Fill layers, Smart Objects etc.
March 12, 2009
The Eyedropper has been relocated to the first grouping of tools in the tool box. In addition, it has been refined n Photoshop CS4, allowing you to choose to sample the Current Layers or All Layers (in the Options bar). The eyedropper’s “Sample Size”, set in the options bar, affects the Magic Wand, Magic Eraser and the Background Eraser. Option (Mac) / Alt (Win) click the Eyedropper to select the background color swatch (instead of the foreground) in the Tool panel. In addition, in Photoshop CS4, the Eyedropper can sample a value of a color within a Smart Object. The eyedropper can now sample colors from outside of Photoshop. Make the color visible (on the desktop, in another application etc.). Then click with the eyedropper on the image and then drag to sample the desired color.
April 29, 2008
Uncover the tremendous power behind Photoshop CS3′s smart objects in this video tutorial. Learn how to add flexibility to your workflow using, non-destructive transformations, and one-click template content replacement.