Layer management

We welcome the future of Photoshop-wizard!

In this article, you will learn how to manage Photoshop layers — step up, move, pin, and merge.

1. Layer Activity

For example, take our blue avatar, which consists of five layers.

It should be understood that each layer is responsible for its part of the avatar. Layer “glasses” for points, layer “eyes” for the eyes and so on. If we want to change the color of the rim of the glasses, then we need to activate the layer that is responsible for the glasses. To activate a layer, click on the desired layer. Changing the color of the frame means working with a layer of “glasses”:

Remember: only one can be active at a time.

2. Moving layers in a document

The tool is responsible for moving layers. “Move” (Move Tool) – It is on the tool palette.

When working with this tool at the top of the main menu, you will see a panel with its settings. At the moment we are interested in the following setting:

If setting Auto Select (Auto Select Layer) not marked (as in the picture), then in whatever part of the document you find yourself, only the active layer will move. I now have a layer with glasses. Using tool “Move” (Move Tool) I moved the frame up.

If setting Auto Select (Auto Select Layer) is marked, then the layer you click on in the document will be moved (grabbed the mouth – moved, grabbed the eyebrows – dragged, etc.) This is a very convenient function if the objects are large enough, for small objects like letters grappling harder, in this case it is better to disable the box.

3. Moving layers in the layers palette

Now let’s talk about moving layers in the layers palette. At the moment, if you list from top to bottom, then I have the following order of placement of layers: glasses, eyebrows, eyes, mouth, blue square. And all together they form a cute blue avatar. Go to the layers palette, stand on the “eyes” layer, hold down the mouse button and move it up to the top of the “glasses” layer (and you should have an exciting hand).

That’s what we did – a layer with eyes covers a layer with glasses.

In fact, it still suits him better when his eyes are behind the glasses – move him back! The main thing you understand the meaning of dragging layers. There are moments that you do not see the layer, refer to the palette, maybe it just closes any of the existing elements. In this case, you need to take and move your lost layer to a higher level.

4. Bonding of layers

If you have a desire to move the eyebrows along with the eyes, then this will help us function “Link layers”, which is at the bottom of the panel Layers

or in the main menu Layers – Link Layers (Layer – Link Layers).

With the key held down Ctrl Click on the layers that you want to link together. In our case, select “eyebrows” and “eyes”, and then click on the icon “Link layers”. Now the eyes and eyebrows of the avatar will be inseparable.

The same click can remove the binding. Or, conversely, add to other layers.

5. Merge layer with bottom

Now let’s try to merge two layers into one. Let’s merge the “eye” and “glasses” layers. Why get up on a layer with glasses and press the key combination Ctrl + E or in the main menu Layers – Merge With Previous (Layer – Merge Down).

Now we have such a picture – we merged the layer with the bottom one:

6. Combining all visible layers

To connect all the parts of the avatar together, press the key combination Shift + Ctrl + E or Layers – Merge Visible (Layer – Merge Visible), then all visible layers will be merged into one layer.

Now we have a single and indivisible blue avatar.

See you in the next lessons!

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