Layers are the most powerful feature in Adobe Photoshop. It’s the core Photoshop feature around which other tools revolve. Like transparent sheets on top of one another, you can shuffle layers around to make anything.
So, as a Photoshop beginner, you will have to learn the ins and outs of managing layers. But sometimes you’ll find that you want to save one particular layer as an image. How do you do this without having to hide every single other layer, then unhide them when you’re done?
How to Save a Photoshop Layer as Image
You can quickly extract a layer as a separate image with the Quick Export as PNG method (see screenshot below), but this does not give you any control.
With Photoshop CC 2017, the more precise and powerful Export as dialog is accessible to each layer in a multi-layered Photoshop document.
To bring up this dialog for layers, select the layer you want to extract in the Layers panel. Right-click this selection and select Export As from the context menu.
The Export As dialog is displayed. This dialog helps you fine-tune each image on a layer before you export it. For instance:
- Choose a format (PNG, JPG, GIF, or SVG) and the format specific settings.
- Specify the width and height of the image you want to export.
- Use a resampling method to change the image quality by either deleting or adding pixels.
- Set a final canvas size when you want your image to have a certain width and height.
You can see the other options in the dialog box. One of the settings on the left allows you to scale the image up or down when you export it. Select a relative asset size.
There are a few more ways to extract a specific layer as an asset from a multi-layered image, but the Export As dialog is the preferred tool for the job.
You might want to export one layer in a specific format and the others in another format. You might want to switch on the transparency for one image. Or you may want to send someone a compact version of an image asset from the layers. It’s all possible.
How useful do you find this method? Which is the other way you use to automate layer export from Photoshop?