Lowering Layered File Sizes—Part Two

Lowering Layered File Sizes—Part Two
by Jen White

As part of a quick mini series, I’m sharing with you my not-so-super-secret tips for lowering the files sizes of layered projects in Photoshop and Photoshop Elements.

In Part One of the series, I shared the super simple how-to tip of cropping your document at the end of the creative process in order to vastly reduce its file size.

If you were surprised at how many megabytes Part One saved you, you will be blown down by this next little dandy. Read on.

Tip #2: Merge, Merge, Merge

I almost always use masks to clip my photos and papers. You probably do, too. Do yourself and your hard drive space a favor—merge the clippings down after you know you won’t want to change them.

• In the Layers panel, click on the layer that is clipped (ie. photo or paper) to activate it.
• In the Menu Bar, choose Layer > Merge.

This is gonna save you a TON megabytes in the end.

But, why?

Just as I noted in Part One, Photoshop and Photoshop Elements keeps track of ALL pixels in a document—even the ones you cannot see. Merging will smash those two (or more) layers together revealing all their dirty secrets and not letting Photoshop get the last word. (wink)

NOTE: You will have to simplify shape layers and type layers before you can merge onto them. However, simplifying vector layers (shapes and type) has the potential to raise the file size of your document. So, I’d encourage you to experiment to see which is better—simplify and merge, or just leave things be.

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jenwhite-48x48Author: Jen White | Contact Us
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