Understanding Adobe Photoshop Elements - The Layer Menu - Photoshop Tutorial On Flatten, Merge, Arrange, Group, and Type

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This layer selection tool offers options to change your text. Firstly, you can choose whether you want to type horizontally or vertically. Anti-alias will choose whether or not you want to smooth the edges in order for the type to look more natural. Warp text will allow you to change how your font appears such as making it arc or fisheye. Update all text layers will allow you to re-configure Photoshop Elements in the off-chance you’re using a deleted font or a font that Elements doesn’t recognize. Lastly, replace all missing fonts will un-delete any fonts you had previously deleted and now want to use again. In most cases these last two options are grayed out.

Simplify Layer, Group With Previous, and Ungroup

Simplify Layer: This menu option allows you to simplify a layer in order to add filters or use the paint tool with them. If you simplify a layer, you will no longer be able to use the type or shape-editing tools on the layer.

Group With Previous: This allows you to create a “layer mask” within Elements. If you group a layer with the previous layer, anything you do to that layer will also apply to the layer it is grouped with.

Ungroup: This works the exact opposite of group with previous. If you no longer want the layers to be grouped together, simply select this option and they will be back to individual layers.

Arrange, Merge Down, Merge Visible, and Flatten Image

Arrange: The arrange option lets you change the order of your layers. Some options will be grayed out depending on what layer you are working with. For example, if you are working with the front layer, you will not be able to choose bring to front because it’s already there. Bring to front will bring the selected layer up one layer, bring forward will bring it all the way to the front. Send back will send the layer back one, while send to back will put the layer at the very end of the document. Reverse will do just as it says; reverse the order of your selected layers.

Merge Down: Merging your layers will change your image from many layers to a flattened image with all of the changes appearing on one document, rather than each piece of the document being on a separate layer. Sometimes this will appear as merge layers in which case it will only merge the layers that you have selected together, rather than all of the layers in the palette.

Merge Visible: This will only merge the layers that can be seen in the document. If you’ve hidden any layers, they will not merge with the rest of the document.

Flatten Image: This last menu option will allow for you to merge every layer in your document into one image. It will take all of the changes in each layer and merge them into one photo reflecting each layer’s changes. This works well if you want to save your finished photo as a .jpg, .gif, or other extension. If there are still un-flattened layers, you will only be able to save the image as a .psd file.

This post is part of the series: Adobe Photoshop Elements 6.0 Menus - Photoshop Elements Made Easy

This tutorial series will explain all the menu options within Adobe Photoshop Elements 6.0. From the File Menu to the Help Menu.

  1. Adobe Photoshop Elements File Menu - Including New, Open, and Duplicate
  2. Adobe Photoshop Elements File Menu - Including Save, File Info, and Organize
  3. Adobe Photoshop Elements File Menu - Including Import, Export, and Print
  4. Adobe Photoshop Elements 6.0 Edit Menu - Including Undo, Redo, Cut, and Copy
  5. Adobe Photoshop Elements Edit Menu - Including Selections, Brushes, and Patterns
  6. Adobe Photoshop Elements Edit Menu - Including Color Settings, Presets, and Preferences
  7. How to Rotate Your Images Using Adobe Photoshop Elements
  8. Adobe Photoshop Elements Image Menu - Including Crop, Transform, and Resize
  9. Adobe Photoshop Elements Image Menu - Details on Mode, Converting Color Profile, and Magic Extractor
  10. Adobe Photoshop Elements Enhance Menu - Including Auto Smart Fix, Auto Levels, and Auto Red Eye Fix
  11. Adobe Photoshop Elements Enhance Menu - Including Adjust Color, Unsharp Mask, and Convert to Black and White
  12. Adobe Photoshop Elements Layer Menu - Details On New, Duplicate, and Rename Layer
  13. Adobe Photoshop Elements Layer Menu - Details On Adjustment Layers, Fill Layers, and Layer Content
  14. Adobe Photoshop Elements Layer Menu - Including Type, Merge, Flatten, Arrange, and Group
  15. Adobe Photoshop Elements Select Menu - Information On Deselect, Reselect, Inverse, and Feather
  16. Adobe Photoshop Elements Select Menu - Including Modify, Grow, Similar, and Loading, Saving, and Deleting a Selection