I hereby declared 2/10/2010 to be National Photoshop Smart Object Day. If you’re a Photoshop user and you’re not familiar with the ins and outs of Smart Objects, then prepare for your mind to be completely blown away to smithereens.
For years, I wanted indestructible control over Gaussian Blur, Unsharp Mask, and Noise. Today, Keane Fine and I co-discovered how to do this. All you gotta do is highlight your desired layer, click on the triangle in the upper right of the layers menu, and select “Convert to Smart Object”. Now ANY filter that you run is indestructibly rendered, meaning that you can go back and edit it at any time in the life of the psd file. That little icon in the lower right corner of the orange box shown above is a powerful tool.
For example, you can apply a gaussian blur of 12.7 to a layer and then you can go back AT ANY TIME in the life of the psd and edit that specific gaussian blur. At any time you can change that 12.7 gaus blur to 13.5.
For years, I’ve been keeping crib notes of different blur, noise, unsharp mask settings. Inevitably, I would lose those notes and the need would arise where I would have to tweak something in a psds file and I’d have to guess and guesswork never works because it’s usually just a minor tweak that needs to be done and guessing does no good. Well, no more, I say! Smart Objects rule the day!
I still remember the day when I was introduced to Photoshop’s Healing Brush. It was at a demo in the Apple Store in Schaumburg of all places and I got chills up my spine when I saw it. Well, indestructible filters through Smart Objects ranks right up there. I’m gonna be bold and say it’s an even greater discovery.