How To Group Layers In Photoshop: All Possible Methods To Try

By Tata Rossi 23 days ago, Photoshop Tips

Such operation as grouping layers in Photoshop is rather popular among users, so every photographer/retoucher, especially a beginner one, should clearly understand how to achieve a successful result. Layers can be grouped by using commands of the main and context menu. However, you can speed up the process by using hotkey combinations. Here are several simple ways to group layers quickly.

METHOD 1. Go to the Layers Panel

Knowing how to group layers in Photoshop, you can easily order and access connected layers. For example, when editing a portrait, it is helpful to group connected corrections, e.g., hair & skin retouching, into separate groups, instead of cramming them into one pile. This way you will segment your layers and optimize the working process. Go to the Layers Panel to start working.

pick up the toolbar

Launch Photoshop and open your document. On the layers panel, choose the “Window” > “Layers” tab to open the “Layers” panel. Note that each layer reflects the thumbnail view specifying the type of content on the layer. You can also use layering photo apps to cope with the task, using your smartphone.

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METHOD 2. Create a New Layer Group

Even if you know how to merge layers in Photoshop, you also understand that this operation is not a standalone method of grouping layers. This technique is fitted when you work with a complex document that has a great number of layers, and you have to group a wide array of specific layers.

STEP 1. Create a “New Group”

group from layers

Click on the layer with an image. Hold down Shift and click on the Img bg layer to select both layers. Click on the “Group from Layers” at the bottom of the “Layers” panel.

STEP 2. Change the Name of the “New Group”

new group from layers

Double-click on the name of the new group and change it into “Image”. Click on the arrow near the “Image” layer group to see how layers are arranged into a group.

STEP 3. Select Layers with Text

create group from layers

Select layers with text and click on the “Create Group from Layers” menu item. This way you will group layers in Photoshop.

create name group from layers

Double-click on the group to change its name.

STEP 4. Work with the Rest of Layers

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Hold down the “Shift” button and click on the other text layers in the document.

drag the selected layers into a new group

Next, drag the chosen layers to the new group, holding down the left mouse button.

expand the group

Open the group to make sure the text layers are in one group.

STEP 5. Return to the Tool Panel

auto-select tool

Choose the “Move” tool from the list and make sure the “Auto-Select” checkbox is selected.

group layers in photoshop

Click on the “Image” group on the “Layers” panel. Move the photo from one side of a poster to another. Now you know how to group layers in Photoshop and can watch other Photoshop tutorials on YouTube.

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  • • Why do I fail to group layers in Photoshop?

You may face such a problem because you’ve chosen the wrong layer while grouping. For example, it is impossible to group layers when you try to perform the action using the background (basic) layer.

  • • What is an icon for grouping layers?

To group layers in Photoshop, press Ctrl + G; to ungroup them ‒ press Shift + Ctrl + G.

  • • How to apply a correction layer to all layers?

To edit several layers in one go, hold down Command/Control and click on the necessary layer. Next, press Command or Control + G to group layers. To adjust the grouped layers, add a correction layer, right click, and choose “Create Clipping Mask”. Now you can edit each layer straight away.

  • • What is a key command to group layers?

To group several layers, choose layers you want to merge, and press Ctrl + E (Win) / Command + E (Mac). To group 2+ layers into a new one preserving original layers, choose layers you want to merge, and press Ctrl + Alt + E (Win) / Command + Option + E (Mac).

  • • How to make one correction layer influence only one specific layer?

You can edit only one layer in Photoshop by using Clipping Mask. Place one layer above another on the layer panel, right-click and choose “Create Clipping Mask” to attach it to the underlying layer. Now, this setting will affect only one layer it is attached to.