Photoshop: view contents of Nested Smart Objects with the ability to edit, add and tweak stuff on the fly, with direct result on the canvas.

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  • Updated 6 years ago
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  • (Edited)
Once again I respect everyones' time so I'll jump right into my "rant" (it's not a rant really :) just sharing my thoughts)

Now let's imagine the following scenario:

Smart Object 5
----Smart Object 4
-----Smart Object 3
------Smart Object 2
-------Smart Object 1

The current system expects me to:

1. Remember settings, masks, blending options, smart filters, etc, applied to specific smart objects within the hierarchy. I think it would be BEYOND AWESOME if I can quckly look at everything that is going on at once.

2. Let's say I have to feather a mask I've set on "Smart Object 2" this would require me to click through 3 smart objects and then hit save 3 more times to see the results of my reiteration. This presents a severe diconnect between me and what I'm designing.

3. When I have multiple smart objects that I have duplicated, editing one of them results in changing all of the duplicates. While this is great most of the time I would much prefer If I can somehow control this feature in a quick, easy and straightforward way.

Introducing some kind of "Smart Folder" system where you can go through all the contents of your hierarchy along with their specific settings would be great!

Thanks!
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Martin Velchevski

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Posted 6 years ago

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PECourtejoie, Champion

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For 3) if you select new smart object via copywhen doing a right-click on the layer name in the layer panel rather than dragging it to the new layer icon, you get an independent SO.
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Chris Cox

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1) That would defeat the whole point of having smart objects. The contents inside the Smart Object are supposed to be hidden until you open the child document (all you see is the converted, transformed composite). And you shouldn't have to remember all the settings inside -- they should either be visible in the result, or you shouldn't care what's inside the child document (what you see is what you've got).

2) Yes, Smart Objects are supposed to hide details. 90+% of the time the contents cannot be represented directly within the parent document. And it sounds like you may be confusing smart objects with layer sets/folders. Most people shouldn't have smart objects nested that deeply.

3) "New Smart Object via Copy"

Overall, it sounds like you aren't that familiar with how Smart Objects work or when they should be used -- and that may have lead to overuse or misuse of smart objects in your workflow.
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Martin Velchevski

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Wow Chirs! Approaching and answering my query with the presumption that I'm ignorant and don't know how to use smart objects is quite an interesting communication technique. Your preaching tone is also a tad bit disturbing given your "EMPLOYEE" avatar.

"you shouldn't have to remember all the settings inside -- they should either be visible in the result, or you shouldn't care what's inside the child document (what you see is what you've got)" --> Yes I do actually! And even if it is only me in the whole world that does that (which is not the case) I should feel fine sharing my thoughts without being proclaimed as "unfamiliar with how Smart Objects work".

"And it sounds like you may be confusing smart objects with layer sets/folders. Most people shouldn't have smart objects nested that deeply. " --> I'm don't feel confused at all my friend. There are things that even you the "employee" might not know about smart objects and what can be done with them.

I am willing to provide some PSDs, that would make my point. I can also cite situations where nesting is the only way to go about things.

Go ahead and check out just that simple technique for example --> http://dribbble.com/shots/513889-Tips...

Here you'll find that nesting is required to achieve certain effect.

Thanks for your kind replay!
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Chris Cox

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Nobody is preaching here. I'm just trying to correct your mistakes. And it really does seem like you do not understand Smart Objects.

You may not think you are confused, but from someone who knows Smart Objects and what's going on with them - you sound really confused. (and since I wrote Smart Objects, I'm fairly certain I know what they do and what they are capable of)

The example given really did not need nested smart objects - they're being used mostly where folders / layer sets would have done just as well.