When will Photoshop properly handle vectors?

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  • Updated 2 years ago
Adobe really needs to add the ability to bring it vectors. I'd like to be able to create vector shapes in Ai then just bring them into Photoshop so I always have perfectly sharp shapes. 
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Posted 2 years ago

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Warren Heaton

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Photoshop has had Paths and Shape Layers forever; however, if you're familiar with Illustrator's drawing tools, you'll probably still prefer those over what Photoshop offers.

Have you tried copy and paste from your AI document to your PS document?  PS will present you with various options as to how it treats the vectors: Smart Object, Pixels, Path, or Shape Layer.

From what you've described, you may want to use Smart Object.  Once pasted into PS, you can double-click the Image Thumbnail in the Layers panel to edit the Smart Object in AI at any time.  Once saved on the AI side, the Smart Object will update immediately in PS. It's also worth noting that the vectors of the resulting Smart Object are saved inside the PSD file. 

Instead of copy and paste, you can also use File > Place Linked.  With this approach, any editing that the vectors might need happen in the original AI file rather than a Smart Object based on AI objects.  When using Place Linked, keep in mind that the placed file needs to be in the same location every time you open the PS file (keeping them in the same folder or sub-folders usually does the trick).

With the Paste As Smart Object or Place Linked, you maintain all of the Illustrator capabilities for editing vectors.

Of course, explore the other paste options.  One is sure to do the trick.

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Cristen Gillespie

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> Of course, explore the other paste options.  One is sure to do the trick.>

Exactly. If I want the object to retain its appearance and editability, then Smart Objects work a treat (with the caveat that the size in AI can't be altered without potential problems when you update the SO in PS).

If I want to create future objects in PS that don't need to retain the appearance of the original—perhaps later to use with a watercolor brush or fill with a pattern, for instance, then I paste as Shape, and it definitely retains the vector outline while adding the versatility of a reusable shape selected from my saved custom shapes.
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Jaroslav Bereza

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I am using competitor software Affinity Designer... it can open AI, SVG, EPS and save it as PSD file with editable vector shapes so I can open it in Photoshop.