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Presentation is key! Give your clients what they want with Layer Comps

Added on Tuesday 27th of March 2007 01:31 am EST
 

Application:

Adobe Photoshop CS/CS2

Operating Systems:

Macintosh, Microsoft Windows

You want to please your clients but sometimes they want more from you than you have time for—such as twenty revisions on a project. We’ll show you how to present top-quality layouts that are sure to please even the most finicky client by utilizing all the advantages of Layer Comps.

 

To help you create successful layouts for your finicky clients, we’ll:

     Show you how to create Layer Comps so you can present your client with multiple designs.

     Explain how to edit Layer Comps so you can make final revisions before you send them to your client.

     Detail how to export your document to a PDF slideshow for your client’s viewing pleasure.

 

You just got off the phone with a client who’s eager for you to get to work on his new ad. But you’re less than thrilled because you know that there will be three—or more—rounds of revisions before he finally settles on a design. Don’t get discouraged—be proactive! Give your client what he wants on the first round of comps. When you create a stunning presentation with a good variety of revisions, he’ll be less likely to send you back to the drawing board. We’ll show you how to maximize your design potential and keep your clients happy.

 

Better mockups with Layer Comps


 

The Layer Comps feature enables you to record the state of your Layers palette at any time. It’s essentially a snapshot of the Layers palette, but unlike a snapshot, a Layer Comp saves with your file. This allows you to save your work at various stages and, as shown in Figure A, makes it easier to create multiple versions of a composition in a single document.

 

A

 

You can record the following information in a layer comp:

        The position of elements on a layer.

        The visibility of a layer (if it’s on or off).

        Special effects applied to a layer from the Layer Style dialog box, such as drop shadows, bevels, or pattern overlays.

 

Creating and applying layer comps


 

To save you time, we’ve provided a file for you to download and practice with. To access this file, download layercomps.zip from the URL listed at the beginning of this article. Then, extract the file layercomps.psd, launch Photoshop, and open the file. We already have some Layer Comps set up in our file, but you can still use this file to experiment with and create new ones as well.

 

To create layer comps:

1.       Open or create a file with one or more layers, as the Layer Comps palette won’t function if your document only has a Background layer.

2.      Position your image elements where you want them, hide layers you don’t wish to include in a particular comp, and apply any layer style effects you want.

3.      Choose Window > Layer Comps to open the Layer Comps palette.

Note: By default the Layer Comps palette is docked to the palette well next to the tool options bar. You can easily click and drag it off if you prefer.

 

4.      Click on the Create New Layer Comp button create_new_layercomp located at the base of the palette to display the New Layer Comp dialog box.

5.      Enter a name for your Layer Comp in the Name text box, or leave the default Layer Comp 1.

6.      Select which layer properties you want recorded, and enter any relevant notes in the Comment text box as shown in Figure B.

Apply To Layers options: Visibility specifies which layers are hidden or shown. Position indicates the horizontal and vertical placement of an image on a layer. Appearance (Layer Styles) indicates which special effects are applied to each layer (drop shadow, glow, stroke, etc.)

B

 

7.      Click OK. The new Layer Comp displ...