Export Each Layer Separately with Export Layers to Files Feature in Photoshop


Photoshop, a powerful tool for graphic designers and digital artists, offers a myriad of features to enhance workflow efficiency. One such feature is the ability to export multiple layers simultaneously, which is particularly useful when working with designs that involve numerous elements such as logos or icons.

Before delving into the export process, it’s crucial to organize your layers effectively. Naming each layer descriptively is a key step, as Photoshop uses these names during the export process. This organization not only streamlines the export process but also helps in maintaining the structure of your project, making it easier to navigate and edit in the future.

In scenarios where certain layers (like backgrounds) aren’t needed in the final export, Photoshop allows you to hide these layers. This feature is handy for focusing on the essential elements of your design, ensuring that only the required layers are exported, which saves time and storage space.

The Export Process: A Step-by-Step Guide

To export layers, navigate to File > Export > Layers to Files. This opens a dialog box where you can specify various parameters for the export.

First, determine where you want the exported files to be saved. This can be done by clicking the ‘Browse’ button and selecting a destination folder. This step is crucial as it organizes your exported files in a designated location, making them easier to find and use in future projects.

The ‘File Name Prefix’ section allows you to prepend a word or phrase to the layer names. This feature is particularly useful for categorizing and sorting your exported files, especially when dealing with a large number of layers.

Choosing the Right File Format

Photoshop offers a variety of file formats for export, such as BMP, JPEG, PDF, PSD, and PNG. Each format serves different needs:

  • PNG-24: Ideal for maintaining transparency, allowing the logos or icons to be placed over different backgrounds seamlessly.
  • JPEG: Suitable for standard web graphics where transparency is not required. JPEG files have a white background by default.

After setting your preferences, click the ‘Run’ button to start the export process. Photoshop will save each layer as a separate file in the chosen format, following the naming conventions you’ve set.

Understanding Trim Options

Photoshop provides an option to ‘Trim Layers’, which automatically removes transparent parts around a layer. This can be toggled on or off based on your requirement. For instance, turning off this feature for PNG files will retain the transparent areas, offering more flexibility in how the image can be used.

Applying This Technique to JPEG Files

Exporting layers as JPEGs follows a similar process, with the key difference being the lack of transparency support. JPEG exports will fill any transparent areas with a white background.


Learning to efficiently export multiple layers in Photoshop can significantly speed up your workflow, especially when dealing with complex designs involving numerous elements. This skill not only saves time but also allows for better organization and management of your graphic assets.