Why Can’t I Rasterize A Layer

By | 12/10/2022

What Does Rasterize Mean In Photoshop?

Whether you’re working with text, shapes, or smart objects, you’ll observe yourself coming beyond the need to “rasterize” the layer. Possibly you demand to edit the layer, change the color, or erase parts of the image, but it’due south not possible without rasterization. This word might seem a little mysterious as the difference between a rasterized layer and a vector are non all that different.

Rasterizing a layer means you are converting a vector layer to pixels. This changes how your layer is displayed and what editing capabilities you lot have. When a vector becomes rasterized, you can come across the pixels forth the edges instead of a make clean line. Notwithstanding, you gain the ability to direct edit the layer.

To better understand the pregnant behind rasterizing in Photoshop, let’s become through the purposes of this characteristic.

What Is The Purpose Of Rasterizing A Layer?

Rasterizing a layer will convert any type of vector layer into pixels. As a vector layer, the image is made upward of geometric formulas to create the contents of your epitome. This is perfect for graphics that need to have make clean edges or exist scaled up significantly.

The problem with vectors is they are not compatible with pixel effects such as castor adjustments or the eraser tool. That means in some instances, y’all won’t exist able to apply the effects you lot need to a vector layer considering it can’t exist mixed with a pixel layer.

That’due south where rasterizing comes into play. Past rasterizing the layer, you can convert the vector from a geometric formula and turn it into pixels. That way you can apply pixel blazon effects onto your layer without any issues.

How Do You Rasterize A Layer?

Whatever vector layer or smart object can be speedily rasterized in i of two ways.

The outset and fastest, style to rasterize a layer is to right-click on it in your layers panel, and choose

Alternatively, you tin go up to
Layer > Rasterize
and select which
of layer(due south) you lot desire to rasterize.

If your layer has multiple vector effects on it, this method lets you choose which areas you desire to rasterize. For instance, y’all could rasterize layer effects without affecting your vector text.

If you just want to rasterize your entire layer, select it in your layers panel go
Layer > Rasterize > Layer.

If you desire to rasterize all your vector layers at in one case, you can employ
Layer > Rasterize > All Layers


When Should You Rasterize A Layer In Photoshop?

In some cases, you lot won’t have any option but to rasterize your layer to go the types of effects you’re going for. For whatsoever pixel blazon adjustments, you won’t be able to utilise them without rasterizing first.

With that said, rasterizing a layer isn’t a proficient mode of editing not-destructively. Since information technology would exist a permanent change, it’s not necessarily a skillful idea. Later on all, what if y’all change your heed and want to go back to your original vector?

Afterward rasterizing a layer, this won’t be possible.

Whenever you can, it’s far more advantageous to duplicate and rasterize your vector layers and so you ever have a backup.

For instance, if I wanted to edit my shape layer directly, I would indistinguishable the layer and rasterize the duplicate. That way I accept an option to change my mind subsequently on or offset all over if I brand the incorrect aligning.

In short, if y’all need to rasterize a layer to make a pixel-based adjustment, do so on a duplicate layer.

Does Rasterizing Reduce Quality?

Although y’all won’t technically lose whatsoever image quality from rasterizing a layer, there are some of import changes to exist aware of.

– Rasterizing Layers Changes The Look Of Edges

When you lot first rasterize a layer, things won’t await all that different at first. The real divergence comes when you lot zoom in. Although rasterizing a layer doesn’t necessarily reduce the quality, it does change how the edges of your text, layers, or shapes appear.

In the example to a higher place you can how the edge of the shape is sharp and crisp in the beginning photograph, merely somewhat boxy looking in the second. This is the large departure between vector and raster layers.

Subsequently rasterizing, your image is converted into pixels and needs to fit inside the parameters of the pixels in your document. That’s why you stop up with a pixelated looking border when zoomed in.

– You Won’t Be Able To Rescale Without Quality Loss

Leaving your layer as is won’t reduce its quality later it’southward rasterized. Nonetheless, yous’ll observe significant quality loss if you’re scaling up and down a rasterized layer.

Since a rasterized layer needs to fit within the pixels of your document, scaling it upward or down changes how many pixels it tin can work with. When y’all scale down, it suddenly has fewer pixels to use and compresses itself. Going the contrary management and scaling support, those few pixels at present accept to be expanded into a larger number. This results in serious quality loss.

Looking at the two shapes higher up, you lot tin see the clear difference in quality between a raster layer and a vector layer afterward significant scaling.

Why Does Photoshop Say You Demand To Rasterize A Layer?

For example, if y’all were to try to use your castor tool on a text layer, yous would become an mistake bulletin asking to rasterize your layer. This is Photoshops way of telling you that you cannot make that specific aligning unless y’all surrender the vector layer functionality.

Things like layer filters, the castor tool, eraser tool, and paint saucepan adjustments cannot be made unless you rasterize a layer.

What Kinds Of Layers Can Be Rasterized?

Not every layer is made the aforementioned. Only sure types of layers will have the option to be rasterized. Hither are a few kinds of layers that you may have to rasterize at some point in Photoshop:

  • Shapes

  • Text

  • Smart Objects

Although shapes and text are considered every bit vector layers, smart objects are a little dissimilar. Since smart objects human activity as “packaging” for regular raster layers, it can’t exist directly edited. That’s why yous won’t be able to straight edit any smart object layer without first rasterizing it into a regular layer.

You tin can learn more about smart objects and how they work in this post.

To edit non-destructively, it’south worthwhile to duplicate vector layers so yous always accept a backup plan. Even when there are error letters saying you can’t brand adjustments to a vector layer, having a second layer is an piece of cake workaround. Additionally, you can use a new layer with a clipping mask to directly edit any vector layer you need. That way you lot never accept to sacrifice quality for an adjustment.

Happy editing!

– Brendan 🙂

Source: https://www.bwillcreative.com/what-does-rasterize-mean-in-photoshop/