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Photoshop - Flatten before printing?

R Resnick , Nov 06, 2005; 09:25 p.m.

In Photoshop CS, when working with an image with several adjustment layers, is it always necessary to flatten the image before printing?

Responses


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Shawn Gibson , Nov 06, 2005; 09:30 p.m.

I don't. I try to, but sometimes with many layers, flattening changes the look, so I just print the full file...no problems...maybe occasionally a little slower, but that's been it in my experience.

danny liao , Nov 06, 2005; 10:02 p.m.

The reason why your image changes color after flattening is because you're using the layers in the wrong order. If done right, flattening will not change the image at all.

Jim Simmons , Nov 06, 2005; 10:41 p.m.

Danny, what's an example of the "wrong order" in which the colors change? I've not experience this, so I must be doing it right, but I'd still like to know more about what you're describing. Thanks.

Rich Jeffrey , Nov 07, 2005; 07:50 a.m.

The main reason to flatten or merge the image is to condense the information so you can make the file smaller and more portable. If you are only going to print, there is no reson to flatten other than to shorten the time it takes to print.

Shawn Gibson , Nov 07, 2005; 07:52 a.m.

>>The reason why your image changes color after flattening is because you're using the layers in the wrong order. If done right, flattening will not change the image at all.

Hogwash.

There is no such thing as 'correct' if you are trying to be creative. And indeed, even if you are 'doing it right' which I'll take to mean not moving adjustment layers or their relatives around after creating them, at the point you have a lot of layers, you simply can not avoid the change when flattening...but that certainly is not to say what you have done is 'wrong'.

This is a stifling approach to creativity.

Shawn

Conrad Hoffman , Nov 07, 2005; 08:23 a.m.

Even if you don't do it yourself, wouldn't the program have to flatten the image in order to print it?

Patricia Minicucci , Nov 07, 2005; 10:40 a.m.

Conrad is exactly right. The print driver will always "flatten" the file as it preps it for the printer. Your work file does not need to be flattened.

Emre Safak , Nov 07, 2005; 10:46 a.m.

Flattening should not change the look. Can you upload a counter example?

Shawn Gibson , Nov 07, 2005; 01:40 p.m.

I will. I'll send the only example I think I have right now when I go home (flat/not flat screen shots). It's not something that happens often, but only when I end up with something like this:

http://www.photo.net/general-comments/image-attachment?comment_id=3075162


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