Beginner Photoshop Tip – Contact Sheets

Scott Bourne Photography

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Photoshop can automatically create a contact sheet featuring some of your favorite images. Using the command FILE > AUTOMATE > CONTACT SHEET II, you will get a dialog box asking you how you want your contact sheet constructed.

Your main task here will be to tell Photoshop where the source files are and how you want the sheet to be arranged. I usually open my files in Photoshop first and then tell the program to work with all the open files.

Depending on your final output size (which you also get to select), you will want to make sure that you create a sheet with the right number of images. I try to use no more than nine to 12 per letter-size piece of paper.

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Once you have your contact sheet, you can choose to flatten all the layers manually or ask Photoshop to do that for you, in advance. Be sure to save the finished contact sheet (which will present as a new document) because otherwise, if you exit Photoshop, and haven’t saved, all your hard work of constructing the contact sheet will have been for nothing.

With some tweaking, you can use this Photoshop command to develop promo sheets, standard contact sheets for your clients, and even logs for your own internal use to track the location of images. I use this when I want to group a series of images onto one page for submission to a gallery, or editorial opportunity.

Scott Bourne Photography

You can select one of the images from the contact sheet and delete it with the CUT command. Insert your own logo and/or promo text and you have a quick and easy self-promo piece. You can alternatively load your logo as a separate file to be merged with the rest of the images in the contact sheet.

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This is a simple trick that most of you already know, but just in case, I wanted to alert you to this powerful but easy to use tool.


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