Resizing an image in Photoshop sounds easy but there are some key considerations. If you’re not sure what you’re doing, you could end up with distorted or low-quality images.
Follow the steps below to achieve picture-perfect results every time.
Resize an Image with the Image Resize Tool
If your needs are very basic, this is the tool to use.
- With your image open, go to Image > Image Size in the top menu.
- A new dialogue box will open. If you’re resizing an image you’ll use digitally, leave the Resample option checked. If you are resizing for print, uncheck it.Assuming you want to maintain the current aspect ratio, change the Height or Width dimension – whichever is critical to you. Photoshop will automatically change the other. Clicking on the Link icon will allow for independent dimensions.Click OK, and you’re done.
Note: If you’re resizing for print, leave the Resolution at 300 pixels per inch. If you’re resizing for digital, you can leave it or change it to 72 if your final file size is an issue.
Resize a Photoshop Image Using the Transform Tool
Use this method when you’re working with layers and only need to resize a single layer.
- Position the layer you need to resize on top of your other layers. (You cannot transform the background layer.)
- Select your layer by clicking on it in the Layers Panel on the right and then go to Edit > Transform > Scale on the top menu. Your image (layer) now appears in a box with handles. With your mouse, pick a handle and drag until you reach your desired image size.
If you need to position the layer after resizing it, you can use the Move tool in the left sidebar.
- Go to Layer > Flatten Image in the top toolbar.
Resize an Image in Photoshop Using Content-Aware Scale
The Content-Aware Scale tool allows you to resize an image without distorting any key content.
- Unlock your image by clicking the Lock icon. It’s found on the Layers Panel, to the right of your background or layer thumbnail. This will change the name to Layer 0.
- Next, scroll up and select the Properties tab. From there, choose Select Subject.
- In a few seconds, you should see the marching ants around your selection. Go to the top menu and choose Select > Save Selection. Name it and click OK.
- Use Windows keyboard shortcut Ctrl + D or Mac Cmd + D to deselect your selection.
- In the top menu, find and select Edit > Content-Aware Scale.
- Drag the handles around your image until you reach your desired size. The subject you selected won’t distort.
- Use the Crop tool in the left sidebar to get rid of any unwanted space.