Home / Articles / Adobe Photoshop / Actions in Adobe Photoshop CS4

Actions in Adobe Photoshop CS4


  1. Preparing to record an action
  2. Playing an action
  3. Batch-playing an action

Preparing to record an action

You use the Actions panel to record, play, edit, and delete individual actions. You also use the Actions panel to save and load action files. First, you’ll open the Actions panel and open the additional files you’ll be using.

  1. Choose Window > Workspace > Automation to display the Automation workspace.
  2. The Actions panel is prominent in this workspace, as is the Layers panel.

  3. In the Actions panel, click the Create New Set button ( ). Name the new set My Actions, and click OK.
  4. Choose File > Open. In the Open dialog box, navigate to the Lesson10 folder. Shift-select the IMG_1443.psd, IMG_1444.psd, IMG_1445.psd, and IMG_1446. psd files. Then, click Open.

Now there are five tabs, representing five open files in Photoshop.

Recording actions

You’ll record the steps for matching colors, sharpening, and saving the images as an action.

  1. Select the IMG_1443.psd tab. Then, in the Actions panel, click the New Action button ( ).
  2. In the New Action dialog box, name the action color match and sharpen, and make sure that My Actions is selected in the Set menu. Then click Record.
  3. Don’t let the fact that you’re recording rush you. Take all the time you need to do this procedure accurately. The speed at which you work has no influence on the amount of time required to play a recorded action.

  4. Choose Image > Adjustments > Match Color.
  5. In the Match Color dialog box, select IMG_1441.psd from the Source menu, select Background from the Layer menu, and make any other changes that you made when you matched color for IMG_1442.psd. Click OK.
  6. Choose Filter > Sharpen > Unsharp Mask. The settings in the Unsharp Mask dialog box should be the settings you used for the IMG_1442.psd file. Click OK.
  7. Photoshop preserves your most recent settings in filter dialog boxes until you change them again.

  8. Choose File > Save As. In the Save As dialog box, choose TIFF for the Format, keep the same name (IMG_1443), and save the file to the Ready For Panorama folder. Click Save. In the TIFF Options dialog box, make sure LZW is selected, and click OK.
  9. Close the image.
  10. Click the Stop button () at the bottom of the Actions panel to stop recording.

The action you just recorded is now saved in the Actions panel. Click the arrows to expand different sets of steps. You can examine each recorded step and the specific selections you made.

2. Playing an action | Next Section