Merge Up!

A Member recently asked about the Photoshop command that merges all layers together but also leaves the individual layers intact. Its a common task and once you learn it, you’ll probably use it a lot, but its not in any menu.

The keyboard shortcut is:

Shift + Cmd + Opt + E (mac)

Shift + Ctrl + Alt + E
(pc)

For the record there is no “Merge Up” command but frequently that is what we are referring to when we press Shift+Command+Option+E. You won’t even find the command in any menu. What you will find is the Merge Visible Command under the Layer menu and strangely theres no indication of what may happen if you press the Option key whilst invoking it.
In fact, nowhere is there even a suggestion that you should be pressing the Option key at all. (outside of the Help pages of course)

The actual term when you add the Option key is “Stamp”. So Merging merges the layers together and Stamp creates a new layer with the result of merged layers. Now that is odd since stamping two layers together results in a new layer with the term (merged) in its name. But I digress.

The images here (click for larger version) demonstrate what happens when you use the various key combinations but the bigger question remains: “Why would you merge up at all?” I think I’ll leave that for another post.