Batch Processing in Photoshop Elements - Digital Photography School

Batch Processing in Photoshop Elements

before_after.jpg

Some time ago I wrote a post on batch resizing images in Photoshop and another on resizing in Lightroom.

One of our readers wrote to me recently explaining that he is using Photoshop Elements and that the resize feature in Photoshop does not work in Photoshop Elements. He is correct, but there is a way of batch resizing in Photoshop Elements and here’s how to do it.

Step 1

In Photoshop Elements, choose File > Process Multiple Files. This opens the Process Multiple Files dialog.

Batch Resising Photoshop Elements step1.jpg


Here you can select which images to process. You can select either a folder of images, all opened files or you can click import and import images from an external device such as a camera card.

Typically, the best option will be to place all the images in a folder and process the files from that folder. To do this, click the Browse button opposite the Source box and choose the folder to process. Enable the Include All Subfolders checkbox if desired.

Step 2

Select the destination folder for the resized images (you can create one from this dialog), or, if desired, select Same as Source.

Batch Resising Photoshop Elements step2.jpg

In the file naming area, select Rename Files if this is desired. You can then choose the naming convention such as typing a document name and the sequential numbering system to be used.

Step 3

In the image size area, select Resize Images as that’s what we came here to do.

Select Constrain Proportions as you will want your images to be resized in proportion and not skewed or distorted out of shape.

Batch Resising Photoshop Elements step3.jpg

Now type the largest Width or Height to use for your resized images. If you enter 600 for the Width you will be unable to enter a value for the Height and vice versa. This is because you can only set one value – width or height (in this situation this resizing tool works differently to the corresponding tools in Photoshop and Lightroom).

So if you enter, for example, 600 as the Width all images will be sized so their width is 600 and their respective heights will be adjusted in proportion. Portrait images will be taller than 600 pixels and Landscape ones will be shorter.

Here too you should set the resolution for the images. If you plan to send your photos to an online sites for printing, you may want to match the resolution to what that site requires. For the web select 72 dpi.

Step 4

To convert the files to a different format or to compress them, from the File Type dropdown list, select the file format to use. For JPEG format images, you can choose Max, High, Medium or Low quality.

Batch Resising Photoshop Elements step4.jpg

Step 5

You can also apply a Quick Fix to your images as you process them. These fixes include Auto Levels, Auto Contrast, Auto Color or Sharpen.

Batch Resising Photoshop Elements step5.jpg

You can also apply Labels to your image such as adding a watermark or caption by configuring the options in the Labels area.

Batch Resising Photoshop Elements step6.jpg

When you are done, click Ok to process the folder of files or the group of files that you had selected for processing.

Tip

If you want to resize images so their longest edge is a set value such as 600 then you will need to presort Landscape and Portrait images into separate folders and process them separately.

Read more from our Post Production category.

Helen Bradley is a Lifestyle journalist who divides her time between the real and digital worlds, picking the best from both. She writes and produces video instruction for Photoshop and digital photography for magazines and online providers world wide. She has also written four books on photo crafts and blogs at Projectwoman.com.

  • Richard Nighbert

    This article must be for the latest version of Elements (ver. 8). I have version 7 which does not have a selection for “Process Multiple Files” under the Files drop down menu.

  • http://www.projectwoman.com/phototips.html Helen Bradley

    @richard The article was actually written using Photoshop Elements version 7 and, just in case I got it wrong I just checked my version 7 again and Process Multiple Files is on the Files menu so that feature is there for you to use.

    Helen

  • richard nighbert

    I just looked again and I do not have an option when I choose the Files drop down that says Process Multiple Files. I checked all of the hidden menus that expand and nothing there either.

    I just got PSE about a week or so ago — I had a really old version (2, I think) on my old computer before it died. The version (under “About”) does say that the version I have is 7.

    Can anyone explain?

  • http://www.projectwoman.com/phototips.html Helen Bradley

    @richard Make sure you are in the Edit area and not the Organize area of Photoshop Elements. You will make a choice when you first start the program. See if this solves the problem.

  • http://www.sblgraphics.com/panorama.aspx panoramic virtual tour services

    Simply explained the procedure. This is really very useful. Keep blogging and thanks for sharing.

  • Pete Bresser

    I’d be surprised if this function is not on PSE v 7 because it is in v 5 that I use. I was dissatisfied with the functionality of PSE’s batch processing however – I didn’t like the idea of pre-sorting the portrait and landscape images just to do a simple resize as this interrupts work flow and the watermarking function is only text; you cannot add an image as a watermark.

    I found a very useful programme that does these functions and more that is freeware for home users. If it sounds of interest to anyone, take a look at Fast Stone’s Photo Resizer for Windows 2.9 ( http://www.faststone.org ).

    HTH

  • richard Nighbert

    Helen,

    I finally found it — under the Edit area, just as you stated.

    This is a little convoluted, in my opinion, since one generally moves to the edit area when working on a single image. It seems to me that one would want to select a group of images from the organize area and then convert them.

    I’ll bet that the reason that this got placed where it did was that the development team is divided by major functionality (organize, edit, etc.) and crossing the “line” to another territory is forbidden.

  • http://www.annmarielouisephotography.com Ann Marie

    This is awesome..THANK you so much..(keeping my $ in my pocket and not splurging on CS just yet!)

  • http://www.thebestdaysofyourlife.com Laura Mooney

    I have been using Adobe Photoshop Elements for about 2 years now, and I did not know this was possible!!!! Thanks so much!!! You have given me so much information and I am so grateful. I have been researching software for watermarking, and have been skeptical to download anything, (My new Virus software found 13 Trojanhorse viruses on my computer, removed of course!) so this feature will certainly be a godsend to me. Thanks again. Very informative and easy to follow. :)

  • http://N/A chas. hoffman smith

    Helen advice on batch processing much appreciated. Last year did a cruise around Australia & came home with 600 + shots (all in RAW) . Really need to convert many into JPEG. One question, do you shoot everything in RAW & later convert for storage or only shoot selectively in RAW? How do you store your images? I have an external hard drive. Should I only store selected images on it in either format? Sorry to appear so dumb but this is essentially a retirement hobby with minimal experience. regards.

  • Brian

    Thank you sooo much this was extremly helpful. just shot a bodybuilding show for first time, as press, was worried how to get pictures to client for web page for display. This was a god send thank you so much.

  • Denise Luppino

    Hi,
    I have elements 9 and I am following the steps but when I browse (source)for the file that is on my desktop, none of the images are highlighted and wont let me choose them. A box comes up saying it is empty? Also I can’t get images from i-photo, why is this???

  • Elizabeth

    Hi Helen – thanks for the advise – this is exactly what I do and yet every time after I have filled everything out the way it should be a dialogue widow come up telling me that I have to choose a destination folder – I have chosen the destination folder and yet for some strange reason it does not get recognised – can you please help?! I have used this function before and it worked well .. and as of late it’s just not wanting to playanymore! – I have even tried reinstalling photoshop elements as I thought it might have gotten corrupt .. but nothing … hope you can advise! many thanx
    Elizabeth

  • http://www.cedarsage.com Suzanne

    Hi Helen – a HUGE thank you for this important tip. Thank you for going through the form step by step. If I had run across your blog post earlier, I would have saved a ton of time. I’ll use this time-saver at least twice a month when I go out to take photos for clients.
    Many thanks again,
    Suzanne

  • http://coming Darsaya

    You are effing brilliant Ms.B.

    I’m not, so I give. How do I choose Edit mode for PSE 5.0? I’ve opened the program several times and nada. Would love to access the process multiple files options.

    Thanks much.

  • http://www.drmark920.com Drmark920

    Thanks Helen:
    Perfectly explained with great illustrations. You rock!

  • Misty

    I have an adorable watermark that i use by layering. Can this be done somehow in batch processing?

  • Luis

    I want to batch process 75 images with my watermark, can this be done in PSE?

  • Jesse

    I want to edit many images in one file all the same. Im getting into timelapse. I want to adjust things like contrst and colors, levels, exposure, burn and dodge ect, then apply the same edits to every image in the rest of the file. I know elements 11 has a batch process wizrd but it is for only simple things like reneming and resizing, all things I DONT want to do. Can you help me?

  • Eddie

    I’ve been resizing images using process multiple files for a while now and for the most part everything comes out successfully. on the rare occasion though after processing the files I get blank files with the original images unaltered. what can I do to fix this?

    thanks.

  • Vincent

    Thank you this was very helpful

  • john m

    hello:i want to batch process 201 photos in my elements 10 with watermarks.i also want to make sure the sizing is appropriate for the pictures use on the web.thanks

  • Don

    Thanks for saving me a ton of work. My win7 computer is now cranking thru 30,000+ images taken with way too high a resolution.

  • Helen Bradley

    OMG Don, I am so glad you found the post and were able to do this. 30K of images is a lot of File > Open, and Saves to do!

  • Saeed

    Thanks for your amazing illustration and info.

    I would like to ask , is it possible with Photoshop Elements 12 to automate Text style and adding multiple borders to the image?

    Best regards

  • PhilAngus

    The issue here is, if you select a folder containing other folders which contain jpegs, if you select the root folder and tick ‘Include All Subfolders’, it converts them all, but puts all the converted files from all the sub folders in to the one root folder! Not very good!

  • Mark Nicol

    I just downloaded Photoshop Elements 12 but it won’t let me “process multiple files” – that option is listed under the FILE pulldown, but is grayed out so it can’t be used. Help.

  • Helen Bradley

    Hi there @Mark Nicol – if you switch to Expert mode on the bar across the top of the program window – then the option becomes available.

  • Mark Nicol

    thank you, thank you, thank you. thank you. I was pulling my hair out, only had one left!!

  • Walter

    I’ve tried the batch rename process several times and I always get the same result. Instead of renaming the existing files, it creates NEW files . . . smaller JPG’s for the existing JPG’s and PSD files for the Canon RAW (CR2) files. The new files are renamed, but the shrunken JPG’s aren’t of any use and the new PSD files are double the size of the original CR2 files. (See screen capture of post-processing results attached.) Any thoughts?

  • angeposs

    I have been using Process Multiple for resizing for a while but I recently realized that if I do do this, set it to 4×6 inches and 300 dpi that the files are significantly smaller (156 kb) than if I go to File>resize> and select the same 4×6 and 300 dpi – I’ll get 1.4 mb files. What am I doing wrong or what am I missing? Is this a problem for printing?

Some older comments

  • Eddie

    August 12, 2013 10:12 am

    I've been resizing images using process multiple files for a while now and for the most part everything comes out successfully. on the rare occasion though after processing the files I get blank files with the original images unaltered. what can I do to fix this?

    thanks.

  • Jesse

    July 10, 2013 03:37 pm

    I want to edit many images in one file all the same. Im getting into timelapse. I want to adjust things like contrst and colors, levels, exposure, burn and dodge ect, then apply the same edits to every image in the rest of the file. I know elements 11 has a batch process wizrd but it is for only simple things like reneming and resizing, all things I DONT want to do. Can you help me?

  • Luis

    May 14, 2013 01:16 pm

    I want to batch process 75 images with my watermark, can this be done in PSE?

  • Misty

    February 25, 2013 09:06 am

    I have an adorable watermark that i use by layering. Can this be done somehow in batch processing?

  • Drmark920

    December 15, 2012 08:53 am

    Thanks Helen:
    Perfectly explained with great illustrations. You rock!

  • Darsaya

    August 13, 2011 05:28 am

    You are effing brilliant Ms.B.

    I'm not, so I give. How do I choose Edit mode for PSE 5.0? I've opened the program several times and nada. Would love to access the process multiple files options.

    Thanks much.

  • Suzanne

    February 17, 2011 05:33 pm

    Hi Helen - a HUGE thank you for this important tip. Thank you for going through the form step by step. If I had run across your blog post earlier, I would have saved a ton of time. I'll use this time-saver at least twice a month when I go out to take photos for clients.
    Many thanks again,
    Suzanne

  • Elizabeth

    January 25, 2011 06:51 am

    Hi Helen - thanks for the advise - this is exactly what I do and yet every time after I have filled everything out the way it should be a dialogue widow come up telling me that I have to choose a destination folder - I have chosen the destination folder and yet for some strange reason it does not get recognised - can you please help?! I have used this function before and it worked well .. and as of late it's just not wanting to playanymore! - I have even tried reinstalling photoshop elements as I thought it might have gotten corrupt .. but nothing ... hope you can advise! many thanx
    Elizabeth

  • Denise Luppino

    January 14, 2011 02:51 pm

    Hi,
    I have elements 9 and I am following the steps but when I browse (source)for the file that is on my desktop, none of the images are highlighted and wont let me choose them. A box comes up saying it is empty? Also I can't get images from i-photo, why is this???

  • Brian

    October 14, 2010 12:10 am

    Thank you sooo much this was extremly helpful. just shot a bodybuilding show for first time, as press, was worried how to get pictures to client for web page for display. This was a god send thank you so much.

  • chas. hoffman smith

    February 24, 2010 06:37 pm

    Helen advice on batch processing much appreciated. Last year did a cruise around Australia & came home with 600 + shots (all in RAW) . Really need to convert many into JPEG. One question, do you shoot everything in RAW & later convert for storage or only shoot selectively in RAW? How do you store your images? I have an external hard drive. Should I only store selected images on it in either format? Sorry to appear so dumb but this is essentially a retirement hobby with minimal experience. regards.

  • Laura Mooney

    February 5, 2010 07:52 pm

    I have been using Adobe Photoshop Elements for about 2 years now, and I did not know this was possible!!!! Thanks so much!!! You have given me so much information and I am so grateful. I have been researching software for watermarking, and have been skeptical to download anything, (My new Virus software found 13 Trojanhorse viruses on my computer, removed of course!) so this feature will certainly be a godsend to me. Thanks again. Very informative and easy to follow. :)

  • Ann Marie

    February 5, 2010 04:23 am

    This is awesome..THANK you so much..(keeping my $ in my pocket and not splurging on CS just yet!)

  • richard Nighbert

    February 3, 2010 11:16 pm

    Helen,

    I finally found it -- under the Edit area, just as you stated.

    This is a little convoluted, in my opinion, since one generally moves to the edit area when working on a single image. It seems to me that one would want to select a group of images from the organize area and then convert them.

    I'll bet that the reason that this got placed where it did was that the development team is divided by major functionality (organize, edit, etc.) and crossing the "line" to another territory is forbidden.

  • Pete Bresser

    February 3, 2010 10:34 pm

    I'd be surprised if this function is not on PSE v 7 because it is in v 5 that I use. I was dissatisfied with the functionality of PSE's batch processing however - I didn't like the idea of pre-sorting the portrait and landscape images just to do a simple resize as this interrupts work flow and the watermarking function is only text; you cannot add an image as a watermark.

    I found a very useful programme that does these functions and more that is freeware for home users. If it sounds of interest to anyone, take a look at Fast Stone's Photo Resizer for Windows 2.9 ( www.faststone.org ).

    HTH

  • panoramic virtual tour services

    February 3, 2010 02:52 pm

    Simply explained the procedure. This is really very useful. Keep blogging and thanks for sharing.

  • Helen Bradley

    February 3, 2010 01:35 pm

    @richard Make sure you are in the Edit area and not the Organize area of Photoshop Elements. You will make a choice when you first start the program. See if this solves the problem.

  • richard nighbert

    February 3, 2010 01:31 pm

    I just looked again and I do not have an option when I choose the Files drop down that says Process Multiple Files. I checked all of the hidden menus that expand and nothing there either.

    I just got PSE about a week or so ago -- I had a really old version (2, I think) on my old computer before it died. The version (under "About") does say that the version I have is 7.

    Can anyone explain?

  • Helen Bradley

    February 3, 2010 03:14 am

    @richard The article was actually written using Photoshop Elements version 7 and, just in case I got it wrong I just checked my version 7 again and Process Multiple Files is on the Files menu so that feature is there for you to use.

    Helen

  • Richard Nighbert

    February 2, 2010 10:55 pm

    This article must be for the latest version of Elements (ver. 8). I have version 7 which does not have a selection for "Process Multiple Files" under the Files drop down menu.

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