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Image flattened when exporting to Photoshop

Community Beginner ,
Feb 20, 2010 Feb 20, 2010

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Me again!! Not sure if this should go under Photoshop or Illustrator, but whenever I export an image to Photoshop it gets flattened and I can't do anything with it. I've checked and double checked that Write Layers, Max Editability etc is ticked but then I get a box saying "some containers in AI have been flattened". Advice in basic English please!!!

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correct answers 2 Correct answers

Contributor , Feb 21, 2010 Feb 21, 2010

I think you are seeing two separate issues.

First, the illustrator is not exporting your layers because you have transparent elements. When it encounters transparency, it flattens everything below that object.

Second is if you are doing copy and paste between illustrator and photoshop: you need to paste as a smart object. If you don't have that as an option, your illustrator clipboard preferences might need changing [Illustrator:Preference…:File Handling and Clipboard:Set copy as to PDF].

You may w

...

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New Here , Aug 27, 2014 Aug 27, 2014

Yes, getting rid off "Overprint Fills" really helps. BUT BE SURE!, that you get rid off all transparencies in the file. Hitting CMD+A and switching off "Overprint Fills" (on the Atributes palette) MAY NOT WORK inside groups and masks. You have to find that specific object, that causes problem. HINT: Layer that contains objects with "Overprint Fill" flattens all layers below it, so start looking below the last unflattened layer. (...it took me only about an hour to find this simple thing out)

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New Here ,
Jan 12, 2015 Jan 12, 2015

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Remove things like drop shadows, transparencies, gradient(possibly) and other visual affects you've used from the effects tab or thing that have applied anything in the appearances panel/ or on the item in your layers panel. Anything you might want to keep as is in the AI file flatten as image, or reapply effects again once it's taken over to photoshop. That is what fixed it for me.

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New Here ,
Sep 16, 2016 Sep 16, 2016

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HI everyone, i dig up this thread to bring my contribution. In my case the problem come from my "menu" and "footer" of my website maquette/design who are symbols. When i delete them from may workspace and export in psd it works like charms.

I use symbols for elements who are repated several times in my design, in this way i can updated just the symbols and all the elements are updating automatically.

I hope this helps someone.

Good luck !

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New Here ,
Apr 07, 2018 Apr 07, 2018

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I realize this is a really old post, but I have been running into this problem and finally found a resolution that works.

Export your adobe illustrator file as SVG.

Then check out SVG LAYERS for Photoshop | Open SVG files as Editable Vector Layers .

It is $19.00 one time fee.  The cost is worth it if you need to export files that include transparency, as much as I do.

Follow the installation instructions, and restart photoshop.  

Go to Window>Extensions>SVG Layers.

Then when you need to open your file, click the svg layers icon to import.

It will open in a new window, in tact.

Once it is done, select all the images and drag over to the window you need your images in.

Saves a bunch of time!

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Community Expert ,
Apr 07, 2018 Apr 07, 2018

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Remove all transparencies in Illustrator. (Also any other blend mode other than normal)

Export as PSD

Apply there agai all transparencies.

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Enthusiast ,
Apr 07, 2018 Apr 07, 2018

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I suggest you,

Share the contents of Illustrator document to LAYERS. If every object in the Illustrator document is in a layer, you will get a much healthier result when you save it.

Graphic Designer Educator / PrePress Consultant

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Explorer ,
Jul 18, 2021 Jul 18, 2021

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Go through your Illustrator layers/sub-layers and click "Release to Layers Sequence" under the Layers hamburger menu. Then, when you Export As .PSD, the file will open in Photoshop with all the layers 

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New Here ,
Apr 11, 2023 Apr 11, 2023

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All these "work around" responses! Adobe takes loads of our money, their developers are paid 6 figures +. Figure it out! Make it work the way your user base needs it to work without jumping through all of your "well, try this hoops!" For the love of god. Sometimes it works sometimes it doesen't. I have followed all of these guidlines. Exporting from Illustrator to psd while retaining the layers groups only works literally about 30-40% of the time DO BETTER ADOBE!

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Community Expert ,
Apr 11, 2023 Apr 11, 2023

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All these "work around" responses! Adobe takes loads of our money, their developers are paid 6 figures +. Figure it out! Make it work the way your user base needs it to work without jumping through all of your "well, try this hoops!" For the love of god. Sometimes it works sometimes it doesen't. I have followed all of these guidlines. Exporting from Illustrator to psd while retaining the layers groups only works literally about 30-40% of the time DO BETTER ADOBE!


By @shannondees

 

You are aware that this thread has been started 13 years ago?

And just this version you can copy and paste content from Illustrator to Photoshop and most of the time it's keeping the layers.

 

Blend modes might still need flattening. They just work differently.

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