I have a photoshop illustration in mid-century modern style - essentially there are only 3-4 global colours, but they're in multiple layers with grouping and sub-groupings. I want to be able to try out different colours, but need to keep the current structure as the groups correspond to elements that I'll need to animate at a later point.

Ideally I'd like to have them as smart-objects, and have the 2-3 main colours exposed as sort of properties of the smart object. Is something like this possible? I'm happy even if someone just provides links to a good tutorial!

  • Sadly, Photoshop doesn't support true global colors, so I'm afraid there is no universal answer. But there are many workarounds depending on how your document is structured (ordinary layers, solid color layers, effects etc.). Could you supply a little more info on how your layers are set up? A screenshot of you layers panel?
    – Wolff
    Aug 26, 2018 at 11:38
  • 1
    This is related.
    – Wolff
    Aug 26, 2018 at 11:39

1 Answer 1


You can use Layer Comps to set different colour styles and anything else, then easily switch between them when presenting to a client or if you just want to quickly switch between the different styles for your own ideas.

Use the Hue/Saturation and Colour Balance layer styles to set your different colour schemes, then use Layer Comps to set their state.

enter image description here

Create a Layer Comp

  1. Choose Window > Layer Comps to display the Layer Comps panel.
  2. Click the Create New Layer Comp button at the bottom of the Layer Comps panel. The new comp reflects the current state of layers in the Layers panel.
  3. In the New Layer Comp dialog box, name the comp, add descriptive comments, and choose options to apply to layers: Visibility, Position, and Appearance.
  4. Click OK. The options you chose are stored as defaults for your next comp.

enter image description here

Further info on Layer Comps:

How to Use Layer Comps in Adobe Photoshop

enter image description here

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.