I use actions regularly. Sometimes I just need to resize a bunch of images to a certain size, and will never use that action again. So I create an action, use it and then delete it, or let it rot in the actions dialogue.

Is there a way to make some changes to an image, and then apply to all open images without having to explicitly create an action?

2 Answers 2


As far as I'm aware there are only 3 ways to "repeat" something within Photoshop, and only 2 of those ways apply to using different documents.

  1. Edit > Transform Again - Only works within one document and only for some operations
  2. Scripting
  3. Actions

To this end, No. I don't believe you can repeat a series of steps across multiple (open) images without the use of actions or scripting. And as for set up, if the steps are always changing, actions are far easier to use than scripting since actions are edited within the Photoshop UI itself.

  • This is what I suspected. I'm quite an advanced user, but I wanted to know if I was missing anything.
    – Pier
    Commented Apr 11, 2014 at 3:02

Perhaps I am looking at your question differently than others.

If all the images are in the same folder you could always create the action and batch process the folder with that action as tosave yourself from manually applying it to each image.

Really, actions could not be any easier being that you name it and hit record to save a process you would have to do anyways. Batch processing just takes the redundancy out applying it.

You can literally create an action, batch process, and delete it in only a few small steps (not including the action processes itself).

  • Like I said, I'm looking for a solution that does not involve creating an action and having to delete it. And btw, you can apply an action to all open documents.
    – Pier
    Commented Apr 11, 2014 at 3:00
  • Like I said, maybe I am looking at this question differently. Apart from actions, I dont know how else you would expect photoshop to handle your request. As you would def have to do with actions, you most certainly would still need to define a "start/stop" parameter of some sort. No worries, just trying to help you with your question.
    – cclark413
    Commented Apr 11, 2014 at 3:07
  • Of course you would need a start/stop button, but the user wouldn't have to name the action and delete it afterwards which is what I'd like to avoid. Another solution could involve parametric actions, so that you could in the actions panel change the resize dimensions (before pressing play). As of today if you want to resize to different dimensions, you either create a new action every time, or you ask the user to input the new dimensions every time the resize step of the action is performed.
    – Pier
    Commented Apr 11, 2014 at 3:18
  • But you ARE able to change steps in an existing action before hitting play...
    – cclark413
    Commented Apr 11, 2014 at 3:27
  • Yes, and then you have to undo...
    – Pier
    Commented Apr 11, 2014 at 3:29

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