For some reason it seems impossible to change the colour of a rectangle I've drawn in Photoshop after I've drawn it. I can change the colour of a new one that I want to draw but once it's drawn there doesn't seem to be any way of changing the properties of the shape. I've googled this for a while but it seems as though this is so simple there are no tutorials for it or no one knows what I mean.

Please can someone explain how to change the colour of a shape after I've drawn it in photoshop, thank you

  • literally figured it out after posting this, new question: how do I delete this question???
    – Guest Man
    Commented Jul 31, 2014 at 15:46
  • 6
    Don't delete the question. Any answers will be good if someone else has this problem
    – SaturnsEye
    Commented Jul 31, 2014 at 16:16
  • 7
    Please don't delete, I found it very useful! Thanks.
    – user44049
    Commented May 19, 2015 at 20:02

4 Answers 4

  • Ensure that your shape layer is selected in the layers panel
  • Choose the Direct Selection tool from the tool bar (the direct selection tool) or press A
  • Now you'll be able to access all of the properties for your shape in the command bar at the top of the screen—including the shape's fill color.

properties of the selected object


Initially when looking at the rectangle it can be a bit confusing.

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You can double-click on the layer thumbnail in the layers palette to open the color picker.

Or you can press "a" on your keyboard to direct select

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Look up towards the "fill"

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  • Please forgive me for hijacking your answer with edits, but I wanted to add images to help people in what can be a very frustrating process. I would have added it as an answer but the question is protected.
    – JGallardo
    Commented Jul 25, 2016 at 23:52
  • Gotta get that Strunk & White badge somehow @JGallardo
    – Manly
    Commented Jul 26, 2016 at 0:01

also be sure to select the Rectangle-Tool to bring up the ribbon-menu on top of your screen so as to change not only color but also stroke-color and width or no-stroke... This can be confusing because the shape-related menu-ribbon disappears once any other tool than the shape-drawing tool is selected.


If you want to change the color of a full shape with nothing inside, a very quick trick is:

layer effects:

1) Click on the layer where your shape is

2) Double-click on that layer. A window will appear. Your layer needs to not be the background layer, by the way.

3) On this window, select the option "color overlay" and click on the little swatch of color next to the blending mode. Select the color you want!

4) You can then change the color of your shape at any time by going back in this menu. You can remove the color by unchecking the "color overlay" OR by deselecting the little eye icon on the layer, under the layer "effect" on your layer.

If you do this on a graphic that has some texture or design inside it, it will cover it all with one color though.


Otherwise, another easy way to change a color of a shape is to go in the menu "Image", then select "adjustment", then "hue/saturation" and play around with it until you get a color you like.

Not very precise but can be interesting if you want to test how a color would look like on your shape without having to enter precise color recipe.

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