I want to create numbers in blocks as shown in the image, using Photoshop CS6.

I understood how to duplicate shapes in the same layer (Path Selection tool -> select shape -> with Option key, click and drag shape) and then align them.

Now I want to add numbers to this shape, and then duplicate them. But the text(number) and containing shape are two different elements. Is it possible to merge the text and shape into a single shape (so that I can duplicate them together) ?

Or is there a different, more elegant way to do this ? Thanks.

numbers example

1 Answer 1


Sure just select the shape layer and the text layer and choose Convert to Smart Object form the Layers Panel Menu.

You'll then need to use right-click/control-click the smart object layer in the Layers Panel and choose New Smart Object via Copy to duplicate it. You can't use the Option key thing with smart objects. The option key will not create a new copy, it'll create an "instance" of the smart object. When you edit one "instance" all instances update -- I don't think that's what you want.

Note, you could also simply group the text layer and shape layer then duplicate the group.

  • And how to align them please ? In both cases, Smart Object and Grouping, the align seems disabled. Thanks.
    – Kaya Toast
    Commented Jan 15, 2015 at 18:34
  • You align the text and shape layer, then may a group or smart object. Then align the groups or smart objects to each other.
    – Scott
    Commented Jan 15, 2015 at 18:36

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