I love the Photoshop artboard feature, however I'm used to seeing the transparent background grid. Is there any way to show this in my artboards in Photoshop?

And yes, I know it will still save with a transparent background, but I like having the grid that way if I were to use a white background for something I would be able to distinguish the white object from transparent.

Picture for reference:

enter image description here

8 Answers 8


As of Photoshop CC 2015.5 you can now have artboards with transparent backgrounds.

Either create a new Artboard and select Transparent under the Background Contents menu or, if you have an existing artboard, simply select it in the layers panel, open up the properties windows and change the background with the Artboard background color dropdown. (Note that you can change the background of each individual artboard separately or change them all at once by selecting the artboards in the layer panel.)

enter image description here Screenshot from 5 Hidden Gems in Photoshop CC

  • This is the correct answer. Thanks @Johannes ! Commented Jun 29, 2016 at 14:26
  • This feature is missing in CC 2015.1.1
    – Green
    Commented Apr 16, 2017 at 19:40
  • 1
    That's correct, @Green. As I said in my answer it's available starting 2015.5.
    – Hanna
    Commented Apr 16, 2017 at 19:58
  • And still relevant in 2023! Thank you so much! 🙏 Commented Mar 3, 2023 at 3:09

As much as I understood, answer of your question would be like this..

1) Take a certain size of file(file A)

2) Now you will have a screen with transparent background. without doing anything else further, first of all take a screen shot of such screen.

enter image description here

3) And past it new file.(file B), keep only transparent grid image and delete the surrounding stuff and save transparent grid image as png or jpg.

4) Now come back from file:B to file: A and give background colour.

5) Bring transparent grid image in file A, set image as you want to see(for example: 300x300).

6) take another layer on transparent grid image and draw square white shape size of 300 x 300..so that you would be able to distinguish the white object from transparent.

7) Now you will have a file like this. enter image description here

That's it... Good luck !

  • It seems this is the only solution. Would still be nice to have a built in way of doing it though.
    – Josh Riser
    Commented Jan 29, 2016 at 18:31
  • @JoshRiser there is a way of doing this with the inbuild options. See johannes' answer below Commented Jun 29, 2016 at 14:28
  • Problem with this though is you don't achieve actual transparency.
    – CU3ED
    Commented Mar 30, 2019 at 21:38

Select the background layer. Double click so it is no longer locked, it will rename as layer 0. select all within your canvas (cmd + a) and delete.

  • 1
    That will not work on Artboards, which is what the questions is about.
    – Lukigi
    Commented Jan 21, 2016 at 15:06

While you create a new file (menu > NEW). Select "Background Contents" drop to Transparent... Now you will get a transparent artboard.

  • Your answer is referring to just regular files, however in Photoshop CC there are now artboards as well. They do not have a Background Contents option.
    – Hanna
    Commented Jan 28, 2016 at 3:43
  • As of Photoshop CC 2015.5 this will now work.
    – Hanna
    Commented Jun 21, 2016 at 17:31

You can take a screen shot and then open it as image. It's simple and you don't have to worry about white background .


....Or you could create the board from the outset: enter image description here


Set artboard background

In the Properties panel (Window > Properties) for the artboard, set the desired value for Artboard Background Color field. You can also set the artboard background to transparent.


Window -> Properties. Make sure Artboard is selected. See properties panel (that should be visible now) -> In the Artboard background color dropdown select: Transparent (white is selected by default).

You can check a quick (12sec) video here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=C9sgajjbrZk

  • Whilst this may theoretically answer the question, it would be preferable to include the essential parts of the answer here, and provide the link for reference.
    – Luciano
    Commented May 24, 2017 at 10:16
  • Hi there thanks for the input, made the requested updates. An upvote would be appreciated :D
    – Edcotty
    Commented May 25, 2017 at 12:43
  • retracted the downvote, although your answer doesn't add anything new to Johannes' answer.
    – Luciano
    Commented May 29, 2017 at 8:12
  • Thanks :) just wanted to add the video.. And I don't have enough reputation rank to comment on an answer... Hence my own post "_,
    – Edcotty
    Commented May 30, 2017 at 9:46
  • Please don't add comments as answers. Invest some time in the site and you will gain sufficient privileges to upvote / downvote / comment
    – Luciano
    Commented May 31, 2017 at 8:09

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