Is there a way to link the layers from a PSD file in Illustrator?

I have 15+ images in a single PSD file as multiple artboards that I have to edit multiple times.

Right now, i edit my images in Photoshop, slide them in Illustrator and delete the old one.

It would be great to be able to link layers from a psd into Illustrator so I don't have to have 15+ psd files (one for each image).

  • No, but if you change your thinking a bit then you can do this more easily. What you can do is make a script that automatically extracts the layers to individual files when you save. Then you will have one master file that drives the sub files. Its doable, while the alternative would be for adobe to implement it and you couldn't have this feature until adobe decides to do it for you. and its only cosmetically different anyway.
    – joojaa
    Commented Apr 28, 2017 at 10:51

3 Answers 3


Yes there is a way.

  1. Save your PSD making sure all the layers are enabled.
  2. In Illustrator click File > Place, select the PSD, click on the page to place it.
  3. Then click Object > Ungroup.

Each of the layers can then be moved to where you want on the page.

  • Thank you for your quick response. However the point here is that every layer act as a liked artwork so i can edit them whenever i want but with your method, they become embedded. or did i misunderstand? Commented Mar 30, 2017 at 10:15
  • Yes, that will embed them. If you want the images to be linked PSDs, then you'll need one PSD for each image.
    – Billy Kerr
    Commented Apr 5, 2017 at 11:49

Import 15+ instances of Photoshop into Illustrator. Make sure you select "linked" when placing, and if you select "show import options", you can select which Photoshop layers to place on each instance in Illustrator.

This way, one save from Photoshop would update all in Illustrator. (assuming you keep the same layers in Photoshop). Yes, there is a better, more linked way of doing such.


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[1]: https://i.sstatic.net/Aum7V.jpg bassuony

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