Adobe Photoshop CC 2015 release New features summary

The 2015 release of Photoshop CC rolls out exciting new features for designers and digital photographers. Read on for a quick introduction to these features and links to resources offering more information.

Note: For answers to common questions asked about the 2015 release of Photoshop CC, see the FAQ.

For a summary of features introduced in earlier releases of Photoshop CC, see:



 New in this release of Photoshop CC

Artboards for different devices on the same canvas

If you are a web or UX designer, you increasingly find yourself designing websites or apps for multiple devices. Artboards, new in the 2015 release of Photoshop CC, help streamline your design process by giving you an infinite canvas on which you can lay out designs for different devices and screens. While creating artboards, you can choose from a wide variety of preset sizes or define your own custom artboard size.

Artboards are useful even if you normally design for just one screen size. For example, while designing a website, you can use artboards to view designs for different pages side-by-side and in context.

For more information, see Artboards.

Creative Cloud Libraries

 Enhanced in this release of Photoshop CC

Creative Cloud Libraries integration in Photoshop is now much-enhanced:

Library-linked assets

When you use a graphic from the Libraries panel, a library-linked asset is created. This asset behaves in much the same way as a locally-linked smart object, but with the benefit of the asset being in the cloud. Also, when you create a new library graphic from a smart object, the corresponding layer is converted to a library-linked asset.

Adobe Stock integration with Libraries

You can now add a watermarked stock image to any of your libraries directly using the Adobe Stock website. You can then use the watermarked image in your Photoshop documents as a library-linked asset. When you choose to license the image—which you can do directly from within the Libraries panel—all instances of the watermarked asset in your open documents are updated to the high-resolution licensed image.

Adobe Stock-Creative Cloud Libraries integration in Photoshop

Performance improvements

Libraries integration with Photoshop now offers reduced disk usage, more efficient bandwidth utilization, and faster propagation of library changes between Creative Cloud applications.

Adobe Stock

 New in this release of Photoshop CC


Adobe Stock is a new service that provides designers and businesses with access to 40 million high-quality, curated, royalty-free images, illustrations, and vector graphics for all their creative projects. You can search for Adobe Stock content directly from within Photoshop. Select File > Search Adobe Stock.

Adobe Stock is also deeply integrated with Creative Cloud Libraries. You can now add a watermarked stock image to any of your libraries directly using the Adobe Stock website. You can then use the watermarked image in your Photoshop documents as a library-linked asset. When you choose to license the image—which you can do directly from within the Libraries panel—all instances of the watermarked asset in your open documents are updated to the high-resolution licensed image.

For more information, see:

Design Space (Preview)

 New in this release of Photoshop CC

Important: Design Space (Preview) requires Mac OS X 10.10 or Windows 8.1 64-bit OS or higher and is currently displayed only in English.

Design Space (Preview) is aimed at becoming a modern design experience inside Photoshop streamlined for the requirements of web, UX and mobile app designers. It’s an HMTL5/CSS/JS layer built on top of Photoshop. We’ve separated out standard Photoshop from the interface so that we can use this layer to create new UI, smarter interactions, and top-requested features. This release is a Technology Preview, which means it’s an early look at this new direction. It’s rough and there is a limited feature set but we want to get this out early so that we can start hearing from you.

To enable Design Space (Preview), select Preferences > Technology Previews and then chooseEnable Design Space (Preview). Help us shape Design Space (Preview) into the experience you want; give us feedback @psdesign.

For more information and a list of known issues in this release, see Design Space (Preview) .

Design Space

A. Tools B. Distribute and Align C. Transform D. Style E. Layers 

Export artboards, layers, and more

 New in this release of Photoshop CC

You can now export artboards, layers, layer groups, or Photoshop documents as JPEG, GIF, PNG, PNG-8, or SVG image assets.

Select the artboards, layers, and layer groups in the Layers panel; right-click the selection, and then select one of the following from the context menu:

  • Quick Export As [image_format]
  • Export As…

To export the current Photoshop document or all artboards in it, select File > Export As[image_format] or File > Export > Export As…

For more information, see Export artboards, layers, and more.

The Export As dialog

Layer Styles

 Enhanced in this release of Photoshop CC

The Layer Style dialog now lets you apply multiple effects—strokes, inner shadows, color overlays, gradient overlays, drop shadows, etc—to a single layer style. Also, more than one instance of some effects can now be applied to a layer style.

  1. In Photoshop, select an option from the Layer > Layer Style submenu.
  2. Select the effects that you want to add to the layer style. Notice that some effects have a icon, indicating that they can be applied more than once in the layer style.
  3. Adjust the settings for the effects. For example, adjust the size and opacity of a stroke.
  4. Click OK to apply the effects to the layer style.

UI changes to the Layer Style dialog

The left pane of the Layer Style dialog now lets you perform the following operations:

  • Change the effect stacking order
  • Delete effects
  • Through a new flyout menu, accessible by clicking the  icon:
    • Manage what effects are displayed in the section
    • Delete hidden effects
    • Reset any changes you’ve made to the default state of the left pane

Device Preview and the Preview CC companion app

 New in this release of Photoshop CC


Get real-time previews of your Photoshop designs on multiple iOS devices with the new Device Preview feature in Photoshop and the Adobe Preview CC mobile app. Changes you make in Photoshop CC are displayed in Preview CC in real time. You can reliably connect multiple iOS devices to Photoshop using USB or over Wi-Fi.

If you have a document with artboards, Device Preview attempts to show you the correct artboard by matching the size and position of the artboard with the size of the connected device. You can also use the navigation bar to preview a specific artboard on the device or swipe through artboards that have matching widths.

Preview CC supports iOS devices running iOS 8 or above.

For more information, see the following resources:

 New in this release of Photoshop CC

Restore grain/noise to make blurred areas look more realistic

Sometimes, after applying a Blur Gallery effect, the blurred area of the image looks synthetic or unnatural. You can now restore noise/grain to such a blurred image area to give it a more realistic appearance.

Set the options on the Noise tab in the blur Effects panel.

For more information, see Restore noise in blurred areas.

Glyphs panel

 New in this release of Photoshop CC

Photoshop now has a new panel that lets you work more efficiently with glyphs.

Do one of the following to access the Glyphs panel:

  • Select Type > Panels > Glyphs Panels.
  • Select Windows > Glyphs.
For more information, see Glyphs panel.

The new Glyphs panel

Camera Raw | What’s new


For a summary of the latest features in Camera Raw, see Adobe Camera Raw | New features summary.

3D printing

 Enhanced in this release of Photoshop CC

Export as PDF or SVX files

You can now export 3D models as PDF or SVX files.

While specifying the 3D Print Settings, select Print To: Local. Now, select PDF File or SVX File as thePrinter.

For more information about 3D printing, see Print 3D objects.

Export 3D models as PDF or SVX files

Control bump map depth

You can now control the depth or height of bump maps for printing. Follow these steps:
  1. Open a 3D file containing a bump map.

A sphere with a bump map

  1. In the 3D panel, choose Scene. Now, switch to the 3D Print Settings tab in the Properties panel.

Use the Min and Max fields to specify a new depth for the bump maps

  1. Under Surface Detail, specify appropriate values for the Min and Max fields. These fields determine the new depth of the bump maps.

New depth for the bump map

Updated PLA profile for Makerbot

The Makerbot PLA profile has been updated for more reliable print outs.

Simplify meshes in preparation for printing

3D imaging

 Enhanced in this release of Photoshop CC

Simplify meshes

The 3D menu now has a new command (3D > Simplify Meshes) that lets you reduce the number of triangles in a mesh to a more manageable number. The command algorithmically reduces the number of triangles to the number you specify while attempting to maintain the fidelity of the model. This enhancement is useful for reducing the complexity of a file in preparation for 3D printing.

You can view a live preview of mesh simplification changes before they’re implemented.

Settings in the Simplify 3D Mesh dialog

Preview mesh simplification changes

Improved export UI

The UI for exporting 3D layers as Collada DAE, Flash 3D, Google Earth KMZ, 3D PDF, STL, U3D, VRML, and OBJ formats is now improved.

Select 3D > Export 3D Layer.

The Export Properties dialog

Export a single mesh

A 3D scene typically comprises many elements or meshes. You can now right-click a mesh in the overall scene and export it individually.

Right-click the mesh in the 3D Panel and then choose Export Mesh from the context menu. This functionality currently exports meshes only in Collada or KMZ formats.

Generate better bump maps and normal maps

Photoshop now lets you tweak your bump or normal maps using tools like Blur, Detail Scale, and High/Medium/Low Frequency.

Select Filter > 3D > Generate Bump Map or Filter > 3D > Generate Normal Map.

Generate better bump maps

Generate better normal maps

Create bump maps or normal maps from diffuse textures

You can now create bump maps or normal maps from diffuse textures. The texture attached to the diffuse texture is automatically loaded as filters for the purpose of creating bump maps or normal maps. Once you’re satisfied with the way your map is looking, Photoshop applies the generated bump map or normal map to those textures.

Follow these broad steps:

  1. Open the file containing the diffuse map.
  2. Ensure that the desired texture is selected in the 3D panel.

The desired texture is selected in the 3D panel

  1. Click the folder icon next to Bump or Normal in the Properties panel. Now, from the context menu, select Generate Bumps From Diffuse or Generate Normals From Diffuse.

Generate Bumps/Normals from Diffuse

  1. Specify appropriate settings in the Generate Bump Map or Generate Normal Map dialog.
  2. Click OK. Photoshop generates the map.

Convert a vertex color to a texture color

3D-scanned PLY files typically have vertex colors and no textures. You can convert a vertex color to a texture color. Do the following:

  1. Open the PLY file.
  2. In the Layers panel, under Textures in a 3D layer, double-click the diffuse to open the texture.
  3. Select 3D > Create Painting Overlay > Vertex Colors.

UI toolkit for plug-ins and scripts

 Enhanced in this release of Photoshop CC

The UI toolkit for building Photoshop plug-ins and scripts has been enhanced to support HiDPI/Retina displays. Also, plug-ins built using the toolkit now look more consistent with the overall Photoshop UI.

For more information, see Photoshop UI toolkit for plug-ins and scripts.

Other enhancements

  • In earlier releases of Photoshop, while painting with the Healing Brush, you’d see a semi-transparent gray area and a progress bar before the healed content became visible. In the 2015 release of Photoshop CC, Healing Brush changes render in real time as you paint.
  • The Content-Aware Move tool now has aTransform On Drop option. When this option is enabled, you can scale the part of the image that you’ve just moved to its new location.
  • Preference panels have been reworked for better organization.
  • Reduced energy usage by up to 80% while idling
  • Reduced loading time for the Welcome screen
  • New command to release all RAM and scratch disk use; hold down the Option/Alt key and selectAbout Photoshop. Alternatively, select Edit > Purge > All.

  • The Photomerge dialog now has a Content Aware Fill Transparent Areas option. Use this option to give your panoramas that picture-perfect finish.
  • Most adjustments (Image > Adjustments) can now be applied as smart filters. Convert the layer to a smart object and then apply an adjustment to it.
  • Improved syncing performance for Creative Cloud Libraries
  • Moving a layer to a group now moves it to the top of the Z-order instead of the bottom.
  • Step backward/forward operations no longer change the layer selection.
  • New preference to revert Esc behavior while entering text

What’s changed

  • Experimental Features are now called Technology Previews. For more information, seeTechnology previews.
  • Scale the UI 200 percent for high-density displays is no longer a technology preview feature. It is now part of standard Photoshop functionality. To enable this feature in Photoshop CC 2015 release, select Preferences > Interface > UI Scaling: 200.
  • The File > Save For Web option has been moved as File > Export > Save For Web (Legacy).
  • The following options have now moved to the File > Export submenu:
    • Export Layers To Files
    • Export Layer Comps To PDF
    • Export Layer Comps To Files
  • Extract assets functionality has been replaced in this release with more intuitive options to export artboards, layers, layer groups, and documents as image assets. See Export artboards, layers, and more for information about these newer export options.
  • The Digimarc plug-in is no longer installed by default. You can, optionally, install it directly from
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