How to Hide Files in Photoshop Elements 11 - dummies

How to Hide Files in Photoshop Elements 11

By Barbara Obermeier, Ted Padova

Photoshop Elements 11 offers a few ways to hide files so that you can keep your images organized and easy to find. With a simple menu command, you can mark selected files in the Organizer as hidden. You might have several files of the same subject and want to keep only one file visible in the Organizer window.

However, you may not want to delete the other photos. You can hide files in the Organizer window — and show the hidden files later by using menu commands.

Select files you want to hide and from either the Edit menu or a context menu, choose Visibility→Mark as Hidden. To see the files you marked as hidden, return to the same Visibility menu and choose Show Hidden.

When you remove the check mark for Show Hidden, you hide the files. To toggle easily between showing and hiding files marked for hiding, choose View→Hidden Files. Selecting this menu command toggles between showing and hiding the files you marked for hiding.

How to create stacks

Think of stacks like a stack of cards that are face-up. You see only the front card, and all the other cards are hidden behind that card. Stacks work the same way. You hide one or more images behind a foreground image. At any time, you can sort the images or display all images in the stack in the Organizer window.

To create a stack, follow these steps:

  1. In the Organizer, select several photos.

    You can select any number of photos. However, you can’t stack audio or movie files.

  2. Choose Edit→Stack→Stack Selected Photos.

    Elements stacks your photos. The first image you select remains in view in the Organizer window. In the upper-right area, an icon that looks like a stack of cards appears on the image thumbnail when you’ve stacked some images.


    When you double-click the photo to open the stack in the Organizer, you find the same icon in the top-right corner. You also see a right-pointing arrow to the right of the image thumbnail for a collapsed stack and left-pointing arrow to the right of the last photo in an expanded stack.

    To see all images in the Stack, click the right-pointing arrow. To collapse the stack, click the left-pointing arrow that appears when a stack is expanded.

How to manage stacks in Elements

After you stack a group of images, you can use the Stack submenu commands to manage the photos. Click a stack to select it and then choose Edit→Stack. The submenu commands that are available are

  • Automatically Suggest Photo Stacks: Choose this command to make Elements search the photos in the Organizer window for visually similar appearances. Photos that look similar are opened in a separate window, where you can select the photos you want to stack. Make a selection of two or more photos and then choose Stack Selected Photos from the same submenu.

  • Stack Selected Photos: This command remains grayed out unless you have several photos selected to create a stack.

  • Unstack Photos: Click a stack in the Organizer and choose this command to return all images to the Organizer window and eliminate the stack.

  • Expand Photos in Stack: This command expands the stack to show all thumbnail images in the Organizer window.

  • Collapse Photos in Stack: This command collapses a stack to show only the top photo in the Organizer window.

  • Flatten Stack: After you stack some photos, this command becomes available. When you flatten a stack, the top-level photo is retained, and all other photos in the stack are deleted from the catalog.

    Be careful with this command. All photos except for the top photo really are deleted from the catalog — although not from your hard drive.

  • Remove Photo from Stack: Choosing this command removes the selected photo from the stack. It doesn’t delete the photo from your catalog but merely moves it outside the stack.

  • Set As Top Photo: Before accessing this command, you choose Expand Photos in Stack. If you don’t like the topmost photo, select another and choose this menu command to move the selected photo to the top of the stack.

If you want to view all stacks in an Organizer window in expanded form, choose View→Expand All Stacks. Using this command, you don’t have to select stacks individually in the Organizer before expanding them.