Disable Live shapes in Photoshop

Live shapes in Photoshop CC 2018 full guide.

Tutorial steps

How to turn / disable live shapes to regular in Photoshop tutorial
  1. Select a live shape such as a rectangle in Photoshop

  2. Go to the direct selection tool

  3. Select a point using direct selection tool

  4. Drag slightly (very slightly)

  5. Message will appear saying "turn into a regular path, continue"

  6. Click OK to disable the live shape


Video tutorial on the subject of disabling live shapes by graphicxtras.com (youtube)


The live shapes is a fairly new feature of Photoshop and one that seems to be added to a number of more regular ones. At the moment the tool is only available in the rectangle and ellipse


combine subtract paths using propertiesHow to add a live shape? Well simply go to the tools and select the rectangle tool or the ellipse tool. Select the path or shape. As soon as create a rectangle or ellipse, the properties panel will be displayed (as long as the right side menu of the properties panel has the show option marked as on). You can then enter the width and height and position X and position Y for the design. You can also set the color for the vector as well as the stroke and all the stroke settings such as adding dots and dashes to the path. If using the rectangle, you can set the roundness of the corners on an individual basis as well as for all of the corners. You can also modify the unite / subtract front etc though personally I prefer to use the layer menu for the combinations or the dropdown along the top bar of the application.


They are great if you want to use them to round corners etc but if not, how do you get rid of the feature and just use them as in earlier versions (it would have been great if the application just had a preference or a setting available via the tool to disable it but there is nothing there)


live properties panel Goto the rectangle shape tool and select the shape option along the top (the live aspect is irrelevent if you are just pasting the design as a pixel to the current layer). You can see that the design is a live shape via the description in the properties panel. It will also show a number of different settings that are not available when you turn it into a regular design. You can see them on the screenshot on the right such as roundness


If you go to the ellipse tool you will see the same set of properties though not the roundness. It is a pity that there is no arc feature as in Illustrator. Again, how to disable the thing back to a regular ellipse. If you select the star tool as well as the custom shape tool and the polygon tool you will notice no such description (hopefully they will include additional properties at some later point such as in 2019 or 2020 version perhaps)


direct selection tool found in toolbarIf you want to change or convert (or disable) a live shape into a regular one then the direct selection tool is one quick way of doing it but it is not ideal as any change to the shape will modify the actual design though if the snap feature is on then the edited anchor can be placed in exactly the same position for the regular as the live


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A quick way to turn the design into a regular path is to just select the entire design and go to the edit menu and define custom shape and create that and use that instead. Again, not really ideal but at least you have achieved the required result of converting the art to a normal vector artwork.


Another way of turning the artwork into a standard path is to drag the artwork into the CC libraries and then dragging back the smart object, the contents of which will be a standard design and not a live one


regular unite vector designsAnother way to convert the art into a normal path it to combine it with a smaller path. For example, create a rectangle and then set the roundness / corners etc and then go to the polygon tool and create a small star or polygon within the confines of the rectangle and then go to the layer menu and combine command and unite. The end result will now be a regular design and not a live shape.






Once you have converted the artwork using this approach or any of the earlier approaches then there is no way to convert it back to a live design (unlike the tools in Illustrator)


Vector shapes in Adobe Photoshop




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