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A frame in Photoshop

With this article you can learn how to make a frame in Photoshop, and enhance the overall look of your real estate photos.



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How to Change the Canvas Size in Photoshop

Published: 20/06/2021

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The Photoshop canvas is the area where you work. If the canvas is not proportionate to your Photoshop project, you can alter its size. In this article, we will show you different options on how to change the canvas size in Photoshop. Learn these methods so that you can adjust your canvas the right way.

How to Change the Canvas Size in Photoshop

Besides the large variety of tools for image editing purposes, Photoshop also offers many unique features for its users. One such feature is the ability to alter the canvas size according to your requirements. Learning how to change the size of canvas enables you to create an image with any dimensions you need.

Here, we will show you different methods with which you can increase or decrease your canvas size effortlessly. You can increase your canvas size to add more space to your work area or decrease it to match it with your image. Whatever you do, altering the canvas size won’t affect the quality of your image.

Photoshop offers different methods of changing the size of your canvas, which are all very easy to apply. Here, you will find two of the most accessible and helpful methods of changing the canvas size. You can pick any of these based on your requirements and image size.

Changing the Canvas Size Through the Menu Bar

  1. Launch the Photoshop program and open the image you want to work on. 
  2. You will see that your image opens up in a locked background layer. The ideal practice in Photoshop is to leave the original form of your image intact within the background layer and generate a copy of it in a different layer. This allows you to go back to your original image in case of any unwanted changes.

We will be using the duplication method to copy the content of our background layer. To do this, follow the steps below:

  • Go to the Layers Panel present on the bottom right of your Photoshop screen and right-click on it. From the popup menu, select ‘Duplicate Layer.’ You will then see a dialog box appear.
  • Enter the name for your duplicate layer and then press OK. You will now see that your image has another layer in the layers panel, while the background layer remains as it is.
  1. Now, make sure to select the duplicate layer from the layers panel and hover your cursor to the menu bar at the top of your Photoshop interface. 
  2. From the menu bar, click on ‘Image.’ This will open a drop-down menu for you. Select ‘Canvas Size.’ Alternatively, you can also press ALT + CTRL + C to achieve the same results.
Selecting Canvas Size option in Photoshop
  1. You will now see the canvas size dialog box. Change the values for the height and width of your canvas according to your requirements. You should know that both the dimensions of your canvas are independent of each other. So, changing one will not affect the other.
Canvas Size dialog box
  1. Apart from the dimensions, you can also set the region where you want to anchor your image.
  2. Here is the result of this procedure on our image:
Image with an edited canvas size

Changing the Canvas Size Through the Crop Tool

Another method to change the canvas size is by using the crop tool. However, the crop tool does not reduce the size of your canvas. Instead, it only helps you add more space. So, you can only use this method if your present canvas is too small for your Photoshop project.

Here are the steps to increase your canvas size in Photoshop using the crop tool:

  1. Launch Photoshop and open up your image.
  2. Duplicate your background layer as explained above. 
  3. Now, go to the toolbar, which is present on the left side of your Photoshop workspace. From the toolbar, pick the crop tool. Alternatively, you can also press the key C to select the crop tool.
  4. As you select the crop tool, you will see that Photoshop will set a default crop border around your image. This border has handles at the left, right, top, and bottom of the border. We will be using these handles to resize the crop border, which will add more space to your Photoshop canvas.
Visible default crop border in an image
  1. To resize the crop borders, all you have to do is click on any of the handles and drag it in the outward direction. You can drag it till you reach your desired canvas size. 
Image with an extra space in a Photoshop canvas
  1. When you let go of the mouse, you will see extra space added to your Photoshop canvas filled with a checkerboard pattern or an empty space. This pattern is to show transparency.
Extra space visible in an edited Photoshop canvas

Frequently Asked Questions

Are Canvas Size and Image Size the Same In Photoshop?

No, the canvas size and the image size are not the same in Photoshop. However, both of these options aim to change the size of your Photoshop project, which can be confusing for beginners. To understand both these sizes, let’s look at each of them individually.

  • Image size determines the dimension of your image file within the Photoshop project. When you change the image size, you change how large or small your image looks. Changing the image size may affect the look of your image by distorting its pixels or making it blurry.
  • Canvas size determines the size of your work area in Photoshop. When you change the canvas size, you increase or reduce the area you can work on. Changing the canvas size does not affect your image, except for when you reduce it so much that your image comes in the way and gets cropped.

What Is the Keyboard Shortcut to Change Canvas Size in Photoshop?

The shortcut to change canvas size in Photoshop is CTRL + ALT + C for Windows and CMD + OPTION + C for Mac.

How Can I Change My Image Size in Photoshop?

There are various ways through which you can change your image size in Photoshop. Here, we will look at one of the most accessible methods for image resizing in Photoshop. Follow the steps below:

  1. Open the image in Photoshop.
  2. Click on Image > Image Size.
  3. You will then see a dialog box. Enter the value for the dimensions you want for your image and then press ‘OK.’

Will Changing My Canvas Size Affect My Image Size?

Changing the canvas size will not affect your image size. When you increase the size of your canvas, your image will not automatically get bigger. Instead, Photoshop will place the checkerboard pattern over the increased space in order to show transparency.

However, when you decrease the size of your canvas, it may affect your image. If your image gets in the way of your canvas, it may get cropped.

Can I Choose My Canvas Size Before Placing My Image in Photoshop? 

Yes, you can choose your canvas size before you open your image in Photoshop. To do this, follow the steps below:

  1. Launch Photoshop.
  2. As Photoshop gets opened up, you will see its homepage. From here, instead of opening an existing image, select the ‘Create New’ option present on the left side of your homepage. You can also go to File > New or press CTRL + N.
  3. You will then see a new window, showing you various canvas sizes. Select any one that suits your requirements, and select ‘Create.’


We have outlined the different methods you can use to easily change the canvas size in your Photoshop project. By changing the canvas size, you can create an image of whichever dimensions you like. Learn these techniques so that you can create images with suitable canvas proportions.