How To Export EPS Files From Photoshop

After creating a design in Photoshop with text, shapes, or paths, you can easily export EPS files from Photoshop to use in Illustrator (or a third-party vector program). This way, you can ensure your graphics have the highest possible quality in other programs, plus you have access to the path information to edit later on!

If the concept of an EPS file confuses you, don’t worry. This guide will cover exactly what an EPS file is and how to export one to use in another program without any issues. Plus, I’ll show you how to save an EPS file so that you can go back and make changes in Photoshop if you need to. 

How To Export An EPS File In Photoshop

Retaining the layers is the most important part of exporting an EPS file in Photoshop. If done incorrectly, the layers of your project will be merged or rasterized, making the point of exporting the project as an EPS file pointless. 

Step 1: Go To File > Save A Copy

First, make sure your design is open in Photoshop. 

To save your EPS file, you need to choose the correct saving option. 

Go to File > Save A Copy

Avoid all the other options for saving, as these options will not retain the vector data. 

Step 2: Change The Format To Photoshop EPS

You’ll find the Format drop-down menu in the middle of the Save A Copy options menu. Choose Photoshop EPS from this menu. 

This is the only option that will work for retaining vector data. 

Step 3: Choose The File Name And Destination 

Before you work on the more difficult settings of this process, ensure that you save the file with the correct name and in the right location. 

In the Save As box, type out the name you want to use for your file. 

In the Where box, browse through your hard drive and select a destination. 

Click Save when you’re ready. 

Step 4: Choose An Option In The Preview Menu

Once you click Save, the EPS Options window appears, where you can customize the save settings for your file.

Firstly, after exporting your EPS file, you may see a low res image that previews the actual EPS file. You can change the quality of this preview image in the EPS Options menu. 

To do this, open up the Preview drop-down menu, then choose the quality of the preview image. 

You have three options to choose from: 

  1. None – Choose this option if you don’t want any preview image. This is a good way to limit the file size. 
  2. TIFF (1 Bit/Pixel) – This option will create a black & white preview image containing less information, which means a smaller file size than the next option.
  3. TIFF (8 Bits/Pixel) – This option gives you a fully colored version of your preview image. This is the best-looking preview image but will add the most data to your file, resulting in a larger file size. 

Remember, the option you choose in the drop-down menu only affects the preview image and won’t alter the information in your EPS itself. 

Step 5: Choose Your Encoding Quality

When it comes to encoding, you can leave this option at the default setting of ASCII85. This setting used to be more important in the past than it does today. 

However, if you want to change the encoding for your EPS file. Here are your options: 

  1. ASCII / ASC1185 – These two options are specially used for Windows systems when printing the file. 
  2. Binary – This option is used for Macintosh systems. Certain applications may have problems reading binary data, so be careful when choosing this option. 
  3. JPG (Low Quality to High Quality) – This option refers to the data within the EPS, not the image format. This option is a universal encoding option that should work on any system. If you care about your overall file size, make sure to choose a lower-quality option.  

For more information about encoding options, click here to see Adobe’s breakdown of these settings.

Step 6: Select “Include Vector Data” 

This step is the most important process. 

Make sure Include Vector Data is checked on. If this option is not checked on, you won’t be able to interact with the individual layers in Illustrator.  

Step 7: Review The Remaining Options, Then Click OK

When it comes to the other options in the EPS Options Menu, they are only necessary in some instances, and most times, you don’t need to worry about them. 

These options are niche, and you shouldn’t worry about them too much. If you want more information about these options, you can find it on the Adobe Help page.

Once you’re ready, click OK to save the EPS to your hard drive. 

Step 8: Open The EPS File In Illustrator, Or Another Program

To ensure everything is exported correctly, locate the EPS file on your hard drive and open it up in Illustrator or the third-party program vector-based program you’re using.

Open up the Layers Panel and ensure all individual layers are present. 

Why Is The “Include Vector Data” Greyed Out When Exporting EPS Files From Photoshop?

For the “Include Vector Data” option to be available, your project needs to have one or all of the following types of layers: 

  1. Path layers
  2. Shape layers
  3. Type layers

The “Include Vector Data” option will be greyed out if your project lacks any of these layer types. 

How To Reopen EPS Files In Photoshop

If you want to work on your EPS file in Photoshop later, the big problem here is rasterization. If you open an EPS file in Photoshop, all of the vector data will be rasterized, making it pointless to even open up the file in the first place. 

You can save your project as a PSD file to get around this. That way, when you want to work on the project again, you can open the PSD file in Photoshop, make your edits, then export the project as an EPS file. 

To save your project as a PSD file, go to File > Save As

The Save As options menu will pop up: 

  • In the Save As box, name your file. 
  • In the Where box, choose your destination. 
  • In the Format drop-down menu, select the Photoshop option. 

When you’re ready, click Save

Your project will be saved to your hard drive as a PSD file at your chosen destination. 

What Are EPS Files?

An EPS (Encapsulated PostScript) file is a vector image format that has grown in popularity over the years. This format is mainly used for graphics and illustrations.  

EPS files are suitable for print-based projects, as you can scale these files without the fear of losing image quality. This means you can enlarge or reduce the size of an EPS file as much as you want without compromising its resolution.

EPS files are commonly used for logos, illustrations, and other types of digital artwork. They can be used to create sharp, high-resolution images that can be reprinted in virtually any size. 

EPS files are also used in web design when an image needs to be embedded within a page.

Article By

Brendan Williams

Hey, I'm Brendan! I'm a professional photographer and photo retoucher who has spent the majority of his career shooting or retouching outdoor lifestyle and social media campaigns for brands like G-Adventures, xoxo Bella, P&G, Fitbit, Chevy, Tourism California, and more. These days I primarily focus my efforts on this site, creating guides and tutorials that I wish I had earlier in my career. Each week I publish new tutorials on Photography, Photoshop, Lightroom, and Canva to help you unlock new skills and bring your creativity to new levels! Everything you learn here is backed by real experience, so you can finally skip the fluff and focus only on what matters.

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