How to Rotate a Single Layer 90 Degrees in Photoshop CS5

Layers are one of the best reasons to use Photoshop, because it makes it a lot easier to edit single elements of an image without affecting the rest of the image. But many of the popular tools in Photoshop will affect an entire image at once, which can be problematic if you only want to edit part of the image. This is particularly a problem when you want to rotate a single layer, as the normal rotation tool will simply rotate everything in the image. Fortunately you can rotate layers individually by using the transform tool. Check out the tutorial below to find out how to rotate a single layer by 90 degrees in Photoshop CS5.

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Rotating Individual Layers by 90 Degrees in Photoshop CS5

This tutorial is specifically about rotating a layer by 90 degrees, but you can apply the same method by any other number of degrees, as you will manually entering the rotation value. This makes it easy to control the direction of the rotation and make small adjustments pretty easily.


Step 1: Open your image in Photoshop CS5.


Step 2: Select the layer that you want to rotate from the Layers panel at the right side of the window. If they Layers panel is not visible, press the F7 key on your key to enable it.

select the layer you want to rotate



Step 3: Press Ctrl + T (Command + T on a Mac) on your keyboard to open the Transform tool, which will appear as a toolbar at the top of the window.

open and locate the transform toolbar



Step 4: Click inside Set Rotation field, then type “90” and press Enter on your keyboard.

how to rotate a single layer by 90 degrees in photoshop cs5



The selected layer will have rotated. If it rotated the wrong direction, then you can return to the Set Rotation field and enter a different value. If the rotation is correct, click the Commit Transform button to save the transformation.

commit the transformation



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If you are trying to rotate the background layer in Photoshop CS5 but it isn’t working, then the layer might be locked. Find out how to unlock a layer in Photoshop. newsletter

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