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  1. Design & Illustration
  2. Problem Solving
Design

Photoshop Errors: Quick Solutions for Liquify Tool Problems

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The Liquify Tool is one of the many magical tools of Photoshop. It allows you to warp and shape your photos or art with incredible ease, and is popular with photographers and designers. So it's no wonder why problems with Liquify would lead to much frustration and even work delay.

If you've ever had issues using Liquify, check out the quick solutions to these common problems below.

Problem #1: Liquify Keeps Crashing

All software crashes. As a rule of thumb, you can always assume that the issue may be related to the file size you're working with. Even if large files don't slow down Photoshop completely, they still may affect its tools. If Liquify is crashing often, or taking too long to load your artwork, try out these solutions.

Solution 1: Create a Liquify Mesh on a Lower Resolution

Many artists want to keep their work at higher resolutions, but this proves difficult when it slows down your progress. Luckily, you can apply edits in Liquify by temporarily lowering the resolution of your work.

  • Always Control-J to create a duplicate of your artwork as a backup copy.
  • Go to Image > Image Size and bring the Resolution down to 72 dpi.
Solve Liquify Problems by Lowering the Resolution Temporarily
  • Now go to Filter > Liquify. Your work should now open faster.
  • Make your edits in Liquify. However, don't click OK. Instead, hit Save Mesh.
Solve Liquify Problems by Creating a Liquify Mesh
  • Leave Liquify and Undo (Control-Alt-Z) your changes to the Resolution.
  • Again, go to Filter > Liquify and load your saved mesh to apply exactly the same changes to the higher resolution. Click OK to commit to these changes when you're finished.
Apply Changes to a Higher Resolution Image with a Liquify Mesh
Commit to changes on a higher resolution after loading your mesh.

Solution 2: Work With a Smaller Area

The first solution is a good workaround to this problem, but if you only have to edit a small area, use the Selection Tools to select the area you want, and then go to Filter > Liquify. By working on a smaller area of your piece, you'll be able to load and edit your art much more easily.

Use Selection Tools to Work Smaller Areas in Liquify

Problem #2: My Liquify Tools Won't Work

Solution 1: Check the Size of Your Cursor 

Some of the most annoying problems are solved easily to our surprise. If you are having problems seeing the cursors for Liquify Tools, and you only seem to be getting a cross hair, try lowering the Brush Size.

Lower Brush Size for Liquify Tools to See Them

Solution #2: Reset Your Photoshop Preferences

If you're still having problems with Liquify, or using its tools, try resetting your Photoshop preferences.

  • Hold Alt-Control-Shift as you start Photoshop.

Know More Solutions?

Keeping your drivers and software up to date is always beneficial when working with Photoshop. But do you have any more solutions to these common problems?
Feel free to share your solutions in the comments below!

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