Batch Watermarking in Adobe Photoshop

Batch Watermarking in Adobe Photoshop

Batch watermarking in Photoshop is easy! Learn how.

This article will show you how to batch watermark an entire folder of photos with a transparent watermark in Photoshop. The tutorial result will look like this:

Batch Watermarking in Adobe Photoshop

Step 1

Find the smallest and the thinest photo in the batch. This is important due to Photoshop’s incapability to scale down watermark if it’s bigger than an photo being processed. Otherwise, you will get cropped watermarks. Open it with Photoshop.

Batch watermarking in Photoshop tutorial - Step #1 - Open a photo

Step 2

We will need an action to perform batch watermarking in Photoshop. Open the Actions tool window, click the Create new action button. Enter your action name (e.g. “watermark”) and click the Record button. Photoshop will start recording all of your actions inside it. You can close the Actions pane to save some space on the screen – Photoshop will continue recording your watermarking actions.

Optionally, you may create a group for your own actions using a button on the left of the “Create new action”. This may be useful, if you have a huge amount of actions, not batch watermarking action alone.

Batch watermarking in Photoshop tutorial - Step #2 - Record a watermarking action

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Step 3

Select the Horizontal Type Tool (shortcut “T”) and click anywhere inside the photo to add a string of text. Type any string you wish. For example, your website address is a good idea because people will be able to find you even if they lost your business card.

You can add a copyright symbol as well. On Windows hold Alt and press numbers 1, 6 and 9 on the numpad. On Mac hold Alt/Option and press g. You can find a video demonstration of typing a copyright symbol in my blog.

Batch watermarking in Photoshop tutorial - Step #3 - Add a text layer

Step 4

Click the Edit – Free Transform menu item, resize and arrange the text item. Also, you can choose the Move tool, select both layers and click the arrange buttons in the main toolbar. I prefer the later approach because it will center the watermark on every photo in a batch, even if their sizes are different.

As an alternative to selecting two layers, you may select entire picture (Ctrl+A). The arrange buttons will become enabled as well.

This step is very important for batch watermarking in Photoshop because it fixes the watermark position on every photo. Otherwise, Photoshop will put it into different places on different photos.

Batch watermarking in Photoshop tutorial - Step #4 - Arrange the watermark

Step 5

Select the newly created text layer and click the Layer – Layer Style – Bevel & Emboss menu item, or “fx” button at the bottom of the layers list. Layer Styles dialog will open. Default settings work in most situations, so leave them intact and click the OK button.

Batch watermarking in Photoshop tutorial - Step #5 - Apply a bevel effect to the watermark

Step 6

The Fill option on the top of the Layers window sets opacity of the layer itself and doesn’t affect layer styles. Set it to 0 to keep the bevel effect only. This will produce a nice glass-like look to the watermark.

Batch watermarking in Photoshop tutorial - Step #6 - Set the Fill option to 0

Step 7

Open the Actions pane and click the button with a black square on it. This will stop recording. Close the photo: we don’t need it anymore. It is better to discard changes because it will be watermarked anyway. It was a preparation but now we can start batch watermarking in Photoshop.

Step 8

Click the File – Automate – Batch menu item. Set the watermark group and action. Set the Source to “Folder”. Click the Choose button and select your source folder. Set the Destination to Folder. IMPORTANT: The Save & Close option will overwrite your photos. If you don’t want to loose your photos, don’t choose it. Click the Choose button and select any folder for output files. It must be a different folder, not the source folder! Click the OK button to start batch watermarking in Photoshop.

Batch watermarking in Photoshop tutorial - Step #8 - Start the batch watermarking

Step 9

Photoshop will ask you to provide JPG quality setting for almost every photo in a batch. Set a desired quality value and click the OK button. Once the batch watermarking in Photoshop is finished, you will find your watermarked photos in the output folder.


Watermark isn’t centered on some photos.

Most likely, you have skipped the Step 4 and didn’t center the watermark. Select an entire photo and use the arrange buttons in the Photoshop toolbar.

Watermark is cropped on some photos

Photoshop doesn’t scale watermarks to fit it into the photo. Select the smallest photo in a batch to design the batch watermark or use Visual Watermark – our watermarking tool. Here you can find a Visual Watermark vs Photoshop comparison.

Photo © David Wormley

This tutorial is for Adobe Photoshop. If you own Photoshop Elements, click here for a tutorial for you.