Can sketchup automatically update an imported image I have modified in photoshop?

Hi all, just wondering if Sketchup has the “linked” function similar to Illustrator or InDesign where the image map jpg in a model will update automatically when the image is altered and updated in photoshop? Without having to re-import, scale, and position each time?

No. You would need to reinsert the image.

If you used the image as a texture, you could open the texture image in Photoshop to edit it and even replace the image. Then saving it would update the texture in the model.


One thing about editing in Photoshop and completely replacing the image by pasting something else on top of the original image, that would make a new layer. Choose Merge Layers before doing s save. Or you could use Smart Objects in Photoshop, then have a number of things that you could make be the foreground object.

True. The image editor I use automatically prompts to merge layers when saving as jpg, png, etc.

Absolutely it does! But it’s a tiny bit different.

First, in SketchUp preferences, select Photoshop as your image editor. Then create your Photoshop image, import it into SketchUp and get it positioned as a texture (import as image won’t work).

When you want to edit the image, go to your materials palette in SketchUp, and select edit material from there. That’s the only way it works. It’ll open Photoshop where you can edit and save. Hop back to sketchup and it will update automatically.

Trick is to always initiate the edit from within sketchup. You cannot relink to a different file, only edit the current material.


I find that right-click on an existing face, and choosing Texture/Edit Texture Image to be a quicker and easier way to update the image you’re interested in.


Sure. Point is, it has to be initiated in sketchup. And the function is there contrary to some opinions. Cheers.


To illustrate what @monospaced said, once you set Photoshop as your editing application withing SketchUp Preferences…all you need to do is edit the material…which opens it up in PS from SketchUp…then make your changes…and save. Trick is not to save it as a new file. If you’re adding layers or anything, make sure to Flatten the image first, then save it and…viola! there is. Updated automatically in SketchUp:


Thanks all for your response. I think the trick is have to initiate within Sketchup,

Was hoping if I save the linked material map with same xxx.jpg file name, sketchup would pickup up on that and update the link, but it does not work that way. My apologies I think I should’ve re-word my question to: would sketchup update .jpg map files as long as it has the same file name, rather than mentioning Photoshop.

My process is this: I build my tradeshow booth back wall poster in AI, I then use Snippet in Windows to screen shot my AI window of the poster, save it as .jpg. map it in sketchup, but whenever there is a change, even if I overwrite the file name, I’ll have to map it in sketchup again. I thought as long as the file name is the same, sketchup would update it, kind of like in InDesign or AI when a linked image is modified, it will ask if I want to update it. But now I know it does not work that way.I’ll have to remap every time there is a change from customer.

Your workflow is okay, but you can easily just export the .jpg directly from Illustrator and leave Snippet out of the mix.

When you import a in image as a texture into SketchUp, it breaks the link to the original and replaces it with another deep in your system’s files. It’s from THAT file it’s “linked” and that’s the one that opens when you initiate edit from SketchUp. It actually preserves the original image and leaves it untouched. Hope that makes sense.

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Unfortunately, once I Export As to a jpg from AI, when I edit from Sketchup, it opens up the jpg file instead of the AI working file.

I totally understand. But at least you don’t have to use Snippet, and you’re still not editing the illustrator file itself. Exporting a jpg is the faster way of taking a screenshot in my opinion.

Sounds like we do similar work. I also use sketchup to design and visualize environments, events and trade show booths of all sizes. I use the adobe sketchup workflow all day.

Pro tip: SketchUp exports great clean vector art if you export as a pdf. You can even set specific sizes making things real easy.

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I don’t understand why you have to remap. It’s texture in sketchUp and you can replace the image in the image editor. If the same size, shouldn’t fit in the same place? Clearly it’s one or more steps than you want.

In LayOut you can use images as a reference file, if that helps and cropping etc. is preserved. You just save the new work from illustrator over the same file. Update the reference in LayOut… If that helps.