Compatibility With Photoshop

Compatibility with Photoshop

Many people use the plugin to open .PSD files that they did not initially create. Ultimately, Paint.NET is a much simpler program than Adobe Photoshop, so there will be some features that do not translate.


In many cases, we can preserve the visual fidelity of a file when loading it in, even though it uses features that do not exist in Paint.NET.


Maximizing Compatibility

Paint.NET ships with layer support in only the native .PDN file format – other file formats will flatten the image. Thus, the Photoshop .PSD file format provides a convenient way to move your work between Paint.NET and other graphics applications. Photoshop files are widely used in the graphics community, and many non-Adobe applications also have the ability to read and write .PSD files.

To maximize compatibility:

Layer Blend Modes

The following blending modes are common to both Paint.NET and Photoshop:

Paint.NET Blend mode Photoshop blend mode Photoshop blend mode key
Normal Normal norm
Additive Linear Dodge (Add) lddg
Color Burn Color Burn idiv
Color Dodge Color Dodge div
Darken Darken dark
Difference Difference diff
Lighten Lighten lite
Multiply Multiply mul
Overlay Overlay over
Screen Screen scrn

The following Paint.NET blend modes are not available in the Photoshop file format specification, and are therefore saved as normal layers:

The following Photoshop blend modes do not exist in Paint.NET, and are therefore loaded as normal layers:

Photoshop blend mode Photoshop blend mode key
Color colr
Darker color dkCl
Dissolve diss
Divide fdiv
Exclusion smud
Hard light hLit
Hard mix hMix
Hue hue
Lighter color lgCl
Linear burn lbrn
Linear light lLit
Luminosity lum
Pass through pass
Pin light pLit
Saturation sat
Soft light sLit
Subtract fsub
Vivid light vLit