Mini Bridge is an independent application that runs within Photoshop (version CS5 onwards), giving you options for finding and viewing files on your computer within the program window. You can see image thumbnails and customise viewing size as well as easily opening a whole selection as a Smart Object on a separate layer. With a bit of navigation know-how you may find yourself wondering how you ever did without it.
This is particularly good for photomanipulation projects, as you might have to combine multiple assets into one images and having to come out of Photoshop, find the next file and go back in again is a time waster. We have done this mini tutorial in CS5, but in CS6 you can still access the Mini Bridge, however, you will find it as a panel that runs along the bottom of the screen, rather than a palette, which makes it even easier to find files.
Mini Bridge can be opened from three locations, the first being File>Browse in Mini Bridge. Its icon is also found on the right-hand panel and on the top applications bar. Click one of the locations to launch and you’ll be presented with the homepage view, though the app may take a few moments to load.
Select Browse Files to open the Navigation screen and locate files and preview thumbnails. If you’ve used Bridge before you’ll see recently opened items, otherwise browse to a folder where the contents will show as thumbnails. Click on a thumbnail and press Spacebar to see the image full-screen then hit Escape to return to your normal view.
To open a single image in Photoshop, select the thumbnail and hit Enter on your keyboard. To add multiple images Ctrl/right-click on them in Mini Bridge and drop directly onto the same canvas. Hit Enter as each image appears to place it and bring up the next one. Collapse Mini Bridge by clicking the set of arrows at the top-right of the interface.