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I'm a little confused by this question. Did you mean to say that you wanted the composite layer (technically called a "Stamped Layer" to be *above* an empty layer? As far as I know, that's never been the functionality. If you create an empty layer at the top of your layer stack, it will fill with the Stamp of the layers below - not leave an empty layer and create a layer above it. However, you don't need to create an empty layer - Stamping layers like that will create a new layer by itself
Also, you mention Cmd, which is a Mac key, and Alt, which is a Windows key. Did you mean "Option", which is the Mac version (also says "Alt" in tiny letters on some keyboards). Maybe just to be clear, which version of your OS, and which version of Photoshop is giving you the problem?
If you think your keyboard shortcut changes MAY have been the problem, may I suggest testing it - in the keyboard shortcuts panel, save the settings you worked on (hit the little "hard drive" icon at the top right and give it a name. Then, change the set back to Photoshop Defaults and see if the problem still exists. If Stamping works correctly in Photoshop Defaults, then we can determine that somehow you inadvertently did change something critical to Stamping when you were working in the shortcuts, earlier.
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I was working today the whole day in Photoshop, and suddenly am unable to create a composite snapshot Shift-Cmd-Alt-E any more on top of an empty layer.
Prior to this disapearance, I was saving some shortcuts in Keyboard Shortcuts and Menus, but to my sanity, I haven't used Shift-Cmd-Alt-E for any other function.
Can someone help and advise on this problem please?
An empty layer shouldn't be any problem as long as it is turned on. Copy merged will not work if the selected layer is turned off.
Regards possible issue with the shortcut, try selecting the Essentials workspace, and then resetting the Essentials workspace. It is hardwired and will return you to default shortcuts. I use this trick to enable custom sets of shortcuts saved with custom workspaces.
1st of all yes, I needed to be more clearer in my original description. What I meant to say is that I was just not able to create the stamp layer when pressing on Shift-Cmd-Opt-E, just was not able to do it any more for some reason, and that on a Mac computer I am using.
So I did go, as suggested, to a keyboard shortcuts panel and changed the set back to Photoshop Default, where I was able to use the stamp layer shortcut indeed. The only thing is that previously saved shortcut settings I decided to delete because with them, I was not able to use the stamp layer shortcut any more.
So needed to go manually again and create the new setting with the shortcuts which was a pain, but what could you do. Anyway lads, thanks a million for your help on this one.