I am extremely new to Photoshop and I am using Elements 2018.
I have downloaded a file which opened straight into photoshop which i can hide layers/ edit layers etc etc
One of the layers i want to edit is a smart object layer, and I have been advised if i double click on this it directs me to more options on this layer which i can choose and edit which will change the layer.
However this is not working, whatever action i use on this layer is just acts as a normal layer and doesnt redirect me etc.
The 'magic' side of 'smart' layers is rather simple: it's not a normal layers made of static pixels, the pixels which are shown are not fixed, they are coming from an outside file. If you resize, move or tilt your layer, the shown pixels are coming from the source file. If the source file is edited (and available in your computer), the shown pixels are updated. You can upsize and downsize many times without loss of quality: what is shown is always calculated from the source file.
In Elements, psd files with smart layers do embed a copy of the source file, there is no option to only store a link to that source file. Bigger file, no risk of broken links...
Elements is limited in the way you can use smart objects compared to the full Photoshop.
The important fact to know about smart layers is that you can resize, move or tilt without quality loss. On the other hand many operations on layers can't be applied to smart layers, you have to 'simplify' them, which is to transform them into normal layers with fixed pixels.