Saving files

Saving, backing up, and exporting your work

Jump to Android or iOS

We can't over-emphasize how important it is to actively save your work. We sometimes hear from users who have lost work due to an app or system crash, and had been working for hours without saving. The best method of preserving your hard work is to save it.

Sketchbook has an Autosave function in case of an app or system crash. These are temporary data caches, not conventional files that can be accessed and opened. If an Autosave is available, the app will ask you if you want to recover it when you relaunch. 

Do not rely on Autosave as a method of saving your work. You should always actively save your work.

Sketchbook's native file format is TIFF. A TIFF created in Sketchbook or Sketchbook Pro can be opened with layers intact in Sketchbook apps on other platforms.

NOTE: Only Sketchbook apps will read TIFF files containing layers. If you open a Sketchbook TIFF in another program, it will appear flattened.

Saving in Sketchbook Pro for desktop

When saving your work, you can save out an alpha channel‍ and choose the file format. Sketchbook Pro supports saving TIFF, BMP, GIF, JPEG, PNG, and PSD. 

Also see Exporting images‍.

The format you select determines whether the image is saved with all its layers or if it is flattened. Only TIFF and PSD will preserve layers. Note that there are some limitations of saving a file to PSD.‍ 

You can customize the following file save behaviors in Preferences:

  1. Set the default save format to either TIFF or PSD
  2. Turn on the creation of backup (.bak) files
  3. Set the default new file name to be incremental, or "untitled"
  4. Turn on additional file verification during save, to avoid bad saves
  5. Customize how often Autosave updates
  6. Customize Page Up behavior for file browsing

Saving in Sketchbook for Android

Files are saved as TIFFs in the Sketchbook Gallery‍. You can export these files as a layered PSD, or a flattened JPEG or PNG.

Where are your files saved

On Android:

  1. If you are on Android 11 or higher, and Sketchbook version 5.3 or later, your files are in the folder Internal Storage > Pictures > Sketchbook Gallery
  2. If you are on Android 10 or below, your files are in Internal Storage > Autodesk > SketchBook3

The TIFF files in this folder are your Sketchbook art.

IMPORTANT: if you move, rename, or delete the TIFF files in this folder, your Sketchbook Gallery will not be able to find them. You may see an error message Failed to open image‍ the next time you try to open a file from your Sketchbook Gallery. Do not move, rename, or delete the TIFF files from this folder. 


  1. Tap Info Settings, then Gallery icon Gallery.

  2. A dialog appears. Select an option.
    Save current sketch – updates the saved file.
    Save current sketch as a copy – creates a new file and saves the sketch with the changes to that file, while preserving the original.
    Discard changes – deletes any modifications to the original file.

  3. The Gallery opens, displaying the images in your current Gallery view. Swipe to the left to ensure your sketch has been saved to the Gallery.

For information on exporting or sharing your layered image files, see the article Exporting images‍.

Saving in Sketchbook for iOS

To save in Sketchbook for iOS,

  • Tap Info Settings icon, then Save.
    If a sketch has been previously saved to the Gallery and additional edits have been made, the prompt will also include the option to Save the current sketch as a copy. This is useful when you want to have checkpoints of progress on a piece or when you want to take a piece in a different direction without overwriting the current version.

TIP: It is always a good idea to SAVE your work as you go along to ensure you have your work safely stored.


On iOS your art files are saved within the app container, they cannot be navigated to from outside the app. 

If you delete the app, you will delete your art. Apple warns you before deleting that you are deleting all the app's data. The only recovery from this is to restore an earlier device backup if you have one.

If your work has not been saved before you create a New Sketch, go to the Gallery, or tap on Files, Sketchbook will prompt you with your save options before you can proceed. 

When you go to the Gallery without saving, your work-in-progress piece will remain on your current canvas. You can close the Gallery by tapping the close icon on the top right to return to your work-in-progress. However, if you select another sketch to open from your Gallery, your previous work-in-progress will be lost.

TIP: When in doubt, it is good to save. From the Gallery, you can delete or transfer files to manage your local storage space.

For information on exporting or sharing your layered image files, see the article Exporting images‍.