Posts tagged "Blend Modes"

August 14, 2018

Five Additional Tips for Accessing and Applying Blend Modes in Photoshop CC

1) Blend Modes can be applied to multiple layers at one time. Select the layers, then select the Blend Mode to apply. 

Applying the Multiply Blend Mode to all three selected layers at once.

2) Second, instead of changing the Blend Mode for each individual layer within a Layer Group, you can change the Blend Mode for the Layer Group. When assigning a Blend Mode to a group, Photoshop treats the contents of the group as if they are flattened before adding the Blend Mode. As long as none of the layers have content that is overlapping, they layers will appear no differently than if the Blend Modes was applied to each layer, but if the content does overlap, then the results will blend differently. 

In this first example, each individual leaf layer’s Blend Mode is set to Multiply. Therefore the top leaf is blended with the two beneath it. The middle leaf is blended with the leaf below it, and all three  leaves are blended with the Background.

 

In the second example, the individual leaf layer’s Blend Mode is set to Normal and the Layer Group is set to Multiply. Because Photoshop treats the content of the group as if they’re flattened before applying the Blend Mode, the leaf layers are only being Multiplied (blended) with the layer below the group (in this case the Background).

3) Layer Groups have a unique blend mode called Pass Through which is only visible when a Layer Group is targeted in the Layers panel. It is the default Blend Mode for Layer Groups and allows any Blend Modes, adjustment layers,  advanced blending options, opacity and fill values applied to layers within a Layer Group, to affect the layers below the Group.  To restrict the blending of layers within a Group, change the Layer Group’s Blend Mode to Normal. Note: Option + Shift + P (Mac) | Alt + Shift + P (Win) sets the Blend Mode of the currently selected group to Pass Through. 

With the Layer Group’s blend mode is set to Pass Through, Blend Mode applied to layers with in the Group “pass through” the bottom of the group and affect the layers below the Layer Group.

When a Layer Groups blend mode is set to Normal, Blend Mode assigned to layers with in a group are restricted to only affect  layers with in the group  (they leaves set to the Multiply Blend Modec an’t blend with layers beneath the group). 

4) For more advanced blending of channels within Groups, choose Layer > Layer Style > Blending Options  (or Control -click (Mac) | Right -click (Win)  the Layer Group icon in the Layers panel and select Blending Options) to specify which channels to use for special effect blending of layers.

5) Select Edit > Fade (or use the shortcut Command + Shift + F (Mac) | Control + Shift + F (Win) ) to access Opacity and Blend Mode setting for several different commands. For example:

• Immediately after creating a brush stroke, select Edit > Fade to change the Blend Mode or opacity for the most recently created stroke.

• Directly after applying a filter, select Edit > Fade  to change the Blend Mode or opacity of the filter using the Fade dialog. 

The Blend Mode of the Diffuse Glow filter is changed using the Fade command.

Note: filters applied to a Smart Object are automatically “Smart Filters”. To change the Opacity and Blend Mode of the Smart Filter, double click the Filter Blending Option to the right of the filter name in the Layers panel. 

5:01 AM Permalink
August 8, 2018

Working with Blend Modes in Photoshop CC

A blend mode allows you to control how the pixels on one layer work with or affect (or blend with) other pixels in Photoshop. They can be found throughout the program in such areas as the Layers panel, Layer Styles, Painting tools, Smart Filters, the Fill, Stroke, and Fade commands, and the Apply Image and Calculations commands. Within each of these different areas of Photoshop, the available blend modes vary based on which modes are useful and appropriate for each command. Except where noted, these modes work on a per channel basis (i.e., they treat an RGB image like three grayscale images).

When using blend modes, it’s helpful to think of the effects in terms of the following three colors: 

• The base color is the original color in the image (which can be the color on a layer or a cumulative combination of layers).

• The blend color is the color being blended (the painting or editing color).

• The result color is the color resulting from the blend.

In addition, some of the blend modes have what are called Neutral colors, or colors that have no effect when they are blended. For example, the Multiply blend mode has a Neutral color of white (white has no effect), the Screen blend mode has a Neutral color is black (black has no effect), and the Overlay blend mode has a Neutral color of 50% gray (gray has no effect).

In this example there are two layers in the Photoshop document – the Background layer is a photo of a mountain and the top layer is a photo of leaves with three circles (black, white, and gray) added to demonstrate the effect of the Neutral color of the Blend Mode.

In the first illustration, the Background layer (the photo of the mountains) is visible. In the second illustration, the photo of the leaves is visible. In the third illustration, both layers are visible but with the Blend Mode for the leaves layer set to Normal, there is no blending between layers.

The first group of Blend Modes (the ones at the top above the first dividing line) contains from one to four blend modes depending on the feature: Normal, Dissolve, Behind and Clear. Note: the Fill command and the painting tools are the only ones that list the Behind and Clear Blend modes and are only available when working on layers that can have transparency. In this grouping, there is no Neutral color – all blend colors will effect the base colors. When used at 100% opacity, the blend color will replace the base color. (I point out that I’m using 100% because lowering the opacity of the layer (or paint or fill etc.) will change the way that the blend color is combined with the layer below.)  

• Normal – This is the default mode. Pixels don’t blend. Results are as expected – the contents of a layer are displayed without any blending. A photo will appear as the original or, if you paint with a color, the result color is the color that you chose.  Note: the Normal Blend mode changes to the Threshold Blend Mode when working with indexed-color and/or bitmapped images.

• Dissolve  – Edits or paints each pixel to make it the result color; however, the result color is a random replacement of the pixels with the base color or the blend color, depending on the opacity at any pixel location. Lowering the opacity (in this example the opacity of the Layer) reveals a speckled effect which is either the blend color or the base color – never a combination of the two. In this case, the result looks a bit like a mezzotint.

• Behind – Edits or paints only in the transparent areas of a layer. This mode is available for the painting tools and the Fill command.  It’s like painting on the back side of acetate, underneath the image. This mode works only in layers with Lock Transparency deselected. Note: it could be more flexible to paint on a separate layer but I’m sure that people have reasons to do it this way!

• Clear – Makes all affected pixels transparent – essentially the same result as using the Eraser tool. This mode is available for the painting tools, the Fill command, and the Stroke command. Note: you must be in a layer with Lock Transparency deselected to use this mode.

In the first illustration, the Blend Mode is set to Normal – layers don’t blend. In the second illustration, the Blend Mode is set to Normal – the layers – blend because the Opacity of the leaves was was lowered  to 50%. In the third illustration, the opacity is lowered and the Blend Mode is set to Dissolve.

In the first illustration, the “Z” is painted with the Brush set to Normal. In the second illustration, the Brush was set to the Behind Blend Mode. Note: it would be more flexible to paint on a separate layer but I’m sure that people have reasons to do it this way! In the third Illustration  the Brush was set to the Clear Blend Mode – creating essentially the same result as using the Eraser tool.

The second group of Blend Modes (Darken, Multiply, Color Burn, Linear Burn and Darker Color) have a Neutral color of white. This means that white as a blend color will have no effect on the result color (white simply disappears). These blend modes all have stronger effects as the blend color becomes darker. Using the Fill slider on Layers palette using blend modes from this group  may  modulate this effect rather than performing a simple opacity blend the way normal mode does. By definition:

• Darken – Looks at the color information in each channel and selects the darker of the base or blend color as the result color. Pixels lighter than the blend color are replaced, and pixels darker than the blend color do not change.

• Multiply – Looks at the color information in each channel and multiplies the base color by the blend color. The result color is always a darker color. Multiplying any color with black produces black.  When you’re painting with a color other than black or white, successive strokes with a painting tool produce progressively darker colors, producing an effect similar to drawing on the image with multiple magic markers. Multiply is similar to sandwiching two pieces of slide film (positive images) and projecting them together. 

• Color Burn – Looks at the color information in each channel and darkens the base color to reflect the blend color by increasing the contrast. The result will always be darker and have more contrast.

• Linear Burn – Looks at the color information in each channel and darkens the base color to reflect the blend color by decreasing the brightness and – unlike multiply – it will clip values while doing so. It has a stronger darkening effect than either multiply or color burn. Linear Burn is a combination of color burn and multiply.

• Darker Color – Compares the total of all channel values for the blend and base color and displays the lower value color. Darker Color does not produce a third color, which can result from the Darken blend, because it chooses the lowest channel values from both the base and the blend color to create the result color.

Blend Modes set to Darken, Multiply, Color Burn, Linear Burn and Darker Color.

The third group of Blend Modes have a neutral color of black. This means that black as a blend color will have no effect on the result color. These blend modes all have stronger effects as the blend color becomes lighter. Using the Fill slider on Layers palette and using blend modes from this group may modulate this effect rather than performing a simple opacity blend the way normal mode does. The lightening modes are essentially the inverses of the darkening modes.

• Lighten – Looks at the color information in each channel and selects the lighter of the base or blend color as the result color. Pixels darker than the blend color are replaced, and pixels lighter than the blend color do not change.

• Screen – Looks at each channel’s color information and multiplies the inverse of the blend and base colors. The result color is always a lighter color. The effect is similar to projecting multiple photographic slides onto the same screen. Screen reduces contrast and can produce and effect similar to painting an area with bleach. 

• Color Dodge – Looks at the color information in each channel and brightens the base color to reflect the blend color by decreasing the contrast. Color Dodge is an exception to the neutral color rule in this group – it is the only lightening mode that preserves blacks. Color Dodge is similar to moving the input white triangle in Levels. As such, color dodge increases contrast but may clip the brighter portions of the lower colors to white. 

• Linear Dodge – Looks at the color information in each channel and brightens the base color to reflect the blend color by increasing the brightness.  Linear dodge is the combination of color dodge and screen. As such, it has a stronger lightening effect than either of them. Linear Dodge will clip bright values, unlike Screen.

• Lighter Color Compares the total of all channel values for the blend and base color and displays the higher value color. Lighter Color does not produce a third color, which can result from the Lighten blend, because it chooses the highest channel values from both the base and blend color to create the result color.

Blend Modes set to Lighten, Screen, Color Dodge, Linear Dodge, and Lighter Color.

The fourth group of Blend Modes have a neutral color of 50% gray. This means that 50% gray as a blend color will have no effect on the result color.  All of the light modes (except for Overlay) lighten when using colors brighter than 50% gray and darken when using colors darker than 50% gray. This happens on a channel-by-channel basis so they can actually both lighten and darken at once.

• Overlay – Multiplies or screens a scaled version of the blend color into the base color based on whether the lower color is darker or lighter than 50% gray. Colors darker than 50% are multiplied, colors lighter are screened. Patterns or colors overlay the existing pixels while preserving the highlights and shadows of the base color. The base color is not replaced but is mixed with the blend color to reflect the lightness or darkness of the original color.

• Soft Light mode – Darkens or lightens the colors, depending on the blend color.  If the blend color (light source) is lighter than 50% gray, the image is lightened as if it were dodged. If the blend color is darker than 50% gray, the image is darkened as if it were burned in. Painting with pure black or white produces a distinctly darker or lighter area but does not result in pure black or white. It uses gamma adjustment s to darken or lighten. The effect is similar to shining a diffused spotlight on the image. 

• Hard Light – Multiplies or screens the colors, depending on the blend color. If the blend color (light source) is lighter than 50% gray, the image is lightened, as if it were screened. This is useful for adding highlights to an image. If the blend color is darker than 50% gray, the image is darkened, as if it were multiplied. This is useful for adding shadows to an image. Painting with pure black or white results in pure black or white. The effect is similar to shining a harsh spotlight on the image. 

• Vivid Light – Burns or dodges the colors by increasing or decreasing the contrast, depending on the blend color. If the blend color (light source) is lighter than 50% gray, the image is lightened by decreasing the contrast. If the blend color is darker than 50% gray, the image is darkened by increasing the contrast. Vivid Light uses color burn and color dodge to darken or lighten. 

• Linear Light – Burns or dodges the colors by decreasing or increasing the brightness, depending on the blend color. If the blend color (light source) is lighter than 50% gray, the image is lightened by increasing the brightness. If the blend color is darker than 50% gray, the image is darkened by decreasing the brightness. Linear Light uses linear burn and linear dodge to darken or lighten.

• Pin Light – Replaces the colors, depending on the blend color. If the blend color (light source) is lighter than 50% gray, pixels darker than the blend color are replaced, and pixels lighter than the blend color do not change. If the blend color is darker than 50% gray, pixels lighter than the blend color are replaced, and pixels darker than the blend color do not change. Pin Light uses darken or lighten modes to darken or lighten. This is useful for adding special effects to an image. 

• Hard Mix – Lighter colors lighten the result. Darker colors darken the result.  Lowering the fill opacity creates less posterization/thresholding.

Blend Modes set to Overlay, Soft Light, Hard Light, Vivid Light, Linear Light, Pin Light, and Hard Mix.

The fifth group of Blend Modes have a neutral color of black. This means that black as a blend color will have no effect on the result color. The Divide blend mode has a Neutral color of white.

• Difference – Looks at the color information in each channel and subtracts either the blend color from the base color or the base color from the blend color, depending on which has the greater brightness value. Blending with white inverts the base color values.

• Exclusion – Creates an effect similar to but lower in contrast than the Difference mode. Blending with white inverts the base color values. Blending with black produces no change.  The effect is a bit like using one image to solarize the other.

• Divide and Subtract – Both are intended for us with calibrated imaging however interesting creative effects are also possible. For astronomy and microscopy:  you want to subtract background values (dark frames, factoring out hot pixels, etc.), and divide by a flat field image (removing vignetting and other lens defects, bringing insensitive pixels back up to normal range, etc.). You can remove lens falloff even if you have something that Lens Correction can’t handle (like mirror lenses, dust on the lens, etc.). Of course you can also use them for HDR toning tricks (or experimentation).

Blend Modes set to Difference, Exclusion, Divide, and Subtract.

The sixth group of Blend Modes have no neutral colors. They work in a hue, saturation, luminance space that is similar to but different from both HSB and HSL. In particular, while hue is the same in all three spaces, all of the spaces define saturation and brightness/lightness/luminance somewhat differently. All of the combinations described below are subject to clipping to keep the values in the valid RGB range.

• Hue – Creates a result color with the luminance and saturation of the base color and the hue of the blend color. 

• Saturation – Creates a result color with the luminance and hue of the base color and the saturation of the blend color. Painting with this mode in an area that has no (0) saturation (gray) causes no change.

• Color – Creates a result color with the luminance of the base color and the hue and saturation of the blend color. This preserves the gray levels in the image and is useful for coloring monochrome images and for tinting color images. Color yields a result with the same hue and saturation as the upper color and the luminance of the lower color.

• Luminosity – Creates a result color with the hue and saturation of the base color and the luminance of the blend color. This mode is the inverse of Color mode.

Blend Mode set to Hue, Saturation, Color, and Luminosity.

This video quickly demonstrates some of the most commonly used Blend Modes for compositing images using the Layers panel (Multiply, Screen, Overlay and Soft Light):

This video gives a quick overview of the most common uses of the blend modes used with Adjustment layers (Hue, Saturation, Color and Luminosity):

While each Blend Mode has it’s own custom keyboard shortcut (see below), holding the shift key and tapping “+” (plus) or “-” (minus) will quickly cycle through the list of blend modes ( + moves forward and – moves backwards). If a tool painting tool selected, then these shortcuts change the blend modes for the painting tool. If a tool is selected that doesn’t have a Blend Mode option in the options bar, then this shortcut will change the blend modes on the Layers panel.

All Blend Modes begin with the same keyboard modifiers: Option + Shift (Mac) | Alt + Shift (Win) and then add a single letter. For example, Option + Shift + N (Mac) | Alt + Shift + N (Win) is the shortcut for the Normal blend mode. 

• Dissolve –  I 

• Darken – K

• Multiply – M

• Color Burn – B

• Linear Burn – A

• Lighten – G

• Screen – S

• Color Dodge – D

• Linear Dodge – W

• Overlay – O

• Soft Light – F

• Hard Light – H

• Vivid Light – V

• Linear Light – J

• Pin Light – Z

• Hard Mix – L

• Difference – E

• Exclusion – X

Subtract (does not have a shortcut)

Divide (does not have a shortcut)

• Hue – U

• Saturation – T

• Color – C

• Luminosity – Y

Note: The next two shortcuts are only associated with brushes, not layers.

• Behind – Q

• Clear – R 

For additional information on Blend Modes, check out these free videos:

Photoshop CC 2017 Essential Training: The Basics — Getting to know the blend modes 

Photoshop CC 2017 Essential Training: The Basics — Adding a texture to a photo 

Photoshop CC 2017 Essential Training: The Basics Using Blend modes to emulate image transfer effects 

Photoshop CC 2013 Essential Training  — Scanning or photographing paper to add a deckled edge

 

5:05 AM Permalink
June 26, 2018

3, 2, 1, Photoshop! Four Popular Blend Modes to Use When Compositing Images

In this episode of 3, 2, 1, Photoshop, you’ll discover when to use Multiply, Screen, Overlay, and Softlight Blend Modes when compositing images in Photoshop CC.

7:36 AM Permalink
June 5, 2018

3, 2, 1, Photoshop! Four Creative Color and Tonal Edits using Blend Modes

In this week’s episode, Julieanne explores different blend modes that can be used for creative color and tonal edits in Photoshop CC.

5:06 AM Permalink
June 20, 2017

Fundamental Layers Panel Tips and Techniques

The Background Layer

  • Clicking the lock icon next to the Background layer on the Layers panel converts the Background to a layer enabling transparency, repositioning  in the image area and changing the stacking order.
  • Double click the Background layer to display the New Layer dialog for additional options (renaming, color coding etc.).

Renaming Layers

  • To rename a single layer, double click the layer’s name in the Layers panel.
  • To rename multiple layers, rename one and then, without pressing the enter key to apply the new name, press the Tab key to move to the layer below. Shift + Tab moves to the layer (above).

Adding New Layers to a Document in Photoshop

  • Command + Shift + N (Mac) | Control + Shift + N (Win) will add a new layer and display the New Layer dialog for additional options (layer name, blend mode etc.).
  • Command + Option + Shift + N (Mac) | Control + Alt + Shift + N (Win) adds a new layer bypassing the New Layer dialog.
  • By default, new layers are added above the currently selected layer. Command -click (Mac) | Control -click (Win) the New Layer icon (on the Layers panel) to create a new layer below the currently selected layer. This shortcut is helpful for example, when adding a layer that you don’t want to be included in a Clipping Group.

Deleting Layers

  • To delete a layer(s), select it in the Layers panel and tap the delete key.
  • To delete hidden layers from the Layers panel, use the fly-out and select Delete Hidden Layers.

Duplicating Layers

  • With the Move tool selected, Option -drag (Mac) | Alt -drag (Win) a layer in the image area to duplicate (copy) the selected  layer(s).
  • To duplicate a layer using the Layers panel, select the layer(s) and Option -drag (Mac) | Alt -drag (Win) the layer until a solid line between the layers appears and release.
  • Command + J (Mac) | Control + J (Win) duplicates the selected layer(s). Note: this shortcut works for Layer Groups as well.
  • To prevent Photoshop from adding “copy” and a sequence number to a duplicated file name, use the Layers panel fly-out menu to select Panel Options and uncheck Add “copy” to Copied Layers and Groups.

Drag and Drop Between Open Documents

  • To duplicate layers from one document to another, select the layers in the Layers panel and drag from one document window to another. When the “destination” document becomes highlighted, release to “drop” the layers.
  • Holding the Shift key while dragging and dropping a layer(s) between two documents will place the “dropped” layer(s) into the center of the destination document. If there is a selection in the destination document, holding the Shift key while dragging and dropping an image will drop it into the center of the selection.
  • When working with tabbed documents, use the Move tool to drag layers from the image area or the Layers panel, on top of the “destination” document’s tab. When the “destination” document pops forward, position the cursor over the image area and release to “drop” the layers.

Changing the Blend mode of a Layer

  • To quickly cycle through a the Blend Modes select the Move tool (or any tool that does not have Blend Mode options), hold the Shift key and press “+” (plus) or “-” (minus) to move forward or backwards through the list.
  • In addition, each blend mode has a unique keyboard shortcut.  They all begin with Option + Shift (Mac) | Alt + Shift (Win) then a single letter.
    • Normal + N
    • Dissolve + I
    • Behind + Q
    • Clear + R
    • Darken + K
    • Multiply + M
    • Color Burn + B
    • Linear Burn + A,
    • Lighten + G
    • Screen + S
    • Color Dodge + D
    • Linear Dodge + W
    • Overlay + O
    • Soft Light + F
    • Hard Light + H
    • Vivid Light + V
    • Linear Light + J
    • Pin Light + Z
    • Hard Mix + L
    • Difference + E
    • Exclusion + X
    • Hue+ U
    • Saturation+ T
    • Color  + C,
    • Luminosity + Y

Changing the Opacity of a Layer(s)

  • To change the Opacity of a layer(s), select the Move tool (or any tool that does not have Opacity options), and press a numeric key to add the percentage of the pressed number. (1 = 10%, 2= 20% etc. and 0 = 100%).
  • Pressing two numbers quickly will give you that exact amount (5 + 4 = 54%).
  • Pressing 00 (zero-zero) decreases the opacity to 0%.
  • Adding the Shift key will change the Fill amount.

Toggling Layer Visibility in Photoshop

  • Clicking the eye icon next to any layer on the Layers panel will hide/show the layer.
  • Option -click (Mac) |  Alt -click  (Win) the eye icon in the Layers panel to toggle visibility of all other layers.
  • Command + “,” (comma) (Mac) | Control + “,” (comma) (Win) toggles the visibility of the currently selected layer(s).
  • Command + Option +  “,” (comma)  (Mac) | Control + Alt +  “,” (comma)  (Win) shows all layers (regardless of which layers are selected).
  • Control -click (Mac) | right -click (Win) the eye icon and select “Show/Hide all other layers” to make all layers visible (regardless of which layers  were previously visible).

Merging Layers

  • Command + E (Mac) | Control + E (Win) will merge selected layers.
The three selected layers are merged into a single layer.

The three selected layers are merged into a single layer.

  • Command + Shift + E (Mac) | Control + Shift + E (Win) will merge all visible layers (hidden layers will remain untouched).
The top two Layers aren't merged because they are not visible.

The top two Layers aren’t merged because they are hidden.

  • Command + Option + E (Mac) | Control + Alt + E (Win) creates a new layer and pastes a “flattened” version of the selected layers on it (the key to this shortcut is that you have to have multiple layers selected)!
The information from the two selected layers are copied to an new layer and merged.

A flattened copy of the two selected layers are merged onto a new layer.

  • Command + Option + Shift + E  (Mac) | Control + Alt + Shift + E  (Win) does one of two things:
    •  If the top most layer in the Layers panel is an empty (blank) layer, Photoshop will create a flattened copy of all visible layers and place the merged/flattened information onto the top layer. 
    • If the top layer  in the Layers panel has content (is not empty/blank), then Photoshop will create a new layer and merge a copy of all visible layers onto the newly created layer. 
A flattened copy of all visible layers is pasted onto a new layer.

A flattened copy of all visible layers is merged onto a new layer (regardless of what layer(s) is selected).

  • When Merging layers, if any of the layers that are going to be merged have been manually renamed (i.e. you renamed them), Photoshop will keep that custom layer name and use it as the new merged layer name. If you have created custom names for multiple layers that are all being merged together, then Photoshop will take the top-most custom named layer.

Copying Merged Layers (and Groups)

  • Command + Shift + C (Mac) | Control + Shift + C (Win) with an active selection in the image, copies a merged view of all visible layers onto the clipboard.

Color Coding Layers

  • Control -click (Mac) | Right -click (Win) on a selected layer(s) and choose a highlight color from the context sensitive menu. Note: the Background must be converted to a layer to color-code.

Layer Thumbnail Preview Options

  • To change Layer thumbnail size, from the Layers panel fly-out choose Panel Options. Choose a large size to more easily see the contents of the layer. Choose a small size to see more layers in a complicated document. Note: if your image is wider than it is high, selecting the smaller thumbnail sizes might display the generic icon for Adjustment layers).
  • Change Thumbnail Contents – select  “Layer Bounds” to display a preview image of only the area in the layer that contains content – this option typically provides a larger preview of layers containing minimal content, Select “Entire Document” to display the layer content in relationship to the entire document (this option typically provides a smaller preview of layers containing significant areas of content.

Thumbnail Content set to Entire Document.

Thumbnail Content set to Layer Bounds.

Locking and Unlocking Layers

  • Several layer attributes can be locked including Transparent Pixels, Image Pixels, and/or Position
    • Locking Transparency enables editing of image information but not transparent areas. 
    • Locking the Image Pixels prohibits any pixel editing (painting etc.).
    • Locking Position prevents the layer from being moved.
  • Command + / (Mac) | Control + / (Win) toggles between locking and unlocking all selected layers.
  • Command + Option +/ (Mac) | Control + Alt +  / (Win) unlocks all layers (except the Background layer), regardless of which layers are selected.
  • If a layer has locked attributes, pressing the “/” key will toggle the lock for those attributes (instead of toggling the lock for all attributes). If the layer was unlocked to begin with, then all attributes will be locked.

Linking Layers

  • When layers are linked together, commands applied to one layer will also be applied to linked layers (when possible). Linking can be helpful when working with complex documents in eliminating the need to have to reselect layers again and again when multiple layers require identical changes.
  • To link two or more layers, select them in the Layer’s panel and click the Link icon.
  • For increased efficiency,  assign a custom keyboard shortcut to Link/Unlink Layers (Choose Edit > Keyboard Shortcuts. In Shortcuts For, select Panels, Menus. Then under Layers, scroll down to Link/Unlink Layers.)
  • Shift-click on the link icon to temporarily disable linking of a given layer.
  • The rules for linking layers are a bit complex because Layers can only belong to one link set at a time. They are as follows:
    • Selecting a layer that is linked will show the link icon on all the other layers to which it is linked. 
    • To unlink a single layer from a link set, simply select the layer and click the link icon. If there were other linked layers, they remain linked. 
    • If none of the layers selected contain linked and you click the link icon, all layers become linked – creating a new link set.
    • If the layers selected contain only linked layers, regardless of whether they’re all in the same link sets, clicking the link icon unlinks everything selected. 
    • If the layers selected contain at least some linked layers within the selection, plus any number of unlinked layers, clicking the link icon extends the link set to include the unlinked layers in the selection.
    • If the layers selected contains linked layers from two or more link sets plus at least one unlinked layer, everything in the selection gets put into a “new” linked set.
5:16 AM Permalink
April 18, 2017

John Paul Caponigro on Blending Modes in Photoshop

I’m a huge fan of John Paul Caponigro and I just discovered an insightful article of his which explains how to isolate the effects of adjustment layers using blending modes in Photoshop. I would highly recommend that you take the time to check out the article here (The Beauty of Blending Modes), as well as the incredible wealth of information that he has on his site (johnpaulcaponigro.com)

5:07 AM Permalink
February 8, 2017

Video – Using Blend Modes to Emulate an Image Transfer Effect in Photoshop CC

Discover how to emulate an image transfer effect in this free video (Using Blend Modes to Emulate an Image Transfer Effect), from Photoshop CC  Essential Training on Lynda.com.  (This video was free before and I didn’t include it in my training series).

 

4:46 AM Permalink
November 7, 2016

Photoshop 2017 Essential Training: The Basics – Live on Lynda.com

I’m excited to announce that my new Photoshop 2017 Essential Training: The Basics course is now live on Lynda.com!

11_06_jkostet_basics

Here are the details:

Learning how to use Photoshop efficiently and effectively is the best investment you can make to get the most out of your pixels. Photoshop CC Essential Training: The Basics filters out the noise and complexity so that you understand the basic features and concepts you need to use Photoshop effectively, whether you’re a photographer or designer.

Julieanne Kost reviews the basics of digital imaging, from bit depth to image size, and shows how to use different Photoshop tools to crop and retouch photos, while always maintaining the highest-quality output. She shows the most efficient ways to perform common tasks, including working with layers, making selections, and masking. Along the way, you will learn the secrets of nondestructive editing using Smart Objects, and master features such as adjustment layers, blend modes, filters, and much more—increasing your productivity every step of the way.

Topics include:
• Opening files in Photoshop, Bridge, and Lightroom
• Arranging your workspace
• Modifying keyboard shortcuts
• Changing color mode, bit depth, and document size
• Cropping and straightening images
• Working with layers and layer masks
• Using brushes
• Making detailed selections
• Retouching
• Editing images with the Content-Aware tools
• Using blend modes
• Creating Smart Objects
• Using adjustment layers to change color, tone, contrast, and saturation
• Applying filters

If you’re looking for more information, you can check out all of my Lynda.com courses here including:

Bridge CC Essential Training

Adobe Camera Raw Essential Training

Photoshop 2017 Essential Training: Design

Photoshop 2017 Essential Training: Photography

Introduction to Photo Compositing

The Art of Photoshop Compositing

Photoshop CS6 Essential Training

 

And did you know that you can watch these videos off-line by using the Lynda.com desktop or mobile app?

Enjoy!

5:01 AM Permalink
October 20, 2015

Blend Mode Shortcuts in Photoshop

Almost all of the blend modes in Photoshop have their own keyboard shortcut. They all begin with Option + Shift + a letter (Mac)/ Alt + Shift + a letter (Win). Most often the letter is the first letter of the name, but not always!

Normal + N

Dissolve + I

Behind  + Q (Brush tool only)

Clear  + R( Brush tool only)

Darken + K

Multiply + M

Color Burn + B

Linear Burn + A

Lighten + G

Screen + S

Color Dodge + D

Linear Dodge + W

Overlay + O

Soft Light + F

Hard Light + H

Vivid Light + V

Linear Light + J

Pin Light + Z

Hard Mix + L

Difference + E

Exclusion + X

Hue + U

Saturation + T

Color + C

Luminosity + Y

I couldn’t find a shortcut for Subtract or Divide, but if you know of one, please add it in the comments!

If you want to quickly cycle through the painting tool’s blend modes, hold the Shift key and hit the “+” (plus) or “-” (minus) to move forward or backwards. Careful: f you have a tool selected that is not a painting tool, these shortcuts will affect the blend modes on the Layers panel.

5:22 AM Permalink
October 24, 2014

Video Tutorial – Adding Textures to Photographs in Photoshop CC

I’m sorry, I completely forgot to blog about this! I was asked to make another guest appearance on the Photoshop Playbook series, so here’s a short tutorial on how to add textures to photographs (both locally as well as selectively) in Photoshop.  I hope it’s helpful!

5:37 AM Permalink
April 15, 2014

Adding Adjustment Layers in Photoshop

Clicking on the adjustment layer icon at the bottom of the Layer’s panel quickly adds an adjustment layer while bypassing the New Adjustment Layer dialog box.  However, when adding Gradient and Solid Color Fill layers, I often want the option to change the blend mode of the layer (before choosing the colors). Fortunately, Option + (Mac) | Alt  + (Win) clicking the icon will display the Adjustment Layer’s dialog box where I can quickly make the changes I need.

5:17 AM Permalink
February 18, 2014

“The Art of Photoshop Compositing” Now Live on lynda.com!

I’m really excited to announce that my new class: The Art of Photoshop Compositing is now live  on www.lynda.com! 

2014_02_17_JKost_CompLR

“Join Julieanne Kost as she walks you through her creative thought process and explains how she transforms concepts and raw images into entirely new works of art using Adobe Photoshop. Discover how to select the images you need to create a whole that is greater than the sum of its parts. Master the tools used in compositing, including adjustment layers, masking, blending, and Smart Objects, so that the technology doesn’t get in the way of expressing your creative vision. Learn how to adjust scale and perspective and manipulate texture and focus to help viewers temporarily suspend their disbelief long enough to enter your world.”

Topics include:

  • What makes a good composite?
  • Refining your story
  • Composing using the basic principles of design
  • Customizing your Photoshop workspace
  • Preparing elements from your source images
  • Adjusting color, tone, balance, and perspective
  • Mastering the Pen tool
  • Unifying with texture, focus, leading lines, and structure

I look forward to hearing your feedback!

5:00 AM Permalink
May 4, 2012

Working with Layers in Photoshop CS6

There are several new features in Photoshop CS6 that make working with layers more efficient.

• In previous versions of Photoshop, we could select the Move tool (or the Marquee, Lasso, Quick Select etc. – basically any tool that didn’t have an Opacity setting), and use the numeric keys on the keyboard to change the opacity of a layer. Tapping one number assigns the percentage of the tapped number (1 = 10%, 2= 20% etc. and 0 = 100%). Tapping two numbers quickly will give you that exact amount (5 + 4 = 54%). In Photoshop CS6, tapping 0 + 0 quickly will set the Layer’s opacity to 0 (zero). This works with either a single layer or multiple layers selected.

• With multiple layers selected, you can now change the Blend Mode for all selected layers.

• If a layer is targeted (selected) in the Layers panel, but hidden (the eye is toggled off) the Opacity and Blend Mode are now visible.

• With multiple layers selected, you can now lock all selected layers by tapping the lock icon.

• With multiple layers selected, Command + J (Mac) | Control + J (Win) will duplicate the selected layers. This shortcut works for Layer Groups as well.

• With Multiple layers selected, Control -click (Mac) / Right Mouse -click (Win) on the eye icon in the Layers panel to change the color label of all selected layers at once.

5:40 AM Permalink
June 15, 2011

Video Tutorial – Creating Transparent Logos for Watermarks and Overlays in Photoshop

In this episode of The Complete Picture, I will demonstrate how to create a single vector logo out of multiple type and shape layers, specify a consistent size, apply a style and save the entire creation as a Tool Preset! In addition, I will show you how to add a scan of your signature to any photograph with a simple change of a layer blend mode.

4:26 AM Permalink
May 27, 2011

Avoiding Color Shifts While Using Curves and Levels in Photoshop

Changing the blend mode of a Curves (or Levels) adjustment layer on the Layers panel from Normal to Luminosity will restrict the adjustment to only change the luminosity (grayscale) value of the image, thereby eliminating an color shift that might otherwise take place.

 

4:50 AM Permalink