Why is this so great and why not keep using the Old Fade command behaviour?
Lots of Photoshop users work on their artwork using the image adjustment operations on a single layer, then if they need to fine-tune the adjustment, they would use the Fade command. The Fade command is very useful for changing opacity or the blending mode of the effect; however, it’s a destructive edit and can only be performed once, just after the adjustment has been applied.
So for example: If an exposure adjustment is made to a layer, the fade command will be available until a new command is executed. i.e. If a selection is made straight after the exposure command is made, the Fade command will no longer be available.
In the 2015 update, the Image adjustments/Fade command became more powerful, but moved to a new place. Fade is now available not just as a menu item, but also when used in combination with Smart Objects. This technique also opens up more adjustments that were not possible when using Smart Objects previously, but also more precision and control at any time during the workflow.
Let’s look at how these adjustments can be used on a layer, and then use the new Fade options to get precise control.
An image opened into Photoshop CC 2015 from Lightroom, using Smart Objects.
Once inside Photoshop, an adjustment may need to be made. To make a non-destructive edit a ‘New Adjustment Layer’ is typically used. This means that any changes via each layer won’t directly have an impact on the underlying (original image), but will also allow continuous edits without having to use the History panel to go back to a previous state.
Alternatively, adjustments can now be made using Image / Adjustments directly on the Smart Object