Paste Into a Selection in Photoshop

If you have an active selection in your document (marching ants) and have content on the clipboard, selecting Edit > Paste Special > Paste Into will paste the content from the clipboard onto a new layer  and automatically convert the selection into a Layer mask!

Command + Option + Shift + V (Mac) | Control + Alt + Shift + V (Win) is the shortcut for Paste Into.


Image with active selection.



Selection converted to a layer mask after choosing Edit > Paste Special > Paste Into.

5:07 AM Permalink

Targeting a Layer Mask in Photoshop

Command + \ (Mac), Control + \ (Win) targets a layer mask.

Command + 2 (Mac), Control + 2 (Win) targets the layer.

4:54 AM Permalink

Pasting into a Layer Mask in Photoshop

To paste content (from the clipboard) into a Layer mask, Option -click (Mac)/ Alt -click (Win) the Layer mask icon on the Layers panel. This shortcut does two things – it targets the mask as well as toggles off the visibility of the mask. Then, choose Edit > Paste to paste into the mask.

Note: if you don’t want to use the shortcut, you can paste into a layer mask by clicking on the mask in the Channels panel and toggling ON the visibility.  Choosing Edit > Paste will paste into the mask, displaying the mask as a red overlay.04_22chanelVis

To hide the red overlay, click the eye icon.04_22chanelHide04_22_toggleVis

5:17 AM Permalink

Unlinking Masks from Layers in Photoshop

Click on the link icon between the layer icon and the mask icon in the Layers panel to unlink the mask from the layer (allowing either to move independently of the other).

04_20_Link Maks

5:15 AM Permalink

Temporarily Disabling & Enabling Masks in Photoshop

Shift-click in the layer or vector mask thumbnail in the Layers panel to temporarily disable the mask.

Click again on the layer mask thumbnail in the Layers panel to enable it.

For a vector mask, you must shift -click the thumbnail again to enable it.

You can also Control-click (Mac) / Right mouse -click (Win) on either type of mask in the Layers panel and choose to Enable or Disable a mask.

4:54 AM Permalink

Passenger Seat eBook Discounted for Earth Day

The electronic version of my book Passenger Seat – Creating a photographic project from conception through execution in Adobe Photoshop Lightroom, is featured as part of Pearson’s Earth Day sale, starting today!


Use the discount code EARTH to get 45% off.

Offer good from April 18 through April 22, 2016.
3:00 PM Permalink

Vector Masks Visibility in Photoshop

Clicking on the Vector mask icon in the Layers Panel will toggle the path’s visibility.

When the path is visible, drawing a path with the Pen tool (or a Shape tool with the tool mode in the Options bar set to Path), will add to the mask.

When the path is hidden, drawing with the Pen tool (or a Shape tool with the tool mode in the Options bar set to Path) creates a new Work Path.

5:04 AM Permalink

Embedding Video into an Adobe Slate

For those of you who haven’t been introduced to Adobe Slate, I have to tell you that I absolutely love this simple, yet elegant storytelling app from Adobe. And now, you can embed video from either YouTube or Vimeo as a part of your story!

Click the plus icon and select Video.


Copy and paste the embed code from YouTube or Vimeo. Note that the embed code is different from the Web Address (URL). On whichever site you used to post your video, look for a button that says “embed”. In the case of YouTube, click the Share button (under the video), and then click Embed. Copy the code, return to the Add an Embedded Video window in Adobe Slate, and paste the embed code for your video.

04_01SlateEmbed copy

FYI: in this example, the embed code is longer than what appears in the window.

That’s all there is to it, your video is now embedded into your story.


Click here to log on and get started with Adobe Slate.

5:03 AM Permalink

“Creating a Photographic Project from Conception Through Execution”  In-Depth Workshop at Photoshop World

04_11PS World600If you’re going to be attending Photoshop World, Las Vegas, I hope you will join me for an in-depth workshop – Passenger Seat: Creating a Photographic Project from Conception Through Execution. We’ll learn what it takes to define and execute a photographic project. I’ll focus on the techniques and workflows that enabled me to publish my most recent book and body of work: Passenger Seat. You’ll discover how to organize your personal project starting from the initial idea, continuing through planning and executing the shoots, mastering the post-capture workflow, to delivering the project for publication and distribution as a book, slideshow, exhibit, or social media. Defining who you want to be as an artist and what you want to create will give you permission to emerge – allowing discovery and imagination to flourish.

This in-depth workshop will be held from 12-3 on Monday, July 18th 2016. I hope to see you there!

5:10 AM Permalink

Previewing Images Full Screen in Bridge

Tapping the spacebar displays all selected files in Bridge in Full Screen Mode with a dark grey background. This is a great way to quickly review files without having to open them in Photoshop. Tap escape to return to Bridge.

Command + L (Mac) / Control + L (Win) displays selected images in Slideshow Mode and automatically transitions between images every five seconds using a dissolve. Chose View > Slideshow Options to access additional Display, Slide, and Transition options.

5:06 AM Permalink

The Art of Photoshop Compositing Course on Lynda.com

Even if you’re not a member of Lynda.com, a portion of each of my video courses are available for free. If you’re interested in Learning about Compositing, here are four free videos from my The Art of Photoshop Compositing course:

What makes a good composite?

A compelling story

Compositional considerations

Creating your own image bank

The complete course is available for paid members. Click here for more information or to start your free trial.

5:07 AM Permalink

Double Check the Layer Mask in Photoshop

When working on intricately composited, multi-layered documents, I often find it useful to check each of the layer masks before finalizing the image. To do this, Option -click (Mac) / Alt -click (Win) on the mask thumbnail in the Layers panel to display the mask in the image area. With the mask visible, check to see if there are any unwanted or awkward transitional areas that might not have been visible in the complex composite (a sharp edge from a selection or a small area unknowingly left unpainted, for example).

6:04 AM Permalink

Introduction to Photo Compositing Course on Lynda.com


2014-11_LDCIntroLREven if you’re not a member of Lynda.com, a portion of each of my video courses are available for free. If you’re interested in Learning about Compositing, here are two free videos from my Introduction to Photo Compositing course:

Unifying images through subject and theme 

Unifying images through composition

The complete course is available for paid members. Click here for more information or to start your free trial.


5:29 AM Permalink

Update! Adding Adobe Slate Projects to Portfolio

Update! Update! I didn’t know that you could create your own iFrame code and embed your Slate projects into your Portfolio site (one of the many drawbacks of not knowing how to code), because you can, you just need to write the iFrame code yourself. But since I can’t write code, a little birdie showed me this site that will do it for me:


First, you need to get the URL for your Slate (in my case it’s https://slate.adobe.com/a/7ZLrG/).

Then, go to the 7thspace site (you will need to have Adobe Flash installed to use this tool), and paste your URL in the iFrame Generator in the iFrame URL window.


Click “Generate iFrame” to create the code you need!


Back in Portfolio, select the project or page that you want to add the Slate project to. Click Embed Media on the floating remote.


Paste the iFrame code in the Embed Media window. In this case, I enlarged the dimensions (width and height) to reveal more of my Slate in the window.


Here is code that you can start with if you know what you want to customize:

<iframe src=”https://slate.adobe.com/a/7ZLrG/” style=”border:0px #FFFFFF none;” name=”myiFrame” scrolling=”no” frameborder=”1” marginheight=”0px” marginwidth=”0px” height=”1200px” width=”1800px”></iframe>

I’m sure that the team would like to make this easier, but in the mean time, I wanted to make sure that you knew there was a workaround.

5:47 AM Permalink

Adobe Portfolio – Day 10 of the 10 Day Challenge 

Congratulations, you’ve made it to day ten of the Portfolio challenge! First we’re going to preview our portfolio to make sure that everything is working as it should be, and then we will publish it to the world. At the bottom of the screen, click the Preview option.


Use the navigation to click through your galleries, projects, pages, and links. If you see anything that you need to change, click Back to Edit and make the necessary changes.

10BackToEditThen, click Preview again and click the other preview icons to see how your portfolio will display across devices.


Once you’ve confirmed that everything is working as you want it to, click Back to Edit.

Click Update Live Site. Don’t worry you can still make changes to your Portfolio even after your site is live.


Fantastic, your Portfolio is live!

To make additional changes, choose Continue to Editor to look at your site, click View your Portfolio.

Thank you so much for participating in this ten-day challenge. I certainly learned some new features this week and hope that you have too.

Please leave your URL in the comments below so that I can visit your portfolio and look at your work.

If you have feature requests, please post them here so that the product team will see them.

Thank you again!


4:48 AM Permalink