Using Layer Masks to Replace Sky
The other thing I used layer Mass for quite frequently is when I need to replace a sky in an image. So here I have a photograph in that's overcast skies rather boring, and I would like to put this guy in it, so I'll use my move tool. In this case, I'll click within the sky image. I'll drag up onto the tab for the other document. And then before I like over the mouse button, I'll make sure to move my mouse into that image. So it's not on the tab and said it's within the image and I'll let go. And then I can reposition this and hopefully get it to fill the frame. I'll close the other file because I already have incorporated into this one. So click it's Little X on the other tab to get rid of that, and now I'd like to use a layer mask, too. Be able to see the building that was there now I could work this way where the sky is the top most later, and Adam asked to it, or I could reverse the order of my layers input the image on top and in this case, with only two layers. It doesn't really m...
atter. But let's say I wanted to try out five different skies, and I want all five of them to be in the same document. So when a client shows up, I could just quickly change the eyeball icons in the Layers panel to show them various versions where they have different options for which sky to use. If that was the case, it would probably be better to have the building on top because of the buildings on top. And it was the layer that contained layer mask. I could just have multiple layers underneath and just turn off or on their eyeballs, and it would determine what shows up behind the building. If, on the other hand, I do it in the order it's currently in, I would put my layer mask on the layer that contains the sky in. If I need to put three or four more skies in the picture and they're gonna be above the building, each one of them would need to have a layer mask attached to prevent it from covering up the building. So I'm gonna change the order of these layers. But when you have a layer called background, I won't be able to drag a layer underneath it. And I won't be able to grab the background and put it on top. The background layer is stuck at the bottom. That is, unless I double click on it to change its name or I click this lock symbol toe. Unlock it. Now it's a normal layer. And now you could either move it on top or move the other one underneath. However you'd like at this point I want to select the background. So maybe I could come up here to the Selectmen, you and see if it would work. Just told to select the subject. Be nice if it knew where everything waas. Yeah, it looks like it didn't select the right side of the building, so that's not gonna be quite good enough. So instead, I'll come over here. Maybe I'll use the, um, object selection tool. I couldn't hold down the shift key to say Add to the selection. We already have enough circle around this area here to indicate what I really want selected about like that. And it looks like the area it got the building and it got part of my wife, Karen, but down below her, it's not selected. If you can't tell what selected, you can type a letter. Q, which will turn on quick mask mode in any area covered in red, is not selected, so you can see that we have a lot of the building. But the road in the portion in between the arms and legs there are not type queue again. To get out of that all, then hold down the shift key to say when I add to my selection and I'll tell it, I want to add this bottom portion and hopefully the object selection tool will be able to accommodate me. It still wants to not select the one area, so I'm going to say, Screw it, I'll do it. After it's a layer mask, I'm gonna add a layer mask to this layer by clicking on the layer mask icon. It'll convert my selections on Lee. The areas that are selected will be visible, and therefore that area between the legs and arms will disappear. Won't look right, but I can always grab my paintbrush tool in any area where I paint with white is going to become visible. So in this case, I'm just gonna come in here and paint with white right here. I see this. Ah, the word stop in the road is broken up. I can see my wife's hand is missing. Well, let's see how it could be how it could be easier for me to paint, cause right now it's hard for me to tell exactly where I needed paint in where I shouldn't. So there's a way to disable a layer mask. I should do that. In previous image. You hold down the shift key and you click on the layer mask, icon or the layer mask a thumb. Now, then you're layers panel. But now I can't tell what was hidden by the layer mask because it's disabled, so everything's visible. Well, there's a trick. There is a way to make the layer mask show up as an overlay on top your picture where it looks like quick mask mode where you get that red overlay, and the way you do it is on your keyboard right above the return or enter key. There's the backslash key, and if I hit back slash, it should make that layer mask. Be a red overlay now in some international keyboards that might not work, and if it doesn't work, let me turn it off by hitting back slash again. I don't know of, ah, alternative keyboard shortcut, but I can show you the manual method for doing it. If you have a layer mask attached to a layer in that slayer that's active, you should be able to switch to the channels panel. And if you do, you're going to see that the layer mask is actually a temporary channel showing at the bottom of your channels panel. And it'll be what's active and right there. You see a hint of that keyboard shortcut. There's the backslash. You just don't need to command backslash. It's just backslash all by itself. But if backsides doesn't work, just click right here to turn on that eyeball because that's all the backslash is doing is toggle ing that eyeball. So if the keyboard shortcut doesn't work because you're on a non English keyboard and they just didn't wire it up, that's how you can get around it. So now I'm gonna paint with White and I'll click right here if you want to draw a straight line, you can hold shift and click somewhere else. It'll snap a straight line between the two. Actually got too far up there, though some shoes undo and manually do that. Any way to get that overlay? I just work on a layer that contains a layer mask, and I end up hitting the backslash key. And then I can touch up all sorts of things. Like here. I can see the red is overlapping. The building red is what's gonna be hidden. So I don't want the edge of the building to be hidden. I'll click down here near the bottom, and here I might try to do a straight line. If you hold shift and click somewhere else, it will draw a straight line from where your last clicked, where you're clicking now and so I can probably touch this up as long as I don't go too close to that edge. Maybe look down the other side to make sure that side of the building looks appropriate. I think I see just the tiniest bit of a red overlay there. There's just a little nook right there that it's missing. I doubt it would be important. We put a new sky in, but I might as well fix it anyway, I'm going to paint with black right now. We've been painting with White and I'm going to hit the letter X, which exchanges my colors. I'm just gonna fill in that little gap and then I'll hit extra paint with white and get the over spray. I just added off of her foot. Here we go pink with black down here. Touch it up wherever you need to. And so it could be a nice way to double check that your mask was accurate for the purpose you need. And I'm guessing I might have an issue right at the tip of this. You see how the red is kind of overlapping that? So if I turn off the overlay with backslash and I enable the mask again by shift clicking on the mask to turn it back on, watch the tip of that tower, you see how it's going away. So I'm gonna disable it again by shift clicking on the mask and I'm gonna show it as an overlay again with backslash. So you see how that's useful. Then I'll paint with white and click about their hold shift Click about there to make a straight line. Same with on the other side. If I need that little what would you call it? Little Spike at the top. I just need a smaller brush. Just be careful. As you brush gets smaller, it gets harder edged. And so if I end up with a tiny brush to prevent it from being too crisp of an edge, I probably gonna need to bring the hardness down here. So I'm just gonna click where that spire, or whatever it is, would connect. Hold down the shift key and I'll go up here the top so draws a straight line. All right, command zero, zoom out, controls their own windows. I'm gonna turn off the red overlay. That was the backslash key. Or if the backslash key didn't work, then I would be coming in here to channels and just turn off the eyeball that's there. It does the exact same thing. Then I'm going to ah, disable or re enable I should say, my layer mask by shift clicking on it. And now we have our sky. I can then use the move tool in reposition that sky wherever I'd like or try different skies. Then we got everything. Even the little, uh, tip. There's a lightning rod at the top, so it's nice. Four sky replacement.