Screen and Multiply and Overlay
So the first blend modes that I wanna talk about here are gonna be screen and multiply. Because as we discussed with screen and multiply, these blend modes are related in a way. That screen makes sure that white stays and black gets dropped out and multiply makes sure that black stays and whites get dropped out. So what you see in front of you in this diagram is you see a cyan layer below and you see a gradient with white square, a gray square and a black square. And the really crazy thing about this though, I promise you that this little midtone it not a gradient. See, this is where color and color interaction is really crazy. Now I don't know about you, but for me this side looks lighter and this side looks darker and that's how the things that we talk about with color interaction, how colors interact with one another, that whole square is actually gray, it's 128 gray. So, I know that's gonna be throwing off your eyes, but I promise, trust me, I promise you that is a gray square. So ...
if we were to go into our blend modes and change this to screen you'll see that white stayed. So the whites of this gradient that we have here stayed and all of the black area showed through. If you look at how we talked about, it's not just about white and black, it's also about that gradation that happens too. So if we look at this gradient that we have here, this gradient shows us from white to black and every tone that happens in between. So it's not just white stays and black goes away, it's also about every value that's happening in between there as well and how that subtle application is going to apply itself to the underlying color. Now on the flip side of that, if we change this to something like multiply notice how black stays and white goes away. That's multiply, that's screen. So this is not as actually a practical application, when would you find yourself working with gradients and squares and... But what you need to gather from this is the repeated pattern that we see there, is that black is going to stay with multiply and allow itself to feather itself into the lights and the lights will stay with screen and allow themselves to feather themselves into the shadowy areas. So if we were to open up an image and see how the practical application would work on this, this is, we're in Seattle, beautiful Seattle skyline, but you see how this image is darker. Now there's things that we could do with an exposure adjustment layer, we could definitely go on with an exposure adjustment layer and make this image brighter. But one of the things that we can also do is look at this in terms of screen and multiply. If I were to press command or control, J and just duplicate my background layer and make an exact pixel copy of that and change that to screen, it's gonna brighten the whole image up. It's using all of the data within that image to brighten that entire image up. At the same time if I go to multiply it's gonna make it all darker. So what's the difference right here between using a exposure slider and using something like the screen and multiply? Well let's take a look at that. If I were to take an exposure slider and to get the exact replicated copy of that, if I were to just bring this up and make this darker it's not the exact same thing of what's happening with this here. Because this is assessing all of the values in the image and it's doing its math that's happening in the background, the calculation that's happening in the background to darken the image based off of the values that are happening within that image. Whereas what an exposure is doing is it's saying, just make the whole image darker or just make the whole image brighter which is not the exact same thing as something like screen or multiply. So when we use screen versus something like exposure to try and get the same value notice how when we bumped up that exposure look at this image, it's getting really bright. If we were to look at this under a histogram and see the histogram of that it would probably be pretty blown out on that top portion, whereas screen has done a successful job of maintaining some of that while also boosting the brightness of the image. Another place that you're gonna see things like screen being used is gonna be with what we call grunge layers or maybe they aren't called grunge layers, maybe I just call them grunge layers, it looks pretty grungy. (laughter) But this layer is nothing more than a texture. So, I'm not sure if you're like me, but when I'm going around on my photo shoots I don't just look at everything for face value and shoot the stuff around me, I also, I take out my cell phone, I use my cell phone for these, and I take texture shots. So if, like dumpsters are perfect for texture shots because the bars that go in to lift that dumpster up and dump the bucket out always leave these really deep scratches on it which can create some really cool effects. This texture that you're seeing here is actually the toaster oven tray that we have in our house that just makes a beautiful kind of vignetted, textured look for your images. And if you download this course I'm giving you, I believe, 30 of my grunge textures plus 50 of my regular textures to go along with this. So if you're not like me, you don't run around looking at broken, dilapidated things, then now you have access to some of my stuff. I probably have over, I don't know, 10,000 images of these, so, kinda crazy about it. But what these allow us to do is if we take a texture layer and we make it really high contrast, high contrast meaning there's a lot of white information and a lot of really dark information in that and we add this right onto the top of our layer stack and we change this to something like screen, watch what happens. It's gonna leave all of that white data and what does it drop out? The black data as it transitions into those midtone areas. So if we look at the before of this, the white data that's being transposed onto my image creates a very quick, very nice look on my photograph. Now, there's another cool thing that we can do here and this is a calculation that's happening very easily by clicking on any layer and pressing command or control, I, that's going to invert that layer. What happens when we invert this layer? Well let's change this back to normal and we'll press command or control, I. I'm essentially now getting two options for this, aren't I? So I've got the option that was set before and now if I change this to screen I get a much better quality. So what I would do here is if I'm putting this grunge or texture layer on top of my image, I'm gonna run through these paces. I'm gonna set it to screen and then I'm gonna press command or control, I, which version do I like better? I think I like that version a little bit better. And at this point I might move this around and do something else with it to give it that old photograph feel. Now, literally on the flip side of this, see what I did there? If we change this to multiply it's gonna drop all the white information out and leave the black information and make it look like someone stepped on a negative or something like that, not be quite as great. But if I press command or control, I, I get a totally different look that might be a little bit creepy. So while this has its own calculations going on with multiply and screen, I can also change that calculation by doing the inverted process for that image. Now, command or control, I is literally everything that's on the opposite side of every color in your image on the color wheel. So when we press command or control, I to invert our blacks and our whites, we get the opposite of black and white, but if I press command or control, I on this background blues become yellows, yellows become blues, so that's how that inversion is working. There's a lot that can be done with the inverted image, is what I call it, there's a ton of stuff that's available to you in that data right there within every layer. Press command or control, I to get that back. Now, beyond that we did say that there's some other applications as well, or some other layer tools. So if I change this to screen I also have the ability to drop down the opacity. So I don't have to just take that for the face value of what it is. You can combine these things, that's the beauty of these things as being different applications that can be plugged in at the same time. Just like your phone can be a phone, but it can also go on to any other application that you have and have multiple applications running at the same time, so can your layers. So now when we get into the fifth dimension of this layer, it's not only a layer that's in the layer stack on top of everything else, separated, if we think about it that way, it also had an opacity change that allows it to be less opaque and it also has a blend mode that allows everything to be different based on whether we use screen or multiply to remove things and add things to that image. A lot of stuff is going on with this one layer right now. Now, we didn't do any masking with this, masking is next, this is only just the layer tools of opacity, blend modes and fill.
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Software Used: Adobe® Photoshop® CC® 2018