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Introduction to Layer Masks

Lesson 4 of 8

Adjustment Layers Overview

Rafael "RC" Concepcion

Introduction to Layer Masks

Rafael "RC" Concepcion

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Lesson Info

4. Adjustment Layers Overview

Lesson Info

Adjustment Layers Overview

What could we do to this, right? So we don't really want to make the chip guy disappear or reappear. What we want to do is we want to start working with the cornerstone of the effect itself. Let's say, for example, I want to make something darker on a dark and a portion of a shirt where I want to burn the edges of the document. How do I apply that concept that we just learned? Brushwork and adjustments were into something like this? What they said was, at Adobe, they're like, Well, we could take those effects that we had any image adjustments panel. And what if if a layer mask is just gonna let you hide and reveal portions of things, why don't we just take those effects and not leave him in the image menu and put them over in the layer mask, almost kind of like the equivalent of like wearing glasses rain. The moment that you put on a set of lenses, things change. If he put on sunglasses, things get darker, things get rosier, things get something and then will give people a concept of b...

eing able to use a mask to do some sort of change. I was like, That's That's actually pretty cool rain. So that is something called a layer or adjustment layer. And you can get to that over here on the layer menu. There's a section called New Adjustment Layer and inside of Here you have all of the different adjustment that you would normally see under the image adjustments menu. So let's pick one that always freaks people out currents. I mean, now you'll notice that it tells me I'm gonna create a new layer. I'm gonna call it darkening stuff and I'm gonna click, OK, the moment that you create that, let's not bring anything else out. Let's just show that part. The moment that you do that, you'll see two icons. You see one icon over here that tells you Hey, this is an adjustment layer, and then to the right of that, you see a mask. The mask is white, which means that it's going to do what hide everything or show everything. Show everything grain. But what is he gonna show? It's gonna show this stuff that's here. I don't know what that stuff is, but if we double click that almost always what'll happen is it'll pop up a properties bar, and then the properties bar will be different for each of the different types of facts. If you do, Hugh sat, you'll see a huge step. Are if you see curves. You see a courage bar. All right, so what we want to do is we want to make a curves adjustment layer here to ah affect this image. Now, this isn't a curves class. I'm not expecting you guys to be able to do any of the curve stuff. But what I will say is that a lot of the times any time that you're doing dodging and burning for an image, you're almost always doing it Towards the mid tones of the image. You take a mid tone, you bring a darker, you take a mid tone, you make it higher. So using that as an idea, I'm just gonna go. You know what? Why don't we just go to the middle of this thing? Whatever this thing is, I'm just gonna click and just drag it down. So we said that middle part make a darker please thank it took the entire image, and I made the entire image darker. It did that because this entire thing is white. So I'm gonna take that guy. I'm gonna be able to make that guy black. I'm a select it from there. I'm gonna go to image adjustments and invert or keyboard shortcut. I right, quick keyboard shortcut that I tell you guys, the worst thing that you could possibly do for yourself if you're trying to remember keyboard shortcuts is to print them out. Don't do that right. So I we we tend to learn either Visually, aurally, kinetically can aesthetically. So actually try to use muscle memory to be able to do stuff. If the first thing that you're doing for layer for keyboard shortcuts is, which one is it? Is it? No, it's not that one. It's not. That's totally not gonna help you, Frank. But if you turn around and you go all right, well, I know where it is in the menu, right? I'm gonna go to image goto adjustments. It's invert. Don't click it. Let it go. Mingo Command, I command I Now you inverted and then you're okay. And while we're at that, I'm always doing basic stuff. People tend to freak out also about where you kind of how to be able to do keyboard shortcuts, right? Like if I told you to do a command p for print people are, like, more often than not, has everything to do with the fact that you're looking at this is a typing tool. Right? So this hand covers this half this hand covers this half, right? So you're trying to do keyboard shortcuts, and you're always kind of throwing your elbows out when you're doing it, Best way for you to work is to take a lot. Take your computer moving over to the side, and now you can cover the entire range is we recover all of your keyboard shortcuts with one hand, right? This is just a device to get toe all of the tools that you need. So control P would be like this, right? Instead of trying to do it with both hands. Your goal is to kind of keep your mouse hand moving or your pen hand moving and being able to access all of the different controls that way. So if you just slip, shift your keep your computer slightly to the left and work with it is just kind of an input device. It helps a ton when you're working with this kind of stuff. Little things. Now I've hidden this entire thing, right? It's black. And now what I want to do is I'm just gonna close this properties bar and remove this over here to the right, and I'm gonna zoom out command space. Partisan amount. Now I'm gonna make that brush beer. Same concepts that we did before. Command option drag. I needed softer up, soft, smaller. And now what I'll do is I'll come over here, make sure my flow is low and just paint in a portion of this one effect. So now I've used this to be able to make this darker. So now, before after before, After simple dodging and burning. And I tell people a lot of the times, like using dodging burning like this helps more than going into a light room or going into camera raw and using your vignette slider. Like a lot of times, people are like, Oh, well, I'm gonna use the vignettes lighter and drag it over and give myself a little burned edges. But no matter. Anyway, you cut it. It almost always looks like it's a spotlight. It always looks weird and always has taken over. When you look at your picture here like you just learned about darkening edges inside a locker room, didn't you? Sometimes you don't need that much. Sometimes you don't need it everywhere. Soto have that amount of selection to be able to go in and brush it with a tool I think is kind of cool. The other thing that I usually do with something like this is I tend to be a little heavy handed on the start like I painted this and I'm like, I don't really need it to be this dark. I really needed to be this much, But at any point in time, the great part about it is that I could regulate this further by either dropping the opacity, which then lets me adjust how that effect is applied. But more importantly, I can always go over here and double click on the Properties bar again. That effect is still here. Now I can grab that little point and look, I really want it. I don't want a kind of sort of wanted rather than working with what tone does what? How do you really work that I just grab it, Dragon, make it a little heavy handed once. It's very heavy handed. I can go back and visually work like I work a lot and technology, but I'm very anti like I'm an anti technologist. I don't want to work with numbers and quarter tones and things like that. I want to visually see it. So if I go, I need this darker or brighter. I painted in I painted and very heavy handedly And then I come over here and go right around there. That looks a lot better. I think I'm done. I can come back over, I can grab another curves adjustment layer, and I'll double click on this one. I'm gonna call this bright innings stuff. I'm gonna grab this guy in the center. This time we're gonna drag it up to be able to make a brighter heavy handedly as well. All right, well, take this mask. Now we're gonna invert. Do you guys remember the keyboard shortcut? What was that? Control Command. I invert it. And now low flow soft white brush will zoom in, Get right into this one section here and we'll pull in some of that part of the eye. Is it gonna be too much? Absolutely. I wanted to be able to see where I did it. So at any point in time, click on the properties. There's the properties that we have here, and we can move it exactly where we need it. So I tend to want to work a lot more visual, even anywhere else. Now, you know how Not only do you know how to be accretive mask, but you know how to be able to dodge, you know, I'd be able to burn. These are the exact same things that we talked about. What we were looking at the side by side things. All you're doing is this is one mask that's right there. This is the other mask right there. If you don't like any of those masks, you can always just single click on that layer, drag the layer and put it into the trash. So simple concepts. But the application of those concepts are the things that are very, very far reaching

Class Description

Layer Masks are one of the most powerful tools in the Adobe® Photoshop® arsenal, so it’s essential that you learn how to use them if you want to take your photography to the next level. RC Concepcion will teach you all of the new ways to make selections in Adobe Photoshop® and show you how to use layer masks in your photo projects to correct exposure, enhance color and selectively add details.

Adobe Photoshop CC 2018

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Bonus Materials with Purchase

Introduction to Layer Masks Resources

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Dave Sordi

Great class. Lots of really important tips. RC is really good at understanding what question a student might have even before the question is asked. Highly recommend this class.


It is a pleasure to watch him, and he manages somehow to keep your attention from the start to the finish without realizing the passing of time, He explains the do's and don'ts with Layer Masks, how to use each of them and when, I just simply loved the instructor and the class. He is one of my favorite instructor from Photoshop Week 2018, and if I could not buy all the bundle, but I would buy some classes, his are definitely chosen.

Mark Koller

Awesome class, love RC's style. Intro to layer mask is loaded with goodies.