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Using Layers in Adobe Photoshop

Lesson 4 of 7

Creating a Clipping Mask

Ben Willmore

Using Layers in Adobe Photoshop

Ben Willmore

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Lesson Info

4. Creating a Clipping Mask

Lesson Info

Creating a Clipping Mask

The next thing I'd like to do in here is to make it so the photograph that is underneath the text only shows up within the text itself. So it fills the text instead of having a solid color, I want a photo in there. In order to accomplish that, I need to make the photograph directly on top of the layer that contains the text. So I look at the Layers panel and I see the text as a top most layer. And then if I look down my layers, I can see that right down here is the really wide photograph. I'm gonna click on that layer and I'll drag until it appears above the text. Then there's a way in Photoshop to cause one layer to only show up where there's information in the layer below. And you do that by placing a layer underneath that where the two overlap each other physically. And then with the top of the two layers active, go to the layer menu and there's choice called Create Clipping Mask. When I choose that, watch what happens in my Layers panel. Specifically watch what happens to the layer...

that's currently active. Right next to the eyeball for that particular layer, you gonna find a down pointing arrow. That means that this layer is only gonna show up where this layer contains information. This layer is now clipped to that. So now you can see that I have the text appearing inside. If I use my move tool, I can still move that picture around. If I move it too far down, there won't be enough of it to cover up the text. So I see the color of the text. But if I move it up, I can easily get it to fill what I want. So I'm just going to try to scale this and position it, so that different elements that I like about Barcelona show up in nice areas. For instance, here we have the cathedral, we've got the smokestacks. But I think there are some other elements over in here that I would like to see within the letters. So I want to resize this. I go to Edit, Free Transform. And now I can grab the edges here and there, I can start seeing, you see the church on the right side, you see this building on the far edge. Just try to get it more optimized. When I'm done transforming, I can press Return or Enter. And if I need to change the size of the text, I can click on that layer and I can either type command+T to do Free Transform, or I could go to the text tool and adjust the type size. If I want to keep the relationship between those two together sizewise, in change the size of both of them, I select both layers and the Layers panel. Then I typed Command+T. And now we're moving both repositioning or scaling them together.

Class Description


  • Scale, rotate and distort layers using transformations
  • Understand the difference between Opacity and Fill
  • Use Clipping Masks to relate one layer to another
  • Discover how selections interact with layers


  • Beginner, intermediate, and advanced users of Adobe Photoshop.
  • Those who want to gain confidence in Adobe Photoshop and learn new features to help edit photos.
  • Students who’d like to take ordinary images and make them look extraordinary with some image editing or Photoshop fixes.


Adobe Photoshop 2020 (V21)

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