It is important that you have a clear understanding of working with Photoshop layers as a blogger.It gives the ability to work on individual elements in a document. We discussed the very basics of Photoshop in the previous blog post. If you miss that click here to go and read the previous post.
Think of Photoshop layers as transparent sheets stack on top of each other. Let’s say you want three objects in your final photograph, a mountain, a cloud and a flower. You draw each object in a separate transparent sheet. And finally, you stack them on top of each other. Once you finish and look through the top you can see the mountain, cloud and the flower as one photograph, but in fact, they are three different layers. This three-layer composition gives the final result.
If you want to change the color of the flower you just go to the flower layer and change it. It does not affect the other layers. If you draw all the three objects in one layer you have to change the whole photograph when you just want to change the one layer, that is the color of the flower.
Always try to create a new layer for every important modification. So it gives you the ability to change something later without complicating the Photoshop file.
If you don’t see the layers panel doesn’t appear, go to Window->> Layers
You can rename your layers. Simply double-click on the layer and re-type what you want. This is more helpful if you have a handful of layers.
When you first created a Photoshop document it only has one layer – the background layer. It is always by default locked. You can see the padlock sign. It means if you try to move canvas it won’t move. Click on the padlock sign and it will unlock.
Photoshop Layers panel
1- Filter layer: filer buttons appear on the top. For example, if you need to select only the text layers click the T icon. you can turn off the filter by clicking the same button again.
2 – Blending modes: Blending modes are the way the layers interact with each other. The default one is “Normal”. Draw two layers, one is a shape and one is text. Bring one layer on top of the other. Play with other modes and you can see how each blending modes changes the final result.
3 – Opacity and Fill: You can use these functions to change the transparency of a selected layer
4 – Lock a layer: Like the background layer, you can lock every other layer by clicking the tiny lock here. Every time you want to prevent a layer from adjustments, you can lock it by selecting the layer and then press the lock icon.
5 – Unlock a layer: To unlock a certain layer, click this padlock sign.
6 – You can turn the layer on or off by toggling the eyeball. You can easily hide a layer without completely deleting it.
7 – Link layer: Link layers establishes a relationship between them
8 – Add a Layer Style: This will add special effects to selected layer
9 – Add layer Mask: It can make a layer or part of the layer either visible or invisible.
10 – Create new fill or adjustment layer: A fill layer lets you add a layer of solid color, gradient, or pattern. Adjustment layer adds color and other adjustments to your image without permanently changing the image.
11 – create a folder: so that you can group related layers. This is only for the organizing purposes. When you work in a document that has a lot of layers you can organize them by grouping related layers. Create a folder and drag the related layers to the folder.
12 – click this icon to create a new layer.
13 – to delete a layer, select the layer and drag it to the trash can icon. You can right-click on the layer and select the delete layer option. Or you can simply select the layer you want to delete and hit the delete button on your computer.
Photoshop Layer Types
There are few different layer types
Background: The background layer is the default layer in Photoshop. When you open an image for the first time, it will always consist just of this layer which is locked
Text: When you Press letter “T” on your keyboard or the “T” symbol in the toolbar, it automatically puts your text on a new text layer.
Image: The image layer contains all your image information.
Fill: The fill layer let you add a layer of solid color, gradient, or pattern on top of an image.
Adjustment: This will create a transparent layer where you can make changes to your photograph without affecting your original.
When you’re working on a layer, make sure you selected the right one. You can select a layer just by clicking on it.
Hope you have a much better understanding of layers panel now. If you want to see the beginner Photoshop tutorial click here.
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