Photoshop CS6 Tutorial
How to Apply a Gradient Overlay Layer Style in Photoshop
Gradient Overlay is similar to Color Overlay in that the objects on the selected layer change color. With the Gradient Overlay, you can now color the objects with a gradient. Gradient Overlay is one of many Layer Styles found in Photoshop.
Open a new document in Photoshop (File > New). Set the size to 500 pixels by 500 pixels at 72 ppi. Set Background Contents to White.
Select the Text tool, click the workspace and add some text. Set the Text Color to a shade of green.
Select the Text layer in the Layers palette and choose Layer > Layer Style > Gradient Overlay.
Notice that the Gradient Overlay heading is Bold and has a checkbox. Selecting a heading name, changes the effect dialog box on the right.
To set the gradient color, click the Gradient Rectangle.
You can choose one of the gradients in the panel or load a new library.
The Blend Mode options are similar to the layer Blending Modes in Photoshop.
The gradient Style, Angle and Scale can be set in the dialog box.
With the dialog box open move your curser to the document, then click-drag to move the gradient.
To blend the gradient with the base color, adjust the Opacity slider. Once you are satisfied, click OK.
You can return to the settings by double-clicking Gradient Overlay in the Layers panel.
Photoshop includes several Gradient Libraries (as show in Step Six) or you can create your own gradient. For more information, see topic, Building a Gradient.
Copy/Paste Layer Styles
To duplicate a layer style, select the source style layer, choose Layer > Layer Style > Copy. Select the target layer and choose Layer > Layer Style > Paste.