Painting Light With Overlay Layer

Painting Light With Overlay Layer

Photoshop CS6 Tutorial


How to Add or Remove Light with a Photoshop Overlay Layer



Layers with the Blend Mode set to Overlay can be used to add light to or remove light from selective areas of your image. By painting with white the area becomes lighter. Painting with black darkens the image.

Another way to affect the light in an image is with Adjustment layers. For an example of this technique, see topic, Selective Layer Adjustments.


Step One

Open an image in Photoshop (File > Open).

Step Two

Click the Create a New Layer icon twice to add two new blank layers.

Step Three

Set the Blend Mode for both layers to Overlay. Name the middle layer Darken and the upper layer Lighten.

Step Four

To paint light into the image, select the Brush tool (b key), choose a soft edged brush and set the Foreground color to white.

Step Five

With a lower brush Opacity, paint on the Lighten layer to lighten selective areas.

Step Six

Change the Foreground color to black and paint the Darken layer to selectively remove light from the image.

Soften the Edges

Since the painted light resides on it's own layer, you can select the Lighten or Darken layer and choose Filter > Blur > Gaussian Blur. This will make the paint strokes and edges less noticeable.

Adjusting the Effect

By adjusting the Lighten or Darken layer opacity, you can adjust the intensity of the effect.


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