Chapter 5: Layers

Layers are a powerful way to “build up” your images, with different enhancements and use of blending modes on each layer. Using layers, you can apply corrections or enhancements on different layers, and experiment until you achieve exactly the look you’d like for your image.

  • To create a new layer.
    Click on the + button in the Layers Toolbar header.  A small pop-up menu will appear giving you the option of creating a layer using one of two options.
    Use an Add New Adjustment Layer to create a layer to which you can apply a preset or any other adjustment in the Filters panel. The Add New Image Layer option will show a standard Open File dialog, allowing you to create a new layer with a texture file or another image that you’ve chosen. The Create New Stamped Layer combines all current layers and filters to a new layer at the top of the Layers panel.

  • To remove the layer. Select the layer and click - in the Layers Toolbar title.

  • To change the blending mode of the layer. Set the Layer Blending mode in the drop-down list under the word Layers or in the fly-out menu indicated by the Gear icon underneath the + icon. You cannot set the blending mode for the first layer because it is not mixed with anything — it is the baseline image. More on blending modes in the chapter “Working with Layers.”

  • Layer Transparency Setting. Click on the drop-down menu with percentages near the word Opacity. Drag the slider to customize the opacity for the selected layer.  Opacity controls how opaque a layer is (and is the opposite of transparency).

  • Access Advanced Settings and Functions of a Layer. Click on the Gear icon below the + icon. A context menu appears with additional features to apply to the layer.

  • To Change the Order of Layers. All the layers except the first are movable. Click on the layer and drag to move the selected layer to the new location.  Changing the stacking order or layers can affect the order of operation (how images are developed) which can change its appearance.

  • Show / Hide the Layer. Click on the eyeball on the right side of a layer to toggle between visible and hidden.

You’ll learn more about layers in the chapter “Working with Layers.”

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