Chapter 17: Painting a Mask

Once you’ve added a mask, you can now add or subtract using a variety of tools. You can freely switch between the Brush, Radial Mask, and Gradient Mask tools while working.  Once you’ve chosen one of these tools, a new toolbar appears.  Let’s explore the essential controls.

Global Mask Controls

Once you start to edit a mask, you’ll see global mask controls.  These make it easier to visualize a mask or edit its contents. These controls are found under the Mask menu in the toolbar.

  • Fill. This option attaches a mask filled with white that reveals all details of the filter.  Use the Brush tool to paint with black and subtract from the mask.
  • Invert. Inverts any mask that you’ve created so that its opacity and transparency values are reversed.
  • Clear. This option hides the results of the filter entirely.  Use the paint brush or gradient tools to add details back to the image.
  • Copy. Copies the current mask to the clipboard. To use this, create a new layer and paste it into the new layer.
  • Paste. Pastes the current mask stored on the clipboard for use on another layer.
  • Show Mask/Hide Mask. This controls the visibility of the mask.  It makes it easy to view the mask as a rubylith (red) overlay. You may also continue drawing while the layer mask is shown, for even more precision. Alternatively you can click the eyeball icon.
  • Density. Controls the transparency of pixels outside of a mask so the overall the mask fades into the background better.
  • Feather. Blurs the edges of a mask to more naturally fade the mask adjustments into the image.

Mask Tool Controls

The next controls affect how you can add or subtract from your mask.  Luminar 2018 offers three tools that you can use to paint a mask.

  • Brush. Use a paintbrush to add or subtract from your mask.
  • Radial Mask. Creates an elliptical shape to blend between affected and unaffected areas.
  • Gradient Mask. Creates a linear blend between affected and unaffected areas.

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