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One of the reasons why Photoshop is so much fun is because there are so many creative options or so much creative potential. That's definitely true when we start to work with layers. In particular, one of the areas it's really fun to work with is layer style effects. What you can do is you can apply an effect to a particular layer. You can have different effects on different layers. Well, let's take a look at how this works. For starters, you can see here that we have this layered document. If we turn off the background here, you can see that we have a leaf all by itself with transparency surrounding it.
Then we have a white background, and then we have some typography layers. All right. Well, let's say that we want to apply an effect to the leaf layer. We want to add a Drop Shadow. Now all that we need to do is to target this layer, and then navigate down to the fx icon and then select Drop Shadow. Once we do this, this Layer Style dialog will open up. You notice that Drop Shadow has been selected. Here we have a few options for the Drop Shadow. I'm going to go ahead and increase the Distance so that we can see that this Drop Shadow is falling off to the side.
Now if we want to change the angle, all that we need to do is to change the Angle here. Now we can see that it's moving off up to the top left-hand corner. We can also define the Spread and the Size of the Drop Shadow as well. Let's go ahead and bring this back down. The only thing that I want to point out here is that if we remove the Distance altogether and then increase the Size, what's going to happen is that the shadow is going to be equal on all sides. Here you can see there is no angle or direction. This doesn't affect it.
So in order to have an angle, you have to have a little bit of direction in there. All right. Well, let's say that we just want a nice equal Drop Shadow behind that. Let's apply this by simply clicking OK. Now underneath the layer, you'll notice that it will show me what effects I've applied. In this case, just a Drop Shadow. Click on the eye icon. There is without the Drop Shadow. Click on it again. There is with the Drop Shadow. Now if it's ever kind of cluttered up seeing all of your effects, you can close the view of those by clicking on this fx icon to expand or to collapse those.
It doesn't change the effect. It just changes how you view your layers here. So you can again expand or collapse that. Okay, well, let's say that we want to add another layer style effect. Let's click in the next layer. This time, the type layer, layers. Well, rather than clicking on the fx icon, wouldn't it be nice if there was another way to do this a little bit more quickly? Well, of course there is. Here is the trick. All that you need to do is to double- click on the layer to the right of the layer name. That will then open up the Layer Style dialog.
Now here, in order to apply one of these layer style effects, all that we need to do is to click on this check box. For example, Drop Shadow, or let's say, Brush Stroke. Now here you can see, we have a Brush Stroke effect and a Drop Shadow effect. Now if we want to modify the Brush Stroke, click in the Brush Stroke. This time, I'm going to select Inside, so that I can still see the Drop Shadow around the edges. Then I'll go ahead and choose a new color here. I'm going to choose a color, perhaps blue, and click OK. Now to affect the Drop Shadow, click into the Drop Shadow.
We already know about this, right? We can change the Distance, the Size, the Spread, and we can determine where we actually want this Drop Shadow to be. I'll go ahead and just put that lets say right underneath there, and then click OK. All right, well, we successfully added these layer style effects to this type layer. Well, let's say that we decide that it would be really nice for this other text field here, Photoshop CS5 for Photographers, to have a Drop Shadow. Well, how could we do that? Well, so far we've learned that we can target the layer and either click on the fx icon, or we can double-click the layer itself.
Yet there is another technique that we can use. We can navigate to our Layer pulldown menu, and then choose Layer Style. Then here we could select Drop Shadow. All right, well, what about an even quicker technique? There has got to be some way that we can do this even faster. Well, there is. Let's say that we have an effect that we like, for example, this Drop Shadow effect. Well, what we can do is we can actually copy and paste that effect from one layer to another. Here is how we do it. On a Mac, hold down the Option key.
On a PC, hold down the Alt key, and then click on the effect, and then click and drag. You notice that it's bringing with me this fx icon, which stands for layer style effects. Hover over that targeted layer, and then let go and voila! That layer now has this particular Drop Shadow effect. Yet the problem with it is it's a little bit too big. It's a little bit too soft. Well, to edit the effect, no big deal, just simply double-click the word Drop Shadow. Then from there you can go in and perhaps change the Size or the Spread, and then bring the Distance out a little bit, and try to find a Drop Shadow that might work for this type here.
It's a little bit tricky, because that black type is a small. But let's say we'll go with that, and we'll bring it from the top down as well. We'll go ahead and click OK. We have now successfully edited the layer style effect. Now the nice thing about this is that if we change the type or if we change the layer, the layer style effect will be changed as well. Let me show you what I mean. I'm going to click the T here on this Photoshop CS5 for Photographers' layer. I'll go ahead and double-click that, which will then highlight all of the copy.
Well, now that that's highlighted, I'm going to go ahead and type something else, "Layers with Chris Orwig," and then press Command+Return on a Mac or Ctrl+Return on a PC. Here you can see that it updated the type, but it also updated how that layer style effect worked with that particular layer. All right, well, the last thing to show here is that if you ever decide that you don't like a layer style effect, you can of course turn off the visibility of that. But let's say you want to take this a step further. You want to get rid of it altogether.
Well, all you need to do again is to click on the effect. You'll see the fx icon come with you. Drag it to the Trashcan. That effect is now gone.
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