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>> Male Speaker: Welcome to an introductory movie to blend modes. Blend modes are often an overlooked feature in Photoshop. And it's too bad they're overlooked, because there's some powerful and profound things that you can do with blend modes. Let's take a look at what the blend modes are. For starters we have these groups of blend modes. You can find these in different locations. So we have a drop-down menu in our Layers palette you'll also notice that if we were to pull up in the Options bar for the brush we have different blend modes. And we'll see these in a number of different locations.
And the location we'll use the most often is in the Layers. Let's deconstruct how these work a little bit. For starters, let's look at these in groups. They are actually put into groups, and understanding how the groups of blend modes work will really help us deconstruct these and begin to use them. Okay, up top we have Normal and Dissolve. I never really found a good use for Dissolve but, Normal is just the normal blend mode of the image. The next group, those blend modes have to do with darkening the image. And you remember that by looking at the first name of the group, Darken.
The group underneath that has to do with lightening; the next group has to do with contrast. And then finally there's a group of Difference and Exclusion. Those are usually used for special effects or aligning items, and aren't used very often. I will show you that briefly, but again those aren't used very often. And then finally, that bottom group has to do with color. So I have some information here. Again, Normal and Dissolve it leaves the color unchanged, no interaction with the layers below, at least for Normal. Darken, Multiply, Color Burn, and Linear darkens the underlying layer.
Now there are different times when you want to darken the layer. Or Color Burn could actually increase intensity of (unclear) or intensity of colors. The next group: Lighten, Screen, Color Dodge, and Linear Dodge, lightens the underlying layer. Overlay, Soft Light, Hard Light, Vivid Light, Linear Light, and Pin Light adds contrast to the underlying area by making some areas lighter or darker. Difference and Exclusion compares the active layer with underlying layers. And then Hue, Saturation, Color, and Luminosity changes aspects of color on the active layer that affect the underlying layers.
So pretty interesting stuff. Alright well let's take a look at how this works. We have a grayscale here and I'm going to scroll through the different blend modes. I'll go down to Darken. What you see is how Darken worked, it simply affected the darker side of the pixels. Multiply, very similar. Just the dark side of the color range is affected. There's nothing being affected over here. If I look at my before and after, there's actually no effect this side of the grayscale. Color Burn, we'll see something very similar.
Linear Burn. Let's go to the lightening side. Now it's on the other side. So Screen is the opposite of multiply. And the way that you can think of Screen, it actually works as if you have two slide projectors and you're projecting the image onto the same screen. It's double the light intensity, so you can see that there with the image. All right, back to our blend mode here, Color Dodge, we're seeing very similar things. Opposite, these two groups work in opposites. Overlay, what happens here? Let's look at our before and after.
It increased the lightness values and the dark values, didn't touch the midtones. So it increases contrast. Soft Light is just a lesser, more humane version of overlay. And again we have more contrast blend modes. Jumping down to Difference and Exclusion. Let's take a look and see how that works when we have a copy of an image. I'm going to take this to Difference. And one of the nice things about Difference is if I offset the image, which I'm doing by clicking and dragging, I can see that the image isn't aligned up.
So remember I said that this is pretty much used for aligning, and now that it's exactly on, I don't see any of those lines on there with Difference. Exclusion works in similar ways, although it's a little bit harder to see. And the only other occasion that I found for using those blend modes is for special affects. We'll look at the Color blend mode with a different sample file. Okay let's look at this in another view with these different strips. So our grayscale is now broken up into percentages. I'll go to Darken, and you'll notice that what happens is just the dark tones, the shadow details up into the midtones are affected, nothing happens over here in highlights.
Jump down to Lighten. It's going to be the opposite, right? Then I go down to Overlay. Notice that in Overlay the highlights are affected, the shadows are affected. Nothing happens there at 50 percent gray. We can use that to our advantage. Go down below that to Soft Light; that's just a more humane version of contrast enhancement there. Highlights are brought out, shadows are deepened, nothing happens to middle gray. All right, I'm going to turn on yet another layer. Here I have a layer with some different colors and we're going to look at the Color blend modes.
One of the problems with digital images is noise. We find noise in our shadows, we find noise when we shoot high ISOs, and people are starting to become really particular about noise. And actually CS2 has some great noise reduction features, which we'll look at in another chapter. But for now let's say that this is noise. This is exaggerated noise and it looks like confetti, there's so much of it. If we go to our blend mode of Color, what were going to see is that we still get the detail in the background. The color is interacting with the layer underneath it in a way that we still get details.
So when we need to change color, it's a really good idea to use that Color blend mode. Another blend mode that's really helpful is Luminosity. When we take it to the Luminosity blend mode what we noticed is that we don't see the color anymore, we just see the luminance values or the brightness values of the color. So if we had a layer that we were sharpening, and when you sharpen an image you actually exaggerate noise, and we took that layer to a blend mode of Luminosity, it would really help our sharpening, because our sharpening wouldn't exaggerate noise it would just sharpen the tone.
So that Luminosity blend mode can be really helpful. All right, more on blend modes. Up in this folder, burning and dodging, I want to talk about that. Here I have a layer and we'll actually go through this again in a movie down the road, but just so we can get a handle on how our blend modes work, let's take a look now. I have this layer that has middle gray and then it has black in the corners. Remember middle gray, which is this color here, on a blend mode of Soft Light, doesn't show up.
So as we can see nothing happening to the middle of the image. It gives me the ability to burn in my corners. If I want more intense burning I'm going to press Command+J to intensify that. I'm going to undo that. I can also lower the Opacity so that I can just bring those corners down, again so that the viewer's eyes don't travel off the edge of the image, but really stays on that image. All right, well this wraps up our first look at blend modes. Those are pretty cool, aren't they? It's amazing when you deconstruct them, and you really start to think about them, they're not that complex.
Darkening, lightening, contrast; these are best for alignment or special effects; and then finally color. I'll see you in the next movie.
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