Join Julieanne Kost for an in-depth discussion in this video Applying layer effects and styles, part of Photoshop CC 2018 Essential Training: Design.
- [Narrator] Photoshop has a number of built-in, non-destructive effects like the drop shadow or the stroke, which can be applied to a variety of different kinds of layers. First, we'll add a drop shadow to the photograph, and then we'll add a stroke. We can see that there's transparency behind this photo, so when I add the drop shadow it's going to add it around the photograph. Now it's going to be easier to see if I choose to turn off the transparency under my preferences, transparency and gamut, and then set the grid size to none.
I just wanted to make sure that you knew that this wasn't a flattened file, this is not white back here, but indeed it is transparency. I can add a layer effect by choosing layer and then layer style, and then choosing the individual effect. Or we can use the effect icon at the bottom of the layers panel and then select drop shadow. In the layer style dialog, I'll just scoot that out of the way so we can see our image. We can see that the drop shadow has the check, and these are all of the options for the drop shadow.
I'm going to increase the opacity so that we can see it. Then I can change the angle and the distance using the slider here or using the angle wheel, but it's probably much easier to just click and drag in the image area in order to change that. I'll make it a little bit larger to get a softer edge. Next I want to add a stroke around the image. If I just click in the empty well next to the stroke, it will apply the default stroke, but I don't see the options on the right side.
I need to click where it says stroke in order to reveal those. I'm going to add a fairly large stroke to make sure that we can all see it. I'll enter in 20 pixels. I want to position it on the inside because if I position it on the outside you can see that I get these rounded corners. I'll choose inside. I'll leave the blend mode to normal and the opacity to 100%. If I want to, I can change the fill color by clicking on the color swatch, and then selecting a color from the image area or from the color picker.
I'll click okay to apply that. Now I'd like to add a secondary stroke. You'll notice some of the layer effects have a plus icon. If I click the plus icon I get an option for a second stroke. I'll change the color of this stroke to black and click okay, but it's covering up the other stroke. I'll make this a little bit wider, maybe 25 pixels. But again, we can no longer see the green underneath. I can't click and drag to reposition the stroke, but at the bottom of the layer style dialog I can click on the downward-pointing arrow in order to reorder them.
Now I can see that green stroke. If I don't know which one's which, I can just toggle on and off the check mark in order to see. I want to make a change to the green stroke, so I'll select it and then change the size down to 15. When I'm finished and I click okay, if we look at the layers panel we can see that we now have layer effects. Here are the two individual strokes and the drop shadow. I can toggle the visibility of any one of the individual effects by clicking on the eye icon, or I can toggle all of the effects at one time clicking on the eye icon next to effects.
If I want to expand or collapse the effects, I can click on the icon to the right of the effects icon. I'll click it again to expand it. If you want to throw away one of your effects, you can click on the effect and drag it down to the trash can. To throw away all of the effects, click on the word effect and drag that to the trash. I want to undo that so I'll use command Z. In order to edit one of the effects I can double click on it. That will display the layer style dialog. I can make my change and click okay.
As you can see, it's quite easy to apply non-destructive, reeditable layer styles in Photoshop.
Photoshop CC boasts tools and features for making tonal and color adjustments, applying effects and treatments to type and graphics, and distorting, filtering, and layering elements—all while maintaining the highest-quality output. In this course, Julieanne demonstrates how to efficiently perform common design tasks, including editing images, drawing shapes, and working with type and fonts. Along the way, she shares the secrets of nondestructive editing using Smart Objects, and helps you master features such as layers, filters, blending modes, typography, custom brushes, vector masks, and much more—increasing your productivity every step of the way.
- Working with Smart Objects
- Linked vs. embedded Smart Objects
- Creative transformations and warping
- Essential filters for designers
- Emulating traditional drawing techniques
- Working with shape and fill layers
- Pen tool basics
- Applying layer effects and styles
- Type essentials
- Creative brush techniques
- Working with libraries and artboards
- Exporting files and sharing images