Photoshop – Adjustment Layers

Creating Adjustment Layer Editing Adjustment Layer

Adjustment layers can be used to apply color and tonal adjustments to an image, without permanently modifying the pixels in the image. For example, if you add a color balance adjustment layer to an image, you can experiment with different colors repeatedly. And if you want to return to the original pixel value, just hide or delete the adjustment layer. When you create an adjustment layer, its effect appears on all the layers below it. This lets you correct multiple layers by making a single adjustment, rather than making the adjustment to each layer separately.

In the Layers palette, the adjustment layer takes the name of the adjustment type and is indicatedby a partially filled circle to the right of the name. Adjustment layers are also layer masks, and the mask icon appears to the left of the layer thumbnail. By painting the adjustment layer, you can apply the adjustment to just portions of the underlying layers. adjustments layer

Adjustment layers can be rearranged in order, deleted, hidden, and duplicated in the same manner as layers.

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Creating an adjustment layer

1) In the layers palette click on the layer above which you want to add adjustment layer.

2) Either choose Layer > New > Adjustment Layer or Ctrl-click the New Layer button at the bottom of the Layers palette.

Create adjustment layer

3 In the New Adjustment Layer dialog box, type a name for the layer, choose an adjustment Type you want to make(here i’ve selected levels) & choose layer options as desired, and then click OK. (Adjustment layers have the same opacity and blending mode options as image layers.)

adjustment layer options Drag the histogram’s triangle and see how the tonal range changes the underlying layers.

4 If needed, in the Levels dialog box make the desired adjustments and click OK.

photoshop adjustment layer
Fig1: Before adding Adjustment Layer
photoshop adjustment layer
Fig2: After adding Adjustment Layer

Note : To apply a color balance adjustment layer to an image, in the step 3 choose Color Balance for Type and in the Color Balance dialog box change the color levels.

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Editing an Adjustment Layer

To edit an adjustment layer: Either double-click the adjustment layer’s name in the Layers palette or select the adjustment layer’s name, and then choose Layer > Adjustment Options. Then make the desired adjustments, and click OK.

To edit an adjustment layer mask:

1 Select the adjustment layer in the Layers palette.
2 Select any painting or editing tool do one of the following .
• To remove the adjustment effect, paint the adjustment layer with black.
• To display the full effect of the adjustment over the image layers beneath, paint the adjustment layer with white.
• To partially remove the adjustment effect, paint the adjustment layer with gray.

To view the adjustment layer mask:

• Alt-click the adjustment layer thumbnail to view only the grayscale mask. Alt/Option-click the thumbnail again to redisplay the other layers.
• Hold down Alt+Shift and click the adjustment layer thumbnail to view the mask in a rubylith masking color. Hold down Alt+Shift/Option+Shift and click the thumbnail again to turn off the rubylith display.


To turn off/on the masking effects temporarily :
Shift-click the adjustment layer thumbnail to turn off the masking effects temporarily; click the thumbnail again to turn on the mask.

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