tutorial: how to use a layer mask (shallow depth of field)

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marco.molteni
Mitglied
Posts: 23
Joined: Sat 16 Feb 2008 23:25

tutorial: how to use a layer mask (shallow depth of field)

Post by marco.molteni »

I have a short tutorial on how to use a layer mask in PhotoLine. In this particular case I am using it to simulate shallow depth of field. I am interested in feedback since I am not sure if this is the best way of using a layer mask in PL.

I am not using a working layer (what in PS is called adjustment layer) for the blur because I've found that since I cannot see the layer mask, a precise editing is impossible, so I am using an old-style duplicate layer to which I apply the blur. I might be missing something on this.

1.Open the image in PL. You will have one layer, name it background.
2.Background layer: duplicate it, name it blur.
3.Blur layer: apply a Gaussian blur. Overdo it a bit, we will diminish it later with partial opacity. I've found that I get good results by leaving the Intensity to 100% and upping the radius to say 50.
4.Blur layer: Layer | Layer mask | Create.
5.At this point you will see a layer mask appearing as a child of the blur layer. Name it blur layer mask. Its icon will be white.
6.Select the blur layer mask.
7.Click on the eye icon to make the layer visible. The image window will become completely white.
8.Lower the opacity to 20%. This will allow you to see the layer below, i.e. the background layer.
9.Select black as foreground color, select a drawing tool such as a brush. Paint on the part of the subject that you want to be in focus. If you overpaint (i.e. if you spill), either use Undo or select white as foreground color and paint on the spill.
10.You can try with different values of the opacity and with different values of the blend mode until you find a good separation between the layer mask and the background layer.
11.Keep painting until all your subject is in focus.
12.Once done, you can keep the opacity and blending mode as you want, it is unimportant at this point, but you must make the layer invisible by clicking on its the eye icon.
13.Blur layer: eventually lower the opacity to diminish the blur effect.
Martin Huber
Entwickler
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Posts: 3757
Joined: Tue 19 Nov 2002 15:49

Re: tutorial: how to use a layer mask (shallow depth of field)

Post by Martin Huber »

marco.molteni wrote:I am not using a working layer (what in PS is called adjustment layer) for the blur because I've found that since I cannot see the layer mask, a precise editing is impossible, so I am using an old-style duplicate layer to which I apply the blur. I might be missing something on this.
You can turn off the work temporarily by using "View/Dialogs/Attributes", sub dialog "Layer".

Martin