DPP Home Technique Software Technique Masking Essentials II

Wednesday, June 27, 2007

Masking Essentials II

A number of key concepts and strategies make selection and masking more efficient and precise

Quick Reference Guide

Key Commands:
There are a number of key commands that make masking and selections faster and easier.


Numbers (1, 2, 3, etc.)—change the opacity of a brush
X—reverses the foreground and background colors
Bracket—the left bracket makes a brush smaller while the right bracket makes a brush larger
Shift Bracket—the left bracket makes a brush softer while Option and the right bracket make a brush harder in 25% increments
Option Click—displays a mask in black-and-white
Shift Click—disables a mask
Option Shift Click—displays a mask in red at 50% opacity
Double-Click On Mask—displays options for changing the color and opacity of a mask
Command Click—loads a mask as a selection
Shift Command I—inverses a selection
Shift Command Click—adds to an existing selection (gradients add at 50%, then at 10% increments)
Control Click—brings up a contextual menu for your selection: Disable Layer Mask, Delete Layer Mask, Apply Layer Mask, Add Layer Mask To Selection, Subtract Layer Mask From Selection, Intersect Layer Mask With Selection or Layer Mask Options
Drag And Drop—use this to move a mask from one layer to another
Option Drag And Drop—use this to copy a mask from one layer to another
Delete—fills with the background color
Option Delete—fills with the foreground color

Filters: You can filter a mask as you would any grayscale image. Here are the most useful ways to filter masks.

Gaussian Blur—makes edges softer (equivalent to feathering a selection but with a preview)
Maximum—makes the white area larger
Minimum—makes the white area smaller

Adjustments: You can adjust a mask as you would any grayscale image. Here are the most useful ways to adjust masks.

Curves—darken, lighten or adjust contrast of a mask; move midpoint in a gradient (or blurred edge); add contrast to quicken a transition; move black point to the right to contract a mask; move white point to the left to expand a mask; move black point up to make black gray (increases opacity); move white point down to make white gray (decreases opacity)
Invert—inverts the mask, making black white and white black

Author of Adobe Photoshop Master Class, John Paul Caponigro is an internationally acclaimed fine artist. A Canon Explorer of Light and an Epson Stylus Pro, he's a passionate teacher who offers an array of workshops in his studio throughout the year. See a live demonstration of this material at the currently touring Epson Print Academy. To learn more techniques, visit www.johnpaulcaponigro.com and receive a free subscription to his enews Insights.



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