How to master layer masks: Part 1



[1] Layer mask

The layer mask is a function that allows you to mask (hide) an image on a layer.

By using this function, unnecessary parts such as overlapping lines can be hidden, making coloring easier.

[2] How to create a layer mask

■Create from selection area

Let’s create a layer mask.

The basic workflow is to first create a selection area of the part to display/hide, and then create a layer mask.

①From the layer palette, select the layer to create a layer mask on.

②Use the [Rectangle] tool to create a selection area.

Note: Alternatively, you can select an area using tools other than [rectangle], or go to the [Selection] menu > [Select Color Gamut]. The later steps will be the same.

③From the [Layer] menu, select [Layer Mask]→[Mask Outside Selection] or [Mask Selection].

This will create a layer mask on the selected layer and the image will be partially hidden.

The black area displayed on the thumbnail of the layer mask will be hidden.

■Creating a layer mask without making a selection area

Creating a layer mask without a selection area will mask everything (as shown below), or mask nothing.

[POINT] Creating a Layer Mask from the Layer Palette

Click [Create layer mask] below the layer palette to create a layer mask.

If there is a selection area, the outside of the selection area will be masked. If there is no selection area, nothing will be masked, and a blank layer mask will be created.

[3] Drawing on the layer mask

After creating the layer mask, you can change the masked part as if drawing.

■Add to the displayed area

Drawing with a color other than transparent color will add to the displayed area (= erase the masked area).

①Click to select the [Layer Mask] thumbnail of the [Layer] palette.

Selecting it will enclose the thumbnails in double lines.

②Select a drawing tool from the [Tool] palette.

Here, the [Pen] tool was selected.

③Select a drawing color other than the transparent color.

④Drawing on the canvas will add to the displayed area.

■Add hidden area

Using the [Eraser] tool or drawing with transparent color adds the masked area.

①Select [Layer Mask] from the [Layer] palette.

②Select [Eraser] tool from the [Tool] palette.

③When using drawing tools such as the [Pen] Tool, select transparent color as the drawing color.

④Drawing on the canvas will add to the hidden area.

■Advanced editing with drawing tools

By using the [Decoration] tool or the [Brush] tool, drawing on the mask can change a mask into unusual shapes or add shades.

[Decoration] Tool

[Brush] Tool

■Show/Hide in selected area

By filling in or deleting the selection area, the mask can be changed to fit the shape of the selection area



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