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Linking adjustment layers

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  • Linking adjustment layers

    I have a really dumb question. When i'm using a adjustment layer on a picture and i want to add a second one then how do i link this first one with the picture? I usually merge them first and then do the second one but i know there is a easier way. I hope that is clear enough!

  • #2
    Linking Adjustment Layers

    Well perhaps this will help. When you want to have the adjustment layer link to the layer your are adjusting you can hold down the Option(mac)/Alt(PC) key as you select your adjustment layer. Then you can click on the box that says "Use previous Layer as Clipping Mask."

    If you have already placed the adjustment layer you can click between the adjustment layer and the main layer while holding the option/alt key and it will turn the adjustment layer into a clipping mask.
    Attached Files


    • #3
      Are you sure you need to link them at all? If I'm reading you right, you want to apply the settings from both adjustment layers to the same picture - or have I missed your point? If that is what you're trying to accomplish, leave your 1st adjustment layer active, and just put a 2nd one on top. The effect will filter down through.


      • #4
        Well lets say that i want to first add a levels Adjustment layer. then after that i want to adjust the color of that same picture and add a color balance Adjustment layer. Do i link it by holding the alt button or do I just click on the level Adj layer and it will add the effect to the picture and not just that level Adj layer.


        • #5
          In that case JenJen, you needn't worry about linking them at all - just stick another adjustment layer on top.

          Imagine you've got a picture, and on top of that you lay a slightly opaque sheet of acetate (your levels layer), and then on top of that you lay a red tinged transparent sheet of acetate (your colour balance layer). You can still see the picture underneath, and if you remove one or both of the adjustment layers, the effect changes.

          That's what you're accomplishing by using layers. All adjustment layers are 'transparent' - the effects filter on down through so you can see the picture underneath with the adjustments you've made.

          When you flatten (or merge down) all the layers, the adjustments get calculated and made to the picture itself. It is therefore better to use multiple adjustment layers, and just flatten once (thereby only altering the data once), rather than make changes, flatten, make more changes, flatten again.


          • #6
            clipping mask shortcut

            I just wanted to give you a short cut to making the clipping mask. All you need to do is select your adjustment layer and hit comand/ctrl + G. To release said clipping mask hold down shift + comand + G. The thing about clipping masks is that they make it so that your adjustment layer only affects the layer directly under it. So it is useful at times but generally speaking should be used sparingly.

            I agree with the folks above. All you need to do is add layer upon layer. As long as the first one remains visible your second adjustment layer is working off of the info from the first adjustment layer as well as your picture.

            I hope that this was helpful.


            • #7
              Thanks everyone i was a little confused about it. I thought when applying the second adjustment layer it was only applying to the first adj layer and not the picture. Thanks again.


              • #8
                Victoria and Rebeka, you both did a good job with explain ing, victoria I really liked the way you explained it. Neb