More Control Over Blends: Advanced Blending
Using Blend Modes is a great way to get the layer you’re on to interact with the layers beneath it. The only problem is you don’t have much control over these blend modes-—they either look the way you want them to, or not. They’re pretty much an “on” or “off” tool. If you’re looking for that next level of control over how layers interact with each other, you need the advanced Blending Options. These are found by double-clicking in the empty space just to the right of the layer’s name in the Layers palette. What appears onscreen looks like the Layer Style dialog (and in fact, it is), but if you look closely, you’ll see two bars with sliders at the bottom of the dialgo giving you control over how your layered images interact. Here’s another quick tip: If you hold the Option key (PC: Alt key) before you drag one of the sliders, it will split the slider in two, which gives you smoother transitions and more usable blend effects.