If you double click on a layers thumbnail, it will bring up the blending options for this particular layer, in this fairly complex dialogue box. Notice to the left of this dialogue box we have a list of various areas we can go to, and whichever one is highlighted is the current dialogue box we are looking at. So this dialogue box actually contains many dialogue boxes or tools that we can go to simply by clicking on their name. I'm going to de-click these two other options, which were turned on automatically when I went to that section, and I want to talk about the blending options for this layer. Notice at the top of my blending options dialogue box, I have a pull down menu for different blending modes, and this is the exact same menu as found at the top of my layers' palette. So I can control the actual blending mode right here, and I spoke about different blending modes in the lesson on blending modes. So we have darken and lighten and all these various interesting special effects type of blending modes. I'm going to go back to normal for now, and we can also control the opacity from this control panel. And this of course is the same control as the opacity slider found right here on our layers' palette. We also have controls for advanced blending, something called the fill opacity and I'll talk a little bit about that on the section for some other special effects. And in the advanced blending section, we can actually tell Photoshop which channels on this layer we want to be displayed. So notice that the red, blue and green channels are all being displayed but we can actually individually turn off channel information on a per layer basis. A very interesting option to have available to you. At the bottom of our blending options, there is a section called "blend if". And notice what we have here are two gray scale sliders, and the way this works is we have a gray scale continuum for the currently targeted selected layer, this layer, and we have a continuum for underneath or underlying layers. And notice right now that the slider is all the way to the left and the right. If I drag my white point slider down for this layer, it will begin to make lighter areas transparent to underneath layers. And notice as I do that, the highlight area in my apple is becoming transparent. So this is a custom way of creating a transparency effect based on the actual layer's brightness values. And to the same extent, I could have the darker pixels in this layer become transparent if I drag the dark slider to the right, you can see how the darker pixels are becoming transparent there. I could have underlying pixel brightness value punch through this layer by dragging these sliders up. And there I am getting some dark values to punch through my currently targeted apple layer. And conversely I could have lighter pixel values punch through the apple by dragging this white point slider for underlying layers to the left. Notice when I am doing this, the effect is very non anti-aliased, it's very pixilated looking. Well, see this little line splitting my triangle - what I can do is option + click to split the transition, and now there is a transition area creating a smoother effect. I'll go ahead and do that to this layer. I'll drag the white point down to create a hole in my highlight, and then I will option + click to split the white point slider. So essentially what's going on here is that everything to the right of this slider for this brightness value on this layer is becoming transparent. Then there is a transition area in between the left and right side of my white point slider. And then everything to the left of the left side of this white point slider is opaque. So we can create a nice smooth transitional effect by splitting the sliders. And the way to do that is of course option + click on that or Alt + click on the PC. And if you want to stick them back together again, all you need to do is drag them next to each other and they will snap together magnetically. We can of course affect all of the channels individually. The, if 'blend if' gray is selected, it is going to control this effect on the aggregate RGB channels for this layer. But we can of course choose individual channels to become transparent. So you've a lot of power using the blending options by double clicking on the thumbnail of your layer.
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