The Complete Guide To Photoshop Blending Modes

The Complete Guide To Photoshop Blending Modes

Photoshop blending modes are one of those areas in Photoshop that a very few people understand in full detail. Everyone has a general idea on how they work and what some of the modes do specifically. Much of it has always seemed to be understood through experimentation. The results you get are often guessed. If you're the lucky few who know all of them precisely, you will still want to read this article. 

I found a great write up that explains everything in detail for those that do not know. Even for those that do, there's a lot more that is included with the information.

This guide from Photoshop Blog Stop goes over it all. The best part is not just the great description of each blending mode, but also how each of them relate to each other, the math behind it, the keyboard shortcuts, and additional tweaks to get the most out of them.

My favorite part was the section called 'Luminance Blending' that allows for fine tuned control. I also learned about a few of them that I was genuinely unsure about.

Here are the topics that it covers:

How Blend Modes Work
Blend Mode Groups
Keyboard Shortcuts
Commonly Used Blend Modes
Blend Mode Opposites
Commuted Blend Modes
The “Special 8” Blend Modes
Blend Mode Math
Blend Mode Math Examples
Blend Mode Descriptions
Additional Blend Mode Math Tips
Brush Tool-Specific Keyboard Shortcuts
Pass Through Mode
Luminance Blending
Luminance Blending Example

Check out the full article here and I hope you enjoy the information as much as I enjoyed finding it to share with all of you!

[Via Photoshop Blog Stop]

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Thanks for the post! I have to admit that I never bothered to figure out much of what each blending mode does and stick to the very limited things that I know how to do. This should make a great read after work today.

Tam Nguyen's picture

Does this also work in Picasa?



Its contrast group blending mode descriptions are confusing/inconsistent...If you read them carefully, you'll see what I mean...