Leaving a Legacy Designs

Helping you scrap your memories one page at a time

Adding a mask to a photo…

on May 22, 2013

Today I am going to show you how I edited this photo and added a mask to it in a few easy to follow steps (or I hope they seem easy)…


First grab your photo…


Next edit it and get it looking how you want on your layout!

2013-05-21_1352Now you want to add a layer mask to your photo layer by clicking on the little icon in the layer palette that looks like a camera.  Also go ahead and bring in your paper that you will be playing with as your mask.  Hide the layer until we are ready for it.  I chose a worn paper from my I Make Dirt Kit.2013-05-21_1357


Now turn the chosen paper back on and CTRL click on the layer to get the marching ants around it.  It is important that you are clicking on the LAYER not the actual paper.2013-05-21_1359

Once the paper is selected we are going to copy it using the short cut keys CTRL C.  Now it is hanging out on a virtual clipboard until we are ready for it.

To get the paper as our mask we need to make the mask our active layer.  We do this by holding down ALT and clicking on the layer mask.  When you do this the screen will go white like in the photo.


Now you want to paste the paper into the layer by pressing CTRL V.  You may need to also press CTRL D to deselect and get the marching ants to disappear.  When the mask pastes in it will be black and white.  This is where the magic starts to happen!  At this point you are going to want to bring up your levels box.  Short cut is CTRL L2013-05-21_1404

The way a mask works is whatever is white shows up and whatever is black erases.  So if you were to leave this alone your photo would be washed out completely.  I added a color fill layer behind it so you can see that it is really washed out.  So you are going to want to play with the sliders on your levels to make it more white and less black esp in the areas where the focus is going to be.


Here is what I started off with on the levels.  At any time you can click on your photo to go back out and see what you are doing and bounce back and forth.


You can also do it from looking at the photo…either works great.  Just make sure your mask is selected when you pull up the levels box.2013-05-21_1419

Now at this point I still wanted more focus on my little man so you can again making sure your mask is selected.  Pick a soft round brush  and the color white to brush away the parts you don’t want masked.  You can see the mask in the photo below is mostly white where my little guy is standing.  Really any brush you use on your mask will create that shape so get creative and see what you can do with it.


Here is another look at my final page using the Dirty Collection.  To get the finished polished look I feathered and erased the edges of the photo.  If you would like to learn more on how I did that let me know and I will expand on this lesson for you.  If you have any questions about how I did this please comment here or send me an email at digiscrapping27@gmail.com


Have a great Wednesday and if there is a tip or tutorial you want to share or learn please let me know!  I am always looking for new ideas.


One response to “Adding a mask to a photo…

  1. Great Tutorial thank you!

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