Layer Blend Mode

Blend modes control how one layer interacts with the layers beneath it. By changing blend modes it is possible to create a range of sophisticated effects.

The blend mode is really part of the layer options, but it is important enough to get a brief section of its own as the range of effects that can be achieved through the different modes is large.

There are five basic blend modes that you need to understand and you can find a good introduction to blend modes here.

HighpassIf you want to dive directly into one of the specific blend modes, you can find tutorials linked below. They are listed (roughly) in order of importance:

Layer blend modes can also be used in a variety of other ways. By combining one of the contrast modes with a highpass filter later you can achieve a wide variety of non-destructive sharpening effects.

There is also a more technical review of the different blend modes, that touches on the maths of various blends and includes a more detailed description of exactly what each mode does at the Photo Blog Stop site.

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