Photoshop: Live dynamic masking

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  • Idea
  • Updated 5 years ago
  • (Edited)
Mask creation & adjustment in PHOTPSHOP is too static - it needs to be more live and interactive. One example of a such a mask is in Camera Raw sharpeneing - it has a slider and a live view of the effect of the slider. But that tool is too limited. What is required is a general layer mask tool, unattached to sharpening, that can be used to create layer masks for edges, surfaces, highlights, &/or shadows, or combinations of these. In addition, it should have sliders for bright, dark, radius (breadth), contrast etc. and the effect of the sliders should be live - visible on the screen immediately. That way, it can be used to create a layer mask for many purposes.
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Steven Potashner

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Posted 6 years ago

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Foto VI

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I like the idea of using one mask on several layers, especially!
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Jeffrey Tranberry, Sr. Product Manager, Digital Imaging

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What you describe sounds a bit like Quick Select and Refine Edge.
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Chris Cox

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No, sounds more like a live, calculated layer mask based on the contents of the layer (easy to calculate and preview) or layers below (easy to calculate, not easy to preview, not necessarily live).

It would have to be a single pixel calculation, like adjustment layers to keep the performance reasonable, but could have the mask panel adjustments applied to it.

That matches some previous requests for automatic masks based on Hue/Sat.
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Foto VI

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How about a linked alpha channel for masks?
Every time, the alpha channel is edited,
the "smart mask" is updated.
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Steven Potashner

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Response to Foto VI, Tranberry and Cox:
Thanks for your comments. I became aware of the concept that I suggested from a sharpening plugin called 'Focal Blade'. Its main window contains a tab with an edge mask that has features similar to those I suggested above. It is possibly a more advanced version of the edge mask contained in Camera Raw. Quick select and refine edge are great tools but they solve problems different from the one I am attempting to address, which is a general purpose layer masking tool useful for whatever you need: sharpening, blurring, color or noise or luminosity manipulation, etc. I think Chris Cox's understanding of the concept is close to my own, although I do not have nearly as much insight as he does about how to implement the suggested tool.
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Stéphane Richard

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The two features mentioned above, dynamic masking based on RGB analysis and linked alpha channels are definitely a good answer to a painful redundancy in some part of photoshop workflow. I really hope such features could be implemented in the upcoming updates.
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Stéphane Richard

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Any chance this has been implemented?