Hi, how do i apply filters on a per layer basis for many layers...
a typical file i have to work is a collage.
There are numerous photos (a photo per layer) in a Group (the folder icon). Each photo has a mask, so only the relevent part is visible, and all the photos have been arranged as the author wants it...
My problem is i need to adjust most of the photos - colors, brightness, sharpness, etc. but if i use adjustment layers everything below changes, and i really dont want to change each layer into its own smart object.
Is there an easier way to apply a filter to just the active layer.
Yep, use clipping layers. Create your filter layer, then hold the mouse between the original layer and the new layer, hold down Option (Control or Alt on the PC, I don't remember) and the cursor will turn into a sort of pair of circles, a black one on a grey one. Click between the 2 layers and the top one is clipped by the one below. This will apply the adjustments only to the visible part of the layer. Anything below won't feel the effects.
You can also do this when creating your adjustment layers by clicking on "Use Previous Layer to Create Clipping Mask" just before creating the layer. You can stack several layers, each clipped to the original layer.