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Adjustment layers - how to make exemptions?

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Gates Bradley
Adjustment layers - how to make exemptions?
on Mar 28, 2010 at 6:33:18 pm

I have an image of an aerial view of a city at night with about 30 different layers. Most of these layers are pieces of letters that add up to spell something out of the lights. To do this i was hoping to just use an adjustment layer and boost the levels to have these 'lights' stand out from the background.

Basically I want the adjustment layer to effect everything but the background layer. Is there a way to exempt one layer (or two or three)? On top of being just one step, I wanted to use the adjustment layer to make sure that the adjustments are equal across the board, as well as to be able to fine tune down the road.

I was hoping that I could just put the layers I want affected into a layer group, but you can't select the "just affect the below layer" button if the adjustment layer sits on top of a layer group.

I'm used to working in after effects where this sort of adjustment layer management is very simple. Is there a way for me to do this without making 29 adjustment layers and adjusting them individually? It seems like it would be such an obvious and simple thing to be able to do...

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Bob Peterson
Re: Adjustment layers - how to make exemptions?
on Mar 29, 2010 at 4:04:31 pm

Certainly. You simply apply a mask to the adjustment layer. The mask will restrict its effects to the areas of the image that you designate.

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