Playing With Overlays In Photoshop


There is lots of different ways to do things in photoshop, and overlays are no exception, this is just a few of the ways that i do things, i am not saying this is the right way or the only way but its the way i do it,
i am using PSCS3 but you could probably do this in most versions..

You will need a paper and an overlay to try these tutorials, i am using a paper from my Beautiful Spring Kit and an overlay from my All Overlayed 16 set, but you can use anything you like.

1.Using overlays with blend modes

Open both the overlay and paper you are using in photoshop, duplicate both by going to Image>Duplicate, then close the originals.
Make sure your paper is the active document, Layer>New>Layer From Background, a box will pop up, click ok (you may not have to do this step),
Drag your overlay onto your paper, now you can have some fun playing around with the blend modes and opacity, these options are normally on your layers palette at the top (see below) if you cant see your layer palette go to window>layers and make sure it is checked.



























































These are some of the results i got:

Overlay blend mode at 80% opacity














































Linear burn blend mode at 60% opacity







































Once you are happy with the result you have,
make sure your overlay layer is active then go to Layer>Merge Down.

2. Using overlays as clipping masks.

I also sometimes use overlays as a clipping mask,
it probably wont work with all overlays but it does with some so lets give it a try.
Open both the overlay and paper you are using in photoshop,
duplicate both by going to Image>Duplicate, then close the originals.
Make sure your paper is the active document,
Layer>New>Layer From Background, a box will pop up, click ok (you may not have to do this first step), now drag your overlay onto your paper but this time move it below your paper layer, make sure your paper is the active layer.
Layer>Create Clipping Mask.
Viola your overlay is now decorated with your paper and the transparent areas stay transparent!, if your happy with the way it looks right click on the clipping mask(paper) layer and choose merge down.

This is the result i got:












































3. Colouring overlays.

Some overlays you have, might also look nice recoloured, there is a few different ways i recolour mine in photoshop, first lets try the hue and saturation way.(please note that all black overlays might not work well with the hue and saturation option)
Open the overlay your using in photoshop, duplicate by going to Image>Duplicate, then close the original.
Go to Image>Adjustments>Hue/Saturation, make sure the colorize box is checked then play around with the sliders until you find something you like then press ok, your overlay is now coloured!.

Heres my result:













































You can also get nice results by colouring your overlay using layer styles so lets try that too.

Open the overlay your using in photoshop, duplicate by going to Image>Duplicate, then close the original.
Go to Layer>Layer Style>Colour overlay, when the box pops up choose a colour and play with the blend modes and opacity settings, i chose a pinkish colour, set the blend mode to colour and the opacity to 60% but you can play around and get some great results, if your happy with the way it looks click ok, right click on your overlay in the layers palette and choose convert to smart object, then right click again and rasterize layer.

This is my result:













































I would also like to add that you could also use gradient overlay or pattern instead of colour for even more great results!

I hope you enjoyed my tutorial!