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Photoshop Friday - gradient goodness

The quick tip is about how to get more than one gradient on a page.
grad1
Let's say you want to achieve the effect above, but without taking the time to create a three-part gradient that goes from black to white to black again. So you load up a black-to-white gradient and hit the top of the page.


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Then you go to add the bottom gradient, and you get...this, below. The top gradient is gone. What gives?
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because your gradient was black to WHITE, the white part of the gradient painted over the top part, so the whole gradient will appear to be entirely redrawing every time you click on the canvas. To put more than one gradient on a page, you need to have it set with CLEAR as one of the stops. Then you can keep popping gradients on there to your heart's content.

So how would I use this in practice? Well, that simple top-and-bottom gradient would probably look pretty good as a layer on an ebook cover.


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Here's a gradient layer from the current cover I'm working on. I think it's actually two gradients, some painting and some masking/erasing that follows the conours of light/shadow on the model's face. This is the layer where I'm trying to make sure my subject looks like he's actually IN his environment and not just pasted on top.
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And here's the lovely Dallas model, without the gradient layer, looking neutrally-lit.
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Now I've turned the gradient layer on, and set its mode to "color" in the layers panel. (Other modes may work better for you depending on the effect you're looking for.) The green hitting his cheek and forehead highlights is really key on selling him in this environment, because he's going to get a big green flare on his shoulder, and the aircraft ceiling is lit the trademark teal color of the series covers.
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And now here he is, beautifully integrated into both his foreground and background, all thanks to gradients.

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