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The Photoshop Toolbox

Essential Techniques for Mastering Layer Masks, Brushes, and Blend Modes

Adobe Photoshop is one of the most powerful image-editing applications ever created, but it is also widely thought to be difficult to learn, infinite in scope, and nearly impossible to master. For these reasons, many photographers choose to stay exclusively with Lightroom for all their photography needs. But for those...
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  • Print and eBook Bundle: $49.99
  • Print Book: $39.95
  • eBook: $31.99


Glyn Dewis


280 pages


8 x 10in


Soft Cover - with flaps





  • Introduction
  • Chapter 1: The Basics
  • Chapter 2: Layer Masks
  • Chapter 3: Brushes
  • Chapter 4: Blend Modes
  • Chapter 5: Tips, Tricks, and Techniques
  • Chapter 6: Photography Project

1 review for The Photoshop Toolbox

  • I appreciate that at the beginning of the book the author points out that all we need is the basic understanding of three things about Photoshop: brushes, leave your masks, and blend modes. That makes things a lot less intimidating for me:)

    The first chapter describes how to use layers and the author advises that we do not pass up that chapter because it’s what Photoshop is all about. I don’t know how to use layers, so I smiled when I read that and found her chapter quite helpful. Now I’ll be using layers!

    At the outset Dewis gives us a link to the book’s files so that we can download them in process photos along with the author. Some other authors do that too, and I much appreciate it. Nothing like learning by doing. Opening the files on my computer and having the book next to me makes layers approachable finally. The author goes into great detail in order to make the execution pretty easy.

    When he discusses layer mask see author uses replacing the sky is it example which is brilliant because all of us have at least some landscape photos in our library. Again, his instructions are sufficiently detailed to leave no unanswered questions as to how to do what he is suggesting you do.

    Dewis also has a section on brushes and a subsection about creating fur and hair of all things! In this section, and elsewhere in the book, the author generously refers us to other photographers work on how to use Photoshop. Nothing like having more than one resource.

    The author also discusses retouching portraits using layers, and blend modes, but the most helpful and fun final chapter is what he called bonus content —- He talks about how to add fake catchlights in the eyes which always helps when you don’t get them in camera, an easy way to whiten teeth with the lasso tool and saturation adjustment layer, and, what will be quite helpful, how to change the lighting affect on the persons face in a Portrait using layer masks and adjustment brush. The author said he uses that trick on every portrait and I can see why.

    This is easily one of the best how-to books on Photoshop I’ve read. Not only does it help immeasurably to work the same photos along with the author, his instructions are tailor-made for people new to layers like me. They are clear and detailed so that you don’t feel lost when following along. That means a lot to learners like me 🙂

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