Image Masks

Create a mask based on image tonality

Image Masks are different than shape masks, because they affect the entire image and can’t be tracked. Start the same way by adding a Mask to a layer; but from the controls, add an Image Mask instead of one of the shape masks. An Image Mask is really a high-contrast (monochrome) key based on the luminance values of the image. The controls feature black, white, and gamma levels to adjust and constrain the image‚Äôs black and white range in order to control the key. There is also a blur control to soften the edges of this key. It’s easiest to make adjustments when Show Mask is turned on.

Apply a correction tool to a layer, apply a Mask to it, and then add an Image Mask. Adjust the levels of the Image Mask. Return to the color correction controls and make your adjustments. These corrections will appear within the brighter portions of the image as determined by the mask. If you want the corrections to appear in the darker areas of the image, simply check the Inverted button in the mask controls panel. The same Parent Mask workflow works with Image Masks if you want two separate grades inside and outside of the masked area. This method can be used for photographic-style split toning. For this method to work properly, the layer with the Parent Mask (filling the brighter areas of the image) should be stacked above the layer with Invert Parent Mask applied to it.


Last modified July 14, 2021