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Using the Layers palette

Every new image contains either a Background or a transparent layer, on top of which you can add layers of many types, such as:

  • Image layers, which can contain all opaque pixels or a combination of opaque, transparent, and semitransparent pixels.
  • Fill and adjustment layers, which apply editable color or tonal adjustments to underlying layers.
  • Editable type layers, which you create with the Horizontal Type or Vertical Type tool.
  • Smart Object layers, which are created when you bring an Illustrator vector file, another Photoshop file, or a raw file into a Photoshop document via File > Place, or when you convert a standard layer. Double-click a Smart Object layer and the object reopens in its original application for editing; save and close it and the object updates in Photoshop. Apply a filter to a Smart Object layer and it becomes an editable and removable Smart Filter.
  • Shape layers, which contain vector shapes.

You’ll undoubtedly use the Layers palette A in most Photoshop sessions. It lets you create, select, show and hide, duplicate, group, restack, link, merge, flatten, and delete layers; change the layer blending mode, opacity, and fill opacity; apply layer effects; attach layer and vector masks; move layer content; and copy layers between files.

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