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Doing more with Photoshop Layer Styles

I like working with the Layer Effects in Photoshop but what really stated me using them more was when I learnt how to separate the effects. In this ‘tiptorial’ I’m going to put Layer Effects onto Layer Effects.

First, lets and an Outline. Double click on the layer you want to apply it to, or choose it from the fx menu at the bottom of the layers pallet.

For this example I’m going to make quite a big stroke in black. So I’ll bang up the size to about 10 and hit OK

Note: OK, here’s some stuff we need to know to make this work…. Photoshop takes the easy way to make a stroke. It doesn’t actually stroke anything. Instead it makes a larger ‘silhouette’ behind the object.

What we are going to do here is access that ‘silhouette’.

From the menu choose Layer > Layer Style > Create Layer

Now what we have is another layer, with our ‘silhouette’ on it.

This is an independent layer so we can do what we like to it. I’m going to add a bevel

But Why stop there?

Let’s add a stroke to the ‘silhouette’, or as it is in my example Tippy’s Outer Stroke, in exactly the same way we did to the original text layer.

I’ve chosen a darker version of the original green

Now lets separate that again using the menu, Layer > Layer Style > Create Layer.

Eeek! What just happened, we got a whole bunch of layers!

No panic, we’ve created three layers that time because I’d made a bevel and Photoshop makes a bevel from a shadows and a  highlights layer that are then clipped to the silhouette.. These two layers plus another ‘silhouette’ layer make our three new layers.

Lets add a bevel to the second silhouette:


And an inner shadow to the original text

Remember, once you’ve got your layer you can do what you like to it, not just layer styles, here I’ve used filters too. Experiment, have fun. I went a bit crazy with the halftone, bevel and inner shadow…..

Layer Styles

About Eric Renno (435 Articles)
Eric’s background in video editing with Adobe Premier led to his interest, and then obsession, with Photoshop. Starting TipSquirrel.com as a hobby he is proud to have gathered together and be a part of The Photoshop Nuts. Known as only “TipSquirrel” for two years, Eric ‘went public’ when he was a finalist in The Next Adobe Photoshop Evangelist competition. He’s also been a finalist in Deke’s Techniques Photoshop Challenge. While still taking on some freelance work, Eric has recently become a Lecturer at Peterborough’s Media and Journalism Centre where he enjoys sharing his knowledge as well as learning new skills. This realisation that he loves to teach has made Eric look at altering his career path.

2 Comments on Doing more with Photoshop Layer Styles

  1. Please recreate Long exposures in Black & White ;you know :silk water ,moving clouds,minimalism …
    Here there is a guy doing some nice stuff :

    Joel Tjintjelaar

  2. Malinda // 27/04/2012 at 3:57 pm //

    I’m working in Photoshop CS4 but don’t have the Layer > Layer Style > Create Layer option. “Create Layer” isn’t listed on my drop down menu. Any ideas?


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