Most things in Adobe Photoshop don’t really need to be learned. They actually just need to be made aware of. In other words, none of this stuff I talk about on this website is particularly difficult to grasp. It’s more of a case of just letting people know that certain things exist. Of course, certain concepts need to be understood to be taken advantage of, but most of the time, just seeing what’s available is good enough.
In today’s post, nothing too challenging needs to be understood. This is one of those, “Oh that’s so cool” moments I’m hoping people have. I’m going to show you how you can add multiple effects (or filters) to am image inside of the Filter Gallery feature in Adobe Photoshop. If you’re a big filter user and don’t yet know about this capability, you’re going to love this. Let’s just say that it will add extra dimensions to what you already do.
I’m going to open a photo of a flower into Photoshop and then turn that flower layer into a Smart Object so anything I do to it will be non-destructive. After that, I’ll enter the Filter Gallery, where I’ll apply one of the many filters to the image. Then, and this is where things get good, I’ll apply another filter. And then another. Finally, I’ll change the order of those filters to achieve different effects. What I hope to convey is that there’s an almost infinite amount of flexibility when it comes to the Filter Gallery in this application. The final look of a photograph is up to your imagination.
The Demo Photo
This is the flower photo I’ll be using for this post. The reason I chose it is because I think it can sustain many of the available filters in the Filter Gallery. As a matter of fact, I think it looks fairly artistic the way it is.
Creating the Smart Object
The first thing I’ll do after launching this file into Photoshop is to turn the flower layer into a Smart Object. As I’ve said many time, whenever working with filters, it’s a very good idea to use the Smart Object feature because it protects against destructive changes. Destructive changes are those that permanently alter a file.
To turn the layer into a Smart Object, I’ll right-click on it in the Layers panel and then click on the Convert to Smart Object option.
Opening the Filter Gallery
Pretty much all of the work I’d like to complete today will be contained in the Filter Gallery workspace. So I’ll need to enter that gallery. To do so, I’ll head up to the Filter > Filter Gallery menu item and click.
Once I click that, the workspace will appear.
Applying Some Filters
My goal today isn’t to make this image look wonderful. It’s merely to show you that multiple filters can be applied on top of one another right here in the Filter Gallery. To kick things off, I’ll go ahead and randomly choose one of the available filters from the Brush Strokes drop-down. The one I’ll choose is called Accented Edges.
Now this is important. When I choose this specific filter, a “layer” for it shows up down in the lower right corner. Take a look.
This is the layer I’m working in. I’ve decided to call this thing a layer because I’m not sure what else to call it. It looks and acts like a layer, but it’s in the Filter Gallery workspace. I’m not sure if that makes a difference or not. Anyway, if I decide to click on a different filter in this workspace, that layer will simply change to the new one I just clicked on. The new filter won’t get added to the area where the layer is. It will take the place of the first one I chose.
Let’s say I want multiple effects to be blended together in this Filter Gallery workspace. As you well know, just one filter is so boring. Let’s add some spice to things.
To add another filter to this same image, I’ll click the New Effect Layer button at the bottom of the palette.
Once I do that, I can go ahead and choose another filter to add. And if I do it once more after that, I can choose yet another filter. Let’s see how these new effects layers look.
As you can see, I chose to add Accented Edges, Crosshatch and Spatter. Now let’s check out how this photo looks with the applied filters.
That’s kind of neat.
Changing the Order of the Effect Layers
Currently, I’ve got the Spatter effect as the top layer in the Filter Gallery workspace. You can see the result of that above. What if I want to change the look of the output and I don’t want the Spatter effect to be so prominent? Well, to minimize the effect Spatter is having on the overall image, I can just click and drag that layer to the bottom of the pile.
Now, the Crosshatch effect is on top and the Spatter one is at the bottom. Let’s see what the overall image looks like now. I’ll click the OK button to exit this workspace and I’ll save the file out.
Do you see what a difference that makes? Now the Crosshatch effect takes prominence. My point here is that it’s possible to add multiple effects to the same file in Photoshop, without much work. If I didn’t like what I saw, I could always click and drag one or more of these effect layers down the trash can below to remove them or I could add more layers if I wanted to.
I know I didn’t get into the settings for each effect. I didn’t think those were important for this post. I wanted to stay focused.
I hope I clearly explained how to apply multiple Filter Gallery effects to the same image in Adobe Photoshop. If you have any questions regarding this post, please leave them for me in the comment section below. Thanks for reading!