Removing Textures from Part of an Image

Hello, all. Here I am with the final segment of our texture series. First we’ll explore how to remove the texture from parts of a photograph. Then, I’ll give you links to some online resources on textures that you will find useful in your own explorations into this creative effect.

You will remember that when we added a texture to an image it was placed on its own layer above the image layer. To remove the texture from a part of the image, we are going to create a mask. Adding a mask is Photoshop’s way of giving you a tool to help you hide or show parts of a layer, in this case the texture. This is an excellent tool for adjusting creative effects of any kind.

Here is an image to which I added an overall texture. You will see that it covers the entire photo including the subject leaf.

Leaf with Texture

Leaf with Texture
© 2011, Fran Saunders

Suppose I did not want to texture to cover the leaf? I would click on the texture layer in Photoshop. Then at the very bottom of the layers palette, the third icon in shows a rectangle with a white circle center. This is the mask icon. Click it and a white square will appear just to the right of the texture thumbnail on the texture layer. With this white mask in place, choose a soft appropriately sized black paint brush and start painting over those parts of the image where you wish to remove the texture. If you make a mistake, paint over the error with a white paint brush and the effect will reappear. In mask parlance, painting with white shows an effect, while painting with black hides it. And there you have it.  Take a look at the image above after the texture was removed from the leaf:

Leave with Texture Removed

Leaf Without Texture
© 2011, Fran Saunders

I hope you have found this series useful, and again, don’t hesitate to ask questions. If you wish to further explore using textures you may find the following websites helpful:

Totally Rad: This group’s “Dirty Pictures” software has many textures and come with software to ease selection and masking. You can even add your own textures to the software index.

Flypaper Textures:  Another fantastic site for textures. Their textures are sold in packages.

Pareerica:  These are free textures which you may use with attribution and link backs.

Don’t forget that you can do a Google search on textures and come up with many more resources. Have fun!


About Fran Saunders

I am a photographer located on the beautiful Eastern Shore of Maryland, where I live with my husband and my Yellow Lab, Sam.
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