There is much more to the HSL Adjustment Layer than you think!

Over the past few months, I have been experimenting with some of the more advanced features of the Hue, Saturation, and Lightness adjustment layer in Photoshop.  If we take the adjustment for its face value it offers a ton of possibilities when modifying the colors in our photos.  However, there is a feature that is right in front of our face that is more powerful than you can imagine when you know how to use it.

When you are in an individual color in the HSL Adjustment layer you will notice that a little bar pops up at the bottom with sliders inside of it.  For the longest time, I did not touch this area because I did not know what it did.  It wasn’t until recently that I decided to experiment with it.  After all, everything we do in an Adjustment Layer non-destructive anyway right?

The bet way to describe the bottom bar area is like Blend If.  When you make a selection for a color with the targeted adjustment tool, it is selecting a small portion of that color based on the range in the slider at the bottom.  You can modify how much feather of a color is selected by increasing or decreasing the range (the triangular shaped icons).  Or you can increase or decrease the range of the selected color by using the solid bars in the middle.

I highly suggest downloading the example image provided here and experimenting with the range adjustment as seen above.  If you need more guidance with it and would like to see how you can practically apply this knowledge to your images, please watch the full tutorial below!

Download the Test Swatch

Blake Rudis

f.64 Academy and f.64 Elite are the brainchildren of Blake Rudis. While he is a landscape photographer he is most passionate about post-processing images in Photoshop and mentoring others.


For Blake, it is less about the art and more about the process. He dives deep into difficult topics and makes them easy to understand through his outside the box thinking.


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