I'm working on a Photoshop CS6 template which will be used pretty regularly that consists of two layers that are essentially inverses of each other.

Right now I've got a layer mask for the top layer and one for the bottom layer which is the exact inverse of the top's layer mask. The image on the top layer is partially transparent so I have to mask them both because I don't want to see the bottom layer under the top layer at all, but it needs to be everywhere the top layer isn't.

Is there some way to link these two layers using just one layer mask (or make the 2nd layer mask always the inverse of the top layer mask)? It's not terrible difficult just to duplicate the layer mask and then invert it, but I have to adjust the top layer pretty frequently and it'd be nice if I didn't have to go through the extra duplication/inverse step every time.

1 Answer 1


In future, you should ask Photoshop questions over at https://graphicdesign.stackexchange.com/ instead.

To answer your question, there is no way I'm aware of. It is not like After Effects where you can use inverted track mattes (top layer effects bottom layers transparency).

All I can suggest is the quickest workflow, which is to alt+drag the layer mask over, then alt+click it then alt+i to invert. Should take about 5 seconds.

  • I kinda figured there wasn't an automatic way. Thanks for the suggestions and I'll try graphic design in the future.
    – Mordred
    Aug 1, 2013 at 18:32

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .