PaintShop Blend Modes

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The PaintShop Blend modes determine how one layer will interact with the layer(s) below it.

They are really useful  and very easy to understand. No doubt they will help improve anyones digital editing with PaintShop Pro.

This tutorial will focus on improving images and they can also be used to create some interesting special effects - they can be seen in Terry's Tutorials.

Well actually - the Blend Modes are Flippin' Awesome!!

The Photographic Blend Modes

While there are twenty PaintShop Blend modes, there are five that are of particular interest and very useful for the digital darkroom, and they are ...

  1. Multiply
  2. Screen
  3. Overlay
  4. Color
  5. Luminosity


This mode effectively burns the top layer into the layers underneath. The Multiply mode darkens all colors where they mix. With layers, it’s comparable to sticking two slides in the same slot in a slide projector.  Selecting Multiply will darken an image and is great for rescuing an underexposed image.


This mode is the opposite of Multiply and lightens the layer where it mixes with the layer underneath. Blending with black pixels has no effect. It’s like putting two slides in two different projectors and pointing them at the same screen. Screen can rescue an overexposed image.


On an image, Overlay multiplies the dark pixels in the top layer and screens the light pixels in the underlying layers. What this does is increase the contrast of an image as well as saturating the colors.  Perks up a flat looking image.


The color mode blends the luminance of the the underlying layer with the saturation and hue of the top layer.  This is the go-to mode for coloring grayscale images because the shadows, highlights and details of the underlying layers remain visible but now with color.


Luminosity is the opposite of color because it blends the hue and saturation of the underlying layers with the luminance of the top layer. The shadows, highlights, and details from the top layer are preserved as they mix with the colors of the underlying layers.

In addition to the blend modes, Mask Layers are also very useful and powerful.

The videos on this page cover the 5 blend modes listed above as well as Mask Layers.

I hope you enjoy the videos and learn as much as I did when I was making them!


Multiply and Mask Layers

Blend Modes Video 1

Screen Mode, Overlay Mode and Mask Layers

Blend Modes Video 2

Color and Luminosity

Blend Modes Video 3

On Page Links

Photographic Blend Modes


Blend Modes

The Blend Modes determine how a layer will interact with the layers beneath it.

Paint Shop Pro boasts an amazing 20 different Blend Modes.

There are really only 5 of the 20 that a Paint Shop Photo digital editor really needs to understand and know:

  1. Multiply
  2. Screen
  3. Overlay
  4. Color
  5. Luminosity

If the change applied with multiply, screen or overlay is not enough simply duplicate the blend mode layer to double the effect and lower the opacity of the duplicate to achieve the desired results.

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