An adjustment layer changes only the appearance of the layers below it without affecting those lower layers. For example, all color layers below a black-and-white adjustment layer will look black and white, and when I paint a red line on such a color layer it will appear as if I am drawing a gray line, but when I turn the black-and-white adjustment layer off, I will see the color layer with its red line. So I can work with colors, while seeing their greyscale values.

In the same way I would like to have a "blur layer", that will make everything below it appear blurred, while the actual layers remain crisp and sharp.

I would like to work on an image while seeing it blurred, but then be able to turn off the blur and have a sharp image.

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    Not exactly the same as what you describe, but the best possible alternative would be a Smart filter – Joonas Jul 20 '18 at 22:27
  • Well not exactly. It becomes sort of like a document within document. The contents of that smart filter layer are still there, they are just not as accessible. You can edit the contents if you right click the layer and choose "Edit contents" or double click the layer thumbnail. That opens the contents in a new document. When that document is saved, the work document that houses the smart filter layer gets updated. – Joonas Jul 21 '18 at 9:17
  • @Joonas It seems that this makes it impossible to paint in the blurred view, because I would have to work in the smartobject layer in a different window, where the content of the smartobject doesn't appear blurred. Right? – user124745 Jul 21 '18 at 9:18
  • Yes, that's right. – Joonas Jul 21 '18 at 9:19
  • @Joonas And I guess it's not somehow possible to apply the smartobject layer including its filters to the layer(s) below it? – user124745 Jul 21 '18 at 9:37

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