I am new to PS and I have no experience with Graphic Design whatsoever.

Here is what I did:

I started with a white background layer. Created a new layer (1) and made a rectangle with the selection tool. I filled it with a gray color. Made a second layer (2) and drew another selection with the lasso tool. I filled it again with a darker color and created a clipping mask from it.

This is the result:

enter image description here

This is what I tried, while painting only the dark area made from the second layer, while not affecting the light gray area.

enter image description here

The red lines show, on what layer I tried to paint. I only want the dark area to be affected.

enter image description here

Edit: Layer Structure

  • Can't be certain without seeing the Layers Panel.. but it appears as though you simply need to reverse the clipping mask. A black shape on a mask means "hide this area".
    – Scott
    Jun 24, 2023 at 15:06
  • I added the Layers Panel.
    – J.A.C.K.
    Jun 24, 2023 at 15:35
  • You could engage the transparent pixel lock on the dark layer (layer 2). That way, when you paint on it, it will only paint on opaque areas.
    – Billy Kerr
    Jun 24, 2023 at 16:49
  • Thank you. This seems to work way faster.
    – J.A.C.K.
    Jun 24, 2023 at 18:30

1 Answer 1


OK I redid your image and the steps were:

  1. Selected the dark gray shape with the Magic Wand tool

  2. Created a new empty layer

  3. With the new layer active and the selection in place I added a layer Mask

  4. The layer Mask is in the shape of the selection

  5. I created the red rectangle overlapping the layer mask

  6. The light gray background shows through behind the red rectangle.

(The dotted line just shows the extent of the rectangle, it is on an additional layer above everything else.) Redone original image showing layer mask

Screenshot of the end result and layers palate

Answer image with Photoshop layers

  • The solution is very similiar, with the solution ChatGPT showed me. And it works and as well as yours. So thanks. But I am not sure, if there is another way. I was watching a chinese tutorial, that uses AI Translation I think, but did without the layer mask. I noticed that he used the selection from layer 2, to make the dark area, and created a new layer, linked it to the clipping mask and started painting, without affecting the other layers. And I didnt understand how, because the Voice Translations was terrible and there is no subtitles.
    – J.A.C.K.
    Jun 24, 2023 at 15:43
  • There are always at least five different ways to do the same thing in Photoshop! Glad you found more help using different methods.
    – user180961
    Jun 24, 2023 at 15:48

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