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Using Photoshop, I created a transparent patterned background (gray scale w/Luminosity blend mode) on top of another layer which is a solid color. Now the developers I’m working with need just the “transparent patterned background” so they can simply change the underlying color as needed. The problem is that they are simply overlaying the “transparent patterned background” and without the ability to apply that “luminosity blend mode” the result is muddy and missing the pop of the original. I tried playing with curve adjustment layers and others but can't seem to get the same result. I personally don’t think it’s possible to give them what they need and still get the same results as the original. Below is an example of the two results.

Does anyone have any idea what I’m dealing with and is this even possible?

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Is there any reason for the developers not to use the Luminosity blend mode? The problems is, as I see it, in the result you produce with the luminosity mode there are areas approaching white. In the second copy using curves will not really reach "white" but kind of bright yellow. Here is an idea you can try, it still requires the use of blend modes but the Luminosity mode will be applied ahead of time. They only need to add a solid color and change the blend mode to color. I am using the lower image which may produce slightly different results that your original but the idea may be worth trying. I simply copied that, desaturated and changed the blend mode to "Luminosity" over a white background. Then proceed as follows:

  1. Double click on the desaturated layer to bring up the layer style window and adjust the blend if sliders as shown below. You may not need to do this since you are working with a transparency image and it may give you the result you are looking for.
  2. With this adjustment I get an image like the monochrome image you see below the layer style window. You can merge this to the background if you want to.
  3. On top of this, I added a blank layer and filled it with a shade of red and changed the blend mode of the red layer to "Color" to arrive at the result you see. Then I repeated with green and blue. The bottom screen capture is my layer stack.

I would like to know if this works for you and for the developers.

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  • This image will be the background of an Android app UI. Everything overlays on top of the background. The reasons for the color change is to indicate different states, such as available, busy, on-hold, etc. So I'm assuming by just changing the underlying color it would be more efficient but again thats just an assumption on my part and even with that explanation I don't' see the advantage. If the ability to use "blend modes" was indeed an option, i would just leave as is but I just need to verify that I'm not missing something that I could be doing. Thank you for your response! – ErickP Nov 2 '15 at 3:13
  • Then the real option may be to create three (or as many) states and use them instead of adding color on top or below. Ignore my reply. – user45605 Nov 2 '15 at 14:08
  • That's exactly what I was thinking. Thank you for you help. – ErickP Nov 2 '15 at 14:15

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