I want to use a gradient mask with multiple gradients.

Layer 1 (bottom) will have an image of a skyline.

Layer 2 (above) will have a solid colour, with the layer set to multiply.

I don't want to use that effect on the buildings in the skyline, so I will use a layer mask with a gradient to make the bottom half of the image the normal colour, with the gradient fading in the multiplied layer. Thus the clouds/sky will have the multiplied colour on them.

On one side of the image is a tall building, so I want to do a second gradient on the same mask which will be diagonal and in addition to the first gradient. This will ensure the tall building is not effected by the multiplied layer as the first gradient would finish shorter than the building.

I then want to repeat that gradient on the other side, but effectively the opposite (flipped), so the diagonal will go the other way, how would I achieve this?

  • I don't understand your issue. You described what you need to do pretty well so what part are you stuck on? If you've started on this and could post a screenshot including the layers panel it might help make it clearer.
    – Ryan
    Nov 30, 2016 at 17:11
  • I always like to keep everthing non-descructive, so I wanted a way to do it with masks without having to apply the mask for example.
    – Eoin
    Dec 5, 2016 at 11:27

1 Answer 1


Use a group or smart objects....

Two masks altering a single layer by using a group for the second mask.

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or apply the mask to the layer, then "Covert to Smart Object" and apply a mask to the Smart Object.

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Note that you can add masks and "Convert to Smart Object" several times, essentially allowing you to apply multiple masks to one layer repeatedly (Creating a type of rabbit hole to the original layer data).

  • Thanks, this is fantastic! I can just nest loads of groups and achieve what I want. Who knew? I didn't want to apply the layer because I prefer to keep things non-destrucive in case the mask is slightly wrong in the future. This is a great method. Thanks!
    – Eoin
    Dec 6, 2016 at 18:52

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