Making a difference: This Photoshop blend mode can be used for simple, customizable color grading
posted Friday, March 30, 2018 at 3:00 PM EST
Blend modes in Photoshop can be complicated. However, that doesn't mean you should avoid them. They are very powerful when used correctly and fortunately there are many tutorials and resources to help us make the most of the different blend modes within Photoshop.
One such tutorial comes from Blake Rudis of f64 Academy and covers the "difference" blend mode. This mode is often used for aligning images, but Rudis has found that it's also very good for color grading.
By using the "difference" blend mode, we separate color information across different channels and then subtract either the blend color from a base color or vice versa, depending upon which has the greater brightness value. By using a solid color fill layer set to "difference," you can apply the selected color only to darker areas in an image and then invert the color to apply it to brighter areas. See it in action in the video below.
(Via f64 Academy)