Open a PSD file with a few layers. Let's start from a PSD file where we have 3 layers: 2 are images (a background and a transparent backgrounded image - the Flower) and a Text layer. In this tutorial we will apply styles and filters to the background image first, then show how to add other styles to the flowers too.

For first, select the layer you want to postwork, in our case the lady (Layer 0) and from the Filters menu select Xycod/PostworkShop. If you are not sure about the fact that you will like the result, it is recommended to duplicate the layer you are working on before applying any filter. 

The PostworkShop plug-in opens with the layer you selected loaded in the Compositing viewport.  Just like for any other image, an Object is created - called "image from plug-in host" - with its default Layer #1 visible in the Style Layers. 

Apply as many styles as you want, layer, mix, and blend them. The Style Editor and the Bitmap Editor work the same way in the plug-in version that in the standalone one. Here we apply a Watercolor 1 from the Painting/Techniques category, with a Blush style put in parallel above and blended with an Hard Light blending mode. We adjusted the Blush style's properties by choosing from the 6 available presets the 4th: Hard Light. 
You can also do the modifications you want in the Paint Module. (In this case we painted a few Sketch lines in white). Note: painting in white is different from erasing!
When you’re done, you have the options to:
  • Apply: "render and return to the host" button. The image in PostworkShop is rendered and sent back to PS. PostworkShop remains open but you need to call it again to work on other images/layers from PS. You can close the plug-in manually. 
  • Apply and exit: "render, return to the host and quit" button. The image in PostworkShop is rendered and sent back to PS. PostworkShop will be closed. Re-call the PostworkShop plug-in to apply styles to a new layer.

The difference between these two is that while “apply” does not close the plug-in window, “apply and exit” does exit and opens a window every time you open the Xycod /PostworkShop plug-in.

  • Exit without applying.

Note: If you chose to keep PWS open for a faster start when you want to use it next time, then you have to quit it manually when you don't need it any more (when you quit Photoshop). We have no means to know when PS quits, the communication is cut between PS and PWS when we return the processed image. Please note that PWS is not a usual plug-in. The "plug-in" is just a messenger between PS and the full PWS program.

Here we will Run the final render and return to the host. A progress bar shows the final rendering of the modified image in case of complex styles. 

And going back to Photoshop, the image postworked is updated and the PostworkShop filter appears in the History tab. 

The first PSD layer postworked, you might want to add styles to the other layers too. If you wish to apply the same style as before, simply select the new layer - in our case the PNG file flowers - and call the last used filter by selecting PostworkShop on the top of the filters' list. 

AAlso, once the first image saved and pulled back to Photoshop, the style you have been creating by adding styles and filters to the image is saved in the History folder within the User folder. This allows you to use the same style again in the future for another layer you might call into PostworkShop from PS. Select the Flowers layer and call the PostworkShop filter: 

Go to the User/History style and double-click the latest style saved automatically to apply it to the image. As you can see, the flowers being a PNG file, it does not have any background. The checkboard background is set in the PostworkShop Properties menu, by setting the canvas to transparent.  If the canvas had been an image or another color, you would have seen that image or that color behind the image portion imported from PS. 

You can also choose to apply new styles and filters to this layer: we have added a Random Painter and a Sketch filter put above in parallel, without the need to blend them together since the Sketch filter is on a transparent background too. When you’re done, you have the options to:

  • Apply: "render and return to the host" button. The image in PostworkShop is rendered and sent back to PS. PostworkShop remains open but you need to call it again to work on other images/layers from PS. You can close the plug-in manually. 
  • Apply and exit: "render, return to the host and quit" button. The image in PostworkShop is rendered and sent back to PS. PostworkShop will be closed. Re-call the PostworkShop plug-in to apply styles to a new layer.

Exit without applying.

Here we will Run the final render and return to the host. A progress bar shows the final rendering of the modified image in case of complex styles. 

With this result, once back in Photoshop we will obtain: