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How To Create a Realistic Pencil Sketch Effect in Photoshop
How to create a realistic pencil sketch effect in photoshop
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A black and white photo to sketch effect in Photoshop.

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Sketch Filter In Photoshop Cc Pencil Sketch.

Let your artwork breathe, In attaching the drawing to the backing or whatever secures its plight within the mats or frame, it should only be secured at the top and allowed to hang if an adhesive or tape is used. It should not be secured fervently at all four corners or around its perimeter, because the humidity changes constantly and the paper has to have liberty to flex, expand, and contract. Otherwise, the paper will ripple or develop sequences if it is restricted in any attribute batteries in the paper become very obvious when the lighting is directional or at an angle to the framed piece of art. The light causes highlight and shadow because of the contours in the paper. Some framers are using a large plastic photo type corner that allows the paper to slide in and be secure at all four corners and still allow for the flexing of the paper. It seems to be working quite well, as numerous of my drawings and illustrations using other media on paper, have been framed this convention for a number of years.

It`s how your fulfilled artwork is presented that makes all the difference. Although it`s tempting to purely area your drawing in a ready-made frame, there are several things that you must take in introspection before framing your artwork to insure it is adequately shielded over the years.

The drawing can be cleaned well, removing smudges, dust, or eraser fragments. To see if there are any tiny fragments on your paper or drawing, you must look at the draw close trimly from a critical angle, so that you could see them contrasting from the paper`s occur as they rise up. You should use a brush or compressed air to remove the fragments from the framing material.

Add a protective dust cover, After attaching the art and framing materials to the actual frame, a dust cover should be used on the back to keep supplementary dust, spiders, or bugs from entering the framed picture compartment. This is usually done by using a two-sided tape on the back come to pass of the molding all the rule around the perimeter. Then a piece of brown-colored paper is laid down on the adhesive come about as it is carried on flat as you press it onto the adhesive near . You then trim the outer edges of the brown paper to fit and then you are ready to attach your hanging wire, before placing your artwork on display.

Utilisation acid- complimentary materials, Any matting, record or adhesive, barriers, or backing that you utilization in the framing of your graphics or drawing must be completely acid free. Acidic materials, after long times of time should actually damage the artwork in the frame by distorting the actual paper or by turning the paper a yellowish color.

The glass must be excellently clean and should be tested for finger prints, dust, hair, or other far-off material, before securing it permanently in the frame. You could have to do this more than once.

Forever soma with glass, I would ever skeletal frame with glass, just I would besides expend the duplicate money for the UV protection glass. However, I would never use non-glare glass or plexiglas.

Stay away from black, As a general rule, I always stay away from black, especially solid black-although, it can work if is part of a color technique with a particular molding and if it is not overpowering the drawing. It`s good to have something that has a range of values-including molding and mats, working as a set. Even with the values and gradations created within the graphite media, the mat or mats and the frame may all be chosen to either compliment, subdue, or emphasize any particular value or aspect of your drawing.

Use matting, I prefer using mats with the framing of my drawings. If an acidic matting is use, it should be backed by an acid-free material that will act as a territorial barrier between the matting and the drawing. There is a standard thickness that is compulsory and favorite in the industry for this buffer or barrier. The same musing must be given to the backing of your drawing. If your drawing or art is backed or mounted on an acid-free material, the barrier is avoidable . Some framers use a foam-core board for backing.

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Changing the blend mode of the layer from Normal to Color Dodge.

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Next, we need to remove all of the color from our “Background copy” layer, and we can do that quickly using Photoshop’s Desaturate command. Go up to the Image menu in the Menu Bar along the top of the screen, choose Adjustments, and then choose Desaturate. You can also use the keyboard shortcut Shift+Ctrl+U (Win) / Shift+Command+U (Mac):

What’s a Smart Filter, and how is it different from a normal filter? Well, Smart Filters are just like normal filters in Photoshop, only smarter! What makes them “smarter” is that while normal filters produce static results (that is, they make permanent changes to the pixels on a layer), Smart Filters are non-destructive and remain fully editable. They allow us to easily go back at any time and make changes to the filter’s settings without any loss of image quality. By applying Gaussian Blur as a Smart Filter, we’re giving ourselves the option to go back and fine-tune our sketch effect later rather than locking ourselves in with our initial filter settings.

If I increase the radius value to something much higher, maybe somewhere around 45 pixels:

Once you’ve chosen a color, click OK to close out of the Color Picker. Your document will temporarily be filled with that color, and if you look in the Layers panel, you’ll see the new fill layer, named “Color Fill 1”, sitting at the top.

Thanks for checking out this tutorial. If you like these kinds of effects, check out my Photographic Effects video course, it’s 27 different effects like this and its only $7

And now, the sketch appears colorized, in my case with blue:

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Use the shortcut CMD+A to Select All, then go to Edit > Copy Merged (or CMD+Shift+C). This will make a clipping of all the visible layers. Press CMD+V to paste this copy at the top of the layer stack.

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We’ve created so many copies of our Background layer at this point that our Layers panel is becoming cluttered with them, and they all have names (“Background copy”, “Background copy 2”, “Background copy 3”) that don’t tell us anything about what the layer is being used for. Let’s break the cycle and rename the layer we just created.

With the “Color” layer now the top-most layer in the document, your original image will re-appear, blocking the other layers below it from view, which is obviously not what we want. We want to blend the color from the original image in with our sketch. To do that, simply change the blend mode of the “Color” layer from Normal to Color:

In this tutorial, we’ll learn how to easily create a classic Photoshop effect, turning a photo into a pencil sketch! In fact, we’ll actually learn how to create four variations of the sketch effect, starting with a simple black and white version. We’ll then take our black and white sketch and learn a few different ways to colorize it, first using the photo’s original colors, then with a single color, and then with a gradient!

17 responses to “Turn a photo into a pencil sketch in Photoshop tutorial”

Hi CAFE Crew, here is a brand new tut for you all. This is an old favorite of mine. How to turn a photo into a pencil sketch in photoshop. This is actually really easy to do and it gets quite good results too. As usual, I’ll provide a few creative jump off points at the end for your own experimentation.

The effect we’ll be creating in this tutorial mimics the lines and shading of a pencil drawing. Producing this style of artwork for real would take hours of work for even the most talented artist, but the power of Photoshop gives us the ability to replicate it pretty well in just minutes. This makes it much more feasible to use the sketched look within your designs that might require an ‘artsy’ theme. If you don’t fancy creating this effect manually, you might be interested in my free Artistic Paint, Sketch & Ink Photo Effect Actions.

Here are some variations using Color Dodge, you will notice that Linear Dodge produces a softer result that Color Dodge. Try different blending Modes for different results.

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If the color appears too strong, you can reduce it by lowering the opacity of the “Color” layer. I’ll lower mine down to 50%:

Changing the blend mode to Color Dodge turns the document temporarily white.

To choose a gradient, click on the small arrow to the right of the gradient color swatch at the top of the dialog box. Don’t click on the color swatch itself or you’ll open the Gradient Editor which is beyond the scope of this tutorial. Make sure you click on the arrow to the right of the color swatch:

We have our main sketch effect, and we created it using a Gaussian Blur Smart Filter. As I mentioned earlier, Smart Filters remain fully editable, allowing us to easily go back and change the filter’s settings later if needed. How do we do that? Well, if we look again in the Layers panel, we now see the Gaussian Blur filter listed as a Smart Filter below the Smart Object we applied it to. If, at any point, you start thinking that your sketch could use a bit more fine-tuning, simply double-click directly on the words “Gaussian Blur” to re-open the Gaussian Blur dialog box and drag the Radius slider as needed:

Learn how to easily turn any photo into a black and white pencil sketch with Photoshop, and then learn three great ways to colorize the sketch! Includes both the video and written versions of the tutorial.

Here’s the same sketch colorized with the photo’s original colors:

And there we have it! That’s how to easily turn a photo into a black and white pencil sketch, along with a few different ways to colorize it, in Photoshop! If you found this tutorial helpful, please consider supporting Photoshop Essentials by downloading the PDF version! Check out our Photo Effects section for more Photoshop effects tutorials!

Click the New Layer icon at the bottom of the Layers panel, then press CMD+Backspace to fill the layer with white (the default background colour). Head back to the Filter Gallery but this time choose Texturizer. Change the setting to Sandstone.

To achieve more of a coloured pencil drawing, the Black and White adjustment layer can be turned off to remove the desaturation effect.

And now I’m back to my sketch being colorized with the photo’s original colors:

We’ve created our main sketch effect, but depending on how much blurring you applied, you may be finding that your sketch is looking too light. If that’s the case, we can easily darken it using a Levels adjustment layer. To add a Levels adjustment layer, click on the New Fill or Adjustment Layer icon at the bottom of the Layers panel:

As soon as you select the Solid Color fill layer, Photoshop will pop open the Color Picker, asking you to choose your color. Don’t worry about choosing the wrong color here because, as we’ll see in a moment, we can easily come back and pick a different one. I’ll choose a shade of blue to see what that looks like:

Click OK to close out of the dialog box when you’re done. Your document will temporarily be filled with the gradient:

Back in the Gradient Fill dialog box, I’ll change the Angle of the gradient from its default 90° to 135°, which will cause it to run diagonally across the image, creating a bit more interest:

After lowering the opacity, the overall brightness is now looking better:

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The effect after changing the Levels blend mode to Multiply.

This opens the Gaussian Blur dialog box. To create our main sketch effect, all we need to do is apply some blurring to the layer (the Smart Object). We control the amount of blurring using the Radius slider along the bottom of the dialog box. The further we drag the slider towards the right, the more we increase the radius value and the stronger the blurring will appear.

To colorize the sketch with a single color, we’ll use one of Photoshop’s Solid Color fill layers. Click once again on the New Fill or Adjustment Layer icon at the bottom of the Layers panel:

In this first example, I added a solid color Fill adjustment layer. Change the blend mode to color, so only the color shows through. Adjust the opacity to suit your tastes.

Add another Adjustment Layer, this time select the Black and White option. The default settings will suffice to remove the colour and generate more of a standard pencil appearance.

Now that we’ve converted the layer into a Smart Object, let’s apply the Gaussian Blur filter. Go up to the Filter menu in the Menu Bar along the top of the screen, choose Blur, and then choose Gaussian Blur:

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If you want to try a different color, double-click on the fill layer’s color swatch in the Layers panel:

Then choose Solid Color from the top of the list that appears:

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The final result is a realistic pencil sketch effect with authentic line work and shading. The blurred and inverted color dodge layer does the base work by boosting the contrast, but the additional effects like the glowing edges outline marks and the paper texture make the artwork much more believable. The use of the Smart Object also means you can adjust the amount of Gaussian Blur to fine tune the result.

The new “Background copy 2” layer appears at the top of the layer stack.

We’re going to need this original image again later when we go to colorize the sketch, which means we’ll need to make sure we don’t make any changes to it. To keep it safe, the first thing we’ll do is make a copy of the image by duplicating the Background layer.

If you find, as I do, that your sketch now appears too dark, you can fine-tune the amount of darkening by adjusting the opacity of the Levels adjustment layer. You’ll find the Opacity option directly across from the blend mode option at the top of the Layers panel.

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To use this layer to colorize the sketch, we need to move it up to the top of the layer stack; in other words, move it above all the other layers. One way to do that would be to click on it and simply drag it up above the other layers, but there’s a faster way. To jump a layer directly to the top of the layer stack, first make sure it’s selected in the Layers panel. Then, press and hold Shift+Ctrl (Win) / Shift+Command (Mac) on your keyboard and press your right bracket key ( ] ). This will instantly jump the selected layer straight to the top:

I end up with an effect that looks more like the original photo. The exact radius value you choose will depend both on your image and the type of effect you’re going for, so the best thing to do is keep an eye on your image as you drag the Radius slider and judge the results. In my case, even though I like both versions, I think I like this second, more photo-realistic version a bit better, so I’ll go with this one. Click OK when you’re done to close out of the Gaussian Blur dialog box:

Let’s look at one more way to colorize the sketch, this time using a gradient. First, turn off the fill layer by clicking on its visibility icon in the Layers panel. This will once again return you to the black and white version of the sketch:

Now that we’ve colorized the sketch with a gradient, what if you like one of the previous colorized versions better (the one using the photo’s original colors or the one using the single color)? Or, what if you don’t like any of the colorized versions and want to go back to the black and white version? How do you switch back?

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This will turn the document completely white, or at least mostly white (you may see a few scattered areas of black depending on your image):

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Here’s what my sketch looks like colorized with the Spectrum gradient:

This opens the Gradient Picker, showing us thumbnails of preset gradients we can choose from. To select a gradient, double-click on its thumbnail. This will both select the gradient and close the Gradient picker. For this tutorial, I’ll choose the Spectrum gradient (first thumbnail on the left, bottom row):

Next, we need to make a copy of our desaturated layer. Click on the Background copy layer in the Layers panel and, just as we did with the original Background layer, drag it down onto the New Layer icon:

Changing the blend mode of the Gradient Fill layer to Color.

I’ll be using Photoshop CC here, but the steps we’ll be covering are fully compatible with any recent version of Photoshop so you can easily follow along no matter which version you’re using. Photoshop CS6 users may wish to check out the previous Photo To Pencil Sketch With Photoshop CS6 tutorial, while users of Photoshop CS5 and earlier can follow along with our original Portrait Photo To Color Sketch tutorial. Note, though, that the steps for colorizing the sketch with a single color and a gradient were not covered previously and are new to this latest version of the tutorial.

Release your mouse button when your hand cursor is directly over the New Layer icon. Photoshop makes a copy of the Background layer, names it “Background copy” and places it above the original:

Photoshop makes a copy of the layer, names it “Background copy 3” and places it directly above the original Background layer:

If you like the way your sketch effect looks using the photo’s original colors, you can stop here. Otherwise, let’s look at a second way to colorize it, this time using a single color. Before we do, let’s turn off the “Color” layer by clicking its visibility icon (the “eyeball” icon) in the Layers panel. This will bring back the black and white version of the sketch:

Here’s the image I’ll be using (stylish beauty portrait photo from Shutterstock):

To reduce the intensity of the color, simply lower the fill layer’s opacity, keeping an eye on the results as you drag the slider:

So how do we apply Gaussian Blur as a Smart Filter? For that, we first need to convert the layer to a Smart Object. Why do we need to convert it into a Smart Object? It’s because, when a filter is applied to a normal layer, it remains a normal, static filter. But when the exact same filter is applied to a Smart Object, it automatically becomes a Smart Filter!

We’ll also learn how to keep our pencil sketch flexible and editable, letting us go back and fine-tune things as needed, by taking advantage of Photoshop’s Smart Filters, fill and adjustment layers, and layer blend modes.

Go to Filter > Filter Gallery, then navigate to Glowing Edges from under the Stylize menu. Change the settings to 1 Edge Width, and maximum Edge Brightness and Smoothness.

When you release your mouse button, Photoshop makes a copy of the layer, names it “Background copy 2” and places it above the other layers:

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We’re going to be using the “Background copy 3” layer to colorize our sketch, so let’s give it more descriptive name. To rename a layer, double-click directly on its name to highlight it:

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In a moment, we’re going to create the main part of our sketch effect by blurring the layer using Photoshop’s Gaussian Blur filter. But rather than applying it as a normal filter, let’s apply Gaussian Blur as a Smart Filter.

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Double-clicking the Gaussian Blur Smart Filter will re-open its dialog box.

It’s easy. First, to hide the gradient, click on the Gradient Fill layer’s visibility icon in the Layers panel. With all three colorizing layers (the “Color” layer, the Solid Color fill layer and the Gradient Fill layer) now turned off, you’ll be back to your black and white version:

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Here’s the same sketch again, this time colorized with a single color (you can choose any color you like):

And finally, here’s how the sketch will look after colorizing it with a gradient. At the end of the tutorial, we’ll see how to easily switch between all four versions so you can choose the one you like best:

Dragging the “Background copy” layer onto the New Layer icon.

Change this glowing edges layer’s blending mode to Multiply to render the white background transparent, then reduce the opacity of the layer to around 50-60% to reduce the impact of these additional outlining sketch lines.

Under the Filter menu, select Gaussian Blur and alter the radius to around 40 pixels. The use of the Smart Object will apply this filter as a Smart Filter so we can fine tune the settings if necessary, rather than permanently apply the effect.

Turning off the “Color” layer by clicking its visibility icon.

Change the blending mode of the duplicate background layer to Color Dodge, which dramatically boosts the contrast and brings out the grainy details of the image.

This opens the Gradient Fill dialog box. I covered everything you need to know about drawing and editing gradients in Photoshop in our How To Draw Gradients With The Gradient Tool and How To Use The Gradient Editor tutorials so I won’t go into detail here. Instead, let’s look at how to quickly select one of Photoshop’s preset gradients and how to apply it to our sketch.

With the name highlighted, type in the new name. Let’s name it “Color”. Press Enter (Win) / Return (Mac) on your keyboard when you’re done to accept the name change:

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To do that, click on the Background layer and drag it down onto the New Layer icon at the bottom of the Layers panel (second icon from the right):

One of the classic Photoshop tutorial topics is the creation of a pencil drawing effect from a photograph. It’s one of those quick and simple techniques that produces a satisfying result, which makes the tutorial great for beginners. Throughout its history, Photoshop has featured lots of built-in filters that produce various sketch and artistic effects, but they don’t exactly produce a realistic outcome. In this tutorial I’ll show some clever steps that will transform a photograph into a hand drawn pencil sketch, which can even be fine tuned to find the most authentic look.

As you can see, the effect itself is quite simple and there are a number of variations that you can try to get very different looking results. Add a comment at let me know how you are using this effect.

The “Background copy 3” layer appears above the original Background layer.

Click the Adjustment Layer icon at the bottom of the Layers panel and choose Levels. Move the shadows and midtones sliders slightly to the right to darken the image a little.

Then, adjust the intensity of the colors if needed by lowering the layer’s opacity:

At this point, we have our main sketch effect, but currently it’s in black and white. Let’s look at a few different ways to colorize it. We’ll start by using the photo’s own original colors. For that, we need to make another copy of the Background layer, so click on the Background layer (the original Background layer that’s sitting below the other layers) and, just as we’ve done a couple of times already, drag it down onto the New Layer icon at the bottom of the Layers panel:

How To Turn A Photo Into A Pencil Sketch With Photoshop Step 1: Duplicate The Background Layer

Next, we need to change the blend mode of the layer. You’ll find the Blend Mode option in the upper left of the Layers panel. By default, the blend mode is set to Normal. Click on the word “Normal” to bring up a menu of other blend modes and choose Color Dodge from the list:

I’ll click OK to close out of the Color Picker, and now my sketch appears with my new color. You can go back and try as many different colors as you like until you find the one that works best:

Invert the layer by heading to Image > Adjustments > Invert (or the CMD+I shortcut) to switch the colouring from white on black to black on white.

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With your image newly opened in Photoshop, if you look in your Layers panel, you’ll see the image sitting on the Background layer, currently the only layer in the document:

The Multiply blend mode is one of a group of blend modes in Photoshop that darken the image, and right away, we see that my sketch now appears much darker:

Drag the Background layer over the New Layer icon in the Layers panel, or use the shortcut CMD+J to create a duplicate of the layer. Go to Image > Adjustments > Invert (or hit CMD+I) then right click and select Convert to Smart Object.

Also try running a gradient through a new blank layer at the top and change that to color blend mode.

Either way desaturates the image, leaving us with a black and white version of our photo:

Start with a Photo that has some decent edge detail, here is one I got from Adobe Stock

Change to Linear Dodge blend mode and you should see a perfectly white image (Use Color Dodge for sharper edges)

The effect you achieve will depend on how much blurring you’ve applied. Lower radius values will create a sketch with fine, thin lines, while larger values will give you a more photo-realistic result. For example, if I choose a fairly low radius value of around 10 pixels:

This re-opens the Color Picker, allowing you to choose something different. I’ll try a pinkish-purple this time:

Photoshop adds a Levels adjustment layer, names it “Levels 1”, and places it above the other layers in the Layers panel:

The Color blend mode tells Photoshop to blend only the color from this layer and ignore everything else, and just like that, the sketch is now colorized:

To colorize the sketch with a gradient, we’ll use a Gradient fill layer. Click once again on the New Fill or Adjustment Layer icon at the bottom of the Layers panel:

To blend the color in with the sketch, simply change the fill layer’s blend mode from Normal to Color:

The more you lower the opacity value below its default 100%, the more the layers below the Levels adjustment layer will show through, brightening the sketch back up. I’ll lower mine down to around 40%, but keep an eye on your image as you adjust the opacity to find the value that works best:

Change this layer’s blending mode to Multiply so the underlying artwork can be seen, then reduce the opacity of the layer to around 50% to produce a much more subtle paper texture effect.

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Filter>Blur>Gaussian Blur (You could actually use any filter, as long as it creates a difference between the 2 layers)

Step 12: Move The “Color” Layer To The Top Of The Layer Stack

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Changing the blend mode of the adjustment layer to Multiply.

Once you have your perfect pencil sketch, why not try adding some color for a nice variation.

Begin by opening up your chosen source photograph in Adobe Photoshop. The effect works best with images that have a clean background in good lighting and focus, so working with a professional studio shot like this stock image from Shutterstock provides the best results.

Then, to bring back the single color version, click on the Solid Color fill layer’s visibility icon (the empty square where the eyeball used to be) to turn it back on. Or, to bring back the photo’s original colors, click the “Color” layer’s visibility icon. I’ll turn my “Color” layer back on:

If we look in the Layers panel, we see the Gradient fill layer (“Gradient Fill 1”) sitting at the top. Just as we’ve done a couple of times already, to blend the gradient in with the sketch, simply change the blend mode of the Gradient Fill layer from Normal to Color:

Turn a photo into a pencil sketch in Photoshop tutorialColin Smith

Clicking the arrow to the right of the gradient color swatch.

We need to invert the brightness levels in this layer, making light areas dark and dark areas light, and we can do that using Photoshop’s Invert command. Go up to the Image menu at the top of the screen, choose Adjustments, and then choose Invert (keyboard shortcut: Ctrl+I (Win) / Command+I (Mac)):

The options and controls for the Levels adjustment layer appear in Photoshop’s Properties panel, but there’s nothing here that we need to do with them. Instead, to darken the sketch, all we need to do is change the blend mode for the Levels adjustment layer from Normal to Multiply:

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To convert the layer into a Smart Object, click on the small menu icon in the upper right corner of the Layers panel:

Here’s how it will look as the initial black and white sketch:

Duplicate the layer by dragging into the new layer icon, or press Ctrl/Cmd+J

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Then choose Convert to Smart Object from the menu that appears:

It may not seem like anything has happened, but if we look again in the Layers panel, we now see a small Smart Object icon in the lower right corner of the layer’s preview thumbnail. This tells us that the layer is now a Smart Object:

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