Boy, it's been a decade and a half and I'm still discovering new things in Photoshop. Want to know what I learned today? Who wouldn't? Of course you do.
To do this blend thing, following a good deal of adjustments to one of the photos using various tools in their own window, up until today I would make copies of the phased in photo up a ladder of sorts in the window for layers. It is a stack of transparencies, then change the opacity incrementally. So the Cosby face layers over Clinton's background face will go something like 10%, 20% 30%, thereabouts or precisely to 100% opacity of Cosby face over Clinton face. Same with the "Hello Friends" sweatshirt. So the stack of transparencies then is quite large, a very tall ladder is what the layer window looks like. I have to scroll up and down the layer window to do things.
Then change all the layers into frames for an animated gif and then, by the same means, phase them back to the original background. So that when the gif runs the images doesn't do something then jolt back to frame 1. You want it to run smoothly.
I leaned I don't have to do all that. I can use the same layer that changes and make copy the frames but change the % in the layer window. The frames advance but the layer does not. So for nine or so consecutive frames in the timeline window the single Cosby face layer window stays put,while it's % of opacity changes. That means, a lot more frames than layers. The frames advance while the single face layer changes it's assigned opacity. Cool, eh? And that keeps the ladder of transparency layers the height of a short stool and not the length of a fireman's ladder. See? The differences between frames and layers is finally sinking in more fully. It's taken me this long to discover this feature of Photoshop layers and the interaction between frames and layers. It is a splendid discovery.
Had I taken a class, a course, or a seminar, this could have been explained to me early. But left on my own as I do then it's taken a very long time to discover. In another twenty years after I'm dead I just might just get this thing figured out reasonably well.
I'm sensing a slight flaw in my planning. My learning arc might be a little bit off. The moral of the story here is, um, eh, live and keep learning innit.
Come on. That's something.