If you convert your labels to annotation, then masking can be handled with the use of the Feature Outline Masks tool and the ArcMap Advanced Drawing Options settings. The standard ArcGIS workflow is outlined as Using masking.
for the condition "should not mask the water" it is OK
But for the road lines i may have the following case : the road style can be a 2 levels line : red line over a larger black line. In my small exmple the symbol is a white line over a larger black line. I want the mask to act : - on the black part of the line symbol - NOT on the colored part of the symbol (either it is red, yellow or white)
My understanding of the ESRI Capabilities is that it makes a new layer (i do not want to manage an additional layer) and that it acts over the full layers symbology, while i need it to act over only a part of the symbol. An other solution could be to manager 2 layers from the same Feature Class in order to mask only the black part of the symbol as a single layer. But doing so we have so many layer and so many mask.
The Advanced Drawing Options will allow you to mask only selected symbol layer, so yes, you are able to mask only black part of the line symbol.
Converting labels to anno creates a new annotation feature class, and creating Feature Outline Masks creates a new polygon feature class. These features are necessary to leverage the Advanced Drawing Options functionality. I think you will find that the management of these additional features will will be well worth the benefit of masking to your cartographic output.
I found this function ... i could have found it by myself. Thanks for the time i saved. I still have 1 questions regarding the use of mask :
How should i used the "levels" value ? I tried to not mask the red part of this symbol (see attached image). The red part of the symblol is the "Layer" 2 is the symbol. My map Layer is rendered with symbol having 1, 2 or 3 symbol Layers.
when i try set use a value (i tried from A to 18), i get no results and when i re-open the "advanced drawing option ..." window, the "Enable to associate levels to masked layers" option is no longuer selected
When this issue will be solved i would have only on thing to manage : mask management in letters with holes such as "O", "D" ...