2 Ways To Quickly Add Bokeh Flares To Your Images

in focus

Photoshop's filter Lens Blur

Lens Blur applied a second time selectively

Bokeh flares added with an image and brushes

 

The word bokeh (Japanese for blur), the quality of the blur produced in out-of-focus parts of an image, is often used to describe the way a lens renders out-of-focus points of light.  You don’t have to have a lens with a very wide aperture to create images with bokeh flares.You can apply bokeh flares to shots with or without analog flares after exposure, using Photoshop.

Blend A Second Image With Flares

There are at least three ways to find bokeh flare images.


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3 Color Tweaks To Improve Image Blur’s Depth Of Field

original

background color adjusted

background color adjusted plus detail blurred

The principles of atmospheric perspective can be used to enhance the illusion depth in two-dimensional images. The three elements of color each encode space. Some colors rise forward – light, warm, saturated. Some colors recede – dark, cool, desaturated. When applied strategically and selectively, they can produce powerful visual effects, making your images appear even more realistic. 

You can combine these tendencies (They’re not absolute rules and can all be reversed in the right contexts.) with selective blur to make the illusion of space in your images even more powerfully felt.

Photoshop’s Depth Blur neural filter offers sliders to make it quick and easy to make these kinds of color adjustments and make blurring effects more powerfully felt. 


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3 Ways To Blur Image Backgrounds With Photoshop From Easy To Precise

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Three Photoshop gurus demonstrate how to blur backgrounds, moving from simple to more precise methods.
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How To Combine Focussed & Defocussed Images Using Photoshop

In & Out-Of-Focus Mixed

 

Combining in and out-of-focus images with Photoshop is a simple matter of placing tow versions of the same image on separate layers.

If you’re simulating an out-of-focus image using blur filters in Photoshop this takes one step. Use the Layers menu and select Duplicate Layer or in the Layers palette drag the layer to the Create a new layer icon ( + ). The two layers will be perfectly registered. The top layer is ready for blurring.

If you’re combing separate exposures of the same image that are in and out-of-focus add a couple more easy steps.


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How To Create Sophisticated Motion Effects With Photoshop’s Path Blur

Photoshop CC’s recent addition to its Blur Gallery, Path Blur offers a creative and flexible way to add directional motion to your images in post-production. It’s astonishing! You’ve got to try it to believe it – and to truly understand it.

The Blur Gallery now has five effects (Field Blur, Iris Blur, Tilt-Shift, Path Blur, and Spin Blur) that can be controlled from a single panel. Once you’ve accessed one, you can quickly access the others at the same time enabling you to create complex blur effects in a single stop. Path Blur alone is capable of delivering lots of complex motion effects with one simple path.

Before applying Path Blur, consider using a Smart Object to make the filter non-destructive, re-editable, and maskable. (I recommend you acquire Raw files as a Smart Objects but in cases where you can’t, such as cases that involve merges or stacks or major retouching, convert your Background layer to a Smart Object – Layer: Smart Objects: Convert To Smart Object.)

To apply the filter follow this path - Filter: Blur Gallery : Path Blur. The Blur Gallery panel will appear, offering you five extraordinary sliders and multiple points of control.


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How To Control Blur FX In Photoshop With Amazing Precision

Photographers use blur (or bokeh) for a variety of reasons: to enhance space through depth of field; to add interesting visual artifacts; to simplify them; to change the quality of their expression. In the past, blur was controlled almost entirely through exposure; now it can also be controlled during post-processing, giving photographers an unprecedented array of options and ways to customize the look and feel of their images. Knowing what you can do, how far you can go, and when you can do it may change the way you shoot, one time, sometimes, or all the time.

There are many blur filters in Photoshop; Field Blur, Iris Blur, Tilt-Shift, Gaussian Blur, Lens Blur, Motion Blur, Radial Blur, Shape Blur, Smart Blur, Surface Blur, in order of appearance in the Filter: Blur drop-down menu. (See A Quick Visual Comparison Of Photoshop's Blur Filters here.) The choices are extensive and it pays to familiarize yourself with your options by experimenting with them; you’ll find you have an extraordinary set of options that you can modify and combine creatively. If you only use the filters Gaussian Blur and Lens Blur, you’ll still have game-changing control at your fingertips, once you learn how to extend and modify them.

Photoshop's Lens Blur filter

There are several important non-destructive strategies you can use to gain more control over all filter effects that will enable you to go further in your explorations and generate more sophisticated and compelling results. Try one or all of the moves in this classic progression. Apply a filter to a duplicate layer and then modify its Opacity, Blend Mode, Blend If Sliders, and add a layer mask.


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One Simple Way To Make Photoshop’s Go To Filter High Pass Even More Useful

Indispensable, Photoshop’s High Pass filtration offers contrast and detail enhancement effects no other tool does. Some tools get close, but they’re not the same. 

(Read Curves, Clarity, Dehaze, High Pass, Texture and Sharpening Compared.)

High Pass filtration slip streams between detail enhancement or sharpening (at a low setting) and luminosity contrast adjustment (at a high setting). The two are intimately tied to one another and the difference is really just the granularity that the contrast is applied with. At a low setting High Pass filtration accentuates contrast along contours with a thin feathered line, while the flat gray areas surrounding contours on the high pass layer tend not to accentuation texture or noise. At a high setting High Pass filtration creates stronger contrast so broadly feathered that it creates a localized vignetting effect, accentuating the illusion of volume in the process.

(Read more here on How To Apply High Pass Filtration.)

The intensity of either or both of these high pass effects can be accentuated by adding more contrast to the high pass layer with Curves. Unlike raising the High Pass filter slider while you apply it, which increases the width of the lines on it, increasing the contrast of the layer with Curves does not; it simply makes the lines darker and the haloes brighter.

Take these steps ...


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How To Make Advanced Masks in Adobe Camera RAW & Lightroom

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Masks in Camera Raw and Lightroom are new. Colin Smith shows you beyond the basics, how to combine masks for more complex selections, such as selecting the foreground, adding, subtracting, and intersecting masks. Learn how to use combination and complex masks.
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How To Hack Photoshop’s AI To Get Astonishing Color Grading In Your Images

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Add spectacular color to photographs using this amazing trick Colin Smith discovered by hacking Color transfer in Photoshop 2022. This quick tip will help you color grade photos like a pro, but its so easy and quick. Every photographer will love this.
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