May 28, 2013

Create Beams Of Light From Nothing In Photoshop

Creating Beams of Light

Here is some great Insight on creating beams of light in Photoshop. Check it out.

Working With Layers

The key to getting a beam of Light to look realistic is using multiple layers while creating it. A beam of light will be most intense in the center of the beam, so by making three different Curves layers that get smaller and smaller it gives the light a sense of Depth. It’s also important to apply a Gaussian Blur to the Layer Masks so the light doesn’t look unreasonably hard edged.

Adding Fog

The second part to making the beam of light believable is adding fog to the image. The only way a beam of Light can really be visible is if there are many small particles in the air for it to reflect off of. By using a combination of Adjustment Layers and Filter > Clouds, we can create a Texture around the light that gives the illusion of a foggy day.

Photo by Vincent Tullo

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  • user image
    Lawrence Smith

    excellent as usual, but how would you go about applying this effect on an image shot in the daylight?

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      Phlearn. com

      We would take it our for our final image, but this episode was just about creating the beam of light. We can’t do it all every time 🙂

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    Christophe B

    Great episode. Could you do an episode on how to do a lens flare ?

  • user image

    Very nice guide, one question, how come you have not taken the stand for the flash?

  • user image

    A little off topic, but…

    No matter how shitty my day was, every time I head to phlearn and watch Aaron do his magic, it just makes my day and I’m smiling all over again.

    Great episode, just as usual!

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    Thameemul Ansari

    This is nice tips

    I have one question, instead of gaussian blur why we cant use feather for curves masks?

    (in that we have more control and we can change values in any time)

    I am sorry, if it is wrong question

    you people are best in PS


  • user image

    Totally brilliant as usual. I learn more from this site than anywhere else on the web. Thanks.

  • user image

    How do you turn the little box on the right from white to black? (I don’t mean the ‘x’ shortcut for switching brush black to white and vice versa, but in the layer’s box)

    • user image

      Watch part1 of three it will tell you its cntr i. Or command in a mac. i have been trying to find the answer to that also.

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    Just something I got inspired to do after seeing this. Nothing amazing but had to try it as soon as I watched the tutorial 🙂

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    I finally learned how to make a white mask black i have been going crazy not being able to do that.
    This really got me ready to start doing some tutorials now.

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    Hey guys here’s my attempt at creating something like this. I’ve always been a huge fan of alien abduction style shots, and I played with a long exposure shoot a few weeks ago of my friend as an alien visiting earth.

    Anyways, here’s my take on this effect. Although I knew how to emulate the beam of light, I never thought about adding the fog / dust. Brilliant! Thanks for the video Phlearn!

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    Only one suggestion. Slow down a bit, most of this watching are newbies to photoshop and you go and talk so fast its really hard to keep up. BUT I LOVE your videos. They are so informative and helpful and your happy tone and attitude make it enjoyable to watch. Thank you so much I’m to bed super late every night watching your videos 😀

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    Mishkat Islam #

    What a nice video tutorial. I am very happy to see the video and I have tried to do like this. I am success.

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    Vibhas Gandhi

    I want to do same effect with a picture I shoot. But I main thing is that you took that picture at night and I took a picture in day light.
    So I thing you can do a tutorial on changing a day photography to a night photography and then create a light beam on main object.

  • user image

    I have read your blog post. Thank you very much for sharing this awesome post. I will visit again to read more post.

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    Tim Kennedy

    Thanks, Aaron. As an instructor, you have the rare talent of making complex subjects very simple to understand.

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    Amanda Schulz

    Another Stormtrooper photograph using tips I learned from this video!

    In this picture, Stormtrooper has learned that Ladytrooper is secretly plotting evil plots with the emperor….