Create a Dazzling Bokeh Effect in 15 Easy Steps

Create a Dazzling Bokeh Effect in 15 Easy Steps

Photoshop Post Production Effects

One of the most used (and trendy) effects in photography is Bokeh. If used properly, it can create a beautiful environment around your subject, bringing a whole new atmosphere to your image. If you're using a good camera with good lens and with a wide open aperture, you can get a nice depth of field effect. But if you don't own a good camera, don't worry — you can still get that gorgeous Bokeh effect in Photoshop.

If you have an image that you want to add some post-production value, in this tutorial I will show you how you can achieve this out of focus effect in Photoshop. But before we begin, and if you want to follow this tutorial exactly as described, please download the following picture from Pixabay: Download

Step 1

Open your image in Photoshop.

Step 2

Go to Layer > Duplicate Layer. Name this new layer as “Focus” and click OK.

Step 3

Using your preferred method, make a selection of the area of the image that you want to keep the focus on. In this case, I will be using the Quick Selection Tool to make the selection.

Step 4

With the selection active in the “Focus” layer, click on the “Add Layer Mask” icon at the bottom of the Layers Panel.

Step 5

Hide the “Focus” layer by clicking on the eye icon next to the layer's name.

Step 6

Hold the Ctrl key on your keyboard and click over the layer mask thumbnail of the “Focus” layer.

Step 7

With the selection active, go to Select > Modify > Expand. Set the value to 20 pixels and click OK.

Step 8

Click on the Background layer to make it active and go to Edit > Fill. Under Contents, select “Content-Aware” from the dropdown menu and click OK.

Step 9

Go to Select > Deselect.

Step 10

Go to Filter > Blur > Field Blur. Apply the following settings and click the OK button in the top toolbar. Note: depending on the image you want to apply the effect to, you may need to change these settings a bit to fit your image specific needs.

Step 11

Go to Layer > New Adjustment Layer > Hue/Saturation. Name this new layer “Saturation” and click OK.

Step 12

In the Hue/Saturation properties panel, set the Saturation value to +20.

Step 13

Go to Layer > New Adjustment Layer > Brightness/Contrast. Name this new layer “Contrast” and click OK.

Step 14

In the Brightness/Contrast properties panel, set the Contrast value to 20.

Step 15

Lastly, make the “Focus” layer visible by clicking on the eye icon next to the layer's name.

Conclusion

This same procedure can be used on any image (it does not matter the size or resolution) and all you have to do is to change the Field Blur settings a bit according to your own image. Furthermore, you can easily make Bokeh backgrounds to be used later over any other image, simply export the image hiding the “Focus” layer and you will have a nice Bokeh background.


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