How to create a Light Effect in Photoshop?

A Lighting Effect is one of the most attractive effects in digital photography. It has the ability to completely change the dimension of an image and make it eye-catching. We can also use various colors as well to add a colored lighting effect on your images. In this tutorial you will learn to create a lighting glow effects in Photoshop by using a very simple technique.


Step # 1 – Go to the File Menu

In the first step, go to the “File” menu which is located at the top left corner of the screen. Click on it and select the “Open” option from the menu.

Open a new file

Step # 2 – Open a New Document

Choose the document’s width as “1366 pixels” and height as “768 pixels”. Now click on the “OK” button to proceed.

Choose a document size

Step # 3 – Create a Sky Layer

Now make a duplicate of the background layer and change its name to “Sky”. Use the “Paint Bucket” tool from the menu to fill this layer with “Black” color.

Insert a new layer and fill it with black color

Step # 4 – Open the Gradient Overlay Panel

Go to the “Layer” menu and select the “Layer Style” option from the list. Now click on the “Gradient Overlay” option from the menu to open it.

Go to the gradient overlay settings

Step # 5 – Adjust the Gradient Settings

In this window, decrease the “Opacity” to “50%” and select the “Reverse” option of the “Gradient” to make it “White and Black”. Now choose a “Radial” style with “90 degrees” of the “Angle” and change the “Scale” option to “80%”.

Apply these settings by clicking on the “OK” button.

Choose the gradient settings

Step # 6 – Create a Colors Layer

Now add a new layer and rename it to “Colors”. Select the “Paint Bucket” tool from the menu and apply a “White” color on this layer.

Insert a new layer and fill it with white color

Step # 7 – Apply a Lighting Effects Filter

Now go to the “Filter” menu and select the “Render” option from the list. Click on the “Lighting Effects” filter from the menu to apply it on the image.

Choose a lighting filter

Step # 8 – Adjust Lighting Effects Settings

A new window will appear in front of your screen in which you can see various options and settings of the Lighting Filter. Choose the “Style” option to “RGB Lights” mode and select the “Intensity” option to “Negative 60”. Now change the “Focus” option to “Narrow 95”.

Leave rest of the options as it is and click on the “OK” button to apply the filter on the layer.

Choose settings of the effect

Step # 9 – Apply a Gaussian Blur

Now go to the “Filter” menu and select the “Blur” option from the list. Click on the “Gaussian Blur” filter from the menu to apply it on the layer.

Choose a Gaussian blur filter

Step # 10 – Choose the Blur Settings

In the Gaussian Blur settings panel, choose the “Radius” to “80 pixels” and click on the “OK” button to apply this filter.

Adjust its radius

Step # 11 – Change the Blending Mode

Now change the blending mode of this layer to “Overlay” from the blending menu.

Choose its blending mode to overlay

Step # 12 – Create a Stars Layer

Add a new layer and change its name to “Stars”. Now fill this layer with “Black” color by using the “Paint Bucket” tool from the menu. Change the blending mode of this layer to “Screen”.

Insert a new layer and fill it with black color

Step # 13 – Apply a Noise Filter

Now go to the “Filter” menu and select the “Noise” option from the list. Click on the “Add Noise” filter from the menu to apply it.

Choose a noise filter

Step # 14 – Adjusting the Noise Amount

In this window, change the “Amount” to “10%” and select both “Gaussian” and “Monochromatic” options. Click on the “OK” button to apply these settings.

Change its amount and settings

Step # 15 – Go to the Level Settings

Now go to the “Image” menu and select the “Adjustments” option from the list. Select the “Levels” option from the menu and click on it to open.

Choose settings for image levels

Step # 16 – Adjust its Levels

In this window, enter “65”, “1.00” and “100” values in the Level’s panel and click on the “OK” button to apply it.

Change the level’s value

Step # 17 – Apply a Clouds Filter

Add a new layer and change its name to “Nebula”. Now go to the “Filter” menu and select the “Render” option from the list. Click on the “Clouds” filter to apply it on the layer.

Choose a cloud filter on the image

Step # 18 – Open the Blending Options

Go to the layer’s panel and right click on the layer name. Select the “Blending Options” from the menu to make further changes.

Go to the blending options

Step # 19 – Adjust the Blending Mode

In the Blending options window, change the blending mode to “Overlay” from the menu.

Change its blending mode to overlay

Step # 20 – Adjust the Gradient Mode

Go to the “Gradient Overlay” tab and change its blending mode to “Overlay” as well. Set the “Angle” to “130 degrees” and “Scale” to “150%”. Now click on the “OK” button to apply these settings.

Choose the gradient settings

Step # 21 – Create a Flash Layer

Now add a new layer and change its name to “Flash”. Select this new layer and move it on top of the “Sky” layer. Use the “Paint Bucket” tool from the menu to fill it with “Black” color.

Insert a new layer and fill it with black color

Step # 22 – Apply a Lens Flare Filter

Now go to the “Filter” menu and select the “Render” option from the list. Click on the “Lens Flare” filter to apply it on the layer.

Choose a lens flare effect

Step # 23 – Adjust the Lens Flare Settings

In this window, change the “Brightness” to “100%” and select the “105mm Prime” option. Now click on the “OK” button to apply this filter on the layer.

Change its brightness and other settings

Step # 24 – Apply a Gaussian Blur

Now go to the “Filter” menu and select the “Blur” option from the list. Click on the “Gaussian Blur” filter to apply it on the layer.

Choose a Gaussian blur on the image

Step # 25 – Adjust the Radius

In this window, change “Radius” option to “10 pixels” and click on the “OK” button to apply these settings.

Change the filter’s radius