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Creating Focus on the Photo by Using Blur Map

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On this tutorial i will share with how to create focus effect on photo with different levels of blur.

Final Image Preview

Creating Focus on the Photo by Using Blur Map

Resources


Step 1

Start by opening photo on Photoshop. Now we are going to create a special blur map to focus attention on the object. To do that start by selecting foreground color as black (#000000).

Creating Focus on the Photo by Using Blur Map 1


Step 2

Use the Pen Tool with Shape Layers selected to draw out the figure of a man. Reduce layer opacity to 50% after starting to select man to see the real shapes of the photo.

Creating Focus on the Photo by Using Blur Map 2

In the end you should have man selected like on image below.

Creating Focus on the Photo by Using Blur Map 3

Update layer opacity to 100% for this layer.

Creating Focus on the Photo by Using Blur Map 4


Step 3

Use the Pen Tool to draw out the second shape (left horse) with foreground color #212121.

Creating Focus on the Photo by Using Blur Map 5


Step 4

Now draw third shape (right horse) on the photo with color of #4c4c4c.

Creating Focus on the Photo by Using Blur Map 6


Step 5

Draw another shape by using color #747474. Keep positioning layers like i have which means that this one should be above the layer with the photo.

Creating Focus on the Photo by Using Blur Map 7


Step 6

Draw another shape by using color #9a9a9a.

Creating Focus on the Photo by Using Blur Map 8

Move this layer with shape under all the layers but above the photo layer.

Creating Focus on the Photo by Using Blur Map 9


Step 7

Draw back horse same way but using color #c0c0c0.

Creating Focus on the Photo by Using Blur Map 10


Step 8

Create a new layer and fill with light grey color (#e7e7e7).

Creating Focus on the Photo by Using Blur Map 11

Step 9

Merge all layers except photo layer. Select photo layer and open Channel panel by going to Window > Channels or by clicking on Channels next to Layers.

Creating Focus on the Photo by Using Blur Map 12

Create a new channel. Adobe Photoshop will automatically name it Alpha 1.

Creating Focus on the Photo by Using Blur Map 13

Go back to layers panel. Select all merged layer content by using Ctrl+click on layer thumbnail.

Creating Focus on the Photo by Using Blur Map 14

Copy selected layer with Ctrl+C, select Alpha 1 channel and paste layer content with Ctrl+V. Move a little bit to left to place it correctly.

Creating Focus on the Photo by Using Blur Map 15


Step 10

Hide merged layer visibility on layers panel and also hide Alpha 1 channel on channels panel.

Creating Focus on the Photo by Using Blur Map 16

Select photo layer and apply Filter > Blur > Lens Blur. Don´t forget to change Source to Alpha 1, select Invert and update Shape to Triangle. Also update Blur Focal Distance and Radius like i have on image below.

Creating Focus on the Photo by Using Blur Map 17


Final Image

And we are done. We learned to create a nice focus effect on photo with different levels of blur. Hope you liked it.


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2 Comments

  1. I know its creative but my inner artist kicks and says it looks just wrong to have two zones of focus in one image. I was following it fine up to the point the horse in the foreground is in more focus and just thought this doesn’t work for me! It should have the more appropriate name of “adding defocus to an image” everyone knows that you cannot re-focus an image! From a technical standpoint though nice tut!

    • Yes Neil you are right there is no need to show two level of focus in to one image but this just a tutorial to show how to create focus your image that it

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