Bokeffects How-to

In this tutorial, I’ll demonstrate how you can use a few of the Bokeffects overlays found in my Light Set.  For purpose of this tutorial, I’m using Adobe Photoshop CS3 in the default mode.  Although this tutorial may seem long, once you’ve done it one time, it is extremely easy and takes hardly any time at all.   Let’s take a look at the before & after.



The image I am using has been post-processed using MCP’s Color Explosion action, but you can use whatever post-processing methods you wish prior to application, or you can choose to use pictures straight out of the camera.  It’s up to you!


First, I’m simply going to open the picture I wish to apply the overlays to, along with the overlays I’m going to use.  In this demonstration I’ll show you how you can layer the overlays for a unique effect, but they each work well on their own as well.


So, just start by opening your picture, along with the overlays you wish to use.  In this instance, I’m using a picture titled “Fairy” along with my Bokeh Flare, Bokeh Flare II, and Alien Sprinkle overlays. Using the Window tool is a great way to easily view what you have opened.




After your picture is opened, choose the first overlay you wish to apply and open it.  In this case, I’m opening Bokeh Flare.




Now, open Bokeh Flare and go to Select, All




Now go to Edit, Copy




Now, go back to your original picture.




Now go to Edit, Paste




Now, you’ll probably need to transform the overlay in order to fit over your picture how and where you like it.  To do this, go to Edit, Free Transform.  Then you’ll need to stretch or shrink the overlay to fit your picture by dragging the little squares in each corner of the overlay with your mouse to fit.





As soon as you get it where you want it,  hit Enter, and your overlay is applied. 




Now, I really like the subtle changes that just one overlay provides, so I would probably be tempted to leave the picture just like this.  But, just for fun, let’s apply a couple of additional overlays so you can see the different effects.


Let’s apply the Bokeh Flare II overlay by repeating the exact same process above, only using the Bokeh Flare II overlay instead.  So, open the Bokeh Flare II overlay, select, copy, paste onto your picture, Free Transform, and then hit enter.  When I did that, this is how my picture looked:





Then, I applied Alien Sprinkle to just the top portion of my picture:




Then, just to give it some variance, I lowered the opacity on the Alien Sprinkle layer:




I also lowered the opacity a tad on the Bokeh Flare II layer.  Again, these tweaks were just to my liking, you can adjust the opacity on each to your own taste.  Also, you could mix the final results of these shots with other Light Set overlays or Dream Collection textures to really get artistic.


When you’re done, just flatten & save.




Here is a before & after shot of what we did.  I hope this tutorial was helpful!




The first time you do this tutorial, it may seem to take a while, but pretty soon you’ll breeze through it! You can also use the following shortcuts to speed things up once you get the hang of it.


To Copy:  Ctrl C (Windows) Command C (Mac)

To Paste:  Ctrl V (Windows) Command V (Mac)

To Free Transform:  Ctrl T (Windows)  Command T (Mac)



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