Join Julieanne Kost for an in-depth discussion in this video Creative blurring along path, part of Photoshop CC 2017 Essential Training: Photography.
- [Instructor] We're going to spend a few moments creating motion in this image using the Path Blur filter. Now, the image was photographed while I was on a Zodiak, so it would have been very difficult to keep the iceberg sharp and have a long exposure where I could get the water moving, but we can do that in post. So, with the Background layer targeted, I'll choose Filter, and then Convert for Smart Filters, then I'll choose Filter, and then Blur Gallery, and then Path Blur.
Photoshop automatically adds a path in my image. Yours may or may not be showing these red end points. If I want to turn them off, I can uncheck the Edit Blur Shapes. So this path determines the speed and the direction of the blur. So, for example, if I click on the white dot next to the arrow, and I drag this up, we can see that the direction of the blur now goes at this angle. In this case, I want to keep it horizontal, so I'll drag it back down.
I can lengthen this. I can also move the center point of the blur by clicking and dragging, in order to change the direction of the blur. But, again, I want it horizontal, so I'll use Command + Z to undo that. In the Blur Tool areas, we can use Speed to either increase or decrease the speed of the blur. I don't want this to be too quick, so I'll leave it down around 60%. If I want to change the shape of the blur, then I'll turn on the Edit Blur Shapes.
We see the additional red interface here. I can click on either of the dots in order to change them, and when I reposition them, it's changing the shape of the blur. So I like to think of this as if I'm in a car, and the car is the speed of the blur. So the car's direction is that blue line. While I'm sitting in the car, if I pan my camera with this scene, if I pan it perfectly horizontal, then I won't have any blur shape.
But the moment that my camera maybe goes a little bit lower or a little higher as I blur, that's the blur shape that I'm creating. All right, so, even though I do like kind of the ripples that it makes in the water here, I don't want it in this example, so I'll make sure that they're both horizontal. I also know that I want to add in a little bit of noise, because right now, this blur is affecting the entire image. But I'm going to isolate it using the Smart Filter mask, so that the iceberg is not affected, and I know that the original image has a little bit of noise in it.
So, with my Noise option set to Grain, because the original image was a digital camera capture, I'll increase the amount to maybe around 12% or so. I can always come in and re-edit this at a later date, so it's not a problem if I need to make adjustments. I'll click OK, and we can see, I have the motion that I want in the water, but I don't want the motion in the iceberg, so, on the Layers panel, I'm going to target the Smart Filter mask.
I'll tap the G key in order to select the gradient. I'll tap the D key to get the default for the mask. We can see here that my gradient goes from white to black. White is going to show me the blur. Black is going to hide it. So I'm going to draw a very short gradient, starting right about at the edge of the iceberg where it touches the water, and dragging up. That's going to hide the blur from the iceberg.
Now, I also want to add this sky to the image, so let's target it on the Layers panel. I'll use the Filter menu, and choose Convert for Smart Filters. Then, return to Filter, Blur Gallery, and Path Blur. I'll hide the Edit Blur Shapes, increase the length of the path by clicking on the white circles at either end and stretching them out, and then, I'll add a bend to it by clicking on the center point and dragging up.
I'm going to add a little bit more speed, so that we get a nice blur, so that it looks like the clouds are moving out in the sky. Again, I'll add a little bit of grain, probably near 12%, just like we just did, and click OK. Now, I only want the sky to appear where there's sky in the original image. So let's hide that for a moment. I'll target the original photograph, but before I start to make my selection, I'm going to disable the filter.
Because if I tap the W key right now in order to select Quick Select, and I click and drag in my image area, you can see that it selects not only the sky, but also the iceberg, which is not what I would expect, because there's a pretty definite line between the iceberg and the sky. Well, there's a pretty definite line because I've masked out the Blur Gallery. If I hold down the Shift key, and we click on the Smart Filter mask, really, that's not a fine line.
So Photoshop is trying to make my selection based on the blurred image. So in order to toggle that off, I'll click the eye icon next to Blur Gallery, so that we get our sharpened version. I'll deselect using Command + D, and this time, when I use my Quick Select, and I drag in the sky area, it does a much better selection. I do see two small areas here that I want to change, so I'm going to tap the L key in order to switch to my Lasso tool, and, because I have the sky selected, and it's selecting too much, I actually want to remove this iceberg from the selection, so I'll hold down the Option key.
You can start anywhere in the iceberg, and just take that area as well as this area out of my selection. Excellent, now I can click on the eye icon next to the Blur Gallery in order to make it visible. I'll hold down the Shift key and click in the Smart Filter mask in order to enable it, and then, I'll select the Sky layer, make it visible by clicking on the eye icon, and I want to add a layer mask, so at the bottom of the Layers panel, I'll click the Layer Mask icon, which will hide the sky area from the iceberg.
If I want to make a little bit softer edge there, from the Properties panel, I'll increase the feather amount. So there you go. An easy way to add motion to an image that would be very difficult, if not impossible, to capture in camera.
Photoshop CC picks up where Adobe Camera Raw and Lightroom leave off, and is loaded with tools and features that can help take your photography to the next level. This course demonstrates the most efficient and nondestructive ways to perform essential editing tasks, including retouching, color and tonal correction, compositing multiple photographs, and adding creative effects—all while maintaining the highest-quality images. Along the way, you will learn the secrets of features such as layers, Smart Objects, adjustment layers, blend modes, fill layers, filters, layer masks, and painting as well as master other features that make Photoshop the most popular and powerful image-editing software on the market.
- Making creative changes with adjustment layers
- Adding color and gradients with fill layers
- Retouching portraits
- Combining (aka compositing) multiple images
- Working with Smart Objects
- Applying corrective and artistic filters
- Painting with Photoshop
- Adding text and watermarks to photos
- Using artboards and libraries
- Exporting and sharing images from Photoshop