How To: Photoshop Tutorial – Soft Focus Effect

How To: Photoshop Tutorial – Soft Focus Effect

August 4, 2019 50 By Peter Engel


Stock download links are in the description. Lets get started. Head over and select the Quick Selection Tool. Select the entire person. Once you’re done, Head up to Select and Mask. Select the Refine Edge Brush. Only focus on the hair. Output to: New layer with layer mask. Then hit OK. Head over and select the Move Tool. (V) Click, and drag the model onto our texture. Right click on the layer mask>Apply layer mask. Right click>Convert to Smart Object. Hit CTRL + T to select the man. Hold ALT + SHIFT>Drag corner inwards to make the selection smaller. Hit Enter when you’re done. Head down and select our bottom layer. Create a new adjustment layer>Black & White. Create a new adjustment layer>Levels. Drag the Shadow slider to the right 75. Then hit close. Select our top layer. Create a new adjustment layer>Hue/Saturation. Clip to layer below. Drop the lightness to – 75. Then hit close. Make sure the mask is selected. Foreground color set to black. Select your Brush Tool. (B) Select a brush with soft edges. Bring back some of the light. Starting on the face. Start adding smaller highlights to the model’s arms. Take your time! Add highlights to the other side as well. As you can see, there’s a big difference. Select the man layer. I’m going to rename this to Man. Select the top layer. I will rename this to Shadows and Highlights. Head down and create a new layer. I will rename this layer to More Highlights. Head up to Edit>Fill. Change the Contents: 50% Gray. Then hit OK. Change the Blending Mode>Soft Light. Head over and select the Dodge Tool. Range: Highlights | Exposure 20 or lower. Start adding more highlights. Go over existing highlights. I will speed this part up, since it’s time consuming. Add highlights the model’s hair. This part is optional. Right click on the top layer>Create a clipping mask. Head down and create a new layer. I will rename this layer to Dark Shadows. Make sure your foreground color is black. Next, select the Brush Tool. (B) Select a brush with soft edges. Start adding large shadows around the man. Start adding large shadows around the man. Take your time. Mine looks like this. It doesn’t have to be the same. Head down and create a new layer. Drag it below the Dark Shadow layer. I will rename this layer to clouds. Edit>Fill. Contents: Black. Then OK. Foreground black, Background white. Filter>Render>Clouds. Change the Blending Mode>Screen. Then head down to FX>Blending Options. Hold ALT + Drag top slider to the right. Then hit OK. Bring down the opacity to about 25%. Head down and select the Levels layer. Then create a new layer. Hold CTRL + Click on the man thumbnail. This will make a selection of the man. Then head up to Edit>Fill. Change the Contents: White. Then hit OK. CTRL + D to deselect. Head up to Filter>Blur>Gaussian Blur. Blur Radius: 30 Pixels. Then hit OK. Then bring the opacity down to about 40%. I’m going to rename this layer to Glow. Create a new layer. Rename this layer to Lights. Foreground color: White. Brush Tool Selected. (B) Add a large dot. Then add a few smaller ones. Then head up to Filter>Blur>Motion Blur. Angle 67| Distance 809 Pixels | Then hit OK. Select the clouds layer. I’m going to add some dust particles. Using your Move Tool. Drag and Drop onto our project. Position them as you wish. I’m going to add more. Using your Move Tool. (V) Drag and drop. Drag it below the Glow layer. CTRL + T to select the dust. Hold ALT + Shift while dragging a corner outwards. Increase the size to fit the image. Hit Enter when you’re done. Change the Blending Mode>Screen. I’m going to rename our dust layers. Next, Select our top layer. Then head down and create a new layer. I’m going to rename this layer to Noise. Head up to Edit>Fill. Contents: Black. Then hit OK. Head up to Filter>Noise>Add Noise. Amount 40% | Uniform | Monochromatic Then hit OK. Bring down the opacity to about 10%. This will blend the images together much nicer. Head down, create a new adjustment layer. Color Lookup. Select a nice one. I will select Crisp Winter. EdgyAmber Looks good as well. Create a new adjustment layer>Color Balance. Adjust the sliders to find colors you like. That’s it!