Rays of Light in Photoshop

    ●   Take a picture and make a spooky background for your project.

Learn About:

Threshold Brush Opacity

  •   This tutorial is part of the Monster Mesh Project.

Other People's Work:

Here are examples of work inspired by this tutorial.


Step #1: Open Your Project in PhotoShop ~

If you are currently working on a Photoshop project, open YOUR PROJECT!

movie poster drawing example


If you don't have a project you can use, then make a blank document the same size - but remember: these tutorials are intended to be used ON YOUR PROJECTS.

To start off, find an image that has some gap or spaces where light normally passes through, such as a window, clouds, or hallway.


Step #2: Duplicate the Layer ~

Duplicate the original layer. Right-Click it land select "Duplicate Layer"

clouds layers

Step #3: Threshold ~

Select the duplicate layer and go to: Image > Adjustments > Threshold

… and adjust the Thresold to half black and 1/2 white.

Step #4: Radial Blur image ~

Now go to: Filter » Blur » Radial Blur

… set to: Zoom, Quality: Best, adjust the Amount and change the Blur Center.

Adjust the "Blur Center" by dragging its center point around - thats's the most important part …

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Step #5: Blending Mode ~

Scroll through the Blending Modes and find one you like …







Try Multiply, Screen or Overlay or whatever you like best …


If you see other blending modes you like as you're scrolling down, don't be afraid to experiment.


Blending Modes are awesome!

Step #6: Erase ~

Then get the Eraser Tool or hit the keyboard shortcut letter (E) …

eraser tool

… and select a soft brush …

… and erase out part of the layer where obviously light is not passing through.

Last Step: Save and Attach ~


Attach it!

  •   ALWAYS save your projects like this:


  •   DO NOT name your project any other way - Improperly named projects will not receive credit and you will be sad.


  •   NEVER leave your work on the desktop or depend on a flash drive - instead, save your work in a folder you can find later - preferably on a virtual drive where it can be backed up.

Other Resources: