Create Lens Flare effects in Photoshop

Create a beautiful lens flare effect on any object in photoshop

This tutorial will show you step by step how to create beautiful lens flare effects, in Photoshop.

Creating lens flare in Photoshop becomes useful when you want to spice up your designs or make them more realistic.

You can use lens flare on logos, buttons, banners...anything that you can think of and the results are quite impressive.

Here are examples without lens flare and with lens flare created from this tutorial.

lens flare tutorial start
lens flare tutorial result
 

So let's get started!

Step 1

Launch Photoshop and either open an existing design that you have or create a blank document and write on it what ever you like.

I have designed a quick 'logo' if you can call it that and I will use this to demonstrate how lens flare can make it look even better.

If you are creating a blank document I suggest making it big otherwise you risk cutting out the light rays (you can always resize it later) and I also suggest using a thick font like 'Impact' for example which is a default Windows font and a dark background (#222222 for example).

As you can see my logo is pretty much basic text written with a thick font on a dark background.

lens flare tutorial start

 

Step 2

Create a new layer:

Top menu : Layer > New > Layer

create new layer in photoshop

 

Select colour:

On your toolbar, set the the foreground colour to #000000

set foreground colour in photoshop


Select the Brush tool:

Keyboard shortcut B

select brush

 

Configure brush settings:

  • Right click anywhere on your image.
  • A menu should appear with your brush settings.
  • Select a soft brush, size: you should make it as big as you want as long as it fits in your canvas.

brush settings

Draw on the canvas:

With your brush, make a simple soft circle anywhere on the blank layer you created.

It should look something like this (I used a white background just so that you could see better the shape I made.):

 brush stroke

Duplicate layer:

With the layer with the brush stroke selected, press CTRL + J to duplicate it.

duplicate layer

 

Create a lens flare on your brush stroke - layer 1:

Select Layer 1 from your layers panel (see image above), then...

From the top menu: Filter > Render > Lens Flare

lens flare menu


Configure lens flare:

Lens type: 50-300mm Zoom

Brightness: 100%

Make sure that the lens flare is centered with your black brush stroke.

lens setting

 

Create a lens flare on your brush stroke - layer 2:

Select layer 2 (the one we duplicated earlier) then...

Using the same method as explained above, create a new lens flare but this time using the 105mm Prime lens.

 lens setting

 

Set layer blend modes:

Select layer 1 and set its blend mode to 'Screen' - Opacity 100%

layer blend mode

Select layer 2 and set its blend mode to 'Screen' - Opacity 50%

layer blend mode

 

Position Lens Flares

Position layer one on the area of your design where you want the flare to originate from.

On my logo, I placed layer 1 on the edge of the letter C and layer 2 a bit further down (I had to rotate layer 2 to match the direction of the light rays of layer 1)

lens detail

I then duplicated both layers and positioned them on the bottom of the letter O.

It is up to you where you want to position them.

Here is what I came up with:

lens flare result

 

A final tip is to create your lens flare on a big canvas with a big brush. By doing so you get the full flare with all the light rays. If it is too big for the design you want to use it on, you can resize after but it is important to have a lens flare with all its nice light rays.

If you liked the tutorial don't forget to like and comment.  

Thank you!

 


Additional information