Adding a Gradient or Filtered Background To Your Photo


Sometimes a solid background just isn’t enough and you want a little variance in the background color or lighting. This tutorial will show you a pretty simple way to make that happen in Photoshop. In order to use this tutorial you need to be able to mask out any foreground material so that it will not be altered by the gradient. If you are looking for masking tutorials you can use any of the masking tutorials on this website. I also sometimes use Topaz Remask 5, which is a paid tool, but it helps with some finer details. My hair masking in Photoshop tutorial using channels will do the same thing, it just takes longer.

Adding a Gradient Background Tutorial


Links from the video:

Masking Hair with Channels Tutorial
Topaz Remask (this is a paid tool, but if you subscribe to Topaz they will usually have sales and discounts pretty often and you can get it for up to 50% off.)


Hair:/Wasabi Pills/ Drew Mesh Hair by MissAllSunday Lemon (@Hairology)

Head: Lelutka Mesh Head Simone by Jaden Art

Eyes: IKON Triumph Eyes by Ikon Innovia

Skin/Makeup: Bold & Beauty :: Sasha (Lelutka Applier) and makeup appliers by Jourdan McMillan (@Tres Chic)

Earrings: (Kunglers) Shani earrings by AvaGardner Kungler (@On9)

Pose: Pretense Poses Linger by Gidge Uriza

Photoshop Tutorial: Masking Hair

Masking out the hair.

It can strike fear and trepidation in even the most bold Photoshopper’s heart. If you’re in front of a solid background it’s easier, but what about when you’re not? What if you want to blur a populated background or make it darker so that your avatar stands out more?

In this tutorial I will show you how to mask out hair (with fly-aways or wisps!) using channels with dodge and burn.

As this is an intermediate-advanced level tutorial, you do need basic knowledge of Photoshop layers, tools and layout. I also want to warn everyone that this tutorial is about 18 minutes long, because I describe a lot of the “whys” around masking. Once we get to this level in Photoshop, there are sometimes lots of ways of doing things and here I show you a few of those ways. However, the technique I use here is a five-minute process at the most when you know all the steps.

Happy masking!

Softening and Highlighting Hair for Photoshop and Gimp

Have you ever looked at beautifully edited photos in wonder and some dismay, thinking that there’s no way you have time (and in my case artistry) for that kind of photo work? It happens to me all the time. As RL gets more and more hectic, it is difficult for me to find the time to edit photos in more than just a few basic ways.  If you are one of those digital artists who can enhance your photos drastically by drawing hair and incorporating external content into your photos, then I admire you and maybe hate you, just a little bit. At any rate, this tutorial is more for the Photoshop and Gimp amateur, a sort of making-hair-look-the-best-it-can-for-amateurs type thing. And I say honestly that the effects I achieve this way are subtle and not meant to change the look of your hair dramatically.

I had to create this video at high resolution so that you can see the subtle blurring effects that I am using. So if the video is a little slow to load I apologize. There is also a link at the end of the video for the G’MIC plugin for Gimp that you will need to create this effect. I am reposting the link here for anyone who just wants to click through.

G’MIC plugin download:


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  1. Softening and Highlighting Hair for Photoshop and Gimp | BloggingSL

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