bokeh-light-bubblesphotoshop-tutorial

This tutorial explains how to create a bokeh underwater light bubbles effect using Photoshop.

This will include blending colours using hue and saturation and creating a really cool custom brush.

Create a new document in Photoshop with 1920x1200 pixels screen resolution . Fill the background layer with a very dark grey, not black. If you fill it with black the effect won't work. The color I used was #151515

background-color

Select the Ellipse Tool (U), and create a circle. Use black for the color, and go to Layer>Layer Style>Blending Options. Change the Fill Opacity to 50%. After that select Stroke. Use 10 pixels for the size, Inside for the Position and Black for the color.

circle-brush

layer-style

Select the ellipse and go to Edit>Define Brush. Name your brush and that's done. Now we have a new brush.

edit-brush

Go to Window>Brushes (F5). The first thing to do in the Brush Engine is to select our new Brush. The size won't matter because you will change that when you use it. The Spacing, however, is very important. Chage the value to 100%. After that, select the Shape Dynamics, then Scattering and Other dynamics. For the values use the image below.

brush-export

Before we start painting our bubbles let's create a new layer and fill it with a colorful gradient. I created a new layer and used the layer styles to do that but feel free to do the way you are used to.

Layer > Layer Style>Blending Options

My gradient settings are as follows: Blend Mode is Overlay, Opacity is 100%, Style is Linear, and the Angle is 40º.

The colors I used are: Blue (#0D283E), Pink (#801258).

overlay-options

background

Let's create a new Folder in our Layer Palette. Rename the folder to Bubbles and change the Blend Mode to Color Dodge. Then create a new layer, choose white for the color and select the Brush Tool (B). Now just paint some ellipses with our custom brush. For this first layer use a big size, like 500-600px.

big

Go to Filter>Blur>Gaussian Blur. For this first layer use 20 pixels for the Radius.

big-blur

Create another layer and paint more brushes. This time however use a smaller size for the brush. After that go to Filter>Blur>Gaussian Blur. Use 4 pixels for the Radius.

medium

Create another layer and repeat the previous step, this time however use a much smaller brush. Apply the Gaussian Blur to this layer as well, but use only 1 pixel for the Radius.

final

Now just add your logo and that's it. We have a nice wallpaper. The idea of this tutorial was once again to show the power of the Brush Engine. You can try different shapes for this same effect, like hexagons for example. Also you can play a bit with the blurs to add more depth to the final design. Now it's up to you.

bokeh-final-sample

Optional: Logo Design

Create another layer and change the blending option like in the picture below. The code of the Blue color is: #7991f3

Layer > Layer Style > Blending Options > Outer Glow

logo-layer

Select the Brush tool and change the bubble color to #cce5fd

Be creative and fearless to do a complete mess with the shape, in my experience, the messier the better. I hope this tutorial helped you. If so, please let us know more about your artworks and drawings based on this tutorial on the comments. Thank you!

logo-432q532

Download Wallpaper Pack

bokeh-deviantart

Download the Photoshop .psd File

download-psd

Shimmer Photoshop Action

Creating stunning light effects from your photos with this easy to use action!

Every time you run the action you will get a different result, even if you use the same brushed area! You then have full layer control, so if there is a sparkle you don’t want then simply hide the layer, or you can even duplicate layers to build more sparkles.

creative-photoshop-effect

make-photoshop-effects

About the author

Alex Roman

I'm a 26-year old independent graphic artist and architect based in Bucharest and also the co-owner of iCanBeCREATIVE.

I specialize in branding for small businesses and startups: logos, websites, flyers, posters; mostly everything a brand may need to put the word out there in a professional way.

I really love what I do. Want to hire me? Follow me on Facebook.

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Comments

  • Olive
    2009-09-04 05:25:32
    This is awesome. I’m well making something like this tomorrow! :D
  • Bobby
    2009-09-04 05:26:37
    Hey! Thanks very much for the tut, its briliant, will experiment with it a bit ! :D thanks a again
  • Danielle
    2009-09-04 05:28:57
    Excellent tutorial. I love the simplicity and uniqueness of this one, plus the effect can be used in a variety of ways, which is great. Thanks for sharing this tutorial, keep up the good work!
  • Jonathas Scott
    2009-09-04 05:30:52
    Thank you for a great wallpaper, it looks great on my laptop. I will try my hand at the tutorial and see how my one turns out lol lol. Thanks again
  • AGt
    2009-09-04 05:32:14
    Wooow!! Really good and easy effect. Thanks for sharing. Good Luck
  • Heatherina
    2009-09-04 05:33:12
    Great Tutorial! Thanks for the PSD!
  • Joan Iguban
    2009-09-04 05:33:46
    Simple yet effective. Awesome.
  • Sandy
    2009-09-04 05:34:01
    Awsome, great tutorial! Simple and beauty.
  • Andrew
    2009-09-04 05:34:30
    Simple and effective design. The blurred background really pulls it together.
  • Rick M.
    2009-09-04 05:35:01
    I’ve been looking for a tut like this so I could include this style wallpaper in my website. Thank you!
  • Clay Jackson
    2009-09-04 05:36:16
    Thanks for the great beautiful tutorial. you are one of a kind who have taste creativity on colors and photoshop. Thanks!
  • Novy
    2009-09-04 05:37:00
    this tutorial is delicious. thanks for the help and I will definitely be using this to spice up my designs.
  • kailash
    2009-09-04 05:40:31
    Awesome tut. I love your site
  • Gorny S. Needa
    2009-09-04 05:46:04
    Wow so simple yet effective. This is one that i will try, Thanks.
  • Joefrey Mahusay
    2009-09-04 05:47:02
    Awesome tutorial I will surely try this. Thanks.
  • wenshen
    2009-09-04 05:47:21
    This was excellent! I’ve been looking for this tip for a long time also. Thanks for the post.
  • 2009-09-04 13:54:51
    Very nice tut. Just downloaded the file, thanks!
  • Joris
    2009-09-05 09:55:35
    Thanks this tutorial is really easy and helpfull. This is my outcome: backgroundu
  • 2009-09-07 13:21:37
    @Joris: i simply love it, great work!
  • 2009-09-18 04:59:38
    Erm... Do you mind crediting me for my video tutorial?
  • Zim
    2009-09-18 07:33:11
    It worked very well, excellent tutorial!
  • 2009-09-29 06:24:53
    This is a very good tutorial. Been looking everywhere for a tutorial on this kind of effect. Thank you. :)
  • 2010-01-02 09:03:18
    Great effect. I started to use this when I first read it on psdtuts.
  • 2010-01-20 16:21:30
    Hi- for some apparent reason it does not let me select the define preset button- to enable it to be a brush? can anyone please help- ive been racking my brains over this for a long time! Thanks Amit
  • 2010-01-28 02:28:16
    Nice work..keep it up
  • 2010-02-10 04:49:08
    Hi! this is very well explain nice tuts. our designer just created a impressive wallpaper. any one can see here http://bit.ly/bn4LQE Thanks for sharing, qammar feroz
  • Kushagra
    2010-03-29 22:56:12
    Thanks for the tutorial.. It helped me a lot in understanding the brush engine... :)
  • camila
    2010-05-18 06:17:11
    Great tips. I was wondering how to make the bubbles so bright... I wasn´t able to get them to shine. Irene L uses a lot of this effect on her pics... can you give me an idea how to make the bubbles brighter and more shinny? Thank you!
  • maybelle
    2010-06-11 20:40:01
    uhm.. i cant define the brush. it simply cant be how can i solve this? :((
  • Tudor
    2010-06-26 07:03:16
    i cant define the brush to...y fallow the steps but not working
  • admin
    2010-06-26 14:08:30
    the tutorial is very clear, however, you can download the brush form here: http://bit.ly/a2224t
  • 2010-12-13 13:40:38
    interesante
  • 2011-02-17 21:54:02
    We are LogoProDesign as a Creative Logo Designer, We checked your artwork collections. Those are amazed us. Thanks for that type of good work collections. We regularly checked your website for good artwork example. Thanks David Thomas
  • 2011-04-18 03:06:57
    nice good bubble i like it thanks
  • 2011-04-18 03:41:42
    superb.. thanks a lot for sharing
  • Gail
    2011-08-28 16:54:40
    Your tool to share this on twitter and fb covers the tutorial. How irritating. I love sharing great tutorials when I find them, but wish you could find somewhere to put that annoying share tool!!!
  • 2011-10-01 10:54:45
    Thanks very much for sharing. I learnt a lot & great work...
  • prem
    2011-10-22 03:48:12
    i cant create a brush(define brush is not enabled) after blending the elipse..please any one help me how to define the elipse to brush pattern
  • naho
    2012-08-09 13:57:41
    great!
  • thoungamba
    2012-09-03 23:19:04
    thanks for sharing..its very useful
  • 2012-10-25 12:33:36
    Thank you very much for this great tutorial. Really easy to learn.
  • Indhira Miraflor
    2012-12-12 21:55:13
    I like your Works... :) keep up a good work.
  • Carlton Banks
    2013-02-12 09:02:42
    Nice tut. Thanks, man.