Playing With Blend Modes

Today I am going to show you how to add some beautiful Christmas lights to a picture. It’s a fun way to bring Christmas into your artwork or portraits.

I have already done my basic edits to the photograph, which was making the background almost black, colour correction and skin smoothing. This is what I have to start with:
start
There are already Christmas lights in the background to start with because they were where I was shooting.

So now what you will do is copy and paste your Christmas light picture on top of the photo and put the blend mode to Lighten. Mask out anything that doesn’t blend nicely with your image.

It’s really easy to make your own overlay; just find some lights, put on a lens that has a low aperture and manually focus the lens to be completely out of focus.
overlays
It’s already coming together nicely with only two added layers. You can do so much more with this style by warping the layer, or making them bigger and smaller.
done
As you can see the possibilities are pretty endless. Play with the depth, and blur some layers so they appear even farther away.

Below are other pictures I have created using similar techniques. Photoshop blend modes are truly amazing.

alien abduction

rainy

IMG_9640 web

Nebual Queen flip

starry dreams

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