Corey shows how to use the luminosity of an image to create a cool design effect and spice up your simple photos.



  1. Phillip Anthony Briles 23 May, 2008 at 09:54 Reply

    Another winner!

    I have always liked the versatility of the Gradient tool but thought I had outgrown it. Man, was I wrong. I was not aware of the Noise feature of that tool. I should have known.

    Once again, you have opened another creative door for us.

    Thank you very much for the Ps enlightenment. Your tuts are always outstanding.

  2. David O'Hara 23 May, 2008 at 10:09 Reply

    Another amazing tutorial! I really like the finished effect with this one. Looks really good. It’s something that say for example you saw on the back of a poster you would look at for a while. It really attracts the audience.

    Another great tutorial.

    Thanks a million 🙂
    David 😉

  3. Me 24 May, 2008 at 10:04 Reply

    Hey there!

    Nice turtorial, only I don’t get one thing.
    On a certain moment you make a new channel, alpha 1.
    That’s a black page, you can only see your selection.
    I don’t get how you make that page coloured.
    The video sais that you have to press ctrl+BackSpace, but when I do that my selection gets white. Can somebody help me?

    P.S I hope my english isn’t too bad..

  4. Gaby Bucur 25 May, 2008 at 02:23 Reply

    great tutorial as always Corey…

    @sharpless… the ‘option key’ on MAC…is the ‘Alt key’ on the PC 🙂

  5. Bob Murray 25 May, 2008 at 08:15 Reply

    Sharpless, you must be on a PC. The option key on a Mac is the equivalent of your Alt key on the PC.

    p.s. – Rock on, Corey!

  6. Lukas 26 May, 2008 at 07:17 Reply

    Why do instructors still create a layer and fill with white instead of adding an adjustment layer with solid colour, white?
    Would have just loaded selection and created a solid colour or gradient layer… gives even more flexibility/editability even after saving.

  7. Arnel 27 May, 2008 at 01:42 Reply

    thank you for this tutorial but please put some sentence or a paragraph for your explanation not only the video tutorial, however thank a lot

  8. Michèle 29 May, 2008 at 11:01 Reply

    I’m a French woman. Sorry I don’t speak English very well.
    Your tutorials are very interesting but I don’t understand
    when you speak (very quickly !)
    It’s difficult to me to realise this effect.
    is it possible to have your tutorials in pdf ?
    I learn English more easily
    Thank you

  9. Melanie 30 May, 2008 at 13:35 Reply

    Great tutorial, thank you for putting it together, though I must agree with Michelle that it would be nice to be able to download this to try it again sometime.

  10. NICKI 31 May, 2008 at 10:34 Reply

    great tuts but way to fast and if you not using mac you get left behind veru frustrating. seems like you preaching to the converted

  11. William Ogunsina 4 June, 2008 at 09:48 Reply

    This Took Me Ages, But I Finally Did It, Im New To Photoshop, Ive Been Using PhotoImpact As You Can See From My Website, But Im Happy I Have PhotoShop, The Effect Are Brilliant, Thanks Corey

  12. robby 5 June, 2008 at 13:02 Reply

    wow man, great tutorial, I’m a total noob in PS but thanks to you I managed to get trough this tutorial.
    great effect btw

  13. sjoerd 5 June, 2008 at 14:46 Reply

    its great! I like to do it. but there is only one queastion.
    Where can I find that picture? so if I got that one I can try to get it as nice as you do it. Because i can’t find a picture like that one. If you coud tel me where I can find that one or one that are all most the same I would like that!.

    I allready thank you, and like your workshops verry much!

    Your faitfully,
    Sjoerd Blankhorst

  14. stephanie 12 June, 2008 at 00:20 Reply

    I have a question, When I go to put the gradient on at the end on the locked layer it won’t allow me because it is locked, what do I do?

  15. srk 15 June, 2008 at 18:55 Reply

    Seriously, I’m deaf. I cannot understand this, and I really want to learn this thing. If it was in writing with pictures, then I would easily learn this.

  16. Naresh 19 July, 2008 at 02:23 Reply

    I could not understand what did u do to the alpha channel which changed suddenly into the image & how did u get that darkness in that alpha channel

    please reply

  17. Kenji 6 August, 2008 at 19:30 Reply

    I really love the tutorials here. Learn a lot a cool spanky stuff than the books I bought!
    Sometimes I am off the internet so a hardcopy will be fabulous.
    But is there a compilation of your tutorials like an e-book or book we can buy?

    Kenji K

  18. =) 30 September, 2008 at 07:57 Reply

    how come i cant do the gradient? it said there cannot edit it because the layer is locked? but it said in this tutorial to locked the layer. pls help me .. im using cs3 extended. tanx a lot

  19. G$$ 23 October, 2008 at 00:57 Reply

    Great tutorial!! For some reason when its time to use the paint brush to paint over the hair white, I can never do it. It barely lightens the hair and doesn’t color white like it does on the video. Am I doing something wrong?

  20. Creative eCommerce 31 October, 2008 at 13:51 Reply

    This simple tutorial has clued me in to some features I didn’t know about. I would like to use some of your content on one of my new sites with a link to your site. I am somewhat new to this blogging thing though.

  21. Flo 5 January, 2009 at 13:01 Reply

    hey,what a great tutorial (all the other tutorials are also great on this site)!

    i tryed it a couple of times and with every try a better result apears.a little variation of the gradient or solid color filling is to ad a picture to it and use the “person” as a clipping mask. try it!

    and corey: pleas go on like this,it´s great,i love your tutorials

  22. lena 7 January, 2009 at 20:13 Reply

    This is an awesome effect!!
    I’m doing this on Photoshop CS3 and the trouble is when i press ctrl+backspace nothing happens to Alpha 1! so what am i doing wrong?
    oh and please can you release a .pdf document to download? so i can try this again later.


  23. Bethanie 3 February, 2009 at 22:16 Reply

    Oh wow! That is inspiring! I’m going to play with Photoshop now.
    This is much incouragement on my profile to be a graphic designer.
    Thank you!

  24. msp 11 February, 2009 at 04:18 Reply

    Hello Corey!

    I wanted to step in and say thank you for all these awesome tutorials.

    Great work you’re really a PS God keep it up!

  25. Beginner 17 February, 2009 at 22:47 Reply

    Hi, Corey! Absolutely love your tutorials…I’m finding them very informative and easy to follow. Unfortunately the Design Effects video keeps cutting out for me just as you start to talk about gradients. Not sure what the problem is there…but I would love to be able to view the rest of the tutorial if possible. Thanks again.

  26. Nikiat T 19 February, 2009 at 22:03 Reply

    You have no clues this was a blessing …….. tryin this effect for more than a week….. n goin though sum 500 tuto …… u have made my day…… Kool tuto…easy to understand…n work VOLLA!!!!!

  27. Tom Bruno 25 February, 2009 at 22:25 Reply

    Very, very cool. Corey, you are the master. Your tutorials are brilliant for many reasons, not the least of which is that they LOOK good. You are an artist, not just a technician. Thank you so much for this and all your other excellent instruction.

    I had one snag which maybe someone can answer. When painting white onto the alpha channel, if I went too far with the brush I don’t know how to reverse that. Pressing Ctrl-Z only reverses the brush stroke. Is there a way to refine the selection, as in a layer mask, painting over the excess with a brush?

    Cheers and regards.

  28. BiggTimm 7 April, 2009 at 20:21 Reply

    I love this!! I saw this effect on a recent Vibe magazine with Keyshia Cole (an R&B singer) on the cover and wanted to replicate it using my daughter’s photo.

  29. kayode 22 April, 2009 at 11:12 Reply


  30. akrchstn 23 May, 2009 at 22:43 Reply

    Whenever I select something and I’m about to move on to another step that stuff wont unselect…how do I go about doing this

  31. peach 26 May, 2009 at 00:41 Reply

    wow! i learned how to do that just from watching this video once =]
    thanks a lot for this quality technique

  32. pencilartist 30 May, 2009 at 09:51 Reply

    This is my first time to visit your site and view the video clip. GREAT!
    Love the way you demonstrated and your knowledge of what to try.

  33. JJ 3 June, 2009 at 12:37 Reply

    Looks good, but one problem…I do not understand what you’re saying cos I’m hearing impaired so how would someone like me understand you and really want to learn this without knowing?

  34. dizzy rizzy 26 June, 2009 at 09:59 Reply

    Boy is this going to be a great to see how others like it. Never would have seen this except for facebook link. May have to rethink my podcast downloads.

  35. Alex 30 June, 2009 at 02:39 Reply

    very cool technique- if anyone’s seen the cover for John Lennon’s Campaign to Save Darfur, the same technique is used on that. i’d always thought it was pretty neat.

  36. MaRcOS 5 July, 2009 at 05:53 Reply

    Ur the man mate… are not just a good designer you are really good teacher…thanks for all your tutorial mate…more power…just wanna ask can i download your vids? coz i dont have an internet at home i just rent it…i wanna put it to my ipod…thanks a lot..thanks for the reply…

  37. Jexso 9 July, 2009 at 16:22 Reply

    Hi, great Tut!
    What is the difference between filling the Alpha-Channel with white and brighten it up with the levels controler. Can I also do it that way?
    Thanks, j

  38. santiago 4 August, 2009 at 00:24 Reply

    Me quede anonadado. It is a very explicit tutorial. My wife love me more after a did her picture using this technich.
    Thank you, YOU ARE THE MASTER.

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