How to Use Motion Blur to Make Your Images Intense with Photoshop

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  By Julian
How to Use Motion Blur to Make Your Images Intense with Photoshop www.sleeklens.com

Hello everyone,

Today in this exciting tutorial, we’re going to be taking a look at how to use the Motion Blur Tool to make your images look INTENSE! like it’s packed full of action.

As you can see from my image, it already looks cool and full of action, but if we tweak it a little bit more, we can take it to “WHOA, THAT IS REALLY COOL”!

Our first task here will be to Crop our subject out of the image. You can do this by using the Polygonal Tool, Click around the outside to make a selection.

You can zoom right in by holding CTRL, then pressing the Plus/Minus keys on the keyboard.

I personally use the Polygonal Tool in the manner which I have just described. Some people like to use the Pen Tool and swear by it, but for some reason I just like the Polygonal Tool. I feel I can work faster with it, As the Pen Tool is accurate and gives far cleaner lines, I suggest using the Pen tool with larger images, Although for standard web images around or about 1000 pixels, there should be no issues using the polygonal tool.

Plus, I use the Pen Tool a good amount when doing Graphic Design, so the further I get away from it when I’m doing something in Photoshop, the better I enjoy it!

Now there’s a few things your going to have to do with the background, you just can’t apply a blur straight away because your subject will be all blurred as well and it will look really odd. You will also have to create the blur to follow the angle in which the subjects are moving, but we’ll talk more about that shortly.

First I want you to us the Clone Stamp Tool (Shortcut S) to cover over your intended subject that is to remain in focus.

By now you should have a copy of your subject on a different layer, if you have this done before while using the Clone Stamp Tool, then you can start to Clone over the original layer.

This cab be done by holding Alt on the surrounding layer and painting over the subject. You don’t have to be super accurate here, you just need it to look good enough so when the area is blurred it will look realistic.

This is what it should look like.

Now duplicate that layer.

You will need a few of these layers, as we are going to be creating our blur from a few different angles.

I want kind of a vanishing point with the blur blasting out.

Now I’m going to make two duplicates of my cloned image, so you should have the original image in layer1, 3 cloned layers of duplicates and the top layer should be your subjects which you have cropped out.

The only reason I keep the original layer is just in case I need it if I make any major mistakes. That shouldn’t happen, but I’ve just learned to be cautious over the years and it’s stuck with me, thank goodness, as I’ve made some blunders throughout my photoshopping days.

So, I’m going to have my cloned layers in three varied degrees of motion blur, you get to motion blur by going to Filter – Blur – Motion Blur.

There you can see the slider that will give you the amount of blur you need. I like to have my subject completely in focus, off in the distance a slight blur, an increased in the middle and right at the front, will be the most amount of blur. Then, I’ll erase the top two thirds of my most blurred image, the top third of my middle image and then I leave the bottom image.

I will change the angle of my blur to match the direction that my subjects would be moving in. kind of imagine yourself there and how you would move your camera if they were right in front of you.

I’ll work with this a little, erasing where I think it’s needed.

Also, I have my opacity set to around 50-75% so it blends nicely. Another thing that I want to mention is to make sure and use a soft brush for the Eraser Tool as shown below.

Then you can activate the layer with our subjects on it, and your image should look something like what I have below.

You can use this technique for any action shot to make them look even more awesome, so experiment and enjoy it.
Until next time, keep learning.

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Graduated from college in 2002 with a degree in Art & Design, I started exploring my way in Graphic Design and Professional Post Production. Full-time freelancer since 2011.

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