Episode 8: Photoshopping Digital Bokeh

By Ash Davies
December 11, 2009 from Graphic Design,Podcast

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Download the Digital Bokeh Wallpaper

In photography, bokeh is one of the most incredible implementations of Aperture, as seen in this inspiring collection. The shallow depth of field causes any light in the background to blur into a floating orb.
In this tutorial, we go through how to create bokeh using Photoshop, with simply beautiful results.

Bokeh is derived from the Japanese word ‘Boke’ which means blur or haze. In the late 1990s though, when ‘boke’ photography was becoming popular, the word was changed to ‘bokeh’ to help us english speaking people say it properly.

I honestly believe this is one of the greatest tutorials on PhotoGuides to date, partly because it shows you how to create such a beautiful image, but also because it opens peoples eyes to the power of the brushes engine, and this demonstration can expand peoples abilities on Photoshop enormously.

The method I teach in this tutorial was originally developed by abduzeedo. When I was experimenting with how to create digital bokeh, I felt their tutorial showed the best way to do it, and thus decided to simply share their method in the podcast (with permission of course), so thanks for letting me share it.

As usual, the Photoshop source file and a high quality download of this tutorial is available for free to all PhotoGuides members.
You can also download the digital bokeh image from the tutorial as a wallpaper over here in the freebies section.

Good luck!

  • blane

    you talk well, i enjoyed watching it.

  • http://www.photoguides.net/?fbconnect_action=myhome&userid=387&height=400&width=370 rl_creative

    This is awesome. I already wrote a comment at Abduzeedo.com, but I’d like to comment this article also :) I really like, how easy this tutorial is. Just perfect :) Already waiting for more tutorials.

  • http://web-design.my nadia

    interesting and can get lots of info from here..

  • http://Website(optional) nunja

    Very nice tutorial. Fun to watch and learn. Nice work

  • http://www.photoguides.net/?fbconnect_action=myhome&userid=498&height=400&width=370 shreoshi

    HI can we get the tutorial in text also. thanks

  • http://www.photoguides.net/?fbconnect_action=myhome&userid=1&height=400&width=370 Ash Davies

    You can find a text version of this tutorial on Abduzeedo at http://abduzeedo.com/awesome-digital-bokeh-effect-photoshop
    It’s a bit harder to follow than the video tutorial though.

    Hope that helps

    Ash Davies

  • http://Website(optional) eepee

    where can i find the ellipse tool? tnx

  • http://www.photoguides.net/?fbconnect_action=myhome&userid=1&height=400&width=370 Ash Davies

    There should be a shapes tool on the left toolpanel on photoshop. I think it has a square on it by default. If you click and hold that then a little drop down window should appear and the ellipse tool should be on there.
    Hope that helps.

  • http://www.photoguides.net/?fbconnect_action=myhome&userid=534&height=400&width=370 Ashcat

    Hi, I hope this will open en new window because I want to say that your tutorial is wonderfull! I’ve followed your instructions and made a very nice bokeh and I now have a bokeh brush too! Thank you!

  • http://www.photoguides.net/?fbconnect_action=myhome&userid=1&height=400&width=370 Ash Davies

    No worries. I can delete the double post.
    I’m glad you liked the tutorial :)

  • http://www.photoguides.net/?fbconnect_action=myhome&userid=590&height=400&width=370 PwnedKA

    Wow man, thanks so much! This was very helpful, and I even learned a couple of things in this useful tutorial.

    Much respect.

    My Bokeh:

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  • http://bit.ly/psoffer Ryan

    Nice tutorial, will be helpful to a lot of people. For anyone serious about photoshop check this out (USA only) http://bit.ly/psoffer

  • http://www.photoguides.net/?fbconnect_action=myhome&userid=1102&height=400&width=370 Jo5hn

    Like Come On Are You really That Good! I Tried It And It Was So Dam Easy And I Am Only 12!!

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  • http://www.photoguides.net/?fbconnect_action=myhome&userid=3127&height=400&width=370 EnigmaXII

    Can someone help? I cant seem to click the Define Brush Preset.

  • http://Website(optional) camila barbieri

    Great work!! I was eondering how to use it for pictures like Irene L does in her work.. Could you give some help?

    Thank you!

  • http://Website(optional) The Diligent Dragon

    Much better than Abduzeedo. Whoever wrote that tutorial left out important details. Thank you! This was an assignment.

  • http://Website(optional) The Diligent Dragon

    After you as he said get the marching ants, hit return. (Enter on PC) Or just click the little check mark button at the top of your screen to commit. It took me awhile too.

  • snaphappy26

    I love this tutorial and am trying to download the video but just get a blank screen with a small red cross on it…???? Any ideas what might be wrong??? Help will be much appreciated.

  • Qngozi

    I am so impressed with the quality of your tutorials.They helped a lot

  • http://twitter.com/omeganova Deniz Altindas

    Coll Tutorial! Thx 4 it.