In this tutorial I am going to run you through some filters to create a cool effect for a wallpaper, but these methods can be used for other applications.
First I am going to start a new document with an 800X600px sized canvas since that is a pretty standard monitor resolution.
Fill in your background layer with black and then create a new layer. Now get your gradient tool from your tools palette located in the same place as your paint bucket.
Choose a radial gradient
Then click on your gradient
When the window pops up choose the gradient that shows a black to transparent
I want a different color than black for the main gradient color so click on the bottom left arrow
Choose a bright blue color. I chose #0090ff as my color.
Now drag your cursor to fill up the center of your canvas with a gradient like this
That is all for that layer. Now start another new layer and fill it with black as you did at the beginning.
Now we are going to use the Chalk and Charcoal filter by going to filter>>sketch>>
Chalk & Charcoal
Use these settings:
Now you should have something like this on your canvas
Next we will add a motion blur filter by going to filter>>blur>>motion blur with a 90 degree angle with 999 pixels, then hit ok.
While on that layer change your blending mode to pin light. I’m sure most of you know but those that don’t your blending options are at the top left of your layers palette with a drop down menu.
After that you should have a pretty good effect so far
Make another new layer and fill it with black yet again. Go to filter>>render>>clouds in the new layer.
After generating the clouds set your blending mode to color dodge. Create another new layer above that one and generate clouds again, except this time generate clouds a few extra times in the new layer. Set it to color dodge as well and you should get something to this effect
To add a neat effect to this tutorial duplicate your layer in which you made the lines with the chalk and charcoal filter. When you duplicate it rotate it 180 degrees and stretch it across to fit the screen. After that set its blending mode to difference and you should get a cool effect. Make sure the layer is below the clouds but above your other line layer.
Here is my result:
Photoshop really has some powerful filters and you can see how much you can do with just a few of them and using different blending modes.
I think this could be used as a pretty cool wallpaper but I am going to add a few more things just to give it some more interesting effects.
As I was making this I wasn’t sure what it was supposed to be, just some futuristic wallpaper I guess, but I decided I wanted to add some kind of orb that is smashing into the canvas.
So using your gradient tool like we have before make a small to medium sized radial gradient with a bluish color. To get the orb to look right drag your gradient a couple times in the same spot to give it more mass.
Next I am going to add some blending options to the orb:
That is interesting I must say, but really cool as well. One last touch and this will be done, even though I don’t know what this is supposed to be.
Before this next step we need to merge all the layers together (even the background layer) except for the blue orb. So in my version of photoshop I am going to click on my layer underneath the orb (layer 4) and while holding down shift on a windows keyboard click on the background layer. This will highlight my layers. Then right click and hit merge layers or you can use your little arrow at the top right of your layers palette and find the same option.
Grab your elliptical marquee tool from your tools palette and make a selection around your orb similar to this:
Make sure after you make your ellipse you have the other layer chosen we just merged into one.
Now go to filter>>distort>>pinch and max out the settings
Click ok and you should have something like this
That is my final result, I hope this tutorial showed you some filter effects you haven’t seen before and maybe inspires you to make something of your own.
Thanks for reading.
Here are some other sizes you can use as a wallpaper
Here are also some without the orb: