Articles, Blog

Photoshop Tutorial: How to Create Lightning and Rain from a Sunny Landscape.

September 2, 2019

Hi. This is Marty from Blue Lightning TV. I’m going to show you how to create a rainstorm
with lightning from a sunny day. I provided a PSD document, so you can follow along. Its link is below in my video’s description
or project files. It includes this photo of a sunny landscape
and an image of dark, storm clouds. The first step is to make a selection around
the land, so we can ultimately replace the existing sky with the storm clouds. Open your Quick Selection Tool and make its
Radius 10 pixels. Drag your tool inside the land to select it. To check it, press “Q” to see it as a quick mask. If it looks good to you, press “Q” again to
revert it back into a selection. Next, we’ll refine the selection. If you’re using version CC or later, click
the “Select and Mask” button or go to “Select” and “Select and Mask”. If you’re using an earlier version, click “Refine Edge”. I did in-depth tutorials on both “Refine Edge”
and “Select and Mask”, so if you’d like to watch them, I provided their links, as well. If you’re using CC or later and would prefer
to use Refine Edge, press the Shift key as you click “Select and Mask”. The Refine Edge window will open. Check, “Smart Radius” and drag the Radius
to approximately 6 pixels. To adjust the size of your brush, press the
right or left bracket keys on your keyboard. Brush over the edge of the trees to refine their edges. Output it to a Layer Mask and click OK. Think of layer masks as stencils – white reveals
and the black masks out. In this example, the white area of the layer mask is revealing the land next to it, while the black area of the layer mask is masking out the sky. Because the sky is masked out, the layer under it is revealed. Next, we’ll adjust the land’s color and overall brightness. Keep in mind, if you’re using a different
photo, you may need to adjust these settings because every photo has its own characteristics. Click the Adjustment layer icon and click
“Hue / Saturation”. Adjustment layers affect all the layers below
them in the Layer panel, however, since we want it to restrict it to just the one layer below it, we need to make the adjustment layer into a clipping mask. Click the Clipping Mask icon or press Ctrl
+ Alt + G on Windows or Cmd + Option + G on a Mac. Another way, is to click “Layer” at the top
of your screen and click, “Create Clipping Mask”. Check, “Colorize” and make the “Hue”: 205,
the “Saturation”: 50 and the “Lightness”: minus 30. Reduce the Adjustment layer’s opacity to 32%. Next, we’ll adjust the brightness of the land’s midtones. Click the Adjustment layer icon again and
this time, click “curves”. Clip it to the land layer. The diagonal line represents the full tonality
of out image from dark to light. For this photo, we’ll darken the midtones
a bit, so click the middle of the diagonal line and drag it down approximately this much. Next, we’ll create the rain. Click the New Layer icon to make a new layer. Name it “Rain 1”. We’ll fill it with black, but first, if your
foreground and background colors aren’t black and white respectively, press “D” on your keyboard. Since black is your foreground color, press
Alt + Delete on Windows or Option + Delete on a Mac. Go to Filter, Noise and “Add Noise”. The Amount is 100%, Gaussian and Monochromatic. Then, click OK or press Enter or Return. Go back to Filter, Blur and “Motion Blur”. Make the Angle: minus 60 degrees and the Distance: 30 pixels. Go back to Filter and this time, click Blur
and “Gaussian Blur”. Blur it point 5 pixels. Change its Blend Mode to “Soft Light”. We’ll add one more layer of rain to intensify the storm. Make a new layer and name it, “Rain 2”. The reason we’re not just copying
the first rain layer is because we want “Rain 2” to be slightly different than “Rain 1”. Fill the empty layer with black. Go to Filter, Noise and “Add Noise”. Whenever we add noise, the texture is always
slightly different, so when we go back to Filter, Blur and Motion Blur, these striated
lines are slightly different, as well. Go to Filter, Blur and Gaussian Blur. This time, blur it 1 pixel. Open “Levels” by pressing Ctrl or Cmd + L.
In the Input black level, type in 80 and for the midtones, type in point 92. Change its Blend Mode to “Screen”. Next, we’ll add lightning. Make a new layer and name it, “Lightning”. Open your Gradient Tool and make sure the
“Linear” gradient icon is active. If the gradient bar isn’t black to white,
click it to open the Gradient Editor and click the “Black, White” thumbnail. Go to the upper left corner of your image
and drag the gradient tool to the lower, right corner. Go to Filter, Render and “Difference Clouds”. Invert it by pressing Ctrl or Cmd + I. Open Levels by pressing Ctrl or Cmd + L. Make
the Input white: 200 and the Input Midtones: point 24. Find an area of the image that you want to
use for the lightning and we’ll brush out the rest. To do it, open your Brush Tool and Brush Picker. Make the size approximately 40 pixels, the
Hardness 0% and the Opacity and Flow both 100%. Brush over all the unwanted areas. Change its Blend Mode to “Screen”. Open your Move Tool and drag it to a location
on the sky that looks good to you. I’d like to flip the lightning, so I’ll go
to Edit, Transform and “Flip Horizontal”. To resize and/or angle your lightning, open
your Transform Tool by pressing Ctrl or Cmd + T. Go to a corner and when you see a diagonal,
double-arrow, press and hold Alt or Option + Shift as you drag it out or in. To re-position it, go inside the Transform and drag it. Than, press Enter or Return. Next, we’ll add a slight blue color cast to the lightning. Click the Adjustment Layer icon and click,
“Hue/Saturation”. Clip it to the Lightning. Check, “Colorize” and in the Hue field, type
in 225 and the Saturation: 14. The Lightness is 0. Lastly, we’ll add some illumination in the clouds. Scroll to the bottom and make the Stormy sky
layer active. Invert the foreground and background colors
by pressing “x” on your keyboard. Now, white is your foreground color. Open your Dodge Tool and make its size approximately
200 pixels and the Hardness: 0%. Make the the Range: “Highlights” and the “Exposure”: 50%. Brush over the top of the lightning and between
contrasting clouds. This is Marty from Blue Lightning TV. Thanks for watching!


  • Reply AB14 August 28, 2017 at 3:52 am


  • Reply AB14 August 28, 2017 at 3:53 am

    Anyways Love Your tutorial videos,Marty !!! keep it Up !!! 👍👍👏👏

  • Reply Alberto Rodriguez August 28, 2017 at 3:54 am

    Great tutorial. You are the best. Muchas Gracias por compartir tu conocimiento.

  • Reply Bigpapa papa August 28, 2017 at 4:39 am

    Thanks u r the best

  • Reply Returning Shadow August 28, 2017 at 4:45 am

    Marty, is this just an updated version of your previous video from 5 years simply due to updated programming?

  • Reply AJ Sharf August 28, 2017 at 4:55 am

    U are fantastic and really imaginative. Great job.

  • Reply Mizanur Rahman Khan August 28, 2017 at 6:00 am

    Hi Marty, I respect you a lot. Your tutorial is very simple anyone can understand easily. I found the best tutorial on Photoshop. May God bless you and your family. May God keep your health well until death. Many many thanks for your great work.

  • Reply Aram Mohammed August 28, 2017 at 7:05 am

    Great tutorial. You are the best.i like this channel

  • Reply Anastasia K August 28, 2017 at 8:46 am

    Thank you very much for the tutorial Marty.
    Can you please make a video of how to animate rain and lightning,like the intro of this video???

  • Reply Ranita Biswas August 28, 2017 at 9:35 am

    Hi Marty, I am Ranita, thank you Marty. It is great tutorial. It is very help full not only it's your all tutorial is very helpful for me or any body .

  • Reply B3R9Y August 28, 2017 at 10:13 am


  • Reply Humble Pie August 28, 2017 at 11:30 am

    You always do such a great job with your tutorials. Thanks Marty.

  • Reply Ahmed A. El Fatah August 28, 2017 at 12:10 pm

    ?Marty , Are making tutorials for illustrator or just photoshop

  • Reply Jack PAVELKO August 28, 2017 at 1:34 pm

    Always great videos.

  • Reply M. Mahesh August 28, 2017 at 3:29 pm

    I like your videos
    I want cs4 or cs6 lessons for beginners. So plzydo for me plz

  • Reply Jan-Ove Johansson August 28, 2017 at 3:57 pm

    You are nr 1, fantastic. Thank you!

  • Reply Владимир Вербицкий August 28, 2017 at 5:26 pm

    Stunning tutorial. Thank you. Martin, it would be interesting to see the tutorials on how to replicate a known work: a movie poster, a cover of a music album, etc. So that we too could repeat the poster of the Game of Thrones, for example, but with a personal photo. It is interesting to know how you would have made a known effect. Thank you.

  • Reply Bonjour August 28, 2017 at 9:21 pm

    GREAT and FANTASTIC!!…thanks a lot Marty!!

  • Reply Luis Fonseca August 28, 2017 at 11:49 pm

    Hey Marty where can I download Photoshop CC 2015?

  • Reply DankWarMouse August 29, 2017 at 12:29 am

    Course you had to make the lightning blue 🙂

  • Reply sokha chea August 29, 2017 at 2:31 am

    Thanks Marty. You help me a lot….

  • Reply Rylan Zhou August 29, 2017 at 2:58 am

    Wow that's an amazing way to create ligntning —- never thought of that before

  • Reply Lars Diederichsen August 29, 2017 at 5:18 am

    Amazing Marty. If I have a litte more time, i will try imedeateley…

  • Reply Cabdisamad Axmed August 29, 2017 at 6:33 am

    you are the best of the best

  • Reply Patrik Hjelt August 29, 2017 at 8:56 am

    Again a great tutorial. I find the way that you explain and speak are really easy to follow and probably one of the best in the field.

  • Reply Bob Koss August 29, 2017 at 12:58 pm


  • Reply Petra Bachova August 29, 2017 at 2:06 pm

    The best tutorial! Thank you 🙂

  • Reply Ahmed Yahya August 29, 2017 at 8:39 pm

    this is brilliant idea

  • Reply Barry Pack August 29, 2017 at 9:47 pm

    Awesome tutorial! Can't wait to try this.

  • Reply Alberto Rodriguez August 30, 2017 at 8:21 pm

    Easy to follow and it works. Thank you

  • Reply Django Littacker August 30, 2017 at 9:22 pm

    Toujours le même commentaire : excellent

  • Reply Chris Hunsicker September 1, 2017 at 9:07 pm

    Great tutorial, shame there is only the sunny landscape to download.

  • Reply Kathy Roberts September 2, 2017 at 9:23 pm

    Thanks Marty I like the way you include each version

  • Reply Charan Singh September 3, 2017 at 5:36 am

    What a….Wow!!!Amazing job Marty

  • Reply σon of Μεσοποταμία September 4, 2017 at 8:31 am

    Amazing 👍

  • Reply Eupix September 5, 2017 at 1:51 pm

    The City (I am pretty sure) is called Rovinj, located in Croatia. And your tutorial is awesome! I tried it and the result was stunning! Keep up the great work!

  • Reply Marios Tabajen September 6, 2017 at 9:07 am

    Any chances for making a Biography: Photoshop with Marty 😀

  • Reply Bhavik Jain September 7, 2017 at 5:49 pm

    sir please make a tutorial on how to make a logo for business

  • Reply Bhavik Jain September 7, 2017 at 5:50 pm

    hats off for this great tutorial nice lighting effect

  • Reply World On one place September 8, 2017 at 8:01 pm

    Marty where i can download cs6 photoshop for free full version

  • Reply NIKO VAL September 9, 2017 at 8:02 pm

    Simply wonderful, thanks a lot.

  • Reply Sajid Ch September 13, 2017 at 2:20 pm

    Woooo soooo cute and beautiful 💚🌹💚🌷💚🌷💚🌷💚🌷💚🌷💚🌷💚🌷💚🌷💚🌷💚🌷💚🌷💚🌷💚🌱🌹🌱🌹🌱🌹🌿GREAT TUTORIAL

  • Reply conquer online 3.0 September 13, 2017 at 4:14 pm

    i made like it, but how you make rain moving and the flash

  • Reply conquer online 3.0 September 13, 2017 at 4:29 pm

    check your video at 0.6 sec first
    i want to do same ,how you made it

  • Reply Sujalsatish Motagi September 23, 2017 at 11:08 am

    can you give me photoshop cc for free. Pleaaaaaaase!

  • Reply Steven Brener September 23, 2017 at 2:03 pm

    Another great tutorial. What I love about your tutorials is that are an excellent bridge between novice and advanced techniques. You don’t feel overwhelmed but can learn so much

  • Reply Steven Brener September 26, 2017 at 9:07 pm

    Hi Marty. Really enjoyable tutorial and love the effect. I'm wondering if you could do one where you add puddles, which might be appropriate if there was land/roads/paths in the foreground.

  • Reply Robert Arismendi September 29, 2017 at 3:00 pm

    Marthy, you are a true teacher. You know very well how to get your knowledge to the people who always see you. There are many good instructors but with your didactics NONE, congratulations and thanks

  • Reply Edward Videos October 13, 2017 at 2:25 am

    Excellent tutorial

  • Reply Musa Babayola October 15, 2017 at 1:36 am

    Nice Work by Genius

  • Reply Thiên Hương November 27, 2017 at 10:45 am

    Thank you for your dedication. I did not and could not even learn Photoshop before I meet you. You are an awesome teacher!

  • Reply eryust ss December 21, 2017 at 7:11 am

    you explain so simply and in detail .

  • Reply Alongkorn Achawabool December 22, 2017 at 8:56 pm

    Thank you very very very much for making this video. I have watched many of videos like this. I speak out to myself "WOW!!!" your speaking is so clear and the way you demonstrate the process is so dramatically clear. From my heart, I really impress your video.

  • Reply muchodj December 29, 2017 at 10:15 pm

    You are the best on the Photoshop tutorials- thanks for taking the time to teach us.Happy Holidays

  • Reply We Care / نحن نهتم January 31, 2018 at 9:25 am

    Hi Mr Marty,First Off all i would like to thank you for this great tutorial,many thanks,Second i think there's something missing in your video,i did everything right! as you did but 1 problem i dont know how to render it as a video!..How to export it.? how to make rain moving and the flash???..Any Help!

  • Reply gözde Tetik March 2, 2018 at 7:10 pm

    Thank you !!!!

  • Reply LordKhabal March 7, 2018 at 6:32 am

    That is a simple, yet amazingly effective, way of making lightning! I will make ample use of that trick! Thank you for sharing! 😃👍

  • Reply Ruth Butler May 23, 2018 at 11:52 pm

    I love the added touch of storm sound effects!

  • Reply Agama Aaron May 25, 2018 at 5:16 pm

    Wow this is so amazing, mehn, i can believe i can do it, but finally, i made it.
    MR. Marty, your Tutorials are super-intelligent, very educating, God bless you Sir. I Love Photoshop!

  • Reply Holly Van Hart May 29, 2018 at 2:43 am

    😍 Thanks for this great content! ✨ ✔️ ✔️

  • Reply leon jones October 5, 2018 at 1:53 am

    unreal cheers for that

  • Reply Paola Ragno October 5, 2018 at 5:42 pm

    Wow .. it's just great !!! Thanks a lot, for the first time I've been able to realize wonderful lightnings !!! Your explanations are just perfect, thanks again!

  • Reply jasper l October 30, 2018 at 12:18 pm

    how to open those two layers?

  • Reply jasper l October 30, 2018 at 12:26 pm

    how did you get two pictures in the layers? if i choose an picture, the other one spoofed

  • Reply CandleKern October 30, 2018 at 2:55 pm

    Great video man! Thank you!!

  • Reply Games Otto November 1, 2018 at 9:35 pm

    It's like watch PanemTV

  • Reply Jonas Orri November 14, 2018 at 1:53 pm

    Thank you so much

  • Reply Android Bani December 3, 2018 at 3:34 pm

    your great work. marty i like your all video i wait next video………………..

  • Reply Actual Pixel January 1, 2019 at 11:07 am

    super tutorial. thx bro

  • Reply Patrick Boulanger February 21, 2019 at 7:54 am

    merci pour ce tuto

  • Reply shorins February 21, 2019 at 3:54 pm

    Fantastic. Have to say one of the best video I've seen

  • Reply Gloriangely Sanchez June 21, 2019 at 11:59 pm

    ‘This is a great 👍 have a great time 😯😎🥳🤑

  • Reply Arjun Bkumar July 10, 2019 at 5:37 am


  • Reply Quan Tang August 22, 2019 at 5:51 am

    When I render the lightning it is always very small and will lose details due to scaling up. I am using a 36 mp camera. Are there any way to create lightning with higher resolution?

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