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How to create contours using Photoshop gradients tutorial

Contours and how to create them using Photoshop gradients tutorial. You can create contours using Photoshop gradients via a style and outer glow style in Photoshop CC 2018 2017 2015 2014 CS6 CS5 etc

Create contours using Photoshop gradients

how to create contours using Photoshop gradients tutorial
  1. Custom shape tool or ellipse etc to create a shape to define the contour

  2. Shape option

  3. Apply shape design as a shape layer

  4. Layer menu

  5. Layer style

  6. Outer glow style

  7. Click the gradient option button if it is not already selected, not the solid color and set the blend mode to normal and opacity 100% and technique precise and spread 0 and size 250

  8. Select a gradient with multiple stops (not just one or two) for the contour in Photoshop

The gradient to use is a multiple stop preset. You can also use adjustments to modify the gradient. You can also use a gradient with 100s of stops to create an interesting circular gradient. This tutorial shows you a number of ways of creating contours using Photoshop gradients. The above is a quick way to create gradients via a shape (of course, you can create gradient contours in other ways) by adding a style with a gradient

How to create a gradient with multiple stops

contour shapes gradient photoshop stops panel

Once you are on the layer styles panel and the outer glow

  1. You will see a gradient / Gradient preset picker / dropdown

  2. Click that to display the gradient editor

  3. Go to the bar in the center of the panel and click the bottom of the gradient line to add a stop

  4. change the color via the color setting on that panel.

  5. Click in different positions along the gradient line to add more stops to the line. If you want a more even contour with the gradient then go along the line perhaps clicking at 0% and 10% and 20% etc and set the color from green to black and green to black and so on alternating the colors. You can make any number of contour variations by simply setting the positions to 0% 5% 10% 20% 50% etc as well as changing the color alternating, perhaps use two blacks to one color combinations etc (up to you).

  6. Once you have that contour gradient you can then either click OK to add the result to the outer glow panel as well as click the new button to add it to the gradients list.


You now have your contour start point for the gradient and the selected shape.


per set GRD format download


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It should be noted that you don't have to perform the above in the outer glow panel, the generation of the contour gradient can be done while selecting the gradient overlay, gradient fill etc as well and then added to the list for future use. Once you have the contour gradient shape then you can also just flatten the image and then use various adjustments or effects to modify it such as hue and saturation on the left or the camera raw filter on the right


You may like to create a large selection of similar presets and save them as a new GRD file for future use. It is a pity that there are no additional controls to modify the color of the preset as well as saturation etc for the controls (you could do this in a variety of plugins such as the KPT ones).


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