Twirl filter in Photoshop tutorial

How to use the twirl filter in Photoshop CC 2018 2017 2015 2014 etc The tool can be used to warp and distort images and type and layers in 1000s of ways.

Twirl filter in Photoshop

twirl filter how to use plugin in Photoshop tutorial
  1. Open an image for use with the twirl filter in Photoshop

  2. Filter menu

  3. Distort

  4. Twirl filter (TF)

  5. Set angle

  6. OK

 

Video tutorial on the subject by graphicxtras.com (youtube)

 

The basics of the TF : basicYou can find the effect in the filter menu / distort

 

It comes with a single setting - angle

 

Buy Price : $11.99 US or equivalent. 13,000 Custom shapes for PS CC 2018 2017 2015 2014 CS6 CS5 etc and PS elements CSH gallery

 

Use multiple times : extreme duplicationYou don't have to use the effect just once, it can be applied multiple times. Sometimes the result of multiple applications can be quite interesting

 

For example, Apply the effect and go to the repeat at the top of the menu (instead of going through the distort menu all the time)

 

The image on the right is the result of three applies of the effect (the image at the top of the page is a single application). The result is more like a spiral design

 

Use the effect again with different angle etc : angleYou do not have to re-apply it with the same settings though. You can just go to the distort menu and run it again but with a different settings such as using the opposite angle to apply and you can make the effect go in the opposite way (though the setting was a little more subtle this time)

 

Actions : actionsIt can be used in actions as well as blended with other effects to create many truly unique distortions.

 

The filter can be used to create extreme designs as well as very subtle warping to an image as well as objects such as type

 

The action on the left uses the effect multiple times and combines with the liquify tool

 

Angle setting : settingSet the angle (really that is all there is, that has been the same way for years and years with the TF - there is no control for the center and no strength or variation of effect such as inverted etc)

 

Use with selections : selectionsYou can use the entire image but you can also use the effect with a selection. So you can apply the effect to multiple areas across the image without affecting the other areas

 

For example, Open image and select part of the image using the marquee tool and then use the effect with the current settings or change the settings and then de-select and then use the selection again in a different part of the image

 

The center of the effect is now no longer in the center of the image (not particular ideal but it is a way around the lack of of center control in Photoshop

 

You can also re-apply this but you can also just select another part of the image and then apply the TF to that and then move to another and apply it again and again such as in the image on the right with multiple applications of the effect. It should be noted that the effect really doesn't like the edge of an image and squeezes the effect into the selection and doesn't just warp the image and leave the rest not displayed). The selection does not need to be circular

 

Use with other tools : distortedYou don't have to apply it just on its own. You can use it with other effects.

 

For example, use the effect and then go to the wave effect and use that - you can add other effects such as oil paint or camera raw to modify the result in countless ways

 

The result can be quite a distorted design. You can also use other distort tools or maximize effect to create many different types of curled designs in Photoshop such as on the right (uses the roundness setting and maximum)

 

Use with channels : channelsThe TF can also be used with channels and use them in separate channels to create interesting color artworks.

 

Go to the window menu and channel panel and Select the red channel and run the TF via the distort menu as before. Change settings. Select the green channel and use the effect again but with different settings / angle. Goto the blue channel. Different angle again

 

The image on the right uses different centers for the TF by using different selections and also different angles but the same approach with the channels

 

Use with type : typeYou can use the effect with layers and type is just a layer.

 

For example, Select the type tool and add some new type such as Lorem ipsum etc and then apply the TF and you will see that the application will display a convert to smart object dialog (you could of course use the convert to smart object command on the type beforehand) and click OK the effect and set the angle value for the effect

 

The type can be a lot more than just a single word. You can use an entire page and then distort that. If you wish to apply different centers then it is best to just flatten the type and then select the type in different parts as on the right.

 

For example, Add the type and then Select using the selection tools (such as a circular selection). Apply the TF and set the settings for the angle and then move the selection using the selection tool and apply the effect again.

 

Blending modes with layers : different blendsYou can create interesting designs from the same image but one that has been duplicated multiple times as layers and then blended using different blending modes in Photoshop and combined with different settings of TF on different layers

 

For example, Open image and Layer menu and duplicate (repeat a few times)

Go to the each layer and apply the TF with different angles and then go to the layers and set different blending modes such as difference or darken etc to create an unique effect for your distortion

 

You can also add effects to the layers to perhaps blur the effect. On the right, a blur has been added to one of the layer and the layers have used a different combination of blends (you can also, of course, re-color the design using adjustment layers)

 

Fade effect : oppositesYou can apply the TF to an image and then edit menu and fade and then use a different blending mode and opacity and the effect will not be so extreme

 

For example, apply effect and go to the edit menu and select the Fade. Change the blending mode for the applied effect (such as difference or darken etc) as well as opacity

 

The image on the right uses two TF applications and both have been faded with blending mode of difference and opacity of 50% and mixed with a little vibrance to bring out the design.

Distorted layers and effect : layersYou can use the TF with layers to create some really oddball distorted designs.

 

Shift the center of the layer from the center of the image and layer will be warped and distorted and then you can duplicate that or move it and re-apply or perhaps combine multiple layers of the distorted design and create unusual surfaces and textures

 

For example, duplicate layer and Shift center of layer. Apply the TF and then duplicate and duplicate etc and re-position those layers across the document to create some truly extreme warping and distorted

 

The image can then be modified by the TF again perhaps with all the layers merged and then to smooth things a little, use an oil paint effect once or twice as on the right.

 

Use with shapes : shapesGo to the toolbar and select one of the shape tools such as polygon. Set to star mode via the options. Set number of points to 12. Apply the artwork as a layer and go to the layer menu and smart objects and convert. Place the object in the center of the document. If not, the distort will be slightly or a lot off center.

 

Once you have the shape as a smart object, go to the effect and apply with an angle of 200. You can do much the same with custom shapes etc

 

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