Photoshop Tutorial: Adding Aurora to your Night Photos

This tutorial will show you how you can add aurora or northern lights to you night photos. Some great photographs of northern lights by Sigurdur H Stefnisson are available here..

Step 1.) Find your background photo. I’ll be using this factory shot at night. Then go to Layer > New > Layer and press OK

creating aurora

Step 2.) Choose your Brush Tool and draw something like this in your new layer


creating aurora

Step 3.) Go to Filter > Distort > Wave , and play around with the wavelength to get desired result.

creating aurora

Step 4.) Go to Filter > Blur > Gaussian Blur, and play around with the radius to get desired result.

creating aurora

Step 5.) Go to Filter > Blur > Motion Blur, and play around with the angle and distance to get desired result.

creating aurora

Step 6.) Change the layer opacity to around 40%

creating aurora

Step 7.) Now add some contrast to your aurora using Image > adjusments > Curves

creating aurora

Step 8.) You can Transform your aurora using Edit > Transform > Perspective to make it looks better…and, here’s my final image..

creating aurora

You can change the color of your aurora quickly by using image hue/saturation.

Originally written: 12/09/06

2 Responses to “Photoshop Tutorial: Adding Aurora to your Night Photos”

  1. unknown says:

    it doesn’t work well =/
    you missed a few steps as well…

  2. George says:

    I don’t really like this… Looks so fake…

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