photoshop creative

How to add light leak in Photoshop

Posted in:
Tips & Tutorials, by Mark White
June 25, 2012

Apply a light leak effect for that retro appeal



Light leak in photoshop

Step 1 – Set colour

Firstly, set your Foreground colour to orange (ffa53b). Add a new layer on top of the Background and change its blend mode to Pin Light.

Step 2 – Gradient tool

Select the Gradient tool (G) and then head to the Options bar. Choose the Foreground to Transparent option and set the gradient type to Reflected.

Step 3 – Apply light leak

With the Gradient tool, draw a horizontal line across your image. This applies a band of orange light from top to bottom with the Pin Light blend mode.

Step 4 – Lower Opacity

Press V to quickly select the Move tool and then hit 6 on your keyboard to lower the layer’s Opacity to 60%. The light leak should be subtle but clearly visible. Try other blend modes such as Linear Light or Vivid Light for different effects.