Light trails: enhance your night shots with this really simple photo editing tutorial

Light trails 20

Light trails step by step – steps 13-15

13 Reduce the trail opacity

Select the red Light Trail layer and use the same Liquify filter technique to distort it a little too. Reduce the layer’s Opacity to 76% to reveal more background detail. Reduce the Yellow Trail layer’s Opacity to 87% to mix in some red and create a more orangey hue.

14 Light the lamp

Create a new transparent layer called ‘Lamp’. Grab the Brush tool and choose a soft round tip. Set the foreground colour to red. Click a few times to create an orange glow around the rear lamp. Shift-click to select the three light layers. Choose Layer> Duplicate Layers. In the Layer Set window, click OK.

SEE MORE: Make a composite image in Photoshop Elements – how to use Layers to add depth

15 Duplicate and transform

Choose Image>Transform>Free Transform. Drag inside the bounding box to move the three duplicated layers over the car’s other rear lamp. Use the control handles to rotate and squash the layers. Press Return. Drag the three duplicated layers below the original light layers in the layer stack.

Light trails step by step – steps 1-3
Light trails step by step – steps 4-6
Light trails step by step – steps 7-9
Light trails step by step – steps 10-12
Light trails step by step – steps 13-15
Light trails step by step – steps 16-18

READ MORE

Best photo editing tips for beginners: 18 quick fixes for common image problems
Clone Stamp tool – how to remove unwanted objects and rescue your photos
Crop photos the right way: classic mistakes and how to avoid them
Adobe Lightroom: what every photographer needs to know about the ‘alternative Photoshop’