Where There’s Smoke, There’s Photoshop

I was chatting with my sister the other day and she was telling me that she needed a print for her new house.  She said what she really wanted was one of my smoke images.  Just something really abstract and colorful.  I asked her what color she wanted, which sort of surprised her a little.  I told her that I could basically make it any color or colors that she wanted so that it would go better with her decor.  So as I was working on her file, I had the thought that this would actually make a cool little tutorial.  Shooting the smoke isn’t really difficult and there are so many creative things that you can do with the images once you are done.  So here is a brief look at how I create my Smoke Shots.

*I do want to apologize if I seem to go through some of these techniques kind of quickly.  I use a lot of keyboard shortcuts to do the routine tasks (copy, paste, Free Transform, etc.).  The keyboard shortcuts show up on the screen as I use them and I try and mention the ones that I am using but I do sometimes forget.  The reason I go through some of the tasks quickly is that I have a 10 minute time limit restriction on YouTube.  So even though I now use Viddler to post my video on the blog, I have a large number of subscribers on YouTube that I don’t want to leave high and dry.  So if you have any questions about something I did in the tutorial, please leave a comment or drop me an email.


  1. Jeff,

    Thanks for the smoke tutorial. It gives me faster way to clean up the image with select colour range and to select the smoke only. That’s great.

    I enjoy playing with curves to colour the smoke, gives a different effect.


  2. smoking again, I thought you gave that up

    I still need to find something that smokes more

  3. very useful tutorial! thanks )


  1. […] finally got me interested into photographing the smoke they are producing. I remembered Jeff Revell doing a feature on his blog some time ago, but his focus was on Photoshopping it into colorful pattern. I needed some more […]

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