PI8 Spot Filter

spot filter effect

Photographers will love PI8's new Spot Filter, which lets you highlight a central focus in a photo, while obscuring the rest of it. It's a great effect for adding an artistic, glamorous look to an ordinary photo, and it's very easy to do. To follow along with the tutorial, right click and save my flower photo below.

save original image

Open up the photo in PI8. Choose Effect, Photographic, Spot Filter to open the Spot Filter dialog box. On the left side is a representation of the original, Before image. On the right side is a representation of the After image, which shows the results of edits to the filter. The default Filter type is a Sand spot filter with a red filter color.

default settings

The filter Types vary significantly, including Sand (a hazy look), Grain (applies a bumpy, uneven texture), Soft (blurry and smeared) and Spot (applies a selected color around the effect boundaries). For this tutorial, select "Color spot filter."

In the left side Before image, drag the red dot in the middle of the Spot Radius so that it's right between the two main flowers. The area covered by the inner and outer broken lines around the radius will be highlighted by the spot light.

drag spot radius

On the right side of the dialog box, edit the boundary's Radius to a value of 90. This will enlarge the area of highlighting. Edit the Edge softness value to 45 to sharpen up slightly the amount of blur between the spot and the effect area. The Filter amount is grayed out for the Color spot option, but when available, you may edit the filter's strength (brightness). Edit the Color amount to 75 to strengthen the color saturation of the effect. From the Color box, you may select a color for the Color spot effect. Right click and choose Eyedropper to open the Eyedropper dialog box. To darken everything outside of the spot light area, pick a dark green from the image for the Color effect and click OK to close the Eyedropper box. The right side of the Spot filter dialog box looks like this now.

edit spot attributes

Click OK to apply the Color spot filter. If you really want to gild the lily a bit, add a Star Filter to further highlight your central focus.

Now that you're familiar with the options available in the Spot Filter dialog box, you'll want to experiment with other colors, or some of the other Filter types. Below are a couple of examples of what you can do with this filter, including Soft spot and Grain spot, respectively.

soft spot filter

grain spot filter

This tutorial uploaded 9/20/02

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