Do you want to give your cool photo a more dynamic range or a badass effect? The dispersion effect is a quick and easy effect you can try out to obtain a more diverse and unique image for your Instagram or Facebook post. The best part of this Photoshop effect is that it is very easy to do and the results will have a complex look.

Here are the steps on how to create a dispersion effect:

  1. Select and open the photo that you want to edit in Photoshop.
    dispersion effect
  2. The first thing you need to do is duplicate the photo by right clicking the background image or pressing CTRL + J.dispersion effect
  3. Now you need to hide the top layer and select the area around the model with a Lasso Tool by clicking it on the right side toolbars or pressing L.

    dispersion effect

  4. After selecting the area, right click on it and select the FILL option and then use the content-aware option.

    dispersion effect
    dispersion effect

  5. Now it’s time to make the top layer visible again and use the Quick Selection Tool. You need to select the entire model and click on the refine edge option on the left portion.

    dispersion effect
    dispersion effect

  6. As you open the refine edge tool an option will pop up. The next step will be selecting the edges of the part that you want to apply the dispersion effect and on the output option select the layer mask.


  7. After that, you need to duplicate the layer by pressing CTRL + J and then click the mask. You can now select the Apply Layer Mask and duplicate it one more time.


  8. It is a must to rename the two new layers to Layer 2 and Layer 3 for easier identification.
  9. Now the magic will begin, select the layer 2 and then click Liquify. Make sure you will select the Forward Wrap Tool once the option pop up.


  10. You can now wrap the model based from your preference. This will determine the range of dispersion effect.

  11. After that, select the layer 2 and hold ALT as you click on the mask tool. Now, you need to select the layer 3 and click the mask tool.

  12. Once you’re done, it’s time to click the brush tool. It will open up a panel where you can select the dispersion brush.


  13. The next step will be clicking on the layer mask of layer 3 and applying the brush on the part where you want to apply the dispersion effect. You can take your time doing this until you achieve the desired look.

  14. After achieving the desired look of your photo you need to select the mask on layer 2.

  15. Now you need to click the brush tool once again and select the brush shape that you want. You can use it to the remaining parts that you want to have a dispersion effect.

  16. The next thing you need to do is clean up all the unnecessary effects on the photo. You can do this by selecting the layer 3 mask and using the soft round brush. Take your time on cleaning the photo to make it professional and presentable.

  17. The next step will be adding some gradient map on your photo to give it some color effects. Click the adjustment layer on the bottom right side and select the gradient map.

  18. Now, you need to sharpen the image to remove the dull portions of the dispersion effect. To do this, you must merge the layers and convert it to a smart object. Press the CTRL + SHIFT + ALT + E to combine all the layers and right click on it to select the convert to smart object.

  19. Finally, you must click the filter tab and select the sharpen tool, the unsharp mask option will pop up. All you need to do is adjust its amount to 60%.


  20. There you have it! You now have a cool photo with dispersion effect.

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