How to do the Sunburst effect on Adobe Photoshop

Hey guys, in this tutorial I will teach you how to make the sunburst effect commonly found on thumbnails and icons. Something like this

Note: I am using Adobe Photoshop CS6 to make this.

Step 1: Create a brand new file, you can do this by going on the “File” tab at the top, and clicking new. I’m using these measurements, and a transparent background, but you can feel free to switch it up to something you like!

Step 2: Chose your primary and secondary colors, chose a light/brighter primary color, and a darker version for the secondary color. This is what I have chosen: (Sorry for the small image)

Step 3: Use the gradient tool (Shortcut: G) and draw a vertical line from the top to the bottom, hold shift while doing so to make it perfectly straight. It should now look like this:

Step 4: Go to the “Filter” tab at the top and click distort > Wave, and copy these settings

It should now look like this:

Step 5: Go on the filter tab again, and click Distort > Polar Coordinates: image
Make Sure you check Rectangular to Polar!

Tada!!! Now we have this cool looking effect, you may want to finish here, but if you want a texture, follow the extra steps below!

Step 6: Get an image of your choice, I’m using a sky texture, make sure to copy your image.

Step 7: Add a New layer in PhotoShop, make sure it is above Layer1, and its blending mode is set to “Hard Light”, however you can mess around and choose which one you prefer the most.
(Again, incredibly sorry for the small GIF)

Step 8: Paste your image inside the second layer, and lower the opacity of the layer (if needed!) It should look like this:

That’s it, you are done! This is my first tutorial on the DevForum, I hope you like it! :smiley:


Very Much appreciated btw I have been trying to learn how to do this for a bit before I though it was part of a gfx pack :sweat:

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Well, I’m glad it helped! :slight_smile:

Too bad Photoshop is really expensive; I would use this if i could haha

There are many other Photoshop alternatives that you can use just like this too!

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As Vong25 said, there are many other alternatives if you do not or cannot invest in a fancy program like Photoshop. Some of the ones I’ve seen are ( is more advanced and is simpler I believe.) There’s also Photopea ( Not sure if it’s as good for GFX and other things like that (I’ve mainly seen clothing designers use it), but GIMP is another one. Google suggested Canva ( though I’m not sure because I haven’t tried it out.

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Yep, this completely works on photopea too!