Spin Blur Filter In Photoshop


The Photoshop spin blur effect is found within the blur gallery in the standard effects location


Well, what does it do ? It turns part of an image, it can be used to turn the entire image but it works just as well and quicker working with small parts of an image such as if you want to add some motion to an object or a part of a picture.


Create your design, it can be layers, it can be a smart object and then apply it. The effect does not include a huge amount of options : center of interactive effect found in the preview as well as the range, the interactive circle on the preview and you can make this circular or elliptical. You can interactively re-position the origin of the effect simply by dragging the widget around the image in the preview. You can also rotate and re-size this range control. You can also make the circular effect become elliptical by dragging the small dots widgets out on left - right more than the top - bottom or vica versa. If you want to keep it in proportion, drag the range control via the square widget and not the small dots.

Influence range

There is also an influence range so you can create an 'in-between' smearing of the image - it is displayed as four dots which can be moved close to the center and you will see no effect. Or move them close to the outside ring to see the effect applied to the entire area.

Multiple effects in One Preview

You can add more than one spin within the effect just by clicking the pin on the preview. They can overlap but they don't blend into each other nor is there any blending mode feature between them. Hover over another area and the cursor will display a pin with a plus and just click elsewhere. If you want to modify the settings, you can do it independently of the other pins.

Apply the effect more than once

As with all effects, it can be applied more than once. You can vary the settings or just apply the repeat command.

Fade the effect

You can also use the edit command and fade and fade the effect and also add in a blending mode to change how it blends with the underlying image

Use layers / smart objects

You can use the effects on layers. You can use the layers as smart objects and apply the effect , which can then be altered at any point as well as removed. To alter the effect added to the smart object, double click the entry and the panel will re-appear and allow you to modify the settings etc.


Sadly, for some reason, you cannot use the effect in different channels. Also, you will find it is not accessible in all image modes. You can always split the channels into RGB files and then apply it in different ways (and settings and origins and sizes) in thered, green and blue channels and then merge them which is not ideal.


You can combine the effect with selections to create the effect in different parts of the image. You can apply it to the selection or invert the selection or perhaps add feathering and apply it to that. You can also move the selection using the marquee tools and then re-apply it in a different positon


You can combine it also with combine them with actions so you can re-apply the action over and over with the gallery effect and other effects combined.

Other panels

It should also be noted that a few other panels can be used are available such as motion effects and noise and these combine well with this effect

Motion and strobe

You can also add in motion effects such as strobe strength and strobe flashes and strobe flash duration (great for adding some spacing to the effect); the noise tab is also available. It doesn't create an animated strobe effect but it does mean you can capture an abstract flashes of your image as it turns in the strobe / motion depending on the strobe flashes and duration etc


You can add in grain (Gaussian etc), amount, size, roughness, color and highlights. All kinds of interesting grain / noise designs can be created with this alone but combined with the other settings it is a powerful feature. If you want very little grain, keep the amount low.

custom shapes

You can also it with vector custom shapes, select the shape tools (polygon etc) and then set option in top left to 'shape' and apply the design and go to the layer menu and smart objects and convert to smart objects.


You can apply the effect to type as well. Select the type tool and create some type and then again go to the layer menu and smart objects and convert command and apply the effect to distort and smear the text