Neural Filters in Photoshop Tutorial

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By Andrew Buckle, Updated : 2021

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How to use the powerful new neural filters in Photoshop such as colorize, depth etc



1. Where are the neural filters in Photoshop

A new AI feature is now added to Photoshop, neural filters. Find it via the filter menu and the top section of the filters. A number of filters are available once the panel appears. Filters are added on occasions by Adobe so the list mentioned here may be different within a week or month or year. I will be doing individual video tutorials / help pages on all of them. The filter is split into 'featured filters' as well as beta filters (ones not ready for the big time as yet). Click either of these icons to see the filters available.


2. Featured neural filters in Photoshop

The featured filters as of now include skin smoothing filter as well as JPEG artifacts and Style transfer.

3. Beta filters in Neural filters in Photoshop

The beta filters include smart portrait, makeup transfer, colorize, face cleanup etc. Some are marked as betas and the others just have information mark against them and are not presently available.

4. Download the neural filters

With all the neural filters, the first thing you have to do is click the download button. I am not certain if you have to click it again to re-download it if there is an update etc. It can take a short while to download the beta filter. Once you have the Photoshop neural filter, you then can run the filter on the current image or layer.

5. Activate state of the neural filters

By default all the filters are turned off but click the little slider beside the name to turn the filter into an active state, after download that is done straight away but if you come to the neural filter at any time later, you will still have to 'activate' the neural filter. You can have more than one filter on the go. I have no idea if there is an ordering process

6. Focal points

All the panels have a fairly similar format in that they may have a picture if you need to add focal points such as in colorize as well an additional set of sliders and these will vary from filter to filter but most neural filters have some control sliders. Such as in the colorize filter, you can modify the focus color as well as cyan etc

7. Preview screen for the neural filter

There is also a massive preview screen on the left.

8. Giving feedback to Adobe

All the Photoshop neural filters come with two boxes at the bottom to ask whether the result was good or not and I know that sounds odd but this is a neural / AI learning filter set and it needs to learn if what it does is good or not.

9. Reset the filters

At the top of the panel there is a reset button so you can restore the settings to the default.

10. Output options to the neural filters

At the bottom of the panel of the neural filter these is also a super useful output field and that offers a number of great options such as generate the result in the current layer, new layer, duplicated layer, smart object etc. I just wish all the filters had this super useful feature.

11. Selections

You can run the neural filters in conjunction with selections.

12. Fade

You can use the edit menu fade in some circumstances such as output to current layer but not with new layer etc. If the output is to a new layer, you can then take the new layer and change the blending modes and opacity and how it combines with the original now underlying layer. Sadly you cannot use the neural filters on color channels though you can if you split the image into three channels etc

13. RGB image modes

Neural filters work in RGB but also in CMYK etc. They don't work in 32bit etc.

14. Actions

You can combine the neural filter effect with actions as well as use it with art history brush etc