The Spiral Flower Graphic Effect

This is something new to me, the Spiral Flower effect, but not totally new to the wonderful world of Photoshop.  It was originally published on this site a few years back (December 2011) and that individual learned it here (published in November 2011).  I learned of it via the Photoshop and Lightroom Group on Facebook (on Wednesday August 5th) 🙂

I go into that whole lineage to show you that these techniques in Photoshop, no matter what technique it is, seem to have an origination somewhere else.  Someone once told me, “No matter what you learn in Photoshop, while I appreciate you quoting me it is not necessary, because I probably picked it up somewhere else.”

While I do agree with that to some extent it is nice to give the originating author some respect so the technique stays with them.

Spiral Flower After Before

So this Spiral Flower technique is pretty simple to do and can make some incredible images!  Here is the list of steps (modified from the originating author):

  1. Start with any photo
  2. Filter > Pixelate > Mezzotint > Medium lines (optional as seen in the tutorial below)
  3. Filter > Blur > Radial blur (slider = 100, blur method = zoom, quality = best)
  4. Repeat step 3 up to 5 times, as desired
  5. Duplicate layer
  6. Remain on original layer. Filter > Distort > Twirl (angle value = +80 or as desired)
  7. Select new layer. Filter > Distort > Twirl (angle value = -80 or opposite of step 6 angle value)
  8. Alter new layer’s blending mode to lighten
  9. Place layers into Group
  10. Modify accordingly

I did make a series of Actions to go with this tutorial to make it much easier on you.  Just be sure to do some self exploration 🙂


Download the Actions

Flower Spiral (Original)

The original Spiral Flower

Spiral Flower Flipped

A variation on the original, this has been flipped and rotated horizontal and vertical.

Spiral Flower Subtle

A subtle Spiral Flower addition.  Add a Mask for really cool effects on landscapes.


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Blake Rudis
f.64 Academy and f.64 Elite are the brainchildren of Blake Rudis. While he is a landscape photographer, he is most passionate about post-processing images in Photoshop and mentoring others.

For Blake, it's all about the art and process synergy. He dives deep into complex topics and makes them easy to understand through his outside-the-box thinking so that you can use these tricks in your workflow today!
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