How to create a vignette effect in your photos.

Learn more about the artistic effect of vignetting, and how to achieve it with your camera or post-processing software.

In photography, a vignette effect is an artistic darkening of a photo’s corners compared to its center. Photographers often use it as a creative effect to draw the viewer’s attention directly to the subject, as in portrait or product photography. Vignettes can be created with the use of certain filters, or photographers can apply them in post-processing applications such as Photoshop.

Create a vignette effect with your camera.

The easiest way to achieve a vignette effect is with post-processing, but you can also get this effect while taking the photo.

Even though photographers will intentionally create darker areas for artistic purposes, vignetting is technically a “defect” where something obstructs the light entering the lens. In order to recreate this effect, you need to alter the light. You can do this by attaching store-bought or homemade filters to the front of the lens, limiting the amount of light that is let in to create your desired effect.

Create a vignette effect with editing software.

When you create a vignette effect in post-processing, you have more control over the strength and overall area of darkness, thanks to the tools available in editing software such as Adobe Photoshop.

To create a vignette effect in Photoshop, follow these simple steps:

  1. From the Filter drop-down, choose Lens Correction.
  2. In the new box, select the Custom tab.
  3. You should now see two sliders that allow you to control the vignette effect. The Amount slider is responsible for the intensity of the vignette, while the Midpoint slider affects the area of vignetting.
  4. Once the desired effect is achieved, tap OK to apply it to your photo.

For even more inspiration, discover additional photography tips and techniques to try.

Explore what else you can do with Photoshop as you begin experimenting with creative effects in your photography.