Glow 2 is a fun way to create and enhance images. Make subtle enhancements with adjustments and blending modes or create electrifying art easily with effects and custom adjustments. 

Have you ever seen those multiple section art pieces and wanted to make one? Today we’ll cover how Glow 2 can be used to create multiple piece art work. This tutorial will show how to make your own multiple piece art work from start to finish with two variations, one Intermediate Level and one more Advanced Level! 

Learn how to accomplish the following in this tutorial:

  • Workflow process
  • Getting started with Glow 2 via Photoshop
  • How to create an effect from start to finish in Glow 2
  • Save an effect in Glow 2 
  • Expand on creative thinking and output results through practice

In this tutorial I’ll be using an image of a flower, which you can download here. I really like this picture for this specific tutorial as the background is simple and the subject matter is bold. We’ll turn this daisy into a 1960’s worthy piece of art.

Let’s get started!

Optional: Create a Folder for Saved Images

Create a FolderYou can use your own organizational method or give this one a try: I recommend creating a folder where you can save your original image, your full sized edited Photoshop image, and 4 separate images for print before getting started. I put mine on my desktop for easy access!

Once you’ve downloaded the file, or picked your own, you should save it to the folder you just created.


1. Getting Started in Photoshop

We’ve got to get technical for just a moment before we start having a lot of fun. Bear with me!  

Open the File: Once you’ve downloaded the file, which you can do here if you haven’t already, open the file in Photoshop. You can also open your own file. This project will work best with a centered, focused subject matter and a completely dark background. 

Before Moving On: The first thing you need to consider is how you want your final piece to look. Do you want to make a statement piece to hang in a large space? Or would you rater make a smaller grouping to hang in a smaller space? There are a lot of presentation options available: 5″ x 5″, 8″ x 8″, 12″ x 12″, 20″ x 20″, and more. Decide on your overall frame size or canvas size for presentation before getting started.

Example of sizing: If you picked 5″ x 5″ framing, your overall image must be 10×10. If you picked 20×20 canvases, your overall image must be 40″ x 40″.

I want to make a nice sized piece with this project so I will plan on framing 4 prints in 4 separate 20″ x 20″ frames. 

Sizing: In Photoshop go to the Menu and select Image and then Image Size. Select the measurement to be Inches and enter in your print size. Remember, because I want 4 20″ x 20″ images I am going to make my overall image 40″ x 40″. Make your image the size you would like or follow along with my sizing!

Guidelines: Now that our image is the right size we will need to set guidelines to separate the image into 4 equal quadrants. Make sure your Rulers are on (Mac: Command R) and set 2 Guidelines by clicking on the ruler and dragging down to your desired measurement, which is the halfway point. The guidelines will usually snap directly to the center point. You will need one vertical guideline and one horizontal guideline. Your square image should now be divided into 4 equal pieces.

Now that our image is the right size and we have our guidelines in place, let’s move on and get our image ready for processing!

You always want to keep your Original Background Layer so that you can revert back if you need to. Duplicate your Background Layer and name as you like. Right now your Photoshop file should have your sizing set, your layers duplicated, and guidelines like this: 

Photoshop Screen
Click for larger view.

Touch Up: Touch up the background in your image on the new layer. Use the Clone Stamp and/or the Spot Healing Brush to make your background even in color.

Duplicate the Layer: Copy your airbrushed layer again to use with Glow 2.

2. Getting Started with Glow 2

Getting to Glow: In Photoshop, select the layer you want to work with. Go to the Menu and select Filter and then Topaz Labs and finally Glow 2. The application is now open and ready to go!

Glow 2 will immediately give you a preview of the featured effects. For this tutorial we want to start from scratch. To do so, select Edit in the top right hand corner and then Reset. All of your settings are now reset and we are ready to start having fun!

Edit and Reset

3. Primary Glow

The first adjustment we’ll make is for Primary Glow. We want our image to be very contrasty, electric, and vivid. The adjustments in Primary Glow will sharpen our image and provide a great deal of contrast to help make our background as dark as possible and our flower as vibrant as possible. Watch how your image takes shape and turns more abstract!

Primary Glow

  • Glow Type: Dark
  • Glow Strength: 0.00
  • Effect Sharpness: 1.00
  • Electrify: 0.50
  • Simplify Details: 0.00
  • Edge Color: 0.20
  • Detail Strength: 0.00
  • Brightness: -0.60
  • Contrast: 0.15
  • Saturation: 0.00

4. Secondary Glow

Our next adjustment is for Secondary Glow. Our image started taking shape after the Primary Adjustments but now we can really emphasize fun color and electric lines! You’ll notice the color drastically become more vibrant with the Electrify adjustment and the Contrast adjustment will really make our colors pop.

Secondary Glow

  • Glow Type: Dark
  • Glow Strength: 0.00
  • Effect Sharpness: 0.70
  • Electrify: 0.50
  • Simplify Details: 0.00
  • Edge Color: 0.16
  • Brightness:0.20
  • Contrast: 1.00
  • Saturation: 0.00

5. Color

Speaking of colors that pop, let’s adjust the Color in our image! We want this image to be as vibrant as possible. Let’s crank the Saturation up!



6. Finishing Touches

Finishing Touches will let us make the image fluid and fun.

Finishing Touches

  • Effect Coverage: 0.00
  • Coverage Transition: 0.50
  • Smudge: 0.05
  • Sharpness: 1.00
  • Sharp Radius: 0.00
  • Vignette: 0.00


7. Save Your Effect

You’ll want to save your effect as we will use it 3 more times for this tutorial! Once you’re happy with your adjustments, click the Save button in the upper right hand corner.

Save Preset 1

Enter a name for your effect and pick any relevant categories you feel it fits under. Saving your Effect will add it to My Effects, allowing you to access it anytime you are logged in. By selecting Favorite the effect will also be added to your list of favorite effects.

Save Preset 2

8. Save Your Changes

Now that we have made all of our changes to our image and saved our effect, we want to commit these changes to our image and return to Photoshop. Simply click the Save icon in the bottom right hand corner of the program.

Save Image

9. Cropping

We are going to start cropping now that we’re back in Photoshop. Remember our Guidelines from Step 1? They’re really going to come in handy now!

Crop: Select the crop tool. Using the Crop tool, select the upper right hand quadrant of the image. Your selection area should snap to your guidelines. Commit your changes.


Save As: Save your current image as yourfilename1.jpg to the folder you created to store your images.


Undo: This step is very important! As we don’t want to lose any of the work we have done so after saving, simply Undo.

Your image should now be back to full size, without any crops.


You can repeat this step three more times to create a 4 piece work of art with all images having the same effect. If you like this look and want to make all 4 of your images the same, simply repeat this tutorial 3 more times. Once you have completed all 4 cropping options, Save your PSD file into your folder.


…or you can continue on and make more fun changes for the next three pieces! If you would like to continue on with additional changes to the remaining three pieces of your work, follow the remaining steps! We will create 3 more layers and process each through Glow 2 with Hue changes to create 4 different colored images that will fit together and make one image.

10. Advanced Editing

I’m going to go ahead and speed up instructions now that you’re experienced with the workflow pattern.

Duplicate the Layer: In Photoshop, duplicate your Background Copy Layer again and place it at the top of your layer list.

Open Glow: Go to the Menu and select Filter and then Topaz Labs and finally Glow 2. The application is now open and ready to go again!

Use Your Saved Effect: We saved our effect in Step 7 and now it’s really going to come in handy! Find and select your effect. Your image should now look like the image you saved as your first piece of the collection.

Edit the Effect: Select Edit in the top right hand corner.


Change the Hue: Go down to Color and change the Hue to 0.90 to change the image to pink, or pick your own color!

Hue 90

Commit your changes and go back to Photoshop. Now that your image hue is changed you can rename the layer and Crop your second piece. If you need a reminder, check out Step 9 again. Save As this piece as yourfilename2.jpg to the folder you made and then Undo.

Repeat this step 2 more times, changing the Hue to .70 and .40 or pick your own settings! Then Crop and Save As your remaining pieces.

Once you have completed all 4 color variations, Save your PSD file into your folder.

11. Frame and Hang

Once you have completed these steps you will have four JPG images that are each a piece of the overall larger image. Pick a printer and have your images printed or print them yourself at home. Once you frame your prints or get your canvases back your masterpiece is ready to hang!


Are you interested in trying Glow 2? Head over to our downloads page and try Glow 2 for 30 days at no charge!

Check out Topaz Labs on Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, and Instagram. We also offer free Webinars and have a great community on our Discussion Forum.

About Jodi L. Robbins

Jodi is currently the Art Director of Topaz Labs. She has been an artist and photographer for over 15 years, starting with black and white film photography and alternative processing. After completing her BFA in Studio Art from Southern Methodist University and her Masters in Photography from Savannah College of Art and Design, she worked in product photography for companies such as Heritage Auctions, Neiman Marcus, and the Dallas Cowboys.

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