If you are new to Photoshop and wish to explore the gradient feature terrain, follow this step-by-step instruction on how to edit the gradient in Photoshop and get it right.

Key takeaways

  • The gradient slider in the gradient editor allows you to add or remove any colour from your shape.
  • The gradient style allows you to determine which colour you want to be more noticeable.
how to edit a gradient in photoshop featured image

Step-by-step instructions on how to edit a gradient in Photoshop

White canvas in photoshop

Step 1: Create a new canvas

To create a new canvas, proceed to the Menu toolbar, and click on Files.

Once you do that, a drop-down menu appears. Scroll down and click on New. A dialogue box will pop up with options for necessary details for your new canvas. Fill in all details and proceed to click OK.

A red triangle on a white canvas

Step 2: Create a triangle shape

The next step is to create a design on your new canvas. For this particular feature, the graphic designer will create a triangle shape using the Shape tool. To use it, scroll to the left-hand side of your screen and click on your Shape tool. In the drop-down box, select the Polygon, change the sides to 3 sides, and design on your canvas.

Selecting blending options

Step 3: Add the gradient

To edit a gradient, you need to make the gradient first. To do that, right-click on the layer, and on the drop-down menu click on Blending Options.

Dialogue box of blending options

Step 4: Blending options

After clicking on Blending options, a dialogue box appears with options of Styles. On it tick the Gradient Overlay box.

Selecting the gradient overlay option

Step 5: Gradient overlay

Once you tick the Gradient overlay box, click on it; afterward, the dialogue box changes and opens with editing options with relations to the Gradient overlay and it shows a preview of any changes made.

A dialogue box for gradient overlay option

Step 6: Editing the gradient

On the dialogue box with the editing options, click on the box labeled Gradient, and choices of stored gradient types available on Photoshop appear. Pick the desired gradient type you wish. For this example, the designer has picked the yellow + orange gradient.

Yellow + Orange gradient style

Step 7: Editing the gradient

Once you pick your desired gradient type, edit all necessary details.

Dialogue box for gradient editor

Step 8: Editing the gradient (Continued)

Once you click on the gradient, another dialogue box appears with Gradient Editor for you to edit your chosen gradient. On the dialogue box, you’ll find a slider showing the gradient colour composition. For this example, you can see the three colours of orange on both sides and yellow in the middle.

Dialogue box for gradient editor

Step 9: Changing the gradient composition

Once you identify the colour composition slider, click on one of the colours grading in the composition. For this illustration, the graphic designer chose the orange colour on the far left side. Click on the colour, and a Color picker option appears in a dialogue box.

Colour picker dialogue box

Step 10: Editing with the colour picker

After you click on one of the orange grading colours and the Color picker dialogue box appears, you have the liberty to change the colour as you see fit. Here, the chosen colour is Blue.

Dialogue box for colour picker

Step 11: Editing with the colour picker

After you adjust the colour grading at the left-hand side, proceed to the right-hand side through the same process done on the left-hand side by clicking on the colour, and when the Color picker dialogue box appears, click on a new colour for the right side of the shape. Here the chosen colour is green.

Dialogue box for gradient editor

Step 12: Gradient editor

Once you finish with that, on the gradient slider, you’ll still see traces of the faded yellow at the centre. To rid yourself of it, drag the colours at both ends across the slider to delete any hints of yellow on it.

Note: You can change the concentration level of any of the colours by dragging the gradient slider from any side towards the other. You can also change the Opacity of any of the colours by clicking on the black slider adjacent to both colours. You can reduce or increase the Opacity of the gradient as you wish.

Dialogue box of layer style editing

Step 13: Style editing

Once you finish up with all the gradient editing, the only dialogue box left on your screen is the Gradient overlay. Scroll down on the dialogue box and click on Styles. The drop-down menu shows different styles ranging from linear to diamond style. For this illustration, the chosen type is the Radial style. 

Dialogue box for gradient overlay

Step 14: Scale editing

As seen above, the gradient pattern is no longer linear but radial. Afterward, change the ratio of the colours on the gradient by adjusting the Scale. Here the scale ratio changed from 100% to 92%. While changing the scale ratio, note that this means the level/percentage of the colour’s presence in the gradient. So you can change the ratio based on the colours you wish to see more.

Dialogue box for gradient overlay

Step 15: Reversing the colour gradient

After you’ve fixed your scale ratio, you can now reverse the colours’ position on the scale. To do that, right in front of the Gradient box, you’ll find the Reverse box. Click on it to switch the gradient colours, as seen above.

Colourful triangle on the white canvas

Step 16: Edited gradient

After all the adjustments, your image, as seen above, comes out with an edited gradient.


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The gradient feature on Photoshop comes with lots of extra touches for your work. To enjoy all that this feature has for you, follow the above steps carefully to unlock your gradient editing skills and make your work more creative and beautiful.