Photoshop has features we can’t imagine!  Silke here, and today I will show you 3 very interesting features with which we can add volume to circles and light, with special effects, to create a beautiful digital Christmas ornament.

First let’s get to know the power of creating the gradient tool to digitally add volume to objects. Then we will increase the brightness with Lens Flare. And finally let’s use the feature I love: Spherize. It forms the pattern realistically around a ball.

Let’s begin! How to create Digital Christmas Ornaments from scratch with Photoshop.

  • In Photoshop open a new document (I used 3600×3600 px; 300 dpi).
  • Create a round selection (hold shift ) and then;
  • Fill it with a simple plain color (I used yellow f1d788) using the Paint Bucket Tool.


Gradient effect:

  • Create a new layer (name it “gradient”) and fill it with gradient tool. See here below how: image 2

  • Change the gradient preset to Black (outside) and White (inside) see here below how:

  • Apply the GRADIENT. Make sure that you have the RADIAL GRADIENT MODE activated. And that your round yellow ball is selected. In a new layer, drag and drop in a diagonal direction over this selected area. Start a little bit outside and end up also a little outside on the other side.


  • IMPORTANT: Set this gradient layer to blend mode “SOFT LIGHT”.

Adding Lightning effect with Lens Flare

  • Keep the circle selected, then add a new layer and fill it with black 100%.
  • Go to filter RENDER > Lens Flare and set it to 147% brightness (50-300mm Zoom)


  • Set this layer to blend mode “OVERLAY”.


  • Set foreground color to white and background to black. Then create a rectangular selection and in a NEW LAYER, fill it with the gradient tool using the same preset we recently created. But this time with the linear gradient


  • Drag and Drop the gradient above the selected area, and start and stop very close to it.

  • In a NEW LAYER, below the first part of the hanger, create the top part of the hanger using one oval selection tool and then with the ‘subtract from selection’ mode activated remove the center with another smaller oval selection.



  • Now fill it again with the same gradient tool and the same preset. Then add a shadow effect.

Add papers or transparent overlays to your Christmas Ball

  • Adding and wrapping doodle overlays with transparent background. Open any pattern paper, set it to black and white and put it above the basic colored circle layer.


Spherize the Paper

  • This is finally the last step. Spherizing the Paper! Actually, that’s why I created this tutorial for you. Because I wanted to show how beautiful the sphere effect applied to the paper that adorns the ball.


I used this tutorial and my MishMash Doodling Pattern files to decor all these 10 Christmas Ornaments.

The Christmas Tree Balls are a freebie for you until November 30.