Add Clouds to the Sky in Your Photos in Photoshop

On this video Colin Smith from PhotoshopCAFE shows how to add some clouds to a boring blue skies in a realistic way in Photoshop.

Blue skies in a photo can be great but sometimes they can also be kind of boring (especially if they take a large part of the image). Knowing how to add a realistic looking cloud can be useful sometimes if you are O.K. with doing composite images.

We start by cutting up the sky. Smith uses the quick select tool (you can do this with color range and many other tools as well). Smith inverse this selection (in select>inverse) and moves this to a new layer CTRL J will do that for you.

The best way to get nice realistic images of clouds is to shoot them when you see them and have a small folder with different – interesting – clouds that you will be able to use. Bring the clouds image to your original image.

Now you have 3 layers and you can drag the clouds below s you will see the new clouds where your skies used to be. Now we add a bit of atmospheric perspective where the lower part is a little bit whiter than the upper part of the skies. We do that with a gradient tool and a white-transparent selected and start from a lower part of the image.

We have looked at many ways of replacing skies in Photoshop as well as fixing and improving different problems with skies including: “How to Add a New Sky in Photoshop in Under 1 Min” “How To Do a Quick Sky Replacements In Photoshop“, “How to Fix a Smudgy Sky in Photoshop“, “Fixing the Sky with the Patch Tool in Photoshop“, “How to Replace a Skyline in Photoshop” and “How to Replace the Sky in Photoshop“.


You can find many more Photoshop video tutorials on LensVid’s Photoshop section. You can find more PhotoshopCAFE videos here on LensVid.

Iddo Genuth
Iddo Genuth is the founder and chief editor of He has been a technology reporter working for international publications since the late 1990's and covering photography since 2009. Iddo is also a co-founder of a production company specializing in commercial food and product visual content.

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