How To Create a Soft Fade Vignette Effect in Paint Shop Pro (6 and Up)

Soft Fade Vignette Effect
Soft Fade Vignette Effect.

A vignette, or soft fade, is a popular photo effect where the photo gradually fades into a solid colored background, usually in an oval shape. By using a mask, you can create this effect flexibly and non-destructively in Paint Shop Pro.

Difficulty: Easy

Time Required: 2 minutes

Here's How:

  1. Open a photo.
  2. Choose the selection tool from the toolbar.
  3. In the tool options, set the selection type to Ellipse.
  4. Drag a selection around the area of the photo you want to keep.
  1. Go to Masks > New > Show Selection.
  2. Go to Selections > Select None.
  3. Go to Masks > Edit.
  4. Go to Effects > Blur > Gaussian Blur...
  5. Click the Proof button so you can see the effect in real time and adjust the radius slider until you are happy with the fade amount, then click OK.
  6. Exit mask edit mode by going to Masks > Edit again.
  7. Create a layer under the photo and fill it with the desired background or pattern.


  1. To reposition the vignette, go to the Mask tab in the layers palette and click the Link Mask Toggle button. Use the move tool to reposition the mask. Don't forget to re-link them when you're done.
  2. The layers palette will display *MASK* in the title bar when you are in mask edit mode. The layer name is displayed when you are editing a layer. Ctrl-K is the toggle shortcut.
  3. You can paint in the layer mask with shades of gray for other effects. Just switch to mask edit mode and experiment.
  4. If you decide you don't like the effect, go to Masks > Delete and answer No when prompted to merge.