Photoshop CC’s recent addition to its Blur Gallery, Path Blur offers a creative and flexible way to add directional motion to your images in postproduction. It’s astonishing! You’ve got to try it to believe it—and to truly understand it.
The Blur Gallery now has five effects (Field Blur, Iris Blur, Tilt-Shift, Path Blur and Spin Blur) that can be controlled from a single panel. Once you’ve accessed one, you can quickly access the others at the same time, enabling you to create complex blur effects in a single stop. Path Blur alone is capable of delivering lots of complex motion effects with one simple path.
Before applying Path Blur, consider using a Smart Object to make the filter nondestructive, re-editable and mask-able. I recommend you acquire RAW files as Smart Objects, but in cases where you can’t, such as those that involve merges or stacks or major retouching, convert your Background layer to a Smart Object: Layer > Smart Objects > Convert To Smart Object. To apply the filter, follow this path: Filter > Blur Gallery > Path Blur. The Blur Gallery panel will appear, offering you five extraordinary sliders and multiple points of control.
Path Blur has two presets, Basic Blur (without strobe effects) and Rear Sync Flash (with strobe effects), which are just suggested starting points. Path Blur defaults to Basic Blur, but if you change Taper, Centered Blur or either of the two sliders Strobe Strength and Strobe Flashes under Motion Blur Effects, you’ll quickly see the preset change to Custom.