I have this image, to get this I made a circular gradient from black to white starting from the bottom and going top. So the bottom of the circle is the blackest, and as the radius increases, it gets white.

However, I want it so that, it becomes white but converges to a single point at the top of the circle. So the top pixel of the circle is whitest (not exactly white but just a little darker than white like in the image), and then as the radius increases from the top pixel it becomes darker.

So I need a way to have two points, top and bottom, where it is the lightest and darkest, respectively. And then as the radius increases, it gets grayer.

Does anyone know how to do this? I need to do this myself, so if you can also show how to do this.


enter image description here

EDIT: Here I am splicing two versions and putting them together, but the center gray is not smooth. I am not sure how to fix it.

enter image description here


4 Answers 4


A relatively quick method with more control:

  1. Create a gray circle.
  2. Create two new layers on top of it.
  3. Select the Gradient tool, draw a black Foreground to Transparent radial gradient near the bottom of the circle in one layer, and draw a white one near the top in the other (adjust their positions, sizes, shadings to your liking).

Colored background to make the white radial gradient easier to see

  1. Turn the two layers into clipping masks for the circle layer by right-clicking them in the Layers panel and selecting Create Clipping Mask or using the Ctrl+Alt+G shortcut (depends on your system).

  1. (Optional) Group them should you need to move the ball.

The problem with this is that Radial Gradient is a perfect circle so the gradient isn't exactly 'realistic'. If you want more adjustments, you can try something like this.


Assuming you want a 3D sphere seen as 2D image:

You have 2 easy methods:

Easy fake that works without 3D functionality:

  • goto a new empty layer
  • make a square selection (=rectangular marquee tool, drag with shif pressed)
  • fill the selection with linear vertical White to Black Gradient (drag with shift pressed)
  • select your square and goto Edit > Transform > Warp
  • stretch the gradient to approximately imitate the light on a sphere
  • create a circular selection (elliptical marquee tool, drag with shift pressed), if needed goto Select > Transform selection and fix the selection
  • copy and paste to a new layer OR invert the selection and press DEL

See the workflow cartoon:

enter image description here

Photoshop's 3D functionality

  • fill the whole layer with vertical linear White to Black gradient
  • goto 3D > New Shape from Layer > Sphere

The result will internally be an readjustable (light, position) 3D object that must be rsterized until it is equal with any bitmap images.

Here's an example of 3D way sphere: The default light is quite flat, but it is easy to adjust in 3D panel or after rasterization with the curves tool.

enter image description here


if you want to create a sphere follow these steps:

  1. On a new layer draw a circle, using "elliptical marquee tool".
  2. Add a gradient to it using "Gradient Tool".
  3. Go to Filter > Distort > spherize. Increase the amount all the way to 100% and set "mode" to normal.
  4. And press ok.

*During these steps make sure you are selecting the circle, not all the layer.

The outcome should be like this:

And you can watch this video if you had any problem: Click Here!


I'm really not sure of what you're trying to achieve, but isn't setting gradient from white to black (instead of black to white) what you need? As simple as that?


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