Renders a procedurally generated cloud pattern in the opaque parts of the layer.


The difference in position of each additional stratum of the effect from the previous stratum. Animate this for parallax motion between the different strata of the effect. (This has no effect on the first stratum, or if Octaves is set to 1)

Default: 0, 0

The X and Y offset of the pattern relative to the position of the layer.

Default: 0, 0

The size of the pattern rendered in the layer.

Range: 0.01 to 50; Default: 1

Stretches the pattern by scaling it separately along the X and Y axes.

Default: 0, 0

Controls the amount of Color 2 used in the cloud pattern. With the default colors, increasing Intensity makes the whole effect brighter. Note that if this is greater than 0.5, there may be limiting or clipping in parts of the pattern.

Range: 0.25 to 0.75; Default: 0.5

A seed used to generate the randomness used in this effect. Change this for different patterns of randomness.

Range: 0 to 5; Default: 0
Color 1

One of two colors used to render the cloud pattern.

Color 2

The other color used to render the cloud pattern (for best results, this color should contrast with Color 1)


The number of visual layers or strata in the effect. Use more octaves for a more complex, intricate pattern, or fewer octaves for a smoother pattern with less detail. Note that if this is set to 1, the Parallax property is ignored.

Range: 1 to 9; Default: 6


Because Clouds completely obscures whatever is already in the layer, it is best used with shape layers, and not particularly useful with photos or video. To use clouds with a photo or video, place the clouds on a separate shape layer above the photo or video layer, and use a blending mode such as Screen to allow the photo or video to show through.


For a similar effect with more controls for customization, see Turbulence. Turbulence also includes a blending mode, making it suitable for use with photo and video layers.

Realistic Clouds

Note that even though this effect is called "Clouds" it is more useful as a basis for generating procedural noise for more complex effects (see Use Cases, below). The clouds generated by this effect are not particularly realistic.

For more realistic clouds, there are better ways. For example, you can fill an oval shape with a gradient from gray to white, then apply the Turbulent Displace effect to that oval for much more realistic clouds. See Turbulent Displace for details.

Use Cases