Luminar NEO: How to use the Sunrays Tool

luminar neo Mar 13, 2023
Luminar NEO Sunrays Tool

The Sunrays Tool in Luminar NEO  allows you to add everything from a soft, warm glow to a set of sunbeams that shine through the objects in your photos. Using the AI power, the Sunrays Tool is able to recognise elements in your photos and filter the sun and sunbeams through and around them to add natural and dramatic effects.

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In this article:

  • What is the Sunrays Tool
  • Introducing the Sunrays Tool sliders
  • Getting started with the Sunrays Tool
  • Video tutorial
  • Luminar NEO



What is the Sunrays Tool

Add a whole new light source to your photo — the sun! You can control its position, warmth, and the amount of glow for a subtle or even dramatic change in lighting. Combine the Sunrays tool with blending modes for even more control of your lighting.



Introducing the Sunrays Tool sliders


Standard Settings

Place Sun Center

Click this button to position the sun. You can also drag the position off of the photo canvas.


This slider controls the overall intensity of the sun’s rays.

Overall Look

This slider changes the overall brightness of the scene.

Sunrays Length

This slider controls the distance the sun rays travel.

Overall Penetration

This slider impacts how much the sun passes through an area. It can be useful when trying to naturally composite the sunrays into a photo.


Advanced Settings

Sun Radius

This slider affects the size of the sun (the origin point of the sunrays).

Sun Glow Radius

This slider changes the size of the glow around the sun.

Sun Glow Amount

This slider changes the intensity of the sun’s glow.

Number of Sunrays

Use this slider to select the number of sunrays.


This slider will generate an entirely new variation based on your current settings.

Sun Warmth

This slider can change the sun from a bright white to a warm glow.

Sunrays Warmth

Use this slider to adjust the color temperature of the rays.



Getting started with the Sunrays Tool

Start using the tool by placing your sun in the location where you want it. Initially, use the Amount, Overall Look, Sunrays Lenght and Penetration sliders to create the overall look. After that, fine-tune the result with the additional settings. You can adjust the sun's radius and glow, the number and direction of the sunrays, and also, you can control the temperature of the sun and sunrays.

Sunrays Tool: 

  • Open the image in Luminar NEO using the Add Photos button (Cmd/Ctrl + O) in the Catalog module (L).
  • Move to the Edit module (E).
  • Depending on the image, apply a basic development with the tools available in the Essentials section (Develop, Enhance AI, Color).
  • Continue the edit using any tools that involve sky adjustments (Sky AI, Enhance AI).
  • Open the Sunrays Tool and start by increasing the Amount slider to see the sun on your image. 
  • Click on the Place Sun Center button. This will show a white dot over the sun center and you can now adjust the position of the sun by dragging the white dot around the image.
  • Continue with the sun adjustments using the other sliders available in the Basic Settings.



Sunrays Tool video tutorial

Watch the full video tutorial covering all sliders in this tool.




Luminar NEO

Luminar Neo is the latest editing software from Skylum. It was announced back in September 2021, and it's been highly anticipated since.

Luminar Neo is an AI-powered photo editing software. Skylum has said that Neo isn’t replacing their previous release—Luminar AI. But Neo sets out to fix some of the issues users faced with Luminar AI.

We were impressed with the AI tools in Luminar AI. But like many others, we encountered performance issues. Luminar Neo uses the same AI tools, but the new high-speed core engine improves speed and performance.

Luminar Neo isn’t just more of the same. We’re happy to see Skylum has taken Neo in a different direction, adding layer and mask AI tools to the program. This broadens Neo’s appeal, taking it in an Adobe Photoshop direction.

Learn more about Luminar NEO here.

Use one of our discount codes: CPNEO10 will give you a 10% discount - CP10 will give you a $10 discount.


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