I've used a few filters here and there with different techniques,but there are SOOO many filters, many of which you may wonder why you'd ever use. I'll show you a few things you can do with filters if your looking for some "different" ways to edit your photos.
Your filters are located at the very top of your program. it will drop down a list of filter catagories which then will list filter sub-catagories.
A popular photo technique is Bokeh. This is when the focus is in a particular area and the rest of the photo is blurry. We can replicate this effect using filters.
Here's my original picture.
To do the Bokeh first duplicate the layer. (Ctrl-J) and add a mask to the top layer.
On the top picture layer go to Filter - Blur - Guassian Blur give it a significant blur.
While on the mask, make sure your forground color is black your background is white. Use your gradient tool (shares a spot with the paint bucket) Select the radial option. Start at the point where you want it to be clear and drag it to the edge.
*note* in the above step your picture should still be blurry, I sort of got out of sync with my steps. Sorry.
Here's the after effect.
If you want a more distinct edge to your subject you can extract and delete the blurred subject like I did in this layout.
This same effect can be used with other filters. Here's an example with the extrude filter:
filter - Stylize - Extrude
same technique as above, be sure to duplicate the layer first.
Now you may wonder how to use those artistic and sketch filters on your photos. Mostly you just need to play with them and see what you get. Here's a couple examples:
Filter - Sketch - Graphic pen
again we duplicate the layer first, run the filter on the top layer I then set the blend mode to Overlay this also looks good in Soft Light
Filter - Artistic - Colored Pencil
duplicate the layer run the filter on the top layer, set blend mode to Luminosity
I'd give ya more examples but my children are driving me NUTS! So YOU play with different filters and blending modes and see what you get!