Cast Shadows and Drop Shadows fall under photo editing. So let us talk about that first. The effort that photography needs on a regular basis, editing the said images need twice as much as effort . Post processing has become more crucial than ever. There are plenty of post production features that make an image better. Photographed images may look appealing but these effects make them look more superior. What is photo editing? The process of enhancing the quality of an image by adding effects or retouching the image is called Photo Editing.
Pictures can be improved at a fascinating rate using these effects. They may prove to be challenging for beginners but are well known by every professional. You can use applications other than Photoshop. Which are GIMP, Lightroom, etc. to boost the quality of an image. All of these softwares can change the shadow or create a shadow based on what you need for an image.
However, picture editing is a vast subject and it cannot be based on simply any service. There are some advanced techniques such as the 3d mannequin effect that photoshop is great at. For this article we are solely going to be focusing on Drop Shadow, Cast Shadows and how to create the effects. With that, we are going to be talking about what’s in trend and what is not.
Drop Shadows are shadows drawn behind an object to show that the object is above the objects behind it. This is most commonly used in wallpapers with text to add effect to the image. This effect is achieved by putting black or gray bars under the letters in a slightly different position. Realism of this effect might be increased by getting the pixels of the surface that the shadow will be casted on, darkened or by softening the edges of the shadows. This can be done by adding Gaussian blur on the shadows.
The generic old drop shadows have gone out of style and do not bring style to its pictures no matter what it is. They have been said to be very tacky and cheesy, hence people nowadays avoid using them. However, other forms of drop shadows have been in style for a while now.
Subtle Drop Shadows, which creates a difference between the font and the background by making the contrast darker or/and make the font colors pop more. These differentiate from the normal drop shadows as it does not create a floating effect, rather has the purpose of differentiating the font and the background.
Hard Edge/Solid Drop Shadows; these are used to bring emphasis on a word or used primarily on headings and important words to make it catch more attention. How it’s different from the generic drop shadows is that it has a strong shadow that mirrors the font and is slightly to the right.
Long Drop Shadows; these shadows are a newer design that brings the drop shadows a more stylish look without taking away attention from the font itself.
To achieve long shadows in Photoshop one has to:
- Click on fx on the bottom right corner of the screen.
- Click on drop shadow.
- Make sure you have preview checked on.
- Work around with the settings; Distance, Spread and Size until you find the right setting to match your needs.
- Once you have something you like, click on ok to apply those changes.
- Now, your drop shadow is applied, you can edit it anytime by clicking on the layers tab and double-click on ‘drop shadow’ option.
Cast Shadows is a shadow cast by an object or a person. To achieve that effect is to achieve a sense of realism in a photo with a plain background. This is mostly used in photoshoots and other product placements on the internet. For images in Amazon, Alibaba etc. to bring that natural look to life and to lure customers to buy the product even if they cannot see it face to face.
To achieve this in Photoshop, one has to follow an intricate amount of steps:
- Use the Lasso tool to select the object.
- Right click the object and select Layer Via Cut
- Select Fx at the bottom of the layers panel, then choose Drop Shadow from the list.
- Enter the following settings and press ok
- With the shadow layer selected, right click the Fx beside the layer name and select Create Layer from the list.
- Select the shadow layer, and then select Edit > Free Transform.
- Right click on the object and select Distort.
- Drag the handles to adjust the position of the shadow, then press Enter when satisfied.
- Right click on the shadow layer and select Duplicate Layer and select ok.
- With the shadow copy layer selected, select Filter > Blur > Gaussian Blur.
- Move the slider to the right to blur the edges of the shadow, then select OK.
- With the shadow copy layer selected, select the Add Layer Mask icon.
- With the mask selected, select the Gradient tool and set the color of the foreground to white and the background to black.
- From the bottom of the shadow to the top to make the shadow fade into the distance add a gradient from about ¼ the distance by drawing it.
- Adjust the Opacity in the layer’s palette to make the shadow appear more natural.
That is how you cast a shadow on an object. That was not that hard was it? Just like that you will be able to cast any shadow on your images.
However, you have to choose the right images and the right software, which in this case is photoshop. The images need to be edited with perfection to be great for marketing. As the industry is reaching new heights on a regular basis, your skills have to as well.
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