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Shadowing in Adobe Photoshop for Digital Scrapbookers

Lesson 4 of 17

The Anatomy of Shadows in Adobe® Photoshop®

Traci Reed

Shadowing in Adobe Photoshop for Digital Scrapbookers

Traci Reed

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Lesson Info

4. The Anatomy of Shadows in Adobe® Photoshop®
Explore how shadows work in real life so you can create more believable shadows in Adobe® Photoshop®.

Lesson Info

The Anatomy of Shadows in Adobe® Photoshop®

So we have a few goals that we're going to be learning things that I want you to come out of the segment knowing so if you don't know them if I'm going too fast, if you can't figure out what I'm saying, let me know and I will stop and we would can ask questions anytime, okay, so first we're going to learn about real shadows and how they're cast, so I'm I'm a little bit weird, so I've looked before to see how shadows air being cast, but I'm sure that most people haven't, so we're going to get the rial layout out here and we're gonna look att things together and see what happens when you move the light farther away. What happens when you get close? I'm gonna pull something from the audience who wants to go with me? I didn't think so way we're going tio translate that afterwards into the functions of the shadow palate. I have a great slide show that breaks down every piece of the shadow palate and the inner shadow pilot and the outer glow palate, and we're going to learn when to use those...

what to use for the most part will be using drop shadows, but they all serve their own purpose, so we're gonna learn about all of them and then we're going tio examine riel shadows and we're going to replicate them so I took a bunch of pictures of all of my I have paper scrap booking stuff I know, I know, but I took a bunch of pictures of him and we are going to look at them all and we're going to replicate him and photo shop so that uh you can see ok, if I need a floating object, then I need to have a higher distance and that kind of thing and then we're going to learn how to make and save layer styles as jumping off points for our future shadow casting. So like I said earlier shadow styles typically are just jumping off point so you know that they need to be this distance in this small you know how big that the public they are, but sometimes we have lighter papers. Sometimes we have weird things that we want to do to make sure that they look appropriate. So what? We're going to learn how to start at the beginning with the layer styles so let's kid starting started let me I still need a I still need a volunteer thank you, rick for you in the brownie points award actually go in the front for me so let me get out a few really papers troubling layouts while I was still attempting paper scrip looking ok so you can see that on both of these layouts there's quite a variety of product so we have things that are floating away from the page and things that are actually coming off the page stick that down way have flair and we have enamel dots and we have all kinds of paper objects and if you look let's get this light going right here okay? Now if you look if we have straight down they all cast a different shadow and they all do different things. So obviously the things that are floating farther away from the page like the flare objects and the wood they have harsher, deeper shadows there darker they flow farther away from the page. These things are on pop docks so they flow farther away from the page to whereas the things like the paper and the stickers they don't have hardly any shadow at all because obviously they're not coming away from the page. Now why is this important? Why does it matter? Because if you want something to look right if you want to shadow a flare so that we can really see that one with to this one if you want to shadow flare so that it looks like it's realistically coming away from the page when we have to understand what they do in real life now this is our light source and I'm gonna have ripple hold it for me the name of the water and so I want you to take it and I want you to move it from side to side so we can watch as that happens we have the cord to kill etc okay, yeah so let's move it can you step back a little bit manigault so if we get the light farther away from the layout you khun see because the light isn't a strong the shadows air fading a little bit but they're also getting longer you can see them like like a midday when the sun is setting in the sun is far away your shadow gets really long happens just like that you know, on scrap booking to now if you get closer to the page you can see that the shadows get darker and harsher but they're also getting smaller and flatter okay, so generally the typical angle from for photo shop is one hundred twenty or um thirty degrees something like that for all my purposes today I'm using hundred twenty degrees which puts the light source right over here right about there so everything's going to be about one hundred twenty degrees and we are going to spend some time replicating how each of these things work but before we do that we have to understand the shadow palette so let's talk I've a keynote and let's talk about the shadow palate and how that works ok thank you riffle okay so there's three ways to add shadows there's the drop shadow there's the outer glow and there's an inner chateau and the all the different things you can see on the picture that they all look differently even the outer glow looks different than the drop shadow because they have different functions. So this is what something looks like with no drop shadow and with a rather large so we can see it drop shadow so this is the drop shadow palette and it's scary for a lot of people first time people especially has a lot of options and it can be kind of confusing but really it's really simple and once you master one pallet, you kind of can understand all of the rest of them. So first is the blend mode now for drop shadows and now I can't go into I go into the science behind the difference between multiplying linear burn but nobody cares they just want to know what to use so we're going to use multiply or linear burn I typically use linear burn for everything because I feel like it gives you more color variation within the shadow multiply tends to be very black, so if you have a pink paper, the multiply it kind of looks money on it but you can adjust the linear burn but if you really really want to play with your shadows, you can also adjust the color of the shadow um so what you would dio is if you're shadowing something that's laying on a pink paper you would sample the pink paper and make it darker to make your shadow pink it's really easy there's aa lot of applications for that not necessary always most the time it's not, but sometimes you really want to play with it and we'll go over when to change the color if you drop shadow when it's when it could make your layout better next is your opacity depends on the color of your underlying layer so if you're shadowing on something white you're not gonna have as opaque of a shadow as something black you're going to have a lot darker shadow to have it show up on something black this is the angle of the light source in this image it's ninety degrees but we're going to be using one hundred twenty this is the distance from the light source so when I had a ripple move away versus when I had to come back changes how long your shadows are uh then we have the spread which controls the fate of the shadows so if you will will go into it and photoshopped but if you hike it way up the shadow gets a lot harder size of the drop shadow and pixels when do you use a ten pixel drop shadow when he's to pixel drop chateau why are there so many rules ls the contour of the shadow? Okay, so these bottom ones I really never mess with therefore fun if you really want to play with them but we're not going to be messing with them today. Um anti alias softens edge of the shadow noise adds picks, elation and texture to the shadow so here's the outer glow very similar to the shadow palate. But you can see it's very different in the effect that it causes and what I typically use outer glow for is if I want a shadow on the other side too. So sometimes, um the cast shadow is big and deep and dark and you can see it but there's a little tiny shadow because there's a little tiny pull away from the paper so if you want to get really technical about it, you can use the outer glow toe add that little tiny extra shadow to the other edge that is away from your light source. So this is the outer glow palate doesn't look familiar it's pretty similar the difference being the outer glow is set to glow instead of shadow. So when you open up your outer glow pal it's going to have a white and it's gonna have screen, which is not what we want because that lightens things up so what we do is we started to multiply or linear burn and we change the glow color too dark we don't want to like if you set your glow color toe white and multiply nothing's going to happen he won't see it so we have to set it to a darker version of the underlying layer capacity all of this is the same the spread in this one controls the fate of the glow so it's just like another one size of the glow and pixels contour anti alias it's all the same so there's no reason to be um to be afraid of the outer glow palate and I know that most people probably don't use it to shadow so that's kind of a fun concept is hey we can use something more than the drop shadow palace to shadow our layout techniques really this stuff on the bottom you know how to mess with it's pretty standard but if you really want to get crazy with it, you can play with it so the jitter as noise and the range controls the fate of the glow either. I don't know why there's different ways to control the fate of the globe but there is now the inner shadow is a little bit different and you can make cutouts are things look cut out from your page with the inner shadow and it looks complicated on scrapbook pages when it's super easy on in your inner shadow palate and again it looks the same multiply, linear burn, darker version, opacity, it's all the same. So, like I said, once you learn the first one, he totally understand all the rest of them. Now, later in the day, we're going to talk about windy disease. What, when it's ok to break the rules, when it's ok, tio and when it's ok to change the light source, we're going talk about all of that, and you would think that you need more rules, and you actually are that there are more rules than there actually is. You can break the rules in photo shop, and it will still look realistic. Sometimes we need to break the rules to make things look really cool.

Class Description

Learn how to create more polished and photorealistic scrapbook layouts with Traci Reed in Shadowing in Adob® Photoshop for Digital Scrapbookers.

Shadowing adds depth and perspective to scrapbook layouts, but stock Adobe® Photoshop® shadow effects can look artificial. In this class, you’ll learn techniques that make adding and modifying shadows a simple process that yields believable results. Traci will teach you how to create shadows that fit the texture and composition of the elements you are using and look great on the screen and the printed page. 

You’ll learn:

  • The anatomy of Adobe Photoshop shadows
  • Realistic shadowing of objects
  • Options for adding finishing touches

If you want to create more photorealistic pages, produce product for sale, or just take your design skills to the next level join Traci for Shadowing in Adobe®Photoshop for Digital Scrapbookers.

For even more advanced scrapbooking tips check out Layering in Photoshop for Digital Scrapbookers & Design Layouts in Photoshop.



I bought all three of Traci's classes and am very impressed. Even though I consider myself a professional Photoshop user, I learned some great new tips and tricks. Not only that, I found the classes inspiring and it kicked my digital scrapbooking creativity up a few levels. More than worth the money. Easy to watch, inspiring and a great teacher.

L. Phillips

This class was fascinating and moved at a good pace. Scrapbookers these days use so many varied Photoshop skills and are some of the most creative thinkers around. I learned so many practical - use it right now! - tricks for shadowing any kind of object and make styles out of them for one-click usability. There's a bit much of the biography section at the front of the class but I felt the usable information was enough to warrant the purchase so I can skip the personal section. Traci is a friendly and clear speaker, and a wealth of knowledge. She should definitely be featured in more advanced scrapbooking classes AND even for creating vector embellishments!

a Creativelive Student

Awesome class! WOW, I had no idea about the world of shadowing. I just started digital scrapbooking and knew my layouts were lacking something and now I know what...depth! I definitely feel more confident now in adding shadows to my pages and I have also graduated from Elements to the full version of PS thanks to Traci's suggestion. I am headed now to search for more classes by Traci. Thanks for a great class!