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Type Tips for Photographers

Lesson 4 of 8

How to Make a Hard Drop Shadow

Matt Kloskowski

Type Tips for Photographers

Matt Kloskowski

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Lesson Info

4. How to Make a Hard Drop Shadow


  Class Trailer
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1 Class Introduction Duration:06:27
2 Type Basics Duration:08:09
3 Use Opposing Colors Duration:06:34
5 Using Gradients with Type Duration:10:16
6 Solid Color Bars Duration:16:20
7 Photo Book Cover Duration:10:13
8 Gallery Prints Duration:12:42

Lesson Info

How to Make a Hard Drop Shadow

This is, this is probably... This is probably the thing that I use, the most when I'm trying to offset my text off of something. So let's go ahead, let's take what we did before and I'm just gonna change the color. Let's change it to a bluish type of a color. One of the main things I do, if I have a brighter background and I don't really want to do, I don't want to do too much to it. You know, guys, as we go on here, you're gonna see we have a lot of tricks between gradients and brushing and a lot of different things we can do to help offset that type from a photo. But one of the basic things that I'll do if I really, if I don't want to interrupt the photo that much, is, I'll put a little bit of a drop shadow behind the text. And what that means is you have to have, this is gonna be on a lighter photo with a whiter type of a background. So if you look here, I've got my type layer selected. I'm gonna double click on it, all right? It's gonna open up the layer style dialog box. Inside of...

here, we have a drop shadow. Now, your drop shadow probably comes in all shapes and sizes and whatnot and if you've never done this before, you're gonna click on it and it's gonna probably look like something like that, all right? It kind of remembers the last settings that you had when you were inside of here, so, what you want to do is just think about, I don't really want a shadow, I don't want a soft shadow. I almost just want an outline, but I don't want a stroke, okay? A stroke around the text has its purpose, but, I just want a slight outline on part of the text to give it some depth. So you're gonna bring your distance really really low. You're gonna bring your spread really really low, and then what I'll do is I bring that size in and let's zoom in a little bit on this, just so we can get an idea for what it's doing there. So think of it this way. We have a lighting angle. This is a drop shadow, it's gonna cast a shadow, so I always just put it in the top left corner so it's gonna cast it to the bottom right corner, okay, you're gonna see, we shouldn't see too much on the outside of here. So let's bring our distance a little bit off. Okay. Now we have our spread, and then we just bring that size in. See how we can control that? So that's all I'm looking for, is just a little bit of an outline and then you can even change the opacity, too. So just that little lift, that little shadow, it'll lift it off of a brighter background. If your text starts to kind of get lost into that background you want to use a lighter color text, you want to use the light color photo, you don't want to really mess with the photo too much, that's probably my first go-to, okay, and it's, honestly, it almost, even when I do some of the tricks that I'm about to do, it's actually one of those things like I used, I still use over and over again just to lift it off of that page there.

Class Description

If you’re creating a watermark, advertisement or social media graphic, adding text can be a powerful way to communicate your message. However, if it’s not well-done or you’re using the font, you can ruin your beautiful photo. In this class, Matt Kloskowski will show you a variety of tips and tricks for adding text to photographs in order to achieve an image that’s professional, effective and easy to read.

Adobe Photoshop CC 2018



Yeah! I was so excited to find another class by Matt Kloskowski at Creative Live! Matt is an amazing teacher who comes up with all kinds of ideas. He is clear, concise and easy to follow. He has a wealth of knowledge that he loves to share and his enthusiasm and love for his students comes through in his teaching. I have his Lightroom Course and am so happy and pleased with it because I have learned so much!!! I highly recommend this class of Matt's and hope you will love his classes as much as I do!

Audrey Agin

Good Teacher. Gives good practical ideas to add Fonts to your photo project & is not distracting. Thank you.

Cheryl Tarr

I loved this class. Matt provides a very clear explanation of different techniques to add text to photos. Short and sweet!