Creating minor shadows
This tutorial will help you in adding
small areas of shadow to your 'shops. These help correct any inconsistencies
in the lighting of a scene and also help blend small details into
The main things which affect the nature
of minor shadows are:
- The direction of illumination.
- The surface the shadow is projected onto.
To make use of in this tutorial i knocked up a quick posh meerkat
The source images were chosen because: well, i like
Step1 - What needs a shadow?
This is fairly simple. Look at the picture
and try to work out what looks wrong, the human brain is pretty
good at spotting inconsistencies. In this case i'd say that a shadow
is needed around the brim of the hat and behind the monocle, especially
Step 2 - Make some initial shadows.
First make a path which fits the shape
of the brim of the top hat and convert it to a selection with a
feather of around 2 px:
Now create a new layer and fill the selection
with a dark grey colour. use the arrow keys to shift the selection
down and to the left around 5 pixels.
To make the monocles shadow i have applied
a drop shadow style to the monocle frame layer in direction 41 degrees
with quite a high opacity. Convet this layer style to a new layer.
Step 3 - Adjust and blend the shadows.
*This stage is hard to explain and much of it is subjective*
Use layer masks and liquify to adjust the shapes of
the sadows until they give you the effects you were looking for.
Remember that the shadows should meet the objects casting them in
Next change the blend mode of the top hat shadow layer
to multiply and apply a gaussian blur of 2-3 px to both shadows.
Duplicate both shadow layers and change the blend
modes of these new layers to color burn.
Adjust the opacities of all 4 shadow layers to give
the correct effect.
If you followed the above correctly you should end
up with something similar to this
Any advice on this would be gratefully
received, any questions likewise. E-mail