Enter your email address:

Delivered by FeedBurner

Cast shadow in Photoshop

By adding cast shadow to an object you can make it look more realistic. This tutorial will teach cast shadows in a few simple steps using nothing but basic techniques.
The fianl cast shadow

Step 1
You must start by cutting out the background from the object that you want to cast the shadow. When you have done this you duplicate the layer that you have the object in, call it shadow to make it easy to work with. Place the shadow layer underneath the object layer.

Step 2
Photoshop Brightness and contrast dialog
Select the shadow layer and go to Image > Adjustments > Brightness / Contrast, set them both to -100 as displayed in the image and hit ok. Change the shadow layer opacity to around 40%.

Step 3
Photoshop distort example

Now go to Edit > Transform > Distort your shadow should now have 6 handles, click and drag the upper middle handle. Drag the handle to the left and down to create the effect that we want.

Step 4
Photoshop gaussian blur dialog

To make the shadow a bit fuzzy go to Filter > Blur > Gaussian Blur and use a Radius of something like 4 pixels.

Step 5
Photoshop layer window
Now I want the shadow to become lighter the further away from the object it is. To achieve this effect you need to add a Layer Mask to the shadow layer. Select the shadow layer and press the Add layer mask button at the bottom of the Layers Window. Use the Gradient Tool to draw a gradient from white to black, where black should be in the position where you want the shadow to be the softest.

The final cast shadow
You might have to move the shadow to make it look like it origins from the object, when you have aligned it perfect to the object you are done and it could look like the image you can see below.
The fianl cast shadow