Photoshop Blend Mode Magic
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Creating a cast shadow with Multiply


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Photoshop Blend Mode Magic

with Michael Ninness

Video: Creating a cast shadow with Multiply

When it comes to adding a Drop Shadow to a layer inside Photoshop they have made that pretty easy. There is a Drop Shadow layer style. We'll just click on the layer that we want to add the Drop Shadow to and at the bottom of the Layers panel the little Effects icon where you can choose Drop Shadow from the menu. You'll notice that by default the blend mode for a Drop Shadow is set to Multiply because you want your pixels to darken the underline pixels underneath the shadow, and of course you can grab your Move tool here and position the shadow outside the dialog box here manually and you can lower the Opacity, you can change it's Size, make it softer or harder and what not.
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  1. 2m 23s
    1. Welcome
      1m 31s
    2. Using the exercise files
      52s
  2. 13m 9s
    1. The three kinds of blending in Photoshop
      1m 49s
    2. Blend modes, blend modes, everywhere!
      1m 38s
    3. Cycling through the blending modes
      2m 1s
    4. Three blending modes you must know
      5m 8s
    5. Blending mode keyboard shortcuts
      2m 33s
  3. 3m 13s
    1. Roughening or pointilizing edges with Dissolve
      3m 13s
  4. 34m 40s
    1. Removing halos with Darken
      2m 26s
    2. Bringing down hot highlights with Multiply
      3m 50s
    3. Tonal correction with Screen and Multiply
      3m 35s
    4. Combining adjustment layers with blending modes
      3m 58s
    5. Creating a composite from a single Camera Raw file
      5m 56s
    6. Creating a cast shadow with Multiply
      4m 50s
    7. Creating artistic edges with Multiply and Screen
      3m 39s
    8. From iPhone to Photoshop: Colorizing line art with Multiply
      6m 26s
  5. 14m 47s
    1. Removing dust spots with Lighten
      1m 36s
    2. Adding lightning to a sky with Screen
      3m 20s
    3. Adding a lens flare effect with Screen
      2m 27s
    4. Reducing halos when sharpening with Lighten
      3m 55s
    5. Creating a faint soft-edged line drawing with Linear Dodge
      3m 29s
  6. 1h 5m
    1. Using Dodge and Burn with Overlay
      4m 34s
    2. Reducing wrinkles with Overlay
      6m 37s
    3. Using graduated neutral density filters with Overlay
      5m 32s
    4. Custom vignettes with Overlay
      3m 30s
    5. High-Pass sharpening with Overlay
      4m 16s
    6. Smoothing skin with High-Pass sharpening and Overlay
      5m 29s
    7. Textured patterns with Overlay
      6m 21s
    8. Textured type with Overlay
      2m 55s
    9. Creating a dramatic diffused glow with Overlay
      2m 49s
    10. Creating a subtle glow with Soft Light
      2m 57s
    11. Creating a medium glow with Soft Light
      4m 25s
    12. Simulating film grain with Add Noise and Soft Light
      3m 54s
    13. Recovering detail in over-saturated areas with Pin Light
      8m 30s
    14. Creating 80's pop art with Hard Mix and Multiply
      3m 15s
  7. 5m 7s
    1. Aligning layers with Difference
      5m 7s
  8. 12m 51s
    1. Reducing color noise with Color
      2m 13s
    2. Avoiding false saturation with Luminosity
      5m 33s
    3. Recovering detail in blown-out highlights with Luminosity
      5m 5s
  9. 26m 27s
    1. Getting better sepia tones
      5m 15s
    2. Using antique color effects
      5m 5s
    3. Combining multiple exposures
      4m 34s
    4. Replacing the sky in an image
      3m 44s
    5. Splitting edges when sharpening
      3m 15s
    6. Displacing type around contours
      4m 34s
  10. 22s
    1. Goodbye
      22s

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Watch the Online Video Course Photoshop Blend Mode Magic
2h 58m Intermediate May 20, 2009

Viewers: in countries Watching now:

The blend modes in Photoshop offer incredible creative options for designers and photographers wanting to enhance images. In Photoshop Blend Mode Magic, Michael Ninness shows Photoshop users how to access and apply blend modes efficiently to achieve an aesthetic vision. He explains the building blocks of layer blending and demonstrates how blend modes can be used for color correction, sharpening, blending images together, adding dramatic glow, applying custom edge treatments, and many other creative effects. Michael also introduces advanced blending options for more experienced Photoshop users. Most of all, he demystifies this essential feature in plain, easy-to-understand terms and inspires photographers to use blend modes in ways they may have never considered before. Exercise files accompany the course.

Topics include:
  • Understanding the three must-learn blend modes
  • Adding texture overlays
  • Recovering detail using Luminosity and Pin Light
  • Enhancing highlight and shadow details
  • Instant dust spot removal
  • Using Overlay to add textured type
  • Simulating film grain
  • Adding antique color effects
  • Combining adjustment layers with blending modes
Subjects:
Design Photography
Software:
Photoshop
Author:
Michael Ninness

Creating a cast shadow with Multiply

When it comes to adding a Drop Shadow to a layer inside Photoshop they have made that pretty easy. There is a Drop Shadow layer style. We'll just click on the layer that we want to add the Drop Shadow to and at the bottom of the Layers panel the little Effects icon where you can choose Drop Shadow from the menu. You'll notice that by default the blend mode for a Drop Shadow is set to Multiply because you want your pixels to darken the underline pixels underneath the shadow, and of course you can grab your Move tool here and position the shadow outside the dialog box here manually and you can lower the Opacity, you can change it's Size, make it softer or harder and what not.

I am going to go ahead and hit Cancel here. We're going to use the old school method for creating a shadow because there is no effect for a Cast Shadow, meaning a shadow that trails off at an angle. So we're going to do that the old fashion way. We're going to begin by duplicating the Silhouette layer Command+J or Ctrl+J, create Silhouette copy. We'll go ahead and rename this by double-clicking on the name and saying Cast Shadow and we'll go ahead and move this below the Silhouette layer just by clicking-and- dragging. Great, so we get our Move tool now, press V on the keyboard and we'll just grab that Shadow layer and move it off to the left a little bit.

Now that we have offset the shadow a little bit, let's change its Opacity. I'm just going to press the number 5 on my keyboard and that lowers that Opacity to 50%. Well, I want my shadow not to be black. I want it to be a little bit of color. I want to have color in it. And I still want to be able to see my shadow over this background here. So let's make it the same color as the blue background, just for an example that I want to show you. I'm going to press the I key on my keyboard and I'm going to click on the blue background to sample that color, make it my foreground color.

If I press the Shift+Delete keys or Shift+Backspace key on Windows, I bring up the Fill command or I can choose to use the foreground color or any of these other colors in the pop-up menu. I want to turn on Preserve Transparencies that I only fill the pixels that are actually on this layer instead of the entire layer with this color. So I'm going to go ahead and click OK. And you can see now that when the shadow has been filled with the same color as the blue I have lost the shadow over against the blue background because they are of the same color. I can still see it against the purple on the orange because the Opacity is set to 50%, but where it's overlapping the blue I can't see it. That's why the Multiply blend mode is so important. I'm going to go change the blend mode of the Shadow layer to Multiply, and now you can see that even though it's the same color technically the Multiply blend mode takes those pixels and darkens the pixels underneath. So I can still see my shadow against the blue background and as you shift the shadow across other colors you can see just like in real life a shadow isn't actually black it's just darkening whatever the shadow is cast upon. So in this case the blue is getting darker, the orange is getting darker, and the purple is getting darker, but they are not all the same colors even though the shadow is the same across all three.

Great, so we've got this great effect now where it's more realistic and now we want to create the cast shadow part of this. To do that I want to do a perspective transformation on the shadow and just as a rule of thumb you want to always try to keep things non- destructive as much as possible. I may want to be able to tweak this transformation later on. If that's the case we want to turn this layer into a Smart Object before we do the transformations that we can always go back and readjust it non-destructibly. To do that I'm just going to right- click or Ctrl-click on the Cast Shadow name of that layer and choose Convert to Smart Object. That wraps that content up into a special layer, puts a little special icon on there to let you that it's a Smart Object, and now I'll use Free Transform, Command+T or Ctrl+T, to bring up the Transform bounding box around that layer.

If I hold down the Command key or the Ctrl key on Windows I can grab a handle here and do a free distort. So I'm just going to drag this around and kind of create this cast shadow. I can reposition it as I'm doing the free transform to get it into position, and maybe I want it to have the shadow go across the purple background as well. So again I'm just grabbing that handle, holding down the Command key or the Ctrl key. And once I get it the way I want it I just press the Enter key on my keyboard and that locks in that transformation. Now if I'm not happy with that, I want to distort it some more, because it is a Smart Object if I do Command+T or Ctrl+ T, again that bounding box comes back and remembers that the last transformation I had made. So I can just pick up right where I left off.

I'll hold down the Command key or the Ctrl key again and grab that handle, and just reposition this. So it's a little bit more of a severe angle for that cast shadow, then I press Enter+Apply. So there you have it, a cast shadow using Free Transform on a Smart Object layer and using the Multiply blend mode to make it look realistic.

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