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In this movie I'm going to try to instill a little bit of respect for the common drop shadow. Now, in case you're not familiar with them, a drop shadow is a shadow that's being cast by a layer. So, whereas the inner shadow appears inside these letters, a drop shadow applied to these same letters would appear outside the letters. Now, when applied indiscriminately, which is often the case A drop shadow could not be a more pedestrian effect. I'll show you two applications of drop shadows that go above and beyond. First of all, I want to take these letters here, and make them appear to really be carved out of this wood, currently, they're just too perfect.
With the craving layer selected, and thanks to the fact that we already have a layer effect assigned, There's a few different ways we can get to the drop shadow. You can double click on either effects or inner shadow here. Or you can double click in the FX icon to bring out the layers style dialogue box. Then you just go ahead and click on this last item drop shadow in order to both select it and to turn it on. I'm going to cancel out here so I can show you the other method which is to drop down to the FX icon at the bottom of the panel, and then choose drop shadow.
In any case, you'll get a preview of the default drop shadow. Now where folks get into trouble with this command is they apply a distance value and then duplicate that value for size. And that works particularly badly where this layer is concerned because, what's the story at this point? We have letters that are carved into wood? And then they're leaping off the wood and casting a shadow that just doesn't make any sense. What we're going to do instead, is of course change the color. We don't want it to be black.
So I'll dial in that exact same color i used last time. That is 35, 120 for the HSB values. And then I'll click OK. And now I'm going to take the opacity value all the way up to 100%. And I'm going to tuck the shadow in by reducing the distance value to five pixels like so and I'm going to leave the size set at 30 pixels and incidentally spread is analagous to the choke option assoiated with the inner shadow, pretty much the same thing in fact. Meaning that you can fill the shadow in by increasing that spread value.
Anyway, I'm going to take it down to zero because we don't want any spread for this effect and then I'll go ahead and click OK in order to apply the effect. And it may not look like much until we do a before and after here so, if I Press Ctrl z or Cmd z on the Mac to undo the drop shadow you can see these letters aren't credibly carved out of the wood at all Where as if I reinstate the shadow, by once again Pressing Ctrl or Cmd+Z, then you can see that the shadow doesn't look like a drop shadow. In other words, it doesn't look like a shadow that's being cast by the letters.
Rather, it looks like a kind of edge burn. I do want to call your attention to something before we go to the next example. I'm going to double click on drop shadow, in order to bring up the drop shadow option And I was telling you how, when you're working with inner shadow or drop shadow. You can actually drag the shadow directly inside the image window. But watch what happens if I do so with the drop shadow. I want you to see how everything in the scene is changing. So the shadow around the big block of wood.
And the shadow inside the letters is changing along with the shadow that's being cast behind the letters in this case because of pretty well ruin the effect. And that's because of this item right here "use global light." And it happens to be turned on by default, and it's also turned on for all of the directional effects that are associated with both the frame and the text layer. And by directional effect I mean beveling and boss, inner shadow, and drop shadow.
So you need to take care especially when your modifying that angle value when used globalitist is turned on because you can end up ruining everything. And it becomes such a disaster that your only option is to either cancel out or Press the Alt key, and the Option key on the Mac And click on what was formerly the cancel button and is now Reset, and that'll go ahead and straighten things out again. I'm going to cancel out of the dialgoue box because I'm done with this image and I'm going to switch over to that same image that we started with in the previous movie.
Let's say you want to create blurry text but you want the text to remain editable. Well, the simplest way to pull that off is to turn the text into a shadow. With the carving layer selected, I'll drop down to the effects icon and choose drop shadow. Because it's the only command that can really pull this one off. And I'm going to start things off by increasing the opacity value to 100% and then I'll click on a color swatch and change the HSB values once again to 35, 100, and 20. Click OK in order to accept that color.
Then I'll take the distance value down to zero, so the shadow is actually centered on the text. The angle no longer matters. And I'll increase the size value by Pressing Shift up arrow a couple of times to 25 pixels. Now what you want to do is drop away the text, so click on blending options. In order to bring up the fill opacity value and go ahead and reduce that value to 0%. We end up getting a pretty interesting effect here. It looks as if we've airbrushed some stencils or something.
That's not the effect I'm looking for, however, so return the drop shadow and notice this check box right there, Layer Knocks out Drop Shadow. This is the only layer effect that offers this option. Go ahead and turn it off. And the layer itself disappears and all we're left with is the shadow. Now go ahead and click okay in order to accept that modification. And now you can use the opacity value to modify the opacity of your text on the fly. Because I had set the shadow to 100% opacity This now is the only opacity value that matters.
And I'm just going to go ahead and tap the seven key to reduce that opacity value to 70%. And now I want to edit my text a little bit. So I'm going to double click on the t to select that text. And I'll Press Ctrl H or Cmd H on the Mac to hide the highlight. And I'll Press Ctrl Shift Alt, or Cmd Shift Option greater than sign twice in a row in order to increase the size of my text. And then I'll Press the Enter key on the numerical key pad in order to except the modification. Now I want to vertically center my text on the canvas, so I'll Press Ctrl A, or Cmd A on the Mac to select the entire image.
I'll switch to the Move tool which I can get by Pressing the V key and I'll go ahead and click on Align Vertical Centers in order to scoot that text down a little bit. Now Press Ctrl+D or Cmd+D on a Mac and I want to go ahead and skew this text so it looks like it's being cast as a kind of shadow onto the wood. So I'll go up to the Edit menu, choose transform, and then choose skew. And now at this point, notice that I can drag these handles in order to skew the text, or I'll go ahead and Press Ctrl+Z or Cmd+Z on a Mac, to undo that change.
If you Press the Alt key, or the Option key on the Mac, and drag a side handle You'll skew both sides both the left and the right side around the center. I'm also going to Alter Option drag this bottom handle in order to add a little bit of horizontal skew then I'll Press the Enter key or the return key on the Mac in order to accept that change. And finally, I'm going to change this word entirely by again double clicking on it and I'll type in this text instead. And then Press the Enter key on the numerical keypad in order to accept my change.
And so with any luck, that gives you a sense of just how powerful and flexible drop shadows can be when used with a little bit of imagnation here inside Photoshop.
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