Creating shadows for complex objects

In this lesson we will create a shadow from a tree of complex shape.

1. Open the image with the tree. Cut it out and transfer it to your working paper. Duplicate the tree layer (Ctrl + J)

2. Duplicate layer name “Shadow”. Apply the Multiply blend mode to it. Also apply a layer style. Color overlay (Color Overlay)> Black (Black) and set the fill (Fill) to 98%.

3. Then select the function Editing> Transform> Slope (Edit> Transform> Skew). You will see a frame, and in the center an icon in the form of a goal. Move the center point down the tree. Then transform the layer so that the desired angle of the shadow is reached (it will be determined by the direction of light falling).

4. Suppose the sun shines from the right side. This can be understood if you look closely at the tree trunk: the right side of the tree is lighter than the left. Thus, the shadow should fall to the left, on the ground.

The shadow should be the darkest at the base, and the farther from the object, so it should become lighter. So we need to smooth the shadow smoothly. To do this, we will use the quick mask.

In quick mask mode draw black and white linear gradient.
Go back to normal mode (press again ), the mask will disappear, but a dedicated area will remain.
You just have to click Delete.

5. You can further brighten the shadow using the Curve, to do this, press Ctrl + M (Image> Adjustment> Curves).

6. If there are any objects on the ground where the shadow of a tree falls, then the shadow should bypass them or pass them.
The longer the shadow, the more it expands and smears in its light part.

Keep in mind also that the farther the shadow is from an object, the more blurred its edges become (vignette display).
To do this, select the required area and apply feathering to it (Select [Select]> Feather), and then add a mask. (approx. translation.)
You can also use Gaussian Blur to make shadows easier.

7. Our tree is ready for replanting. Since we do not have a tree on a flat terrain, but on a mountainous one, then the shadow will be with differences that need to be adjusted.

You can make all the necessary adjustments using the Free Transform (Ctrl + T).

Author: askphotoshop

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