Create a long shadow effect in Photoshop

With the advent of Photoshop CC 2015, we have the opportunity to add several instances of the same effect to one layer. This allowed us to create more advanced effects. This works especially well for text effects. In the past, in order to create such a simple effect as a long shadow, it was necessary to perform a series of steps, while at the same time changing the text would be quite difficult. In this tutorial, I will show you a quick technique of adding a long shadow to the text while maintaining the function to edit it. Let’s start!

Step 1

Create a new document of 800×600 pixels. Choose a tool Horizontal text (Horizontal Type Tool) (T) and create text. In this tutorial, I used the free gobold font.

Step 2

Using the settings below, add a Drop Shadow effect to the text layer.

Shadow (Drop Shadow):

  • Blend mode (Blend Mode): Normal (Normal), Color Navy (# 182542)
  • Opacity (Opacity): 100%
  • Angle (Angle): 135 °
  • Global coverage (Use Global Light): Uncheck
  • Bias (Distance): 3 px
  • Swipe (Spread): 100%
  • The size (Size): 1
  • Smoothing (Anti-aliased): Uncheck
  • Noise (Noise): 0%
  • The layer knocks out the shadow (Layer Knocks Out Drop Shadow): Put a Tick

As a result, under the text we will have a small shadow.

Step 3

Now we will add a second shadow, to do this, click on the plus sign to the right of the effect. Shadow (Drop Shadow). As a result, we get a duplicate of the shadow effect, which is under the original. Select a duplicate shadow effect and change the value. Bias (Distance) by 5 px.

Please note that our shadow has become a bit longer.

Step 4

Keep adding shadow, changing value Bias (Distance). Photoshop 2015 allows you to add up to 10 copies of the same effect. Tip: It is important that the distance be correct. If the gap is too large, you will get jagged edges on a long shadow.

Step 5

Before moving on, let’s add a stroke to our text. The stroke in this case should be the same color as the shadow.

Stroke (Stroke):

  • The size (Size): 5 px
  • Position (Position): Inside (Inside)
  • Blend mode (Blend Mode): Normal (Normal)
  • Opacity (Opacity): 100%
  • Stroke Type (Fill Type): Colour (Color)
  • Colour (Color): # 182542

Step 6

Now let’s make the shadow longer. At this stage, we have already added all the shadows that Photoshop allows to add for one layer. However, we can use a group of layers to gain additional access to the effect. Shadow (Drop Shadows). Place the text layer in the new group.

Step 7

Add effect Shadow (Drop Shadow) to the group. Some parameters need to be adjusted so that they match the color and style of the previous shadows. It is also necessary to arrange the shadow so that it looks like a continuation of the previous shadow.

Shadow (Drop Shadow):

  • Blend mode (Blend Mode): Normal (Normal), Color Navy # 182542
  • Opacity (Opacity): 100%
  • Angle (Angle): 135 °
  • Global coverage (Use Global Light): Uncheck
  • Bias (Distance): 11 px
  • Swipe (Spread): 100%
  • The size (Size): 0 px
  • Smoothing (Anti-aliased): Uncheck
  • Noise (Noise): 0%
  • The layer knocks out the shadow (Layer Knocks Out Drop Shadow): Put a Tick

As a result, we made the shadow longer.

Step 8

Continue adding new shadows for a group of layers until you are satisfied with the length of the shadow. The final image should look something like this:

Below are the images that were created using this technique.

Conclusion

In this lesson, you learned how to add a long shadow to any object. We were able to effectively add multiple instances of the same effect to our text, and then found a way to get around the limitations of the program by adding a new set of effects to the group of layers. This effect allowed us to create a long shadow right on the text layer, with the ability to quickly edit it.

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