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View Full Version : PS: Using Warp Tool for custom Drop Shadows


kimberkatt
01-26-2011, 08:36 AM
This tutorial brought to you by Piggy Scraps Designs


I almost hate to tackle this here. This is a small space, and this is a big subject. But it will be a start. It will be something to try, to tweak and play with. Something to make your own. I am talking about drop shadows.

Today I will do a short tutorial on using the Warp Tool to alter drop shadows. My goal is to have my frame pop off the page. I'll start by sharing my paper & my frame:

http://img2.ymlp153.net/stoneaccents_dropshadow1.jpg
I imagine no one is jumping up & down at the sight of the frame on the paper. It just blends in. I added the standard drop shadow. The photoshop default.
http://img2.ymlp153.net/stoneaccents_dropshadow2.jpg
I find the default a little too dark, too rigid for my tastes. I normally dial down shadow opacity to 40-50% depending on the light/dark of the kit I'm working with. I always up the blur factor by increasing size in the effects (fx) panel. I'm not a fan of strong edges on my shadows, though this does have a place & purpose on some elements. Nothing is concrete in photoshop or design!
http://img2.ymlp153.net/stoneaccents_dropshadow4.jpg
Now that I've played with all the drop shadow settings in the effects (fx) panel. It's time to get a little more control over my drop shadow. My favorite way of doing this is to put the drop shadow on it's own layer. I do this by going to my layers pallet. Then;


Right click on the "Frame" layer (on the fx symbol)
Choose "Create Layer"
Your drop shadow is now on it's own layer

http://img2.ymlp153.net/stoneaccents_dropshadow3_1.jpg
To warp the drop shadow layer select it in your layers pallet. Then click edit-->transform-->warp
http://img2.ymlp153.net/stoneaccents_dropshadow6_1.jpg
You will see a 9-grid mesh appear over your image. You can pull & push, warp, your shadow any which way. Play with it, hit the check mark above your design(work) area when finished, or hit the http://img2.ymlp153.net/stoneaccents_no.jpg if you want to start over.
http://img2.ymlp153.net/stoneaccents_dropshadow6_3.jpg
I did mine in a rough butterfly shape to help it pop up & out. Then I dialed down the opacity even more. Honestly, I like the opacity even lower but it doesn't demonstrate very well if I do it. I just think it looks good.
http://img2.ymlp153.net/stoneaccents_dropshadow7_1.jpg

DarlineHM
01-27-2011, 08:57 AM
How can you do this in PSE9?

kimberkatt
01-27-2011, 09:21 AM
unfortunately, the Warp tool is not supported in PSE products, so you have to come up with a work-a-round... I've used the Wave Filter & the Liquify Filter to achieve the same effect, but it is time-consuming & difficult - also, PSE does not have "Create layer" function either... so you have to create your own drop shadow layer to begin with...

There is a basic tutorial HERE (http://www.cottagearts.net/tutorial_shadows_pse.html) on how to get lifted corners in PSE, this was one of the first tutorials I used when I started out with PSE. Scroll about half-way down for the Custom Lifted Drop Shadow - there are other tips & tricks there, too! :)

DarlineHM
01-28-2011, 08:52 AM
Thanks so much!!! I will check it out now. Thanks

DarlineHM
01-28-2011, 08:55 AM
that worked for me. thanks so much!!

kimberkatt
01-28-2011, 09:43 AM
You are very welcome Darline! :XX I'm glad it worked out for you! :DD