Drop shadow has been the secret sauce of the major retailers to make their products shining in the marketplace or e-commerce platform. The developing market and technology have given a birth a generation of smart, tech-savvy buyers. They put multiple factors into consideration besides the price and functionality including your product photo.
Today, realistic photos seem to bring more buyers and drop shadow is a valuable technique that can bring your products to life.
The shadow effects now have a wider application as a valuable support to product photography. You can now preserve the shadow or recreate new ones for different background. Shadow effects can be applied to most objects to bring them alive. Realistic shadow can be generated automatically as it requires a skilled hand to draw. We provide professional shadow services that cover all types of products and shadows.
With extensive portfolios, we can deliver a realistic drop shadow in your product photos. Make them shining through your display in the marketplace and drive more sales soon.
Types of Shadow Effects
There are some types of shadow effects you can choose from including drop shadow, natural shadow, existing shadow, reflection shadow, and so forth. It’s very important to choose the one you actually need for your product photos.
Drop Shadow Effect
When you want the object to be slightly floating from the ground as it’s about to” drop”, drop shadow effect is what you need. The drop shadow gives a slight glow and angled-dropped shadow effect on the object like being photographed from above. Many retailers in the marketplace use this technique to showcase tinner products like smartphones, tablets, etc.
Natural Shadow Effect
Natural Shadow creates a visual effect on the object where it throws the shadow naturally following the incoming light. Unlike drop shadow, the natural shadow effect capture the object from the side where it looks sitting or grounding on a surface instead of floating. You can decide where the light comes from and create the natural, consistent shadow in the background.
Cast/Existing Shadow Effect
In some cases, you want to preserve the existing natural shadow in the photo. Even though it looks legit, capturing the natural shadow usually requires you to use another background and edit it. Since the photo also comes with a natural background, configuring the shadow’s transparency and opacity would be needed in this preservation attempt. It could be a little bit laborious and for the shadow that blends well with the background, you’d to recreate one. You can use the existing shadow as your guide.
Reflection Shadow Effect
Reflection shadow is the next-level visual effect featuring mirrored-reflection instead of ordinary shadow. This technique aims to create the reflection of an object that sits in a mirroring surface, either it’s a mirror, polished ceramics or metal surface. The reflection shadow effect requires more techniques and experience to perform. The technique is commonly used in jewelry product photos.
Floating Shadow Effect
Floating Shadow Effect tries to capture the shadow of the floating object. More retailers now use white background and let their products floating on the air. Compared to drop shadow, the object with a floating shadow has a more significant distance to the ground. This distance makes applying the floating shadow effect trickier especially when there are multiple objects in the photo.
What Benefits of Drop Shadow Service
If you’ve been surfing to the major marketplace or e-commerce platforms, you should already find the drop shadow application to various products.
Here are the benefits of drop shadow service:
Embossing and appealing products that ambiguously blend with the background. This way, consumers would still clearly view the shape of the products even though they have the same or similar color to the background.
It’s quite obvious that drop shadow makes your image more realistic. Depending on your experience, drop shadow can tune the vividness of any object in the photo.
Drop shadow is undoubtedly a considerable technique to enhance your product photo in the catalog. It allows you to apply a uniform and consistent look to the products, make them more appealing to consumers. You can then insert texts or characters to the photo without making a confusing outline.
There are limited ways to enliven objects in a flat image and the drop shadow technique is one of them. When you do some enhancements, the process can distort the image and make it looks roughly edited. Drop shadow helps you preserve the natural shadow and allow you to recreate one if preservation isn’t possible.
More retail businesses apply drop shadow on their product photos. Realistic photos make your online retail store stands out in the market and attract more customers to purchase your products.
How to add Drop Shadow Effect to Images
Photoshop is the common software used for drawing drop shadow and other visual effects. You can get a general guide to draw the drop shadow on the object.
However, if you’re looking for a basic but practical way of shadowing your products, check our guide below.
1. Decide where the imaginary light comes from or you can use the original shadow as your guide.
2. Draw the black or gray shadow to follow the shape of the object and cast it to the background. If there are more than two objects in the set, be consistent on dropping the shadow following the light source in the point 1.
3. Next, you need to apply some touches on the edges of the shadow you’ve been drawn. You can soften or put some gradation just like when a shadow cast to the ground.
4. Check the proportions of the object and the shadow. There is no exact theory for point 3 and point 4, applying some touches on the drop shadow can be smoother after hours of practice.
5. Next, you set the brightness of the shadow to make an even more realistic result. The basic guide: the closer object to the light, the shadow would be darker and it would be lighter, the farther object to the light. It’s very important for a floating drop shadow effect.
6. The final step, check the whole picture and fix any discrepancies that may appear on the shadow. At this point, use a smaller zoom or the actual size of the photo and you’re ready to go.
Each object has its own difficulty and it would need some experiences and maybe more techniques to deal with more complicated or multiple objects in the set.
Tips on Drawing Drop Shadow Effect
Drawing drop shadow, as well as other shadow effects, requires a meticulous collaboration of techniques, creativity, and diligence. It could be tricky to draw the shadow on the objects if you don’t know where to start.
Here are some tips for you:
Take Your Time
Just like any other editing technique, drop shadow can be only be done properly when you’re not in a rush. As you’ve seen above, the process takes several steps to perform with extensive check and re-check procedures. Except you’re a professional photo editor, you need to take your time when drawing a drop shadow.
Maintain The Proportion
The key to drawing realistic drop shadow is by maintaining the proportion of the brightness and size. When the shadow too big or too small, consumers would easily recognize your edited photo. That’s not good for your business.
There are several factors you need to be consistent on especially the angle of the light and distance between the object and the surface. These are more crucial if you have multiple objects you want to draw the shadow in the same set. It would be absurd if the shadow cast to the background in different angles. Be consistent and keep them as natural as possible.
Zoom in and Zoom Out
Even though there is no one-size-fits-all solution when drawing a drop shadow, take advantage of zoom-in and zoom-out would be very helpful. You can zoom in when detailing the shape of the shadow and zoom out to check the proportion and balances. You can do these hundreds of time and it seems to be laborious but the results would be satisfying.
Compare The Result
But don’t get satisfied too soon! Compare your drop-shadowed photo with similar photos on the internet. Benchmarking would reveal the quality of your work in applying drop shadow. With hours of practice, you’d be able to draw drop shadow in a photo more effectively.
Get A Professional Service
If you’re running a retail business and simply don’t have time to learn or to do drop shadow while there are hundreds of photos you need to work on, it’s time to get a professional service.
You can save time and focus on what does matter in your business. We Photo Clip Out is a team of highly skilled photo editors that can provide a professional drop shadow service for your photo products. No trial and error, we just deliver the best-drawn drop shadow to make your products shining.