The reflex effect in the product photo
One of the most demanded resources in the discipline of professional photo retouching is the reflection added to a product photo. Digital technology allows e-Commerce to offer itself as the best way to stylize objects for sale and promotion. But not only to this photographic field, but the reflections are applicable to all kinds of images, logos, icons and graphics of online environments.
It is, therefore, a basic utility that ensures that the images do not just float or lose their isolation, but rather find an associate with a point of reference, in addition to winning in aesthetics and professional finishing. The reflection can be thrown on a glass, on a mirror, on the glass, on water, or on any reflecting surface. The creativity has no limits but you know that you should always aim to find the most natural result possible.
Below we will detail the simplicity of execution – there are many other methods to achieve the same result – of this valuable effect that can be accompanied by as many effects as silhouetted or artificial shadows.
Nor do we have to be experts in the properties of reflection and refraction. With a few quick steps, the retoucher will add to any element the most appropriate and realistic reflection. This technique solves the avoidance of the reflex management at the moment of shooting during the still life session. However, we also give you some essential tips to incorporate the effect on our photos before the post-production.
Create the reflex effect in:
SHOT SESSION. Any still life kit marketed in specialized stores can serve. But, as we are prepared, we can make a homemade one – it is the DIY fashion of doing it yourself, what are we going to do – with a table, cardboards or fabrics, and a flexo lamp. You have to use a very clean glass as the basis of the object, as long as part of the background is placed under it. This background must be smooth and neutral, apart from having the effect infinite or endless. Remember the planning! We also recommend a preponderated measurement to the center to achieve the best light balance, as well as choose the AV mode -or the manual if you really do with the technique- to only worry about the diaphragm. The normal thing is that the object is focused in its entirety. Of course, tripod and cable trigger. But remember, even then you can not do without digital retouching .
-Open the image in Photoshop. We can remove the background by first unlocking the layer to add it to a separate layer and thus work with the product image more conveniently.
– Duplicate layer. Layer> Duplicate layer or Ctrl + J.
-Increase the size of the canvas. Image> Canvas size . Double the Height value by marking the Anchor on the top arrow up.
-Move the duplicate layer to the point where you want the reflex effect to take place, usually below the image of the original layer.
– Flip the duplicate layer. Edit> Transform> Flip Vertical .
-Lower the opacity of the duplicated layer to achieve a transparency effect. The quantity to be reduced is at the pleasure of the retoucher.
-Mark degraded to simulate perspective. It achieves the Add layer mask to the duplicate layer + application tool Degraded, as long as it is linear and go from black to white or vice versa. It is applied by drawing a vertical from bottom to top or from top to bottom depending on the final result of the visibility graduation that we want to obtain.
If we want to save the step of lowering the opacity, we can also make a Quick Mask (Q) to apply the Gradient. Once you have decided the same, leave Quick Mask to see the selection. The last step is Selection> Invert + Delete.
-Optional: add Gaussian Blur on the duplicate layer to gain realism, as well as add a slight shadow.
* Another way to create the reflex effect without using the Gradient Tool :
-Select an area with a Rectangular Marquee tool on the duplicated layer and with the values of Faded (Smoothing the selection borders) between 15 and 30 pixels.
– Add a vector mask that automatically creates the gradient simulation.
* However, these tips are limited to simple reflections of objects with straight lines resting on the same horizontal. It is more difficult when it comes to something more complex with curves and in which perspectives are mixed. With the same method as before, you should work by sections or directly by deforming the object with the Liquify Filter before applying the Gradient.
Retouching is power!