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knowoneuno

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This is my first post on these forums and I hope I am posting in the correct one.

I saw this photo and I would like to ask someone much more experienced than me with Photoshop to please explain the simplest way possible to put a gradient between the image of the jet, and the reflection of the jet on the bottom. I would like to try this process out on a reflection shot that I have made.

Also, if any of you have any additional steps or recommendations on how to achieve this type of look/style, I would greatly appreciate it.
 

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IamSam

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.........please explain the simplest way possible to put a gradient between the image of the jet, and the reflection of the jet on the bottom.
Hello and welcome to PSG.

Not sure what you wanting, can you explain a little better?
 

knowoneuno

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Hello and welcome to PSG.

Not sure what you wanting, can you explain a little better?
Sure, thanks for responding. I am going to try and explain it, and also try and attach a photo, pointing to the area I am talking about.

There is a dark area (gradient I assume) right below the wheels, just below the white ramp (pavement) area and then there is a dark area
which I assume is a gradient, that is in between the light area, and where the reflection begins on the photo.

How do I add that gradient or dark area?

Thanks!

gradient example question.jpg
 

IamSam

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Well, that area is not really a gradient that has been added, it part of the inverted aircraft image that was used to make the reflection.

Here is the aircraft with a duplicate layer that has been rotated and flipped to serve as the reflection layer.
Notice that the green arrow points to the dark horizon line of the original layer.
The yellow arrow points to the same dark horizon of the reflection layer.
Screen Shot 2017-04-23 at 7.14.55 PM.png

Now when the blur effect is added, the dark horizon (yellow arrow) now appears to look like a added gradient to the reflection layer, but it's not.
Screen Shot 2017-04-23 at 7.18.45 PM.png
 

knowoneuno

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Well, that area is not really a gradient that has been added, it part of the inverted aircraft image that was used to make the reflection.

Here is the aircraft with a duplicate layer that has been rotated and flipped to serve as the reflection layer.
Notice that the green arrow points to the dark horizon line of the original layer.
The yellow arrow points to the same dark horizon of the reflection layer.
View attachment 73679

Now when the blur effect is added, the dark horizon (yellow arrow) now appears to look like a added gradient to the reflection layer, but it's not.
View attachment 73680
I understand what you are saying and I appreciate your help with this. So, how do I get to follow some "step-by-step" instructions to be able to do something
similar?

Here is another example to view from this website.
 

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IamSam

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The water reflections shown in your examples are not very realistic at all and are probably created in at least two different reflection layers, one for the distortion and another for the more in focus reflection and then they are blended using layer masks.

I understand what the original artist was shooting for, but the distortion he/she is trying to simulate is associated more with heavier ripples in the water. Rippled water causes what's called diffuse reflection. In essence, think of it as each ripple is an individual mirror and each ripple reflects the entirety of the subject. This is what causes the elongated reflections you would see in images photographed at a greater distance.

Here notice how the moon is reflected in it's entirety in each ripple:
6736586088ab7e98732191ce5fca08d4.jpeg

Rippled water causes the elongated reflection.
Chicago-Night-Views-Illinois-L.jpeg

This one gives an example of both, rippled water closer in and calm water further out.
canada-lake-night-reflection.jpeg

Here's another example of calm water:
sandestin-baytowne-wharf-scenic-night-reflection-001-M.jpeg

In your example, the subject (plane) was photographed fairly close in and in calm still water. The reflection would be very crisp. Even if the water were slightly rippled, you would not have the exaggerated elongated distortion you see in your plane examples.

The closer you are to your subject and in calm water, your just not going to have that exaggerated elongated reflection.
horse-jimmy-reflection.jpeg
 

knowoneuno

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I really appreciate the links to the tutorials.

I already have a step-by-step process to make my water reflections with the aircraft that I photograph.
What I am looking for is "how" to put that one extra step or process into my reflections to match this
other photographer's work?

While some may think it isn't realistic, which is fine that everyone has their own opinions, I just like the style
of the photographs of this aircraft photographer and would like to try and do something similar.

I just don't know how to do that step.

Thank you!
 

IamSam

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Why don't you post what you have so far and let us take a look.

Just to reiterate, the other photographer does not include another step for his photographs. As I explained, what your interpreting as a gradient is not, it's part of the original image.

Here's how it works on the second image example you provided.

Original
Screen Shot 2017-04-24 at 5.41.30 PM.png

Reflection
Screen Shot 2017-04-24 at 5.42.39 PM.png

Blurred reflection
Screen Shot 2017-04-24 at 5.43.11 PM.png

No gradient added.

But since you insist, create a new layer, then use your Rectangular Marquis Tool to create a selection of the lower half of your image (where the reflection begins), then use the Gradient Tool to create a gradient from the top center of the selection (hold down the shift key to keep the gradient straight), that's pretty much all there is to it.
 

knowoneuno

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Thank you so much for being so patient with me.

If it isn't a gradient, than by all means, I'll do something different. I'd just like to get that desired look, if at all possible.

Here is a reflection I did. If you can tell me any additional steps or tips that will make mine look better, by all means, please tell me.
I want to get better, which is why I am on this site.

:)
 

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IamSam

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If it isn't a gradient, than by all means, I'll do something different. I'd just like to get that desired look, if at all possible.
No need, you already have it exactly like the image your trying to emulate!:thumbsup:
The primary difference is that your photo is in the daylight.
Screen Shot 2017-04-24 at 9.02.06 PM.png

knowoneuno said:
Here is a reflection I did. If you can tell me any additional steps or tips that will make mine look better, by all means, please tell me.
I want to get better, which is why I am on this site.
Well...................if you won't be angry with me for telling the truth..............the reflection looks terrible!

But we have both already stated our opinions on that matter, LOL!!! If your happy, I'm happy!
 

knowoneuno

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By the way, here are the instructions I've been using to make the reflection that I posted.
The only step I don't do, is the last one. I do it from time to time, but not all the time.

Water Reflection Instructions


1. Use the marquee tool and select an area around the aircraft and place the bottom portion slightly below the wheels.
2. Then go and Copy that layer, Paste it and then choose the Free Transform tool. Pull down on the top, middle square while holding the shift button and flip the image to about half the length of the original photo.
3. Then go to Filter, Distort, Ocean Ripple and make the ripple size large and the ripple magnitude small.
4. Then go to Filter, Motion Blur, and set at 90 degrees.
5. Then go to Filter, Smart Blur, Radius at 14.1 and threshold 10.9 with a quality setting of high and a mode of normal.
6. Use the Gradient Tool from bottom to middle of the reflection with a simple black to clear pattern.
 
Last edited:

knowoneuno

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Oh no, trust me, I am not happy, which is why I am "trying" to get better......the ones I've posted from the other photographer, look a LOT better than mine.

Please tell me what I am doing wrong. I'm not angry for you telling me the truth. Constructive criticism is fine with me, as I want to learn and make my
photos look a lot better.

I just posted the steps that I am using, and I know they need a LOT of tweaking. By all means, please feel free to tell me where I am going wrong and
how do I correct it?

I'll try to go find one of my previous "night reflects" to let you see one of those, for reference.
 

IamSam

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Oh no, trust me, I am not happy, which is why I am "trying" to get better......the ones I've posted from the other photographer, look a LOT better than mine.

Please tell me what I am doing wrong. I'm not angry for you telling me the truth. Constructive criticism is fine with me, as I want to learn and make my
photos look a lot better.
Ok, I have already told you what I think your doing wrong. I've explained (in post #7) that the original photographers reflection is not very realistic and far too distorted. I also gave you example of REAL reflections and how they should appear. If you want to improve, don't distort your reflections so drastically.

This is a much more natural looking reflection in calm water..............
Screen Shot 2017-04-25 at 12.41.01 AM.png

If your going to make a distortion, then it should be in the water......with a rippled effect.
Follow this tutorial but make adjustments for your own photo: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pZO0dFfCoiQ

More natural reflection in rippled water.......
Screen Shot 2017-04-25 at 1.22.45 AM.png
 

SCTRWD

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I would suggest the following workflow for reflection part:

Open your image. Cut out the bottom part. Convert layer to Smart Object.

Make a copy the SO layer. Name it "Reflection". Flip it vertical and position it just under the first copy.

Now make a new document the same size. Fill it with white and apply Filter->Render->Fibers. Rotate and scale layer so that fibers go from left to right. Save this document on disc.

Go to your original image, select Reflection layer and apply Filter->Distort->Glass filter. In the filter dialog choose the file you saved on the disc as a Texture. Play with filter settings.

You can always change the SO contents and change Glass Filter settings.
 

knowoneuno

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Thank you for your two examples, I now see what you are talking about. Takes me a while. I'll give it a go this morning.

I appreciate your help with this!
 

knowoneuno

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Thank you for your help and work flow suggestion.

I am very confused by all of your steps, as I am not a "power Photoshop" user by any means.

When I open up the image, then do I go to the bottom of the image, where I want to make the reflection and use the marque tool and then hit the "cut" button?
I tried that, and it wasn't pretty. I did convert the layer to a Smart Object and there was nothing but black when I flipped it, so I could not see it when I put
it under the first copy.

I then followed your instructions to make a new document the same size, fill it with white, and followed all the other steps. After I did this, I didn't have a lot of
fibers going from left to right and how do you scale the layer???

After that, I tried to go to Reflection layer, apply Filter-distort-glass filter. In the filter dialog box, I was not able to choose the file I saved as a texture. Should
I have saved the file as something other than a .psd or .jpg file?

Just very confused, as you are writing and giving instructions way over my head.

I sincerely appreciate you trying to help me, is there any way you could "dumb down" the instructions for a Photoshop light weight?

Many thanks in advance.
 

IamSam

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Is this one "any" better?

I used the glass reflection filter instead of ocean ripple. Still gave it a little bit of motion blur and smart blur.

Thank you everyone for trying to help me with this.
First let me say that I have been stating a personal opinion about my views on reflections. However, this is by no means the rule. Art in any form is subjective. With this in mind, you need to be asking yourself if your happy with the results and do you feel that your getting any better?

If your happy with your results, then that's all that matters.
 

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