I want to make a long shadow just like in this image.

I can create this shadow with shapes and by deleting the unwanted shadows after rasterizing the layer. But it's not very reusable. I can't resize the layer after rasterizing it.

Is there any easy way to make a long shadow like in the image below?

example graphic with a long shadow


3 Answers 3


Dinesh, I have a solution for you, but it will require Photoshop CS 6 Extended or preferably, Photoshop CC. First, you'll need your vector artwork for the Man Of Steel logo. I grabbed (copy to pasteboard) mine from within Abduzeedo's source files for the following tutorial: http://abduzeedo.com/man-steel-symbol-illustrator-and-photoshop

I created a new document in Photoshop then made a rounded rectangle (vector shape) and then pasted the "S" logo as a shape layer... Logo and Rounded Rectangle

I'd then right-click on the shape layer and at the bottom of the list choose Make 3D Extrusion from Layer. You can also use the 3D panel for the conversion.

Layers panel

Next merge the two 3D layers. 3D Layers Merge Layers

You'll need to position the "S" logo in front of the rounded rectangle after merging as the extrusion of the "S" logo isn't as deep as the rounded rectangle extrusion.

Adjusted Logo 3D panel

Your scene should look something like this (which infinite light selected): Sample rendering

Select and move the Infinite light to give the "S" logo the long shadow. Positioned Light Rendering

I next removed the materials/textures from the extrusions shapes and changed the diffuse to the red and blue. I also added a bevel to the "S" logo, adjusted the lighting and rendered: Rendered Logo

Here's another example just moving the light. Rendered Logo Variation

Remember that this is all CG and no raster data (until the final rendering), so you can change the "S" logo (edit source and edit the path), play with bevels, materials and textures, lighting and light shape/color and whatever else you'd like till you're happy with it. You can also change the image size without loosing detail, you'll just need to render the 3D layer. I hope this helps. Cheers and good luck!

  • Kevin you tutorial is really great. I got an idea. I don't have adobe CC now. But I understand the way it is. After I tried it, I will inform you with success. Jul 2, 2013 at 13:09
  • 1
    I just learned something new. Awesome!
    – Hanna
    Jul 2, 2013 at 18:03
  • ** Dinesh, good luck and let me know how it goes. Remember, you can always get a trial copy of Adobe Creative Cloud. (^_^) ** Johannes, excellent! I know I'm always happier when I learn something new. (^_^) ** Disclaimer: I'm the editor-in-chief of Photoshop Dimensions (photoshopdimensions.com) and you can download the first issue for free as a PDF (or in iTunes). The first issue covers 3D in Photoshop CS 6 Extended. There will be a new versions shortly that covers the new features found in Photoshop CC. Cheers! Jul 3, 2013 at 8:01

Try this:

  1. Give your icon a drop shadow.
    • Opacity around 25%
    • Distance: 0
    • Spread: 0
    • Size: 250 (this is the max Photoshop will allow)
    • Click OK
  2. Now turn this shadow into a layer (right click on the 'effect' lext to the layer in the Layers panel and click Create Layer
  3. Now for the tricky bit – select the Polygonal Lasso Tool (L) and, holding down Shift, draw a selection box from the bottom-left of your icon to the bottom-right of your artboard, at 45 degrees, connecting back up to the top-right of your ocon, also at 45 degrees. There must be an easier way to do this – I'll edit this answer when I figure it out.
  4. Select your 'Drop Shadow' layer and, in the Layers panel, click Add a mask to mask the shadow.

Alternatively, download one of these Photoshop plugins:

I reckon that's cheating though – the best thing about Photoshop is seeing something you like and figuring out how to do it yourself!


Unfortunately you're going to have to create this shadow by hand.

If you're worried about working with rasters you can either make a path in Photoshop, or better yet you can use Illustrator (if you have it).

In addition to all of that, you'll have an easier time using a mask with your shadow so you don't have to do any manual cutting of the shadow. Just use whatever the shadow falls on as your mask.

  • I haven't used Illustrator before. Anyway I will try with that. Hope this would be easy in Illustrator. I don't understand your second point. I didn't try with mask. Lemme try that and accept your answer. Jul 2, 2013 at 9:28

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