When used effectively in a photo, shadows can be a powerful tool. Photographers often use shadows to heighten drama and add atmosphere to their images. Shadows are useful because they offer photographers an interesting array of options that make observers look at their photos differently.

A shadow can help trigger a strong emotional by creating suspense, leaving the main subject off camera for the observer’s imagination. Shadows keep us guessing. Shadows also simplify images. Just as black and white photos can remove the distraction of color from a portrait and bring more attention to a person’s expression, shadows remove the distraction of detail and make us focus on an objects form. Lastly, shadows have the power to distort. Depending on the position of the light source, shadows can transform a child into a monster, and produce any number of unpredictable and intriguing results.

This gallery features a collection of photos from our community which take advantage of the magic and mystery of shadows to create bold and memorable images.

Share your own photos of shadows by tagging them with #shadow.

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shadow images