I'd suggest getting a copy of Steve Caplin's 100% Photoshop book
I'd also suggest Googling How to draw using perspective. This sort of thing
But the Steve Caplin book is key. Other than perspective, it is about shadows and highlights, because they give flat objects depth. I made this cake to illustrate a thread here last week, for instance. Notice there are no lines. Just colour, shadows and highlights.
I can't tell you it is easy from a Photoshop point of view, because it isn't. I generally create a face, (as in face of a building) as a flat square cornered rectangle, and distort it to fit the perspective when done. There are lots of little tricks and tips that put together achieve the end result.
This book, as another for instance, started with the cover as a flat rectangle. It was distorted to fit the required perspective (which I dodn't get completely right this time), and used things like Free Transform Step & Repeat to give it depth.
The pages were done using Render Fibers. Lots of layer styles and hand drawn shadows etc. I took me a long time to be able to do this sort of thing quickly and easily, and there are no shortcuts I am afraid.
That 100% photoshop book looks interesting. I am always looking for new ways to create objects and scenes.
Bruce, I have the best part of one shelf full of Photoshop, and photography books, and the Steve Caplin books are far an away my favourite. Well 100% Photoshop, and How to Cheat at Photoshop. He also has a Art & Design in Photoshop title that is not something I'd reccommend.
Steve works as a professional illustrator for newspapers and magazines all round the world, and is very good at what he does.
He also has a nice little forum as an offshoot of this site
It's nothing like as busy as this forum, but it has a regular Friday Challenge in which some talented people take place. I have not used the forum for several years now, but Steve reads everything, and answers questions. IIRC I tried to get back on the forum, but could see no way to retrieve a forgotten password, so I gave up. Perhaps that has changed, so I might give it a try. I have certainly learned a few trick since I was last there, and a lot of that from this forum, from people including yourself.
The best thing about this forum, from my point of view, is that it tests you. When you don't know the answers - and I am not talking about the installation and driver type questions - then you have to try and work it out, and if you can't work it out yourself, there is always someone here who can.
But I'd say a big chunk of the free hand 3D stuff I do comes from the two Steve Caplin books.
Nope. I just tried again, and there is no mechanism for retrieving forgotten passwords, so I've done a Station and registered again. I feel quite reborn!