Hi, i'll have a different kind of tip: water effects, ripples, waves, like other effects are not that much of a gain, stockwise, they usually affect the image to the point of no use, so we don't encourage the use of such filters/effects. A "clean" photograph can be adjusted to precise customer needs way more easily and hence offers more sales prospects.
We don't automatically refuse such filtered images, but they're usually not what we look for, because in most cases they are used just to "enhance" pretty dull imagery - and that just doesn't work.
580EX,Mamiya Universal, Intel Q6600 ws, Thinkpad T61 mobile ...
U decide if it looks real enough. It is actually a Photoshop job. I took the top picture, selected the mountain and a small strip of trees and feathered it (sort of looks like a mist on the lake in the final image). I then copy/pasted it into a new canvas, and copied that layer. I then rotated it 180 degrees and "flipped horizontal" to mirror it, so it would be an accurate "reflection". After that, I did some minor bumps and adjustments including stretching the refletction downward, a slight motion blur, and lightening it up a tiny bit. The ripple didn't work for me either.
Here's another image in which I added a log to make it look more like a lake. It's not real, but it's the closest you can get to realistic without actually having a real lake.
In my opinion, I don't believe anything is cheating as long as the photographer is honest about how they achieved the picture if asked. I agree that it takes skill to use PS and can be as genuinely artistic as taking the photos is - although to my shame I haven't yet mastered either lol Keep the tips coming.