Can someone help me conceptualize the differences between a photon's involvement with absorption, transparency, reflection, and emission?
To be more specific, my current understanding of the matter is that when a photon interacts with an atom containing electrons (not a free electron), if the frequency is high enough, it can be absorbed, and the electron moves to a less-stable, yet higher energy level. In this sense, all other photons that were not absorbed are then reflected back outwards (giving the object its corresponding color). But if the frequency is too low to make the energy gap, the photon passes through the electron cloud and the atoms are transparent in the visual spectrum (as in glass, or air)...
Given this, what is the main ingredient that causes a photon to either be reflected off of the object versus passing straight through it (as in transparency)? As well, when does an emission of the electron get involved (as in, if the electron absorbs a certain frequency, when is a photon emitted versus an electron, and does the electron itself get emitted if it's a valence, or does a separate electron in the sea of electrons elsewhere get emitted to make up for the balance?)
Sorry if it's a bit of a mess; please let me know if my assumptions above are inconsistent, and need tweaking as well before moving forward.