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Masks and Channels in Adobe Photoshop CS6

Article Description

Learn how to create a mask to remove a subject from a background, refine a mask to include complex edges, create a quick mask to make changes to a selected area, edit a mask using the Properties panel, manipulate an image using Puppet Warp, save a selection as an alpha channel, view a mask using the Channels panel, load a channel as a selection, isolate a channel to make specific image changes.

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Creating a mask

Creating a mask

You’ll use the Quick Selection tool to create the initial mask in order to separate the model from the background.

  1. Choose File > Save As, rename the file 06Working.psd, and click Save. Click OK if the Photoshop Format Options dialog box appears.
  2. Saving a working version of the file lets you return to the original if you need it.

  3. Select the Quick Selection tool (Image). In the options bar, set up a brush with a size of 15 px and hardness of 100%.
  4. Select the man. It’s fairly easy to select his shirt and face, but the hair is trickier. Don’t worry if the selection isn’t perfect. You’ll refine the mask in the next exercise.
  5. At the bottom of the Layers panel, click the Add Layer Mask button (Image) to create a layer mask.

The selection becomes a pixel mask, and it appears as part of Layer 0 in the Layers panel. Everything outside the selection is transparent, represented by a checkerboard pattern.

4. Refining a mask | Next Section Previous Section