Photoshop #4: Cutting Out Things

One of the most annoying things that you'll often have to do in Photoshop is cut-out entourage/props like people, trees, cars, or other objects - here's how to do this without going completely mad.

Using Pen Tool To Create Complex Selections

One of the most annoying things that you’ll often have to do in Photoshop is cut-out entourage/props like people, trees, cars, or other objects. No matter how large your library of these elements grow, you will always see a  “better” photo, that you’ll have to cut out to use in your design. For example, let’s say that the following image would look really nice our composition:

2-woman-big

So how do we “cut out” the woman from the background? There are several ways to go about it, and none of it is very easy. You can go and try to draw the outline using “Polygonal Lasso Tool” but it will probably drive you mad very soon.
So it’s better to use Pen tool, which works very similar as in Illustrator.

Create A New Path Using Pen Tool

Click to add a “corner” point, or click and drag to add “smooth” point.
Be patient, and draw the line around the person as close as you can, like on the video below (please note video runs at 2x speed!):

Edit Path Using Direct Selection Tool and Convert Path Point

As you seen, I made a mistake around the foot, so I need now to edit the path:

Here’s how:

More info on path editing:
Quick guide: How To Edit Paths in Photoshop CS6 – For Dummies
Complete Info: Photoshop Help: Edit Paths

Convert Path To Selection

That’s all nice, but what do we actually do with this path now?!
Well, of course, we will make a selection out of this path. Here’s how:

2-cutouSo in the end we’ll have this: 

Here’s how in this short video:

:)As you see, working with paths is not much fun, but very often you’ll have to do it. Especially if you’re doing an internship in a studio that does the rendering, this is usually the task that will befall on you as the youngest team member

 

Any questions?

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