Tutorial: Lasso Tool Tip (scroll view) in Photoshop (and Elements)

Screenshots from Photoshop CS2, will work with all Photoshop (and Elements) Versions.

I love using the lasso tool to extract pictures to use in my layouts. The lasso tool is located on the tool bar. To make your tool bar visible click on Windows > Tools. All the options of the lasso tool can be seen by clicking on the fly out arrow on the bottom right corner of the tool.

I usually set my feather to 2. This will make the edge less sharp to allow it to blend into the new background you will be using. I like the magnetic lasso tool and seem to use it the most. It will look for the edge for me and place points as I move along my subject. If you select the lasso tool, you will need to click along the edge as you go to make the point selections. I usually will zoom in close to my subject to make sure my magnetic lasso is on the edge. This is where this tip will be very useful. When you zoom in close, you then find yourself at the edge of the photo and when your lasso hits the edge of the photo it jumps and make a goofy selection. So right before you get to the edge click and hold your "SPACEBAR". This will bring up a hand. This hand will allow you to move your image around in the screen. Once you have the proper area, release the spacebar and continue on with you lasso tool.

In this example I want to cut out my son and kittens from the background. I will zoom in close and start using my magnetic lasso, set at a feather of 2. When I get to the edge of my window click and hold the "SPACEBAR". You will see a hand appear. Then just drag you photo to the new area you want to work with.

Continue working until you completely lasso the entire area. Then double click and you have your selection you can cut and copy onto a new layer.

Once you have your selection on a new layer you can turn off the visibility of the original layer (click on the little eye). Add you new background and you are done.


For a printable copy of this tutorial, click here.


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