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The Cookie Cutter tool is much like the Custom Shape tool, except that the Cookie Cutter tool lets you draw custom shapes, and then automatically fill them with content from your photographs. This makes it ideal for scrapbookers. I'll select the Cookie Cutter tool from the toolbar, and then I'll go up to the Options, where there is a shape picker. I'll click the arrow to the right of the shape picker, and here I can see a subset of the many shapes that are available. I'd like an animal shape, so I'm going to click this double-pointed arrow, and I'll choose Animals from this menu, and here I can see some animal shapes to choose from.
I'm going to click on the bird shape, and then I'll click in the tool Options bar to close the shape picker. In the Shape Options menu, I can choose to draw Unconstrained, which means that the bird can be distorted in any direction, or if I click Defined Proportions, that will constrain the bird, so it won't be distorted. I'll click in the Options bar again to close that picker, and then I'll go to the Feather field. If you want the edge of the shape to be soft, you can try typing in just a little bit of feather here; maybe 1, 2 pixels, or less. But I don't use this, because sometimes it can make the edges too soft.
I will check the Crop box here, so that after I draw this shape, Elements will automatically trim the edges of the image down to just the size of the shape, as you'll see in a moment. Then I'll come into the image, and I'll click and drag, dragging out the outline of a bird. As soon as I released my mouse, Elements cuts away everything outside of that bird shape, leaving me with this gray and white checkerboard that represents transparency. It's done that by adding a vector- based mask to the image, which you can see over in the Layers panel.
Now, before I click the green check mark to accept this shape as is, I can click inside of it, and move it around over my photograph until I get just the part of the photograph in the bird that I want. When I'm happy with that, I'll click the green check mark. And at that point, Elements cuts out the shape from my photograph, leaving it surrounded by transparency, and at the same time, crops it down, so that the entire image is just big enough to fit the outside of the shape. And that's great, because now I can use this in another image, and I don't have to bother cropping it manually.
So the Cookie Cutter tool is a really fun and creative way for you to make graphic shapes for use in your projects.
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