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In this movie, I'll show you how to use one shape to crop another. And then I'll also show you how to merge your shapes together, in order to create a new custom shape. Now if you're working along with me, make sure that swash layer is active. And what we're going to do is draw a rectangle around the region that we want to keep. So, I'll go ahead and select the Rectangle tool from the Shape Tool fly out menu. And just to make sure I don't make that same mistake I made last time where I drew a new layer, I'll go up to the Options bar and click on the Path operations icon.
And sure enough, new layer is active. What we want instead, is Intersect Shape Areas. So I'll go ahead and select that option. Notice that my cursor now has an X next to it, showing me that'll keep the intersection of the rectangle and anything behind it. And now I'll go ahead and drag with the rectangle tool like so. And if your alignment isn't spot on then you can use the spacebar to adjust it. Make sure that you totally enclose the top of those two ellipses. And then go ahead and release, in order to create this effect here.
Now, there's one option I haven't showed you yet which is Exclude Overlapping Shapes. And let me give you a sense of how that works. I'll switch to my Back arrow tool. And I'll go ahead and select that rectangle to make it active. And then I'll switch from Intersect Shape Areas to Exclude Overlapping Shapes. And I end up getting an effect that I did not expect at all. And the reason is, because the underlying layers turned on, filling in the hole. So I'll go ahead and turn the underlying layer off for a moment. And sure enough you can see that what were doing is creating holes at the intersection areas, instead of keeping the intersection.
So it's essentially the opposite affect of what we want. All right, so I'll go back up to the Path operations icon, and switch it back to intersect shape areas. Which is what I'm looking for. And now it turns out it's just fine that the underlying layer is hidden, because we don't really need it anymore, except for its effect. So I'm going to drag that fx icon, and drop it on to swash like so. You don't need to duplicate it or anything like that so no need for the Alt or Option keys. Then click on the underlying layer, which is officially dead to us. And press the backspace key and the delete key on the Mac to get rid of it.
Now another fantastic thing about the fact that we've created the shape layer is that in addition to being totally scalable, we can resize it as much as we like. But it's also extremely flexible. For example, I'm going to zoom in here and scroll up as well. Let's say I'm sitting here looking at what I've got, and you can see that I've more or less centered the word pout on the page. That is visually, it's not actually exactly centered, but it has the appearance of being visually centered. Meanwhile the underline is approximately 30 pixels from the left hand edge.
And about the same number of pixels from the right-hand edge. So it is centered, but it shouldn't be. It should really be tucked in, the edge here should be tucked into the bottom of the T, and this left edge should be tucked in to the bottom of the P. Now, if I was working with a pixel based layer, I could use a layer mask and all that good stuff in order to get rid of the edges, or I could just select them, and get rid of them, what have you. However, in this case, all I have to do is change the size of the rectangle. And to do that, I'm going to click and hold on the Black arrow tool, and switch to the White arrow tool, and I'll click off the Path outline to deselect it, and then Ill click on this right-hand edge, for starters, to select it, and I'll drag it to the left while pressing the shift key.
So it's very important that you have the shift key down, so that you're constraining your drag to precisely horizontal. And then, go ahead and do the same thing over here with this left-hand edge. And by the way, you want to press the shift key after you begin the drag, and keep the shift key down until you release the mouse button. And we end up achieving this effect. And the beauty of it is, if I later change my mind, and I want to reveal more of the swash, I can, just by dragging, while pressing the shift key, outward. So I've got all the flexibility in the world. Anyway, I'll undo that last modification.
Now let's say that you want to define this swatch here as a custom shape, so that you can draw swatches inside of your other artwork. Well in that case you'd want to go ahead and merge all these paths into a single, custom path, and you do that by switching back to the Black arrow tool. And I'll partially marquee these three shapes to select them all, and then, I'll go up to the Path Operations icon, once again, and choose this command, Merge Shape Components. And that'll go ahead and give you a single path outline, as you see here.
Then, I'll go up to the Edit menu and choose Define Custom Shape. And I'll go ahead and call this guy swash and then click OK to create it. Now what I'd recommend you do next, is go up to the Edit menu and choose Undo combine path components. Or press Ctrl+Z or Cmd+Z on the Mac. And that'll go ahead and retrieve those three separate shapes. And you might wonder well why in the world did you do that? If you wanted to merge them together, why didn't you just leave them that way? And the reason is this structure is actually more flexible. So its nice to be able to have all three shapes in case I want to modify how this swash works in the future.
But meanwhile, I'll go ahead and press Ctrl+H or Cmd+H on the Mac to hide those outlines. I could draw more swashes inside other files, by selecting the custom shape tool and then setting the shape to that last shape I created at the bottom of the list here, swash. And now I can draw as many swashes as I want. And they can be wider or narrower, like this. So they can be squished in any way you like or you can go ahead and maintain the original proportions. By pressing and holding the shift key.
Alright, I'll go ahead and undo that new shape player by pressing Ctrl+Z or Cmd+Z on a Mac and I'll go ahead and scroll back up to the group here, and shift-click on this layer mask on the hill in order to turn that layer mask back on. And that's how you crop a couple of shapes inside of another one, modify that crop boundary and finally merge everything into a new custom shape.
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