Not only can you use the native tools available inside of Adobe Photoshop CC 2019 to create selections, but you can do the same thing with third-party plugins. What are these plugins? How do you use them to make selections to your image? In this video, author Richard Harrington demonstrates how to use several plugins to make selections.
- While Photoshop has an extensive collection of selection tools, there are some additional tools on the market that allow for masking. These are typically plugins or standalone apps. While there are many products on the market, I just wanted to take a moment to show you one. It's called ReMask from Topaz Labs, and it is a standalone application that works in conjunction with Photoshop, Lightroom and others to help you with your masking. Here's how it works. First up, open up the image and make any changes that you want to get a good file. Then, what you'll do is simply Save As and save off a high-quality TIFF file. I'm going to save this out to the desktop here. And I'll click Save. And I'll do the same here for this other image. Now, while there are many different tools for masking, this is just one. It's not actually a filter, so you won't find it here underneath the Filter menu. Rather, it's an application. So let me switch to my Applications folder, and I'll go to Topaz ReMask and launch it. Now, it prompts me to open up an image. Let's start with that first one here. There is a built-in tutorial, but essentially, all it's asking you to do is make a selection by defining the edges, mark the area to keep, and mark the area to remove, then it will compute a mask and you can refine this using some of the additional tools. Alright, let's click Skip.
So in this case, I'll take the brush and define the edge. And I don't have to be super-accurate, but I need to trace around the outside, so make sure that your stroke includes both. There we go, and try to include any wisps of hair. Now, you can take the Fill Tool and mark the area that you want to remove. You see that we have blue defining the edges, green with the subject and red to remove. Now, all I need to do is click the Compute Mask button to analyze the image. And you see, it did a really nice job on the hair and the transition zones. Now, if needed, I can scroll down and further-adjust the edge here, allowing the edge to expand or contract, and I could adjust the strength of the mask to further refine it. If you need to, you can go to the Keep section to evaluate which pixels are going to be kept so you can continue to refine this a little bit, and I'll make that edge just a little softer.
Once you're satisfied, you simply need to save this. Now, you could place the background in here if you want, there are tools to add a solid color or an image behind the subject, but I'm just going to do Save As, and choose to save this as a TIFF file. Now, let's save that out. Now, let's make sure that we save this as a high-quality TIFF using the Adobe RGB color space, and I'll check a box to save the mask as transparency.
There we go, now we can switch back to Photoshop and open that up. What you'll notice is that the transparency was built in. So it actually has that stored within. If we zoom in here and take a look, you'll notice that the hair has all of the transparency data built into it, so really quite cool. Let's try that one more time. What we'll do here is open up the next image.
Choose Open, simply paint around the edges defining the transition zone. There we go. In the case here with the hair sticking up, I'm taking time to get a little bit more. There we are.
Mark it with red to fill the area we don't want, and tell it to compute the mask. Now in this case, it did a great job with the exception that there's a hole where the earring is, so I could take the paintbrush here, simply go over that area and paint to mark it as something to keep. And you see it fills it in. So if needed, you can fill in any spots or transition zones that need a little bit extra. But what it did there on the hair was amazing.
And if we look at the keep zone, I really see some great results. Now, the only thing that I see is down here on the shoulder, so I could paint 1 with the subtract there, and just remove 1 a little bit to tighten up the transition zone. 1 Additionally, using the Edge Shift here allows 1 us to erode that a little bit more. 1 And we can go either way, let's take 1 the Edge Shift the other way there. 1 And you start to see the transition. 1 There, we're getting a little bit of green, 1 so I'll take it back for a slight negative number. 1 And that definitely helped. 1 That looks good, when satisfied, again, 1 just click Save As, and my suggestion 1 is save that as a TIFF file, make sure 1 to include the transparency, and pick 1 a high-quality 16-bit format generally with Adobe RGB. 1 That'll give you a file that can be easily opened 1 up and then you can use this in your document. 1 Remember, once you have that, it's super-simple 1 to bring it back in. 1 So, I could just choose something simple like File, 1 Place Embedded, navigate to that image and click Place, 1 and it drops it on top, putting it over the background. 1 Now you might need to refine the edge 1 a little bit to clean that transition zone up, 1 but this gives you a lot of flexibility. 1 Remember, you can always click to reload 1 that and add it as a layer mask, and then within 1 Photoshop further refine that as you see fit. 1 This gives you that flexibility to now click on this, 1 open it back up, and try a little bit 1 of Smart Radius, and if needed the edge detection 1 there, painting on the hair and you can refine 1 that as needed to further adjust the transition. 1 But still, very useful and great flexibility 1 to quickly extract a subject from the background.
- What are selections?
- Creating masks from selections
- Using the selection tools, including marquees and lassos
- Moving a selection
- Selecting with the Quick Selection tool
- Growing, smoothing, and feathering selections
- Transforming a selection
- Using the Refine Edge command
- Selecting a color or tonal range with Color Range
- Making a selection with the Pen tool
- Creating selections from channels
- Saving a selection as an alpha channel
- Using the Content-Aware tools for selections
- Using Face-Aware Liquify