10 Amazing Photoshop MASKING Secrets Tips and Tricks You Probably DONT Know

hi welcome back to the photoshoptrainingchannel.com I'm mrs. Ramirez in this video I'm going to show you 10 Photoshop secrets tips and tricks to create perfect cutouts my goal for this video is to show you techniques that you probably don't know that will help you remove backgrounds and create better cutouts by the way I'm in the latest version of Photoshop if you're in an older version no worries most of the tips and tricks that I'm going to show you today should work except for the artificial intelligence feature that we will use in one of the tips before we get started I would like to ask you for two favors number one if this is your first time at the Photoshop training channel then click on the subscribe and notification button so that you don't miss any new Photoshop tutorials if you're already subscribed and click on that notification bell number two if you see anything in this video that helps you in your creative work then click on the like button and let me know in the comments which tip or technique that was also I would like to thank MSI for sponsoring this Photoshop tutorial today I'll be working with my msi prestige 15 laptop which is a powerful 4k computer with great color representation okay let's jump right into the tutorial in this first example I'm going to show you the power of Adobe's artificial intelligence known as Adobe sensei this artificial intelligence allows you to quickly remove backgrounds in Photoshop all you need to do is have a layer selected make sure that the layer is unlock if you see a lock simply click on that lock and in the properties panel you'll see under quick actions a remove background button when you click on that Photoshop will use machine learning technology to detect the main subject and remove the background I'll zoom in although the artificial intelligence is not perfect it is a great starting point for your cut out projects two of the most powerful yet underutilized tools for masking and Photoshop are the minimum and maximum filter let me show you how they work I'm gonna zoom in so that you can see the edges on this runner you can see that there are some white halos known as fringing going around them and you often see that when you're to mask elements that are up against a white background or have edges that are not well-defined and one way of removing them is by using the minimum filter which allows you to contract the mask it's really easy to use all you need to do is select the layer thumbnail then go into filter other and select minimum this will bring up the minimum window and from here you can contract the mask base by a number of pixels if I click and drag this over you'll see that the mask will contract to sixty point eight pixels and this is obviously not what we want to do in this case but you can see the power of this filter so what I'll do is I'll come back down to about maybe three pixels and what I can do now is tap on the down arrow key in the keyboard to come down point one pixels at a time so I can really fine-tune how much I contract my mask you can see that before and after by clicking on the check mark before and after you can see that the edge halos are all gone you can also press the P key and the keyboard to enable or disable the preview checkbox and all dialog boxes inside a Photoshop also I want you to note that there is a preserve algorithm either you'll preserve roundness or squareness you want to select squareness if you're working with man-made objects but if you're working with organic objects like a human being in this case roundness will be the better choice because we don't have too many straight edges I'll press ok and Photoshop applies that contraction to my layer mask now let me show you how the maximum filter works if you go into filter other maximum you'll find a filter that does the opposite it expands the mask by a number of pixels in this case I have a 25 pixel radius that means that the mask is now expanded 25 pixels I'll press ok and you can see now how it appears that I have a 25 pixel stroke on my mask but it's not really a stroke this is where the mask is if I hold ctrl on Windows command in the Mac and click on the layer mask thumbnail you'll see that the selection adheres to the edge of that white stroke sometimes it's a lot easier to use the blend of command than to create a mask in situations like this we have a lot of fine detail that will be really difficult to mask we can instead use the blend of command but before we go in there let's take a look at the channels panel and you always want to check each individual Channel the red one the green one and the blue one to see which one has more contrast between the foreground and background in this case the sky is almost white and the foreground elements are almost black and that is very important to note black foreground white background what I'll do now is click on RGB and go back into the layers panel and let me quickly show you the layer that is below here I'm gonna bring out this sky on top of here and the way that I'm going to do that is by double clicking to the side of the layer to bring up the layer style window from here I can go back to that same channel the blue channel under blend if click on the drop-down and select blue remember we had a black foreground and a white background so watch what happens when I click and drag this black point under that this layer section so I'll click and drag this to the right and notice that all those pixels that were black are disappearing and showing what's beneath and if I click on the white point I'm sure you guess what's gonna happen everything that was white on that channel will disappear you can also hold alt on windows option in the Mac and click on this point to split it in half spread it apart and you'll create smooth transition between visible and invisible pixels press ok and you can now select the background layer and adjust that anywhere that you want and if i zoom in you'll see that Photoshop did a really good job in masking these difficult to select areas in this next tip we're going to continue where we left off in the previous example so now that I have a layer that uses blend if to blend it with the layer below I can create an adjustment layer to adjust my image I'll click on this icon to clip it to a layer below in other words this levels adjustment layer will only affect the foreground layer but watch what happens when I make an adjustment the original sky starts coming back if I make the image darker and if I make it brighter then pixels on this we'll start disappearing and that's because blend if uses the luminosity of those channels to create the blend so if we change the luminosity of the image we change the luminosity of the RGB channels and therefore we change the blend so how can we make this layer into actual transparency so that we don't change the blend first of all what we can do is reset the levels adjustment layer so that it's not adjusting anything then right-click on this foreground layer and select convert to smart object notice the layer thumbnail now we see the checkerboard pattern that indicates transparency so this is actual transparency now if I come into the levels adjustment layer once again I can make any adjustments that I want and the pixels will not change because we are now working with actual transparency if I hold ctrl on Windows command the Mac and click on the layer thumbnail Photoshop will load the active pixels as a selection this wouldn't happen if we hadn't turned the layer into a smart object if it was just a regular layer like before Photoshop will just select the entire layer in this next example we'll continue working with the previous image and what I'm gonna do now is show you how to convert the blend if transparency into a layer mask so let me just undo these last few steps so I'll press ctrl Z on Windows command Z on the mac to undo several times once you have your background layer back and it's no longer a smart object when you can no longer see that transparency I can select that layer and press ctrl J on Windows command J on the Mac so now I have two layers and I'll delete this levels adjustment layer just so that it doesn't distract us and what I'm gonna do on this layer on top I'll right-click and select convert to smart object that gives us our transparency checkerboard back and if I hold ctrl on Windows command in the Mac I can click and load that transparency as a selection at this point I can click and drag the foreground copy to delete it I can right click on this icon that indicates the advanced blending that we applied and I can right click on that and select clear layer style that will remove the blend if but now with that selection active I can click on this layer mask icon to create a layer mask based on the blend of transparency so I can now work with this layer mask just like I could with any other layer mask in Photoshop in this next tip I'm going to show you my two-step process for creating better layer masks using the Select in mask or experience elected you can go into select and click on selected masks this will bring up a dedicated workspace that allows you to create selections and layer masks I have my view set to onion skin in my transparency set to 50% to make a selection I can use the artificial intelligence the same one that we already looked at you can enable the quick selection tool and from the options bar click on select subject and Photoshop will use machine learning technology to find the edges of this image and it does a really good job as you can see however if I tap on the z key to enable the zoom tool and zoom in you can see that the edges are very jagged it might not be visible in this view so you can change the view into the black and white and you can see the jagged edges I can smooth those out by simply dragging the smooth slider to the right and that creates much smoother edges and I can also sharpen those edges by dragging the contrast slider to the right and that will make the edges around my model of great however in areas where we have hair the edges will not be very good and that is because the edges on her hair are vastly different than the edges on her body and we were focusing on smoothing the edges on her body with these sliders so what you need to do is simply press ok so that Photoshop can create a mask based on that selection and now we can focus on our hair so we can actually go back into the selected mask workspace by double clicking on the hand tool notice that these smooth and contrast sliders are now set to zero so that means that there are no global refinements being applied to the image anymore so what I can do is double click on the hand tool to fit the image to screen and then select the refine edge brush make it a little bit bigger by tapping on the right bracket key on the keyboard and I can now click can rag over the edges around her head to make a better selection around her stray away hairs like so and this will just make a much much better selection in some cases you are gonna need to zoom in and make sure that you switch over into the brush tool make sure that this plus icon is selected and you can paint in the details that Photoshop is hiding that shouldn't be hidden so I'm just gonna paint really quickly here and I'm using the spacebar to pan and I'm just painting in these areas so that they are visible when I apply the changes to my mask like so I'll double click on the hand tool to fit the Emer screen and I'll press ok Photoshop applies those adjustments to my mask and if i zoom in you will see that this is a much much better layer mask and we had before just because we used a two-step process that gave us much better results in this next example I'm going to show you how to customize a brush to make better selections so I'll start by using the same artificial intelligence to get it started from the properties panel I'll click on the remove background button now that the background has been hidden I'm going to make a few adjustments to the background with the brush tool I'll select the brush tool and I'm just going to paint with black on my layer mask and hide the areas that I know I will not need for sure so I'm gonna hide the leash and this part around the space like so now that I've done that I need to look at the areas that have fur that are gonna be very difficult to select like these areas here and the areas around this tail so what I'll do now is zoom in a little bit so that I can see the entire image and I need to make a selection with the lasso tool around the areas that have this really difficult to select sections like these here so I'm going to go and make that selection there another one here like so and I'm just gonna select them with the lasso tool like you see here and notice that I'm not being precise at all so now that these areas are selected what I can do is make sure that my layer mask is selected and going to filter other minimum and do a large number around 24 maybe even more why don't we try 30 pixels and that pushes the edges in dramatically and that's exactly what I want I'll press ok next I'll press control D on Windows command in the Mac to deselect and to better see what we're doing I'll create a solid color fill layer and I'll just make it a dark gray and I'll place that below the dog so that we can see our image I'll zoom in and what I want to do is make sure that we get the fur back and it's going to be impossible to select a real fur if I hold the shift key and click on the layer mask thumbnail you all see that these pixels are just too difficult to mask and select so what I'll do instead is create fake fur using the original fur and we're going to use a custom eye brush for that let me show how that works I'll select the brush tool then I'll click on this drop-down and we're gonna use the legacy brushes inside of Photoshop if we're in an older version of Photoshop like cs6 you don't have to worry about this part these brushes are enabled by default but a new versions of Photoshop we have to enable the legacy brushes I'll click on that press ok and Photoshop will add this folder that contains brushes and the brush that I'm gonna use for this is found under the default brushes folder I'll open that up and I'm gonna go look for my grass brushes here they are I'm going to select the dune grass brush and I'm gonna create a new layer above the dog layer so you can see how this works if I simply click and drag you'll see how that looks it uses the foreground and background colors to create that effect and I don't want that I want just a solid color so I'll click on this icon and I'll disable the color dynamics so now when I paint I get that result that you see there now I have to look at the fur in the actual dog lair so I'll click on the layer thumbnail holding shift so that I can see how the first sticks out so the fur is going down a little bit and it's sticking out to the left so I need to try to match that with this brush so what I can do now is rotate my brush you can see how I'm rotating it by clicking and dragging on this icon and now the hair is pointing up so I needed to point down I can simply click on the flip X checkbox and now it's facing down and I need to adjust the rotation a little bit so maybe something like that and yeah that looks pretty good so what I'll do now is I'll delete this layer because I don't need it anymore I'll come into the layer mask and I'll paint with white along the edges here like so so I'm gonna continue filling in the fur I can tap on the left bracket key on the keyboard to reduce my brush size I'll collapse this panel just so that it doesn't block our view and I'll continue painting and notice now I'm getting much more realistic further than what I had before also to make it easier to see with the layer mask select that I can go into the properties panel and bring down the density and you can see where the original fur is so I can paint up to those edges that way my mask matches a little better like so and I can just continue painting in those edges so that it matches the fur as close as possible once I'm done I can bring the density back up to 100% and you can see the edges this technique will give you a much better mask than actually trying to cut out the original fur in some cases when working with adjustment layers you need to create a layer mask so that your adjustments are contained to the proper pixels let me show you one example of this if you're working with a hue and saturation adjustment layer you can click on this icon and then click and drag on an area to adjust the saturation of the pixels that you selected also if you hold ctrl on Windows command in the Mac as you do that you will adjust the hue and I think in this case adjusting the hue is a better example to show you what the problem is we want to change the color of this blue backpack to something else but there is a lot of blue in the image there's a lot of blue haze in the back this hat has blue in it so we're also changing those colors so let me show you a technique that you can use to properly isolate the colors that you want to adjust so I'll delete this un saturation adjustment layer for now start by selecting the lasso tool from the toolbar and then make a loose selection out of the object that you want to adjust like so then go into select color range from here you can move the window over if you need to and you can click on the color that you would like to select in this case the blue backpack and then you can click on this icon to add more colors to that selection notice how my backpack is becoming white if the opposite is happening make sure that you don't have the invert checkbox enabled so make sure that you have that box unchecked and just click and drag over the colors that you would like to adjust notice how the backpack becomes white and you can adjust the fuzziness slider to add or subtract similar colors in this case I don't think I need any fuzziness and just make sure that you have everything that you need to select selected so I'm gonna click on this plus icon and make sure I get some of these shadows here like so and maybe I will increase the fussing it's just a tiny little bit right about there and I'll press ok Photoshop has now made a selection around the backpack now if I need to make an adjustment I can go into hue and saturation Photoshop creates a layer mask based on my selection and I can adjust the hue accordingly go back into this icon click and drag while holding the ctrl key on windows command key on the Mac and make an adjustment and Photoshop will make a much much better color shift by the way if color is important to you then make sure that you're working with a device that can reproduce colors properly on screen I'm working with the MSI prestige 15 laptop it features MSI's exclusive true pixel display which is a combination of several features specifically the sign for creative pros to get the best colors possible these features include a 4k display at 220 PPI for great on-screen detail which can reproduce a we RGV at 100% this gives you a wide color range and more accurate colors also included is the true color technology which ensures high color accuracy so that your work is displayed exactly as you intend each MSI prestige 15 laptop is calibrated at the factory and they are Kalman certified which means that you're going to get great color representation which is obviously very important for creative work if you want to find out more about the laptop that I'm using the MSI prestige 15 then check out the link below in the description in this example I'm going to show you how to make a channel base mask what I'm gonna do here is take this image of snow and apply it as a foreground to this texture now one of the easiest things to do to make a mask like this is simply going to the blending mode option and select screen to make the black pixels disappear and keep the bright pixels and that certainly works unfortunately when we do something like this we cannot have actual transparency around the pixels that we keep for example if I double click to the side of the layer and add a drop shadow notice that the drop shadow appears around the edges of the layer not around the edges of the snow so this is not what I want I want to actually have transparency on something like this so to do this I'm going to set the screen mode back to normal and I'm going to disable this background layer and I'm gonna go into the channels panel and I'm gonna create a channel base selection and it doesn't matter which channel I select they're all the same see that they're all the same so you can hold ctrl on Windows command in the Mac and click on a channel to load it as a selection go back into the layers panel and simply create a mask around that see that see how we now have a layer mask around the snow I can click on this icon to enable the background and at this point I can now go into the screen blending mode so that I can hide all those darker pixels this is what the image looks like would screen this is what it looks like with normal you might want to keep that if you prefer it in this case I think I like screen better and what I'll do now is zoom in so you can see that we are dealing with actual transparent pixels now I can double click to the side of the layer to bring up the layer style window and I can add a drop shadow to the layer if you remember the light is coming from the top left so we need the shadow on the bottom right you can actually click and drag directly on the image to reposition the shadow so I'm just gonna drag it just to the bottom right and I'm going to click on the color select the background here and just select a darker color from that and I can now adjust the opacity accordingly and it now looks like we have snow on that surface so this is how you would create a channel base mask and as a bonus I'm going to show you some amazing keyboard shortcuts that you can use with layer masks so in this document I have three layers a background layer a model and the hue and saturation adjustment layer applying a global adjustment to the image in Photoshop you can enable or disable a mask by holding the shift key and clicking on the layer mask you can see that red eggs over the layer mask if I hold shift and click on the layer mask again it brings the layer mask back if I hold the Alt key on Windows option on the Mac I'll get the alternate view that's an easy way of remembering and if you're on windows alt alternate when you click you'll see the alternate view which is the mask view white reveals black conceals to go back into the regular view you can hold alt on windows option on the Mac again and click on the layer mask thumbnail you can also move a layer mask to another layer simply by clicking and dragging it over into another layer like so notice that the layer mask is now on the layer on top and not on the model layer anymore you can hold shift click and drag a layer mask into another layer and that inverts the selection as you move it notice now that the model is hidden but not the background so holding shift as you drag it into another layer will move the layer and invert it at the same time you can also press ctrl I command I on the Mac to invert a layer mask and if you want to duplicate a layer mask what you need to do is hold alt on windows option in the Mac and click and drag it into another layer and Photoshop will duplicate the mask as it was I'll delete the mask by right-clicking and selecting delete layer mask and if you hold Alt + Shift on windows option and shift on the Mac and click and drag the layer mask into another layer it will duplicate it and invert it at the same time also with a layer mask selected you can tap on the backslash key to bring up the red overlay this revealeth overlay shows you what areas are selected in which areas are not the areas in red are not selected so if I paint with white on my layer mask you'll see that the red overlay disappears and if I paint with black the red overlay reappears so this is a really good shortcut to help you visualize what the layer mask is selecting and what it's not selecting ok if you made it this far make sure that you click on that like button now and let me know in the comments which was your favorite tip trick or technique if this is your first time at the Photoshop training Channel then don't forget to click on that subscribe and notification button so that you don't miss any new Photoshop tutorials and again I would like to thank MSI for sponsoring today's Photoshop tutorial if you haven't already make sure that you check out the msi prestige 15 laptop this is the laptop that i'm currently using it has a powerful 6 core i7 processor the 4k display is amazing it has 220 PPI it can reproduce both Adobe RGB and srgb at 100% and most importantly it is Kalman certified so the color reproduction on this thing is amazing the prestige 15 also comes with a very powerful video card an NVIDIA GeForce 1650 GTX max XQ so if you're looking for a powerful computer to run Photoshop then this is something that you should definitely look at I'll place a link to it down below in the description so that you can check it out if you like also in the description you'll find information on the limited offer to get 20% off on selected Wacom products when you is a qualifying MSI laptop and thank you again so much for taking the time to watch I really appreciate it I'll talk to you again in the next Photoshop tutorial