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Cropping is, on the surface, a fairly simple process – highlight the area you want to cut out, then just cut it out or delete everything around it, right? For the most part this is it, though of course there are many more layers when you’re doing this stuff in Photoshop.

Whether you want to do basic cropping, individual layers, or instantly alter the perspective of a cropped image, our beginner’s guide on the various ways you can crop an image in Photoshop should help you out.

Cropping Basics

For now, select the standard crop. You’ll now be able to create a rectangle of whatever size you like, move it around by dragging the mouse when it’s inside the selected area, or resize it by dragging on the edges. To keep the aspect ratio of a selected area while resizing it, hold the “Shift” key.

Crop to a Specific Size or Aspect Ratio

If you want to be more exact about the size and aspect ratio of the area you’re cropping, you’ll want to go to the area at the top left of the Photoshop window (see picture).

Crop Individual Layers in Photoshop

Using the default cropping method, you’ll find that it affects the entire canvas rather than just the individual layer. That means that every layer in your image will be cropped down to the same size, even if you were just trying to crop the one.

A plucky workaround for this is to use the rectangular marquee tool (pictured below).

Perspective Crop in Photoshop

If your image is a little askew, you can also use the perspective crop to warp it straight again.


Robert Zak

Content Manager at Make Tech Easier. Enjoys Android, Windows, and tinkering with retro console emulation to breaking point.

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You're reading How To Crop In Photoshop

How To Crop Yourself From A Photo

But you don’t need to worry! We’ve got you covered. There is still a way or two to save the picture.

How to crop yourself from a picture

Cropping yourself or replacing the background from a picture you’re in can only be done through third-party apps on Android. In this guide we’re using two different apps to crop yourself or an object and past it onto a different background.

Using Cut Cut app

Step 1: Download and install Cut Cut app from Google Play.

Step 2: Open the app.

Step 3: Tap on Edit at the bottom left.

You will now be taken to a new window where you’d be shown pictures from your gallery. In order for the app to show pictures, make sure you grant storage permissions.

Step 4: Select a picture from which you choose to remove a background. This could be a picture with you in it or an object you want to crop from its surroundings.

Step 5: Tap Cut Out.

Step 6: In the next page, you can select the subject you want to crop from the picture by brushing over it.

When you do so, the brushed-over portion of the picture is colored in red (with opaqued background).

You can change the brush size by sliding through the yellow slider.

You can zoom in into the picture to brush the subject with precision.

If you mistakingly brushed over a portion that need no be cropped, you can tap on the Eraser icon and brush again to undo the mistake.

You can undo or redo last moves by tapping on the reverse and forward arrows at the top.

The fully brushed picture will look something like this.

Step 7:Tap on the tick mark at the bottom right.

You will now see the cropped object without a background.

Step 8: Select the dimensions and characteristics of the cropped subject:

Resize: By pressing and dragging the double-headed arrow, you can enlarge or minimize the subject.


: You can make an extra copy of the cropped subject by tapping on the

+1 icon


: The cropped picture can be reversed with mirror effect by tapping on

inverted arrow icon


: Tapping the

x icon

will delete the cropped picture from the background.

Step 9: Once the cropped picture is tuned, you can select a new background for it. Choose from either of the following tabs to paste a background behind the cropped subject.

Online: Tapping on the Online tab will get you pictures to choose from the Cut Cut app itself for your use.


: Choosing the Unsplash tab will let you choose a background from Unsplash, which specializes on stock photographs from over 110,000 contributing photographers and a library of over 810,000 photos.


: When you tap on the Gallery tab, you will be able to choose a new background for your cropped picture from your own gallery/internal storage.

Step 10: Choose a picture from any of the three tabs listed above.

A preview of the newly edited picture is available for viewing at the top of the screen.

Step 11: Tap on the preview picture.

Step 12: You can repeat Step 8, if you wish to modify the cropped image.

Step 13: Once editing is done, tap on Save to finish the process.

The saved picture will be visible on your phone storage.

Using PhotoLayers app

Step 1: Download and install PhotoLayers app from Google Play.

Step 2: Open the app.

Step 3: Tap on Load a background image.

Step 4: Select a picture.

Step 5: Choose the image parameters for the background image.

Step 6: Tap Done.

The background picture is now set.

Step 7: In the next window, tap on Add Photo button at the top.

Step 8: Select the picture you want to add as a cropped subject.

Step 9: Adjust the dimensions of the second picture.

Step 10: Tap Done.

Step 11: In the next window, you can erase the unwanted elements of the overlaying picture. Try these different tools to crop the picture the way you want to

Auto: This mode will remove large portions of unwanted elements from the picture. Tapping the Auto tile and brushing over the picture will automatically remove portions with the same color and items as the one you are brushing.

Magic: This mode works similarly to Auto but will only delete elements from the picture where the brush actually touches. Smartly enough, the Magic mode will let you precisely cut out the minutest details that Auto mode won’t be able to.

Manual: This mode will let you crop the unnecessary details from the background by simply brushing on it.

Zoom: Unlike on the Cut Cut app, zooming into the picture for precise cutting is only possible on this app by tapping on the Zoom button on the bottom right and then pinching in/out to zoom in/out.

Repair: This mode will let you recover those portions of the image that got mistakingly cropped.

Cursor offset: At the top, you can slide over the cursor offset tool to manage how much gap the brush has from the actual cursor.

Step 12: After all the cropping-related editing is done, tap on Done.

The cropped picture will be overlaid on top of the background that we added before (on Step 6).

Step 13: You can move and resize the cropped picture by pressing and dragging on any of the arrows on its frame.

Step 14: Tap Save to complete the process.

Step 15: Tap Save again when prompted.

Step 16: Hit Finish to save the edited photo on the gallery.

How To Use Paint Symmetry In Photoshop

How to use Paint Symmetry in Photoshop

Learn how to use the new Paint Symmetry feature in Photoshop CC 2023 to easily create fun, symmetrical artwork and designs!

Written by Steve Patterson.

Paint Symmetry in Photoshop allows you to paint multiple brush strokes at once to create mirrored, symmetrical designs and patterns. It works with the Brush Tool, the Pencil Tool and the Eraser Tool, and it also works with layer masks.

First added as a technical preview in Photoshop CC 2023, Paint Symmetry is now an official part of Photoshop as of CC 2023. All of the more basic symmetry options from CC 2023, like Vertical, Horizontal and Diagonal, are included. Plus CC 2023 also adds two new symmetry modes, Radial and Mandala, that let you create amazing, highly complex symmetrical artwork in seconds! Let’s see how it works.

To follow along, you’ll need the latest version of Photoshop. And if you’re already a Creative Cloud subscriber, make sure that your copy of Photoshop CC is up to date. Let’s get started!

How to paint with symmetry in Photoshop

We’ll start by learning the basics of how to use Paint Symmetry to create symmetrical artwork and designs. Once we know the basics, I’ll show you how to combine Paint Symmetry with layer masks for more creative effects!

Step 1: Add a new blank layer Step 2: Select the Brush Tool, Pencil Tool or Eraser Tool

Paint Symmetry works with the Brush Tool, the Pencil Tool and the Eraser Tool, all of which are found in the Toolbar. I’ll select the Brush Tool:

Selecting the Brush Tool.

How to download over 1000 more brushes in Photoshop

Step 3: Open the Paint Symmetry menu Step 4: Choose a symmetry option

And then in the menu, choose a symmetry option from the list. There are ten different styles to choose from in CC 2023, including the new Radial and Mandala options at the bottom:

The Paint Symmetry options in Photoshop CC 2023.

The Paint Symmetry options in Photoshop CC 2023

Here’s a quick summary of how each of Photoshop’s ten Paint Symmetry options works:

Vertical: Divides the canvas vertically and mirrors brush strokes from one side onto the other side.

Horizontal: Divides the canvas horizontally and mirrors brush strokes from the top onto the bottom, or from the bottom onto the top.

Dual Axis: Divides the canvas vertically and horizontally into four equal sections (top left, top right, bottom left, and bottom right). Painting in one section mirrors your brush strokes in the other three.

Diagonal: Divides the canvas diagonally and mirrors brush strokes from one side onto the other.

Wavy: Similar to Vertical but with a curved, wavy line instead of a straight line.

Circle: Mirrors brush strokes painted inside a circle outside the circle, and vice versa.

Spiral: Mirrors brush strokes painted along either side of a spiral path.

Parallel Lines: Divides the canvas into three vertical sections using two parallel vertical lines. Brush strokes painted in the middle section are mirrored in the left and right sections.

Radial: Divides the canvas into diagonal segments, or “slices”. Brush strokes painted in one segment are mirrored in the others.

Mandala: Similar to Radial, but mirrors the brush strokes within each segment as well, creating twice as many brush strokes as Radial.

We won’t go through every symmetry option here since you can easily try them out on your own. But to show you the basics of how they work, I’ll choose a simple one, like Dual Axis. Dual Axis is a combination of the Vertical and Horizontal modes listed above it:

Selecting one of the ten Paint Symmetry options.

The symmetry path

Choosing an option from the menu adds a blue symmetry path to the document. In this case, it’s a Dual Axis symmetry path, dividing the canvas vertically and horizontally into four equal sections:

A symmetry path appears.

Step 5: Resize and accept the path

Before you can paint with a symmetry path, Photoshop first places a Transform box around the path so you can scale and resize it if needed. But note that the path is for visual reference only. Symmetry paths always affect the entire canvas regardless of the path’s actual size. Since painting outside the path boundary has the same effect as painting inside it, there’s really nothing to be gained by resizing symmetry paths. So in most cases, you won’t need to resize it.

Scaling the symmetry path by dragging a corner handle.

Related: Free Transform’s new features and changes in CC 2023

Step 6: Paint in one of the sections to create symmetry

Then, with the symmetry path in place, simply paint inside one of the sections. Photoshop will automatically copy and mirror your brush stroke in the other sections, creating a symmetrical design:

Painting a single brush stroke creates multiple, mirrored strokes.

The more brush strokes you paint, the more complex the design becomes. Even with limited painting skills, Photoshop makes it easy to come up with something interesting:

Painting more brush strokes adds to the symmetrical design.

How to hide the symmetry path

Choosing Hide Symmetry from the Paint Symmetry options.

Since the path is only for visual reference, you can continue painting and adding to the design even with the path hidden:

Hiding the path still lets you paint symmetrically.

How to show the symmetry path

Choosing Show Symmetry from the Paint Symmetry options.

And now the path is once again visible:

Is it art? Probably not, but it was certainly easy.

Viewing the symmetry path in the Paths panel

Like regular paths in Photoshop, symmetry paths appear in the Paths panel. The path is named based on its symmetry mode (in this case, “Dual Axis Symmetry 1”). And the butterfly icon in the lower right of the thumbnail tells us not only that it’s a symmetry path, but that it’s currently active. You can have multiple symmetry paths in the same document (as we’ll see in a moment), but only one can be active at a time:

Symmetry paths can be viewed and selected in the Paths panel.

The new Radial and Mandala symmetry options

New in Photoshop CC 2023 are two new Paint Symmetry options, Radial and Mandala. Let’s see how they work.

How to use the Radial symmetry option

The Radial symmetry mode divides the canvas into diagonal segments, or “slices” (think pizza slices). Painting in one slice mirrors your brush strokes in the others.

Step 1: Choose Radial from the Path Symmetry options

Choosing Radial from the Paint Symmetry options.

Step 2: Set the number of segments

Then choose the number of path segments (slices) you need, from 2 to 12. I’ll go with 5:

Choosing the number of segments to divide the canvas into.

Step 3: Paint in one of the segments

And then simply paint in one of the segments. Photoshop will mirror your brush stroke in the other segments, creating a radial pattern:

Creating a radial symmetry design.

How to use the Mandala symmetry option

Like Radial, the Mandala symmetry mode also divides the canvas into diagonal segments. The difference between Radial and Mandala is that, along with mirroring your brush stroke in the other segments, Mandala also mirrors the stroke in the same segment. This adds twice as many brush strokes as Radial, allowing you to create highly complex symmetrical patterns with very little time and effort.

Step 1: Choose Mandala from the Path Symmetry options

Choosing Mandala from the Paint Symmetry options.

Step 2: Set the number of segments

Then, just like with Radial, choose the number of path segments you need. While Radial lets you choose up to 12 segments, Mandala is limited to 10. I’ll go with 8:

Choosing the number of segments.

Step 3: Paint in one of the segments

And then, just like before, paint in one of the segments. Photoshop will mirror your brush stroke in the same segment you paint in, and it will mirror both brush strokes in the other segments. This complex design took me only a couple of minutes:

Mandala is the most impressive (and fun) of Photoshop’s Paint Symmetry options.

How to undo brush strokes when you make a mistake

Creating symmetrical designs in Photoshop is fun and easy, but can also involve a lot of trial and error. If you don’t like the brush stroke you just painted, you can undo it from your keyboard by pressing Ctrl+Z (Win) / Command+Z (Mac). Continue pressing the shortcut to undo multiple brush strokes. To redo brush strokes, press Shift+Ctrl+Z (Win) / Shift+Command+Z (Mac).

How to switch between symmetry paths

Photoshop lets us add multiple symmetry paths to the same document, and each one you add appears in the Paths panel. The butterfly icon in the bottom right of a thumbnail indicates the currently-active symmetry path. Only one path can be active at a time. In this case, my Mandala path is active:

The butterfly icon shows the active path.

And then choose Make Symmetry Path from the menu:

Choosing the “Make Symmetry Path” command.

This deactivates the previous path and activates the new one so you can paint with it in the document:

The Radial Symmetry path is now active.

The Last Used Symmetry option

The Radial Symmetry path is now active.

How to turn Paint Symmetry off

Choosing “Symmetry Off” from the menu.

How to use Paint Symmetry with a layer mask

Now that we’ve learned the basics of how Paint Symmetry works, let’s look at how we can use a symmetry path with a layer mask to create something even more interesting.

In this document, I have a radial gradient on the Background layer:

A radial spectrum gradient.

Turning the top layer on in the document.

And now the document is filled with black, blocking the gradient from view:

The top layer is now hiding the gradient.

Step 1: Add a layer mask

A layer mask thumbnail appears on the top layer:

The layer mask thumbnail.

Step 2: Select the Brush Tool

I’ll select the Brush Tool from the Toolbar:

Selecting the Brush Tool.

Step 3: Set the Foreground color to black

And since I want to hide the top layer in the areas where the symmetry effect appears, I’ll make sure my Foreground color (the brush color) is set to black:

Setting the brush color to black.

Step 4: Choose a Paint Symmetry option

I’ll choose Mandala from the Paint Symmetry options in the Options Bar:

Choosing a symmetry option.

And Photoshop adds a Mandala symmetry path to the document. To accept it, I’ll press Enter (Win) / Return (Mac) on my keyboard:

The symmetry path is added to the document.

Step 5: Paint a symmetrical design on the layer mask

Then, to hide the current layer and reveal the layer below it, simply paint on the layer mask. As the symmetry effect expands, more and more of the layer below is revealed. In this case, the colors from my gradient are showing through the brush strokes:

Painting with a symmetry path on the layer mask to reveal the image below.

I’ll continue painting to add more brush strokes to the Mandala effect. And here is my final, colorful result:

The final Mandala design.

And there we have it! That’s how to use Paint Symmetry in Photoshop CC 2023! Check out our Photoshop Basics section for more tutorials! And don’ forget, all of our tutorials are now available to download as PDFs!

How To Use The Quick Selection Tool In Photoshop (In

The Quick Selection Tool is an excellent solution for when you need to quickly select simple objects, subjects, or areas of an image. This tool lets you draw a rough selection, and Photoshop automatically snaps the selection to the edges of the area or object you paint over.

You can use the tool for rough selections or a quick method to get a general selection before refining it further. Use this tool as the first step of cutting out images from the background or completing spot adjustments on the image. This tool should be your go-to selection tool when the selection is relatively basic.

In this tutorial, you’ll learn all the use cases for this tool, an explanation of all its settings, as well as how to cut out objects and apply selective adjustments with it too!

What Is The Quick Selection Tool For?

The Quick Selection Tool is primarily used to create a selection around an object, subject, or region of an image. This selection is quick and easy to make as you only need to give Photoshop a rough idea of what the selection should cover. The program then detects edges and refines the selection to select the area as best as possible.

Once a selection is created, you can use it in various ways. The most common reason for using a selection is to cut out an object, whether it is taking the object out of the image, covering the object, or removing the background of an image. However, this is not the only use for this tool.

You can also use a selection to add spot adjustments to an image. For instance, if you have a photo with a skyline where the sky ends up overexposed while the foreground is correctly exposed. You can simply select the sky and correct the exposure without affecting the rest of the image.

The Quick Selection Tool is best used on images with well-defined edges and contrasting areas. These images will let Photoshop easily create the correct selection, with you only needing to add minimal refinements in some cases.

Once you make a selection using the Quick Selection Tool, you can add to the selection by brushing over more areas to extend it or subtract from the selection in the same manner. You can go even further using the Select and Mask workspace to refine the selection.

Quick Selection Tool Settings Explained

Once you choose the Quick Selection Tool from the toolbar (W), you can adjust specific settings in the Options Bar to better navigate the tool.

When you activate the Quick Selection Tool, it will automatically be set to create a New Selection, the first brush icon in the row of three icons. Select the second icon to Add to a Selection that is already made. Although once you create a selection, the tool automatically switches to this icon, allowing you to add to the selection easily.

Then, select the last icon to Subtract from a Selection if you have selected too much. You can also hold in Alt (Win) or Option (Mac) while brushing over areas to subtract from the selection.

Check Sample All Layers if you want the selection to factor in information from all layers in your project and not only the active layer. 

Then check Enhance Edge to reduce the roughness of the selection boundary. This button automatically applies edge refinement to the selection, which will help when cutting an object out of the background to produce a cleaner look.

To skip painting over the subject you want to select, you can also press the Select Subject button. Photoshop will automatically detect the image’s subject and create a selection around it. You can then refine the selection further if needed. 

This option is best used on images with a clear subject and not multiple objects that could be seen as the picture’s subject.

Press Select and Mask to open up a workspace that offers a range of tools to refine the selection better. The options in this workspace allow you to shift the edge, paint over areas to select more precisely, and select hair in an image for those tricky strands of hair that are difficult to select correctly.

How To Create Selections Using The Quick Selection Tool In Photoshop

Now let’s break that down more in-depth.

While the Quick Selection Tool is designed to offer a quick method of making a selection, it is still an in-depth tool that gives you a lot of control over the process. This control enables you to create precise selections even when looking for a quick solution.

The Quick Selection Tool will already be set to make a New Selection. Adjust the other settings as follows:

Choose the right Brush Size for your image

Check the box next to Sample All Layers

Check the box next to Enhance Edge

Once you let go, the tool will switch to Add to Selection, so you can keep brushing until you have selected the entire subject. In some cases, the tool may select parts of the background if the colors are similar. 

To fix these areas, select the Subtract from Selection setting in the Options Bar and paint over the area you want to remove from the selection. You can also simply hold in Alt/Option to activate the subtraction option, and once you let go, the tool will revert to Add to Selection.

Even after all this, there may still be some areas that aren’t selected correctly. The selection isn’t correct in the image above around the woman’s hand or the stray bits of hair. To refine the selection further, press the Select and Mask button in the Options Bar or press Control + Alt + R (Win) or Command + Option + R (Mac).

Once this button is selected, it will open the Select and Mask workspace, where you have multiple options to refine the selection. 

You can decide how the selection shows by choosing between the overlay, marching ants, on a white or black background, or others. You can also adjust the opacity and color of the overlay in the Properties panel.

Under the Global Refinements tab in the Properties panel, you can clean up the selection with the options displayed.

Move the Smooth slider to reduce irregular shapes. The smooth option is usually used on horizon lines

The Feather slider blurs the edges of your selection

Adjust the Contrast slider if you want to create a harsh edge in the selection or correct the feather

Use the Shift Edge slider to adjust the edge of the selection inwards or outwards

Another important use of this workspace is the toolbar on the left. You can use the following tools to refine the selection better.

The first tool is the Quick Selection Tool, which you can use to create a new selection or add to your selection

The Refine Edge Brush Tool lets you clean up edges in certain areas around the subject

Then it’s the Brush Tool, which you can use to brush more areas into the selection or subtract areas from the selection in the same manner as when working with the Quick Selection Tool in the Photoshop workspace

Next are the Object Selection Tool and Lasso Tool, offering more tools to create selections with

The last two icons are the Hand Tool to move the image around and the Zoom Tool to magnify specific areas of the image

Once you have refined the selection enough, you can choose the Output To option at the bottom of the Properties panel. In this case, choose Selection and then press OK.

You will now have a more precise selection of your subject, which you can go on to cut out of the background, edit separately from the rest of the image, or use in a different project.

How To Cut Out Images With The Quick Selection Tool

The Quick Selection Tool is commonly used to cut subjects or objects out of an image, which essentially removes the image’s background. This process is quick and easy when using the Quick Selection Tool to make the selection.

To cut a subject out of an image, start by opening your image and selecting the Quick Selection Tool (W) from the toolbar.

Refine the selection to ensure that the subject is correctly selected before cutting it out of the image.

Next, duplicate the background layer by dragging it to the new layer icon at the bottom of the Layers panel or press Control + J (Win) or Command + J (Mac). Then hide the background layer by unchecking the eye icon next to the thumbnail.

Working on the duplicated layer, select the layer mask icon at the bottom of the Layers panel.

Once the mask icon is selected, everything included in your selection will remain visible, while everything excluded from the selection will disappear.

You will also notice the layer mask is added to the layer, allowing you to go back and change the edit at a later stage.

You can then add any type of background to the image or use the cut-out for another project. Here, I added a gradient fill layer to the image’s background.

Using The Quick Selection Tool For Spot Adjustments In Photoshop

The Quick Selection Tool is used for more than just cutting out images. You can also add spot adjustments to some regions of the image using a selection to prevent the rest of the image from being affected.

To add a spot adjustment to an image, select the Quick Selection Tool (W) and make a selection of the area you want to edit, as you learned in the first section. Use any of the refining techniques to clean up the selection.

Next, choose the adjustment you want to use to edit the selected area. In this case, I will use the Curves Adjustment Layer to increase the intensity of the sky by darkening it slightly. I will choose the Curves icon in the Adjustments panel to do this.

Once the Curves adjustment is selected, it will add a new Curves layer to the Layers panel with your selection applied to the mask.

Once you have the adjustment to your liking, your edits will only be visible in the white sections of your layer mask (the sky in this case). That’s because white is 100% visible, while black is 100% transparent in the world of masks.

You can select this layer mask at a later stage to re-edit the adjustment if needed by accessing the Properties panel and re-adjusting the points on the curve.

On the image, you will see that the sky (or the area you selected) has changed according to the adjustment layer, and the rest of the image is unaffected.

Discover 6 Tricks To Help You Master Photoshop

How To Border Text In Photoshop – Brendan Williams Creative

Adding a border or stroke to text is a great way to make it stand out. Creating a bolder stroke around your text highlights the words to make them pop in your design. The added stroke is also a way to separate your text from the background, especially if the colors are similar. There are various ways you can border text in Photoshop, depending on the effect you want.

Here are my top three ways to add a border around text, including adding a basic color, gradient, or pattern outline, adding several strokes around the text, creating an outline-only text, or adding a box around the text.

3 Ways To Border Text In Photoshop Option 1: Adding A Basic Color, Gradient, Or Pattern Outline 

You can fill your text stroke with a basic solid color. But if your project doesn’t call for anything basic, you can go really bold with gradients and patterns. 

First, enable the Text Tool (T) in the Toolbar.

Then, enter your text on the canvas, as you usually do.

The Layer Style panel will pop up, and you will find some options to adjust the Stroke in the middle of the panel.

You can change the color of the stroke in the color fill box.

You can also use patterns and gradients to fill the stroke. You can customize each option in many ways.

You can change the Gradient’s angle, scale, and so on.

The options for customizing patterns are also abundant. For example, you can fill your stroke with either a preset pattern or your own saved patterns.

Ultimately, all stroke fill options allow you to create exciting text border effects.

Stroke Filled With Color Stroke Filled With Gradient Stroke Filled With Pattern

After choosing how to fill the border of your text, you need to adjust other Stroke settings so that the border becomes visible and looks the way you want. 

Adjust the stroke size by dragging the Size slider to the left or the right.

In the Position drop-down menu, choose between placing the stroke inside, outside, or the center of your text. Remember that positioning the stroke inside or to the center of your text may overshadow the text color.

Adjust the transparency of the stroke using the Opacity slider.

How To Add Multiple Outlines To Your Text 

Adding multiple outlines to your text gives it a vibrant look. You can add as many strokes to your text as you want. Here is how to do it. 

To add multiple outlines to your text, you must apply another stroke layer to the text. To do this, apply the first stroke to the text, as you learned in the previous section of this tutorial. 

An additional stroke section will appear in the Layer Style panel. Change the color of the new stroke in the Fill color box.

Then, drag the Size slider to the right until the new outline becomes visible.

You can check whether the stroke is visible or not in the Preview window on the right side of the Layer Style panel.

Repeat the process to add as many strokes as you want to your text.

Before After

Option 2: Creating Outline-Only Text 

Outline-only text is full of style and has a strong visual appeal. 

To create an outline-only text, you must apply a border to your text beforehand; otherwise, the effect will not work. Review the first section of this tutorial to learn how to apply a border to your text.

Next, locate Fill Opacity within the blending options.

Then, bring the Fill Opacity down to 0%.

That will make the text transparent, and only its border is visible.

Before After

Option 3: Adding A Rectangular Border Around A Text Layer

Adding a rectangular border around text is a great way to draw attention or isolate it in a layout. To add a rectangular border to your text, draw a rectangle, set its stroke to any color you want, set the fill to transparent, and then position it over the text. 

Here is how to do it. First, type the desired text on the canvas.

Then, select the Rectangle Tool (U) from the Toolbar.

Next, set the rectangle Fill to transparent and the Stroke to any color you want. 

Then, drag out the rectangle shape over the text. That way, the rectangle covers the text, like a text box.

To adjust the size of the rectangle, push one of its control points outwards or inwards while holding Shift. Holding Shift preserves the proportions of the shape. 

You can change the stroke size in the Properties panel on the right side of the workspace.

Once you are happy with the text and the rectangle, you have to ensure the alignment of your elements is correct, so the piece looks balanced. 

Lastly, you need to align the rectangle with the text. To do this, select the respective layers while holding Shift.

Afterward, go back to the Options bar and select Align Horizontal Center again.

By the end of the process, Photoshop will perfectly align all elements you created to the center of the canvas. 

Now, when you use the Move Tool (V) when either the text or rectangle layer is active, you will move both layers together, keeping them centered.

Before After

How To Use The Paint Bucket Tool In Photoshop

The Paint Bucket Tool is one of the most straightforward, yet helpful tools in Photoshop to fill selections, objects, or layers with color. Without needing to remember keyboard shortcuts, this tool makes filling anything with a color a breeze, along with opening doors to fill objects with a pattern too.

Now, this just touches the tip of the iceberg in terms of understanding the settings related to this tool. Luckily everything you need to know to gain an in-depth understanding of this tool will be found in this tutorial.

What Is The Paint Bucket Tool In Photoshop?

The paint bucket tool allows you to fill layers, objects, and graphics with a specific color or pattern. Thanks to its many settings, you can color anything in Photoshop with precision and speed. This tool adds a color — the foreground color set in the document — to an area you select as well as the adjacent pixels around the selected point.

The Paint Bucket Tool is a great solution to quickly add color to large sections rather than using the Brush Tool to paint in the color.

How To Access The Paint Bucket Tool

Alternatively, press G to activate the paint bucket tool. If it doesn’t appear, press Shift + G to cycle through the options under the gradient tool menu and select the paint bucket tool.

The Paint Bucket Tool Settings Explained

Once you enable the paint bucket tool, some settings will appear in the Options bar for you to adjust.

Every setting you adjust makes the paint bucket tool behave differently, affecting the area you fill. I will show you what each setting does and how they affect the paint bucket tool.

The foreground/pattern drop-down menu allows you to set the source of the fill area. You can choose between filling areas with the foreground color or with a pattern.

Area filled with a solid foreground color Area filled with pattern

Mode controls how the color used to fill an area interacts with the layer you paint. 

There are several Blend Modes available, and each one of them gives the areas you paint a different look. Some effects are only possible if you choose the right blend mode. 

Blend Mode set to Lighter color Blend Mode set to Normal

Opacity controls the transparency of the color used to fill an area.

Opacity set to 100% Opacity set to 77%

Tolerance controls the range of colors affected by the paint bucket tool. If you set tolerance to zero, only a specific pixel color is affected; if you increase Tolerance, you can paint more pixels. 

If you use the paint bucket tool on an empty layer, it will fill that entire area, regardless of the value you set for Tolerance because there will be no variation of colors. That makes the paint bucket tool one of the best tools to fill empty layers.

Tolerance set to 5 Tolerance set to 150

Anti-Alias slightly blurs the edges of your selection, making them look smoother. Keep this setting checked to prevent problems such as jagged or rough edges.

In the example below, you can see two stars I drew. For the star on the left, I unchecked Anti-alias, and for the star on the right, I left Anti-alias checked. See the difference in the edges of the object.

Contiguous restricts the area affected by the paint bucket tool.

Only pixels close to each other are painted when you enable this option. The paint bucket tool will change the colors of pixels across an entire layer if you uncheck this option.

Contiguous checked Contiguous unchecked

All Layers allows you to expand the painted area to all layers in the Layers panel. As a result, when working with two or more layers, you can paint both layers simultaneously instead of painting one layer after another.

How To Use The Paint Bucket Tool

Now that you know how the paint bucket tool works, I will show you how to use this tool to change the color of any object in Photoshop.

First, decide what area of your image you want to change the color of. In my case, that was the red area on the top of the lighthouse in the image below. 

The changes in the object’s color will be placed on that layer. You can apply the paint bucket tool to an image layer directly, but this makes it harder to make changes to the new color applied. 

Next, drag around the object to create a selection. It doesn’t need to be a precise selection. The key here is to delimit the area to be painted so that you don’t risk affecting other regions if, for example, you accidentally set Tolerance to a very high value. 

It’s not mandatory to select an object if you are using the paint bucket tool to change its colors. That’s because the Tolerance option usually allows you to precisely change the colors of objects, preventing the surrounding areas of it from being colored. However, it’s best if you at least isolate the object you are painting.

Ensure that the entire object is placed inside the selection and that no part of it is left out.

After that, select the Paint Bucket Tool in the toolbar (G).

Then, go to the Options bar and change the following settings:

Source to Foreground 

Mode to Normal 

Opacity to 100%

Try to set Tolerance to a value that covers the entire object or at least the most part of it.

The minimum value for Tolerance is zero, and the maximum is 255. In my case, I set the Tolerance to 150 since the area I wanted to cover consists primarily of red and variations of red. If you are covering an area with a more uniform color, you will need a lower value and if you are painting something with many variations of tones, set tolerance to a higher value. 

Properly adjusting Tolerance gives you great control over what colors are changed. That way, you avoid painting the surroundings of an object, for example.   

Now, check the Contiguous, Anti-Alias, and All Layers checkboxes. Contiguous restricts the area painted to pixels of the same tone and color that are close to each other. Anti-alias prevents problems such as jagged edges. 

And you will absolutely need to check All Layers if you are painting with the paint bucket tool non-destructively since, in such a case, you are sampling colors from the original image but keeping color changes on a separate layer.

From the Color Picker panel, pick any color to paint your object.

The new color will be very opaque. To fix that, go to the Layers panel and change the Blend mode to Color.

The Color blend mode preserves the luminance values of the original object and blends it with its new color. As a result, your object’s color will change, but its luminance values will remain the same, giving your object a more natural appearance since the shadows and lights are still there. 

Changing the blend mode will also allow you to see the details of the painted area. If you think some areas are missing colors, decrease Tolerance and cover those areas.

For the area below, for example, I set Tolerance to 20px, and that was enough to fill the region that was left out.

 You can also use the Brush Tool (B) from the toolbar to cover the left-out area.

To use the brush tool, drag it over the area you want to paint. And if you think you painted too much, you can grab the Eraser Tool (E) and erase that extra color.

To use the eraser tool, drag it over the desired area. 

Keep using the paint bucket tool, brush tool, and eraser tool (or combining these tools) until you feel that your object is well painted.

Before After

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