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Selection and Move Tools
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Selection and Move Tools
Created by: Zonia

 
In this lesson we will cover making selections and using the Move tool.
 
Selections are a very big part of PSP. They enable you to perform tasks such as flood-fill a defined (selected) area of your image. There is some type of selection involved in most every tutorial you do. There are also lots of tutorials available that show you how to make an image using selections that the tutorial writer made for you.
 
Selection Tool
Selection tool


Freehand Selection Tool
Freehand Selection tool


Magic Wand Tool
Magic Wand tool

The selection tools are located in the 5th icon on the toolbar. There are 3 selection tools: Selection, Freehand Selection, and the Magic Wand. We will be covering the Selection and the Magic Wand tools in this tutorial. The Freehand Selection tool is a great tool but is beyond the scope of this lesson.

The Selection tool allows you to make selections using predefined shapes such as Rectangle, Circle, and so on. The Freehand Selection tool lets you make selections by clicking around the edges of the item you want to select. The Magic Wand tool lets you make selections based on content (fill) such as a particular color.

 
In this lesson we will be using some stuff we learned in previous lessons so let's review a few of them. The Foreground is located on the Materials palette. Click in the top box to choose the color, gradient, or pattern you want to use. We will be using several layers in this lesson, so remember right-clicking on a layer in the Layer palette will bring up a context menu with several options. Every option I will use is located on the context menu, or if you prefer you will find them in the Layers menu also. With that said let's get started.
 

New Image
Create a new image: Go to File || New (Ctrl+N)
– Width = 500 pixels
– Height = 500 pixels
– Resolution = 72.00 pixels
– Background = Raster
– Color Depth = 16 Million Colors (24 Bit)
– Color = Transparent checked
 
Selection Tool  Preset: Reset to Default Option Click on the Selection tool and reset to default. On the Tool Options palette, choose:
– Selection type = Rounded Rectangle
 
Materials Palette - Materials Box  Materials Solid Color Option Set the Foreground to a color of your choice; it needs to be a color, not a gradient or pattern (I had a yellow: Red = 255, Green = 239, Blue = 49; HTML = #FFEF31). The All Tools option should be checked.
 
New Raster Layer Add a new Raster Layer (Layers || New Raster Layer) and name it 'Leg 1'.
 


Click anywhere in your image and, holding down the left mouse button, drag out a 35x115 rounded rectangle selection, then release the mouse button. The size is the third set of numbers on the Status bar (red in the image on the left). The first set of numbers show the (x,y) coordinates of where you started from and the second set shows the current (x,y) coordinates of the mouse pointer. The number following the 3rd set of coordinates (current size) is the aspect ratio.
 
Flood Fill Tool  Preset: Reset to Default Option



Duplicate Layer       New Raster Layer

You should have a portion of your canvas surrounded by "marching ants". Click on your Flood Fill tool and reset to default. In the Tool Options palette, set the Match Mode = None. Click anywhere inside the marching ants to fill with your chosen Foreground color.

Deselect by going to Selections || Select None (Ctrl+D).

Go to Layers || Duplicate and then to Image || Mirror. In your Layer palette, rename the 'Copy of Leg 1' layer to 'Leg 2'. Make sure the 'Leg 2' layer is selected and add a new Raster Layer (Layers || New Raster Layer), name it 'Arm 1'.

 
Selection Tool

Materials Palette - Materials Box

Flood Fill Tool

Duplicate Layer       New Raster Layer

Click on the Selection tool and change the Foreground to a different color (I had an Orange: Red = 255, Green = 105, Blue = 0; HTML = #FF6600). Still using the Rounded Rectangle, holding down the left mouse button, make a 100x25 selection. Click on the Flood Fill tool (same settings as before) and flood-fill the new selection. Deselect (Ctrl+D).

Go to Layers || Duplicate and then to Image || Mirror. Rename the 'Copy of Arm 1' layer to 'Arm 2'. Make sure the 'Arm 2' layer is selected in your Layer palette and add a new Raster Layer (Layers || New Raster Layer), name it 'Body'.

 
Note Note: When you duplicate a layer it adds a new layer on top which is an exact copy of the original layer. We used the Mirror option so you could see the second one. You could also have used the Move tool.
 
Selection Tool      Materials Palette - Materials Box


Flood Fill Tool      New Raster Layer

Make sure you are still on the 'Body' layer. Click on the Selection tool and, in the Tool Options palette, change the Selection Type = Ellipse. Change the Foreground to a different color (I had a Pink: Red = 255, Green = 51, Blue = 204; HTML = #FF33CC).

Drag out an 120x150 ellipse selection. Click on the Flood Fill tool (same settings as before) and fill the new selection. Add a new Raster Layer (Layers || New Raster Layer), name it 'Head'.

 
Selection Tool      Materials Palette - Materials Box


Flood Fill Tool

Click on the Selection tool and in the Tool Options palette, change the Selection Type = Circle. Change the Foreground to a different color (I had a Blue: Red = 0, Green = 102, Blue = 204; HTML = #0066CC).

Drag out a 100x100 circle selection. Click on the Flood Fill tool (same settings as before) and fill the new selection. Deselect (Ctrl+D).

 
Move Tool  Preset: Reset to Default Option

Click on the Move tool and reset to default. Now click on each item (filled selection), hold down the left mouse button and drag it where you want it. Try to arrange the items so they resemble a stick figure. If you watch the Layer palette as you click on the different items you will see that the layer the item is on automatically becomes the active layer.

Tip: You can also arrange the selections before you fill them by using the Move tool and using the right mouse button instead of the left for moving the selections ("marching ants").

Note: Although I didn't do it in this lesson, after filling in the ellipse selection for the body, it is good practice to deselect (Selections || Select None or Ctrl+D) before starting a new selection. As long as Selection Mode = Replace, however, it doesn't make much difference.

 
Let's see what the Magic Wand tool does. Unlike the Move tool, with the Magic Wand you need to first select the layer you want to work on in the Layer palette.
 

Magic Wand Tool  Preset: Reset to Default Option

Click on the Magic Wand tool and reset to default. Make sure you are on the 'Body' layer and click into the body. The ellipse should now be selected. Now change to the 'Arm 1' layer and click in the Arm1 item. (If you are not sure which one is the Arm1 item click on the eye beside the 'Arm 1' layer in the Layer palette to hide the layer and look and see which arm disappeared. Don't forget to click on the eye again to turn the visibility back on.)

Now Arm1 is selected but Arm2 isn't – why not, they are the same color? That is because of two reasons: First the arms are not on the same layer and second the arms don't connect. To select all of a particular color in an image click on the color with the Magic Wand, then go to Selections || Modify || Select similar. Remember if you want to select the color on all the layers you need to put a check in front of "Sample Merged".

 
Materials Palette - Materials Box  Materials Pattern Option

Flood Fill Tool

Change back to the 'Body' layer and click on the body with the Magic Wand to select it. Go to Selections || Modify || Expand = 2 Pixels and click on OK. Your selection is now bigger by 2 pixels.

Change your Foreground to any multi-colored pattern. Click on the Flood Fill tool and fill the selection with the pattern. Deselect (Selections || Select None or Ctrl+D).

 

Magic Wand Tool



Selection Tool

Click on the Magic Wand tool and click somewhere into the body. Hmmm ... with all the different colors the whole body didn't select this time.

This is easy to fix. There are two ways you can do this: You can click on the Selection tool and draw a rectangle around the body, then click somewhere into the body; or, my favorite, you can go to Selections || Select All (Ctrl+A), then to Selections || Float (Ctrl+F), and to Selections || Defloat (Ctrl+Shift+F). Try using both methods now to select the body.

 

Go to Selections || Modify || Contract = 2. This will put the selection back to the same size of the original before we expanded it. The only problem is that the part we want to keep is what is selected now, so now what?

Go to Selections || Invert. Now the part we want to get rid of is selected along with every part of that layer that was not previously selected. Since it is just transparency it doesn't make any difference but if there was something else on the layer it could cause problems. Hit the Delete key and deselect (Ctrl+D). Your ellipse should now be pattern-filled and back to its original size.

Practice selecting, filling, and moving the other items, then come back here and I will give you some more tips.

 

You pretty much know the basics of selections now but please take some time to explore the Selections menu. There are many items there we did not discuss. The Save/Load Selections is an important option especially if you are going to do selection tutorials. For help with this option try the Selections with PSP 8 tutorial.

Earlier in this lesson when I was telling what the numbers in the Status bar were I mentioned Aspect Ratio. In most tutorials it is never mentioned or used but it is very important to pay attention to. To find out why check out the Making Proportional Selections tutorial.

 
Selection Tool



Select Area = Opaque - Merged

Besides the Load/Save Selection option I showed you how to use the most commonly used Selection tools. I want to show you one more thing then we will wrap it up. Click on the Selection tool, Selection Type = Rectangle. See all that empty space around your figure? Let's get rid of it.

Draw a rectangle around your entire figure, or click on the "Merged Opaque" button in the Tool Options palette to have PSP do it for you. Now go to Image || Crop to Selection. There you go – all the extra space is gone.

 
That's it for this lesson. I hope you enjoyed it. Don't forget to save (File || Save) your image if you want to keep it.