The first selection tool I am going to cover is my favorite one – the Lasso!! Oh, I enjoy that little tool but sometimes I can get carried away and I have to tell myself “Step away from the Lasso, Amanda.” Funny, but sadly true.
Remember the basic rule of selection tools – you are selecting an area you want changed and (usually) the area INSIDE your selection will be the area changed. To use the lasso, simply press the ‘L’ key on your keyboard, move your mouse to an area on the image, then trace around the area you want to alter. After you let up, you will see moving dotted lines, or “marching ants.”
If you did not get all of the area you wanted, or there are multiple areas that are not connected, just click the “Add to” button in the tool option menu for the lasso. It looks like two squares together (see next image below).
Did you select an area you wish you had not? No problem, click the “Subtract From” button, which looks like one solid square and one transparent square.
When using any of the selection tools, it is important to know that you must “feather” or “refine” the edge. That usually means you want to blend the changes into the pixels around them. Sometimes, though, it is to create a harder edge, like when replacing backgrounds but we will talk about that later.
I am crazy busy right now, so I am keeping the tutorials short and sweet, with lots of bullet points. I love bullet points.
If you want to try this on your own, make a selection with the lasso:
- Choose an adjustment layer of your choice – circle that is half black/half white
- Notice it automatically makes a layer with a BLACK mask, and the area you selected is in white
- Any change you make with that adjustment layer will ONLY show through the selection area (however, you can use a brush and brush on other areas of the image, as I quickly show in the video tutorial below).
You can use the lasso tool to do so many things, too many to list them all. Here are my favorite ways to use the lasso tool:
- Getting rid of unwanted objects
- Selecting specific areas for change, like color casts or lightening/darkening
- Correcting especially difficult under-eye circles (that aren’t helped enough by the Easiest UnderEye Circle Fix Ever)
Are you thinking this is super easy? Ready for something harder? Just wait (imagine me saying that in a sing-song voice). We are going to be replacing skies soon and it will be plenty hard, I promise.