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Photoshop Masks are, one of the key tools Adobe flagship has to offer. When in the process of learning Photoshop in a more in-depth fashion, masks open a hole other realm of possibilities.
Masks are an essential part of using this powerful software. Although it sounds obvious to some of our advanced readers, a lot of starting Designers tend to overlook, or plain ignore it. In many cases, the new graphic designer simply doesn’t know about it.
If you are interested in a more in-depth read about masks, you can check this article by Adobe.
Well, a Photoshop Mask is a tool that lets you erase -or show- non-destructively a part of a picture. For example, you are trying to add a mug to a table. Now, that mug is itself a picture with a background. Applying that mask to that mug layer, and cutting out the background, you will, again, non-destructively, obtain the mug as a separate object. This way you can proceed and place the mug on the table.
Now, something very important that you need to know when working with a mask. When you are cutting out part of the picture, you will do so on the mask that is applied to the layer you are working on. That mask will appear represented as a square right beside to the layer you chose to apply the mask to.
Also, is paramount to know that if you want to erase part of that picture using a mask, along with your Eraser Tool or the Laso Tool, you need to, in your color palette, set the main color as WHITE, since the white represent zero image. Now, on the other side, if you would like to bring back that part of the image you just erased, you can, since you are working non destructively, by simply using the main color on your pallet as BLACK, since black represent 100% image.
We will touch into this tool once more in a more in-depth tutorial in the near future. We just wanted to inspire you guys, or at least the ones who do not know how to use this powerful tool, to research a bit more about it, and to watch as many tutorials as possible so you learn how to use it. Believe us, you’ll love it.
Bellow, we’ll leave you one example of digital art we’ve created using Photoshop masks. This image can be brought back to its original individual components since we work all our designs Non-Destructively.