Clipping masks are very versatile and they are very cool you can do some amazing things with them. Now what they are literally little paintings or little shapes that you draw that will then be the mask on top of another image. For example, we're gonna paint an outline of this gentlemen here on a separate layer and that mask is going to literally leave him and get rid of everything else. Let's go ahead and try that. The first thing I'm gonna do is create a new layer and you'll notice its transparent and I'm gonna double click where it says layer one and just name it mask. You don't have to do that and with a hard brush at about 36 pixels here with my color as black I'm going to paint around the shape of the gentlemen here. And I'm just gonna make a nice selection, I'm not gonna be too careful about the painting so I'm just gonna go ahead and grab as much as I can. And almost done and now I'm just gonna go quickly and finish filling in this shape here. And of course I got inside this sleeve, not a problem at all. So now that we have our shape what I'm gonna do at this point is I'm going to take this and drag it underneath the background layer but before I do that I want to double click on this layer and just unlock by clicking ok, just accepting any name it gives you and drag the mask layer underneath this layer. Now I'm gonna put my mouse in between layer 0 and the mask itself on this line and I'm gonna hold down on my keyboard option or alt until I see this little crazy paint bucket thing and I'm gonna click on time. And look at that this shape now becomes the mask and it gets rid of everything else, it shows whatever is in this area. Whatever pixels are in your mask layer become the mask object, how cool is that? Now I'm going to show you a different example of how you can use this to create something like a tree. So I'm gonna create a new document and you see here I'm gonna change this width to 640 and for 80 pixels in height resolution of 72 and I want to make sure that my background contents are transparent. But for this instance I'm gonna show you how to fix the mistake so just in case you have a white uh background I'm gonna show you how to fix this so I'm gonna leave it on white on purpose. I'm gonna click OK and on my background layer I'm gonna once again I'm gonna unlock it, I click on the lock and I'm unlocking it and I'm going to draw a silhouette of a tree. So with the same exact brush I'm going to paint the silhouette of tree. I'm gonna start down here and start to draw out some branches and I'll draw over here and do this kind of thing and I'm go ahead and just draw the trunk and if there is ever a speed tree painting contest I think I'm gonna win man. So here we go I'm gonna just go ahead and finish painting this tree and that's done right there, we'll put one crazy branch over there and this is gonna be our tree. Alright so it's a little whacky but its fine. Now I'm going to create another layer and we are gonna paint the tree texture up here. So once again I am gonna double click where it says layer one and name this texture. Now on this layer I'm gonna click on the swatch and I'm gonna choose a brownish color like this and I'm gonna I'll this entire layer with that brown. So we are gonna go to edit and we are gonna go to I'll and we are gonna choose foreground color with the blending mode that's normal and an opacity at a hundred percent. click OK and now I'm gonna show you a trick here. We are gonna go to the filter menu, we are gonna add some noise and we are gonna make sure we have a good amount here. As you see I have about 50 pixels so we are gonna make a lot of noise in this tree. Now we are gonna go back and go to filter and we are gonna go to blur and we are gonna choose motion blur and as you see here I have 90 degree angle and we have a trunk kind of affect already. And I have my distance set to like 155 but you can just play around with that until you get the nice texture you're looking for. So having done all that I'm gonna click OK and we have our trunk right? Now watch what happens when we try to clip this so I'm gonna hold down my option or alt key and alright hey man where, where's my tree I was promised a tree, I have no tree. Well see the thing is with this effect Photoshop needs to have a part of the image transparent. Photoshop knows that this whole thing is covered with pixels, it doesn't know that this is black and this white. We need to get rid of this white area so that this tree can be the object that's gonna clip. So what we have to do is we have to go to our select menu and choose color range, I'm gonna click on the white area, I have my fuzziness all the way up to 200 hundred, I'm gonna click OK and now I'll hit delete or backspace to get rid of that fill. Now we can actually clip this. I'm gonna once again show my texture and I'm gonna clip and there we have our tree. Now I can go to the texture layer and grab the burn tool and check this out, I can start to shade it in and give this guy a little bit of a 3D feel and I can actually start to paint this trunk and make it look a little more real. And that is one of the benefits to using the clipping mask because we now we can create something that was just 2D and slowly but surely start model it by using the burn tool and the dodge tool and all these other tools to slowly but surely give this guy some weight and some depth. And you can use this to create all kinds of cool effects. So once again you have to have a layer that has some transparency and some pixels on it and you simply hold down the alt or option key in between the two layers to create your clipping mask.
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