Photoshop tutorial: How to use Clipping Masks in Photoshop

In this tutorial, you will learn how to set up a clipping mask in Photoshop using shapes as a masking method.

Intro


While Photoshop’s Clipping Paths are great for cutting out specific objects for publication, Clipping Masks are a speedier and much more versatile method for applying cut out effects to images, using a shape or text layer underneath your chosen image to control which parts of an image are visible.

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Clipping masks are easy to use, but there’s a lot that you can do with them, as you’ll discover as Tigz Rice shows you how to use them to put a grid over a photo in Photoshop.

Time to complete

15 mins

Software used

Photoshop

Step 1

Step 2

STEP 2

Select the Rectangle Tool and click-&-drag while holding the Shift key to create a square. Set the Fill to black and the Stroke to none.

See also: 86 Best Photoshop tutorials

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Step 3

STEP 3

Press Cmd/Ctrl + J to duplicate your black square and create a 5x5 grid. Make sure the squares are evenly spaced. Going to View > Snap will give you more control over the placement of your squares.

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Step 4

STEP 4

Once you’re happy with your grid, highlight all the squares and click on the New Group icon at the bottom of the Layers panel to group them all together. Rename this group ‘Squares’.

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Step 5

STEP 5

Now, open your chosen image in Photoshop and drag it into the new document at the top layer.

See also: 86 Best Photoshop tutorials

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Step 6

STEP 6

Holding down Alt, click on the diving line between the Squares group and your image in the layers panel. A small arrow should appear next to your image layer, which indicates a Clipping Mask has been made.

See also: 86 Best Photoshop tutorials


Step 7

Step 8

STEP 8

You could also try changing the opacity of some of the original squares to create a more interesting mosaic effect. Click on each individual square in your squares group and change the Opacity slider as required.

See also: 86 Best Photoshop tutorials

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