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Chapter 16. PATHS/SHAPES

Chapter 16. PATHS/SHAPES



PHOTOSHOP'S pen tools and shape tools create precise vector shapes, called paths, that consist of anchor points connected by curved or straight line segments .







The pen tools can also be used to create shape layers whose visible areas are controlled by layer clipping paths. Shape layers contain editable fills and a layer clipping path that defines the shape's contour. Layer clipping paths are vector masks and work much like layer masks, but with an added bonus: they have sharp, precise path edges that occupy much less storage space than channels. A layer clipping path can be used on any fill or image layer.


Paths created by the Pen tool and Freeform Pen tool are displayed, activated, deactivated, restacked, saved, and deleted using the Paths palette . When a pen tool is chosen (and before a work path is created), you'll see two buttons on the options bar . Click the button on the left to create a shape layer or click the button on the right to create a work path.



Before we delve into the Pen tools, we'll show you how to create a path using a selection as a starting point. Once a selection has been converted into a path, you can precisely reshape it and then use it as a path or as a layer clipping path. You can also convert it back into a selection if you need to.


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