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Chapter 16. Paths/Shapes > Vector masks

Vector masks

A vector mask (formerly called a layer clipping path) works like a layer mask, except in this case a vector path shape is used to delineate the visible and masked areas in the current layer. The path used for the mask can be created using the Pen tool, Freeform Pen tool, or a shape tool, or from a selection that is converted to a path. The vector mask produces a clean, sharp-edged shape that hides pixels on a layer. You can modify the path shape or discard the mask at any time.

A vector mask displays as a gray thumbnail on the Layers palette, and also on the Paths palette when the layer that contains the mask is selected. Like a layer mask, a vector mask is associated with only one layer.


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