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Chapter 11. The Pen Tool and Shape Layer... > Clipping Paths and Vector Masks

Clipping Paths and Vector Masks

Clipping paths and vector paths serve the same purpose—identifying what will be visible or invisible—but they do so at two different levels. Clipping paths are used with images destined for page layout programs, delineating areas of visibility for the image as a whole. Vector masks are used in a similar manner to show and hide areas of individual layers within an image.

Open, closed, and compound paths can all be used to create both clipping paths and vector masks. You must name a work path to save it before you can convert it to a clipping path. Double-clicking a work path in the Paths palette and renaming it will save it, and you can then use the Paths palette menu command Clipping Path.


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