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Cutting out objects in Photoshop for Video

Here's a short Photoshop tutorial on using several methods for cutting out a object from its background.  You can then easily import this into your favorite non linear editing system.

If you are a subscriber to our Final Cut Pro or Avid Media Composer tutorial, we've decided to send this tutorial out to you since Photoshop has become an essential tool when working with Video.

Here are two additional tutorials that demonstrate what's possible by cutting out an object in Photoshop.

Alpha Transitions in Final Cut Pro
Animated Graphical Wipe in Avid Media Composer

Continue reading for a full text transcript of this Photoshop tutorial.....

You can use a variety of object selections in Photoshop to isolate objects on their own.  The  selection you choose, will depend on how complicated your object is and how much contrast there is between your object and its background.

In this simple exercise, we will select and cut out an irregular object combining two selection tools from Photoshop.  

Select the eraser tool, hold and drag to select the Magic Eraser tool

Set your tolerance to 50

Click right above the flowers.  The Magic Eraser tool will convert your selected areas into transparent pixels.  

Click on the negative spaces in-between the flower stems.

Now click in an area where there is enough value contrast between two surfaces

Now set your tolerance to 30

Click on any residue left out from previous selections.  Use lower tolerances to remove areas with less contrast between them.

Notice that the lower part of the image shows many similar tonalities between objects.  In this case , a most direct selection tool is needed.  

Select the Magnetic Lasso tool.  

Zoom in and out at any time by by using your roller/wheel in your mouse

Start your first click on a transparent area outside of your object.  

Proceed to move your mouse around the perimeters of the vase and the leaves as shown.

Once you reach the other side of the transparent area, move your Magnetic Lasso to its original point, close the "lasso", and press the delete key.

On your keyboard select:  command/d to deselect

To get rid of the surrounding objects, make a simple selection using the Polygonal Lasso Tool as shown.

Close your selection

Inverse your selection using the keyboard shortcuts:  Command / Shift/ I

Press the delete button.  Your object is now ready to be saved.

Save as png to be compatible with most with your favorite non linear editing system.

For other tips like this, or to enroll in a Photoshop training course, visit GeniusDV.com


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