How to Select Pixels in Photoshop


This wikiHow teaches you how to select an area of pixels in Adobe Photoshop for Windows or macOS.

Part 1
Selecting Pixels in a Square or Rectangle

Selecting Pixels in a Square or Rectangle on How to Select Pixels in Photoshop

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It’s in the All Apps area of the Start menu (Windows) or in the Applications folder (macOS).

Selecting Pixels in a Square or Rectangle on How to Select Pixels in Photoshop

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Selecting Pixels in a Square or Rectangle on How to Select Pixels in Photoshop

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It’s the second icon from the top of the toolbar that runs along the left side of the screen. A list of selection tools will appear.

Selecting Pixels in a Square or Rectangle on How to Select Pixels in Photoshop

4

Selecting Pixels in a Square or Rectangle on How to Select Pixels in Photoshop

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Click the mouse at the location where you want to start selecting, then drag it until the desired area is selected. To include or remove pixels from the selection, click the Select menu, select Refine Edge, then choose an option. To deselect an area, press Ctrl+D.

Part 2
Selecting Pixels in an Elliptical Shape

Selecting Pixels in an Elliptical Shape on How to Select Pixels in Photoshop

1
It’s in the All Apps area of the Start menu (Windows) or in the Applications folder (macOS).

Selecting Pixels in an Elliptical Shape on How to Select Pixels in Photoshop

2

Selecting Pixels in an Elliptical Shape on How to Select Pixels in Photoshop

3
It’s the second icon from the top of the toolbar that runs along the left side of the screen. A list of selection tools will appear.

Selecting Pixels in an Elliptical Shape on How to Select Pixels in Photoshop

4

Selecting Pixels in an Elliptical Shape on How to Select Pixels in Photoshop

5
Click the mouse at the location where you want to start selecting, then drag it until the desired area is selected. To include or remove pixels from the selection, click the Select menu, select Refine Edge, then choose an option. To deselect an area, press Ctrl+D.

Part 3
Selecting Pixels in an Irregular Area

Selecting Pixels in an Irregular Area on How to Select Pixels in Photoshop

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It’s in the All Apps area of the Start menu (Windows) or in the Applications folder (macOS). Use this tool to freehand-draw your selection area.

Selecting Pixels in an Irregular Area on How to Select Pixels in Photoshop

2

Selecting Pixels in an Irregular Area on How to Select Pixels in Photoshop

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It’s the third icon from the top of the icon bar that runs along the left side of the screen.

Selecting Pixels in an Irregular Area on How to Select Pixels in Photoshop

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Click the mouse where you want to start making your selection, then drag the line over the shape of the pixels. Keep clicking points on the edge of the desired selection until you’ve made it back to the first pixel. To include or remove pixels from the selection, click the Select menu, select Refine Edge, then choose an option. To deselect an area, press Ctrl+D.

Part 4
Selecting All Pixels on a Layer

Selecting All Pixels on a Layer on How to Select Pixels in Photoshop

1
It’s in the All Apps area of the Start menu (Windows) or in the Applications folder (macOS).

Selecting All Pixels on a Layer on How to Select Pixels in Photoshop

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Selecting All Pixels on a Layer on How to Select Pixels in Photoshop

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This selects the layer.[1]

Selecting All Pixels on a Layer on How to Select Pixels in Photoshop

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It’s at the top of the screen. A menu will expand.

Selecting All Pixels on a Layer on How to Select Pixels in Photoshop

5
All pixels on the current layer are now selected. To include or remove pixels from the selection, click the Select menu, select Refine Edge, then choose an option. To deselect an area, press Ctrl+D.

Part 5
Making a Quick Selection

Making a Quick Selection on How to Select Pixels in Photoshop

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It’s in the All Apps area of the Start menu (Windows) or in the Applications folder (macOS).[2] Use this method to select the most prominent subject in the file.

Making a Quick Selection on How to Select Pixels in Photoshop

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Making a Quick Selection on How to Select Pixels in Photoshop

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It’s at the top of the screen. A menu will expand.

Making a Quick Selection on How to Select Pixels in Photoshop

4
This selects all pixels of the image’s main subject.[3] To include or remove pixels from the selection, click the Select menu, select Refine Edge, then choose an option. To deselect an area, press Ctrl+D.