RetouchPRO

Go Back   RetouchPRO > Tools > Software > Photoshop Help
Register Blogs FAQ Site Nav Search Today's Posts Mark Forums Read


Photoshop Help Tips, questions, and solutions for Adobe Photoshop users
One tip or question per thread, please

quick selection tool when used is feathered

Reply
 
Thread Tools
  #1  
Old 12-22-2011, 08:32 AM
Jerryb Jerryb is offline
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2006
Posts: 397
quick selection tool when used is feathered

hi,
I have noticed when using the quick selection tool that the selection has about a 1-3 pixal feather around it edges, and it also noticiable when you do a mask. Sometimes that works to my advantage but other times I end up doing a little sharpening.

At first I thought it was just my software and I was the only one, but in my research i found a couple of others that noticed it also but no reason or theories to why ... other than "that the way it is"

does anyone have any ideas why the feathering?
my theory is that adobe didn't want it to be to sharp, or couldn't make it sharp and also they figured
you would use the refine tool to fix ..
Reply With Quote top
  #2  
Old 12-22-2011, 09:13 AM
Repairman's Avatar
Repairman Repairman is offline
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Dec 2010
Location: Bristol UK
Posts: 683
Re: quick selection tool when used is feathered

When using the lasso tool a control strip (not sure of it's correct name) appears on screen displaying a Feather dialogue box which controls the edge. Just put '0' in the box if you want a hard edge.
R.
edit - sorry, wrong tool. I should take more water with the christmas spirit!

Last edited by Repairman; 12-22-2011 at 09:55 AM.
Reply With Quote top
  #3  
Old 12-22-2011, 06:21 PM
John Wheeler's Avatar
John Wheeler John Wheeler is offline
Senior Member
 
Join Date: May 2011
Location: Colorado
Posts: 583
Re: quick selection tool when used is feathered

Hi JerryB

I can guess on the reason for the feathering yet the actual reasons are probably only known by the Adobe software engineers.

First, let me clear up that it is incorrect that the Quick Select tool has a fixed feathering (or anti-aliasing). In my experience the amount of softness in the selection has to do with the amount of contrast. I can create a selection around black and white objects with the Quick Selection tool that are hard edged.

I suspect that since this is a "Quick" selection tool Adobe wanted this to cover as many cases as possible for their users without having all sorts of fine tuning options with the tool (i.e. not quick). Detailed tuning is left for Refine Edge (or as Regine Mask if selection is turned into a Layer Mask). Doing a hard edge selection when there is a slow transition in luminosity often is not what many want for a Selection.

Repairman indicated you could change the edge characteristic by changing the feather option in another selection tool. I have not been able to duplicate that capability. Also, the Adobe help files indicate that those other selection tool options (feather and anti-alias) don't affect the Quick Selection tool.

Here is an experiment that helps show the action of Quick Selection. I made a 256px x 256px image with the left side black and the right white. I made this a Smart Object and applied a Gaussian blur set to 100. I created a vertical gradient in the filter mask going from black to white downwards for the middle section:

Screen shot 2011-12-22 at 4.49.31 PM.png

The upper 1/4 portion of the B&W edge is a sharp transition, the middle1/2 is a transition to a softer transition (due to increasing blur with the gradient in the filter mask), and the lower 1/4 is a consistent blurred transition.

I took used the Quick Selection tool with Auto Enhance turned off and selected the right white part of the image.

Screen shot 2011-12-22 at 4.49.44 PM.png

To identify if this is a hard or soft selection I turned this selection into a Layer Mask and then viewed the Layer Mask by Opt Click Layer Mask Thumbnail (Alt Click Layer Mask Thumbnail for PC):

Screen shot 2011-12-22 at 4.50.13 PM.png

Close examination of the upper image Layer Mask showed that there was absolutely no feathering anywhere alone the center selection line. The Layer Mask had a hard edge.

Now, I deleted the Layer Mask and turned on Auto-Enhance for the Quick Selection Tool. Again selecting the right side or white area to get the right side selection marching ants rectangle:

Screen shot 2011-12-22 at 4.50.40 PM.png

I again turned this into a Layer Mask and viewed the Layer Mask. The following image is a blow up of that Layer Mask and I used the Magic Wand tool with tolerance of 1 and selected the totally black and white areas to show which portion of the mask was not hard (the non selected triangle area in the middle lower portion):

Screen shot 2011-12-22 at 4.52.22 PM.png

As you can see, the feathering of the Layer Mask (created from the selection) is "no feathering" where there is high contrast and more feathering or softness where the contrast is lower as long as Auto-Enhance was turned on during the selection with the Quick Selection tool.

I am sure there are more details about the Quick Selection tool that this does not cover yet thought this would help give you an idea on how it operates.
Reply With Quote top
  #4  
Old 12-22-2011, 08:49 PM
Jerryb Jerryb is offline
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2006
Posts: 397
Re: quick selection tool when used is feathered

hi john,
thank you for the reply....
before i forget i like your posts and that tutorial..... thank you..

next ... i think i have a plausable theory on why the feather...
The tool looks for a contrast difference and to do this it needs apply a "box around a giving area" so it can see transition then it applies a point and after enough points it can then it creates part of the selection.... this "Box" has i think a logrythmic value... and because of this that get translated to what appears to be feathering... this would also explain why there is no setting for feathering it built into the plugin.
Like i said it plausable..smiling ... and to me logical... but only adobe knows...lol ...

on the auto enhance i wondered about that yesterday and i look that up and it appears it primarily smoothing... which means some thing like anti alias i guess

when i made my test i used a normal image..... i did selection withthe other tools , i then did a copy and paste ... the edges nice and sharp... but make the same selction with the quck sel tool... andcopy and paste... obvious there was feather....

and i did the same thing that you did... selections and masks .... although in my test saw a little feather when the qucik sel tools was used compared to just using the other selections which the mask sharper... maybe it because of the image i was using...

well idon't think i will ever find a answere... however... it was good for me because i am thinking more andmore on how these tools work....and that give me a better understanding on using them...

thank you very much for your reply.. you have a very merry christmas and a happy new year.
Reply With Quote top
  #5  
Old 12-23-2011, 11:04 AM
Tony W's Avatar
Tony W Tony W is offline
Senior Member
Patron
 
Join Date: Mar 2010
Posts: 1,415
Re: quick selection tool when used is feathered

I probably need to study Johns response a little further but...

Interesting question and coincidentaly something that I have just experienced. Using the quick selection tool to highlight a relatively low contrast area which I wanted to protect I then inverted the selection and carried on working with the clone tool. Once deselected there was an area of light grey around the whole of the masked area.

Looked in the refine mask dialogue box and found that Remember settings was checked and some large changes had been made to feathering etc from a previous image. Set all back to 0 and redid the image all ok.

The thing is that I have not been able to repeat the first problem even by 'fouling up' the settings in the dialogue box, so I am unsure what occured in the first instance.
Reply With Quote top
  #6  
Old 12-23-2011, 10:57 PM
John Wheeler's Avatar
John Wheeler John Wheeler is offline
Senior Member
 
Join Date: May 2011
Location: Colorado
Posts: 583
Re: quick selection tool when used is feathered

Hi Tony

Not sure what you came across with the high amount of feathering. I have seen feathering of up to 15 pixels wide straddling the marching ants outline when using the Quick Select tool. You did not mention the pixel with of the gray fuzzy edge that was created with the clone tool. I have not idea what the upper bound could be or all the parameters that could affect that feather width. One factor that does make a difference on how the selection is done is the setting sample all Layers. Even with a single Layer Smart Object this can make a difference.

Also, the Refine Edge does not turn on and have an effect until you have an initial selection. If Refine Edge is turned on at any point, that could have a huge impact on the selection edge.

If one does not like the amount of feathering, you can do a pretty decent job of backing it out with the Refine Edge/Mask capability (I prefer to do it as a Layer Mask). Just changing the edge placement and turning up the contrast makes the edge sharper and placed where desired.

FYI
Reply With Quote top
  #7  
Old 12-24-2011, 04:50 AM
Tony W's Avatar
Tony W Tony W is offline
Senior Member
Patron
 
Join Date: Mar 2010
Posts: 1,415
Re: quick selection tool when used is feathered

Thanks John. Unfortunately I have no idea what settings were in place at the time. This was a quick play seperating a birds head from a bright highlight by selecting the head and inverting the selection to work on sky only. When it went wrong I just thought I had fouled up and did it again after zeroing mask settings without taking any notice where they were!

Second attempt was absolutely fine, then when I came here and read the post I thought I would add my 2 cents. I have never experienced this issue with this tool in the past and as I cannot repeat it have come to the conclusion that it is user error on my part
Reply With Quote top
Reply

  RetouchPRO > Tools > Software > Photoshop Help


Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
 
Thread Tools

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is Off
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
CS5: Color range selection issue KarimNassar Photoshop Help 6 08-09-2011 05:28 AM
Quick selection tool cant work sometimes takamoko Photoshop Help 3 11-03-2009 06:42 AM
Selection Tool T Paul Scratch Pad 2 04-15-2009 11:46 AM
Using Transform Selection Tool Tony_Tea Hidden Power Support 5 11-20-2008 09:50 AM
13 Photoshop Selection Tips DJ Dubovsky Photo Compositing 5 10-20-2004 08:49 AM


All times are GMT -6. The time now is 06:25 AM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.4
Copyright ©2000 - 2017, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.
SEO by vBSEO ©2011, Crawlability, Inc.
Copyright © 2016 Doug Nelson. All Rights Reserved