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Photoshop - Polygonal Lasso Trace

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  • Photoshop - Polygonal Lasso Trace

    Just wondering if there is some kind of solution as I am sick and tired of this happening over and over, I mean there has to be a simple solution that I am not aware of....,
    The problem is when I trace an image with a polygonal lasso tool and I do prefer to do this manually oppose to using Magnetic Lasso thingy,
    Half way through the image the lasso mask connects and it messes up my trace cause now I have to add /subtract and so on to get my original path...,
    is there a way of getting into last stage of lasso editing and having it at open point again ... I am aware of using the back space to go back in my trace steps how ever when it connects I am lost and I end up wasting a lot of time refining my mask....

    any replies would be greatly appreciated

    thanks.

  • #2
    Re: Photoshop - Polygonal Lasso Trace

    The laso tool can be frustrating that way. You can press the space bar while using it to temporarily freeze it, however, a better solution might be to use the pen tool to make a path. You can subsequently add / delete / move points along that path. When you are finished and a pleased with you path, you can right click on it to turn it into a Selection or you can stroke it.
    Regards, Murray

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    • #3
      Re: Photoshop - Polygonal Lasso Trace

      thanks for your kind reply,
      I am aware of the path tool however it comes to my mind as editing all the curves I am tracing lots of flowers with leaves for a 80" x 55 ft digital print... so using lasso trace was my tool of choice for speed and precision however I was hoping that there would be some sort of option to get last state of lasso mask after it closes .... you would think that it would be a must have option in ps... strange.

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      • #4
        Re: Photoshop - Polygonal Lasso Trace

        Dear Morph1...

        I think that if you spend a little bit of time practicing and working with the Pen tool that you'll find that it's as easy to work with as the Lasso tool (but then you can go back and refine and adjust your selections afterward and save those paths with no real file size penalty). I think that you'll find that you can do things that would be impossible (or incredibly frustrating) using the Lasso tool. The Lasso tool is terrific for rough selections, but it seems to me that you're looking to do things with greater complexity, and the Lasso tool is always going to leave you somewhat frustrated. The Pen tool allows you to be rough or incredibly refined, and it gives you the added benefit of being repeatable. Try working with it for a couple weeks. I think you'll find it incredibly useful. There are some things that you will be able to do faster with the Lasso tool, but you need to have the Pen tool in your bag of tricks when it comes to making selections. It's incredibly powerful. It takes a bit of time to get used to working with the Bezier curves, but after you get the hang of that you'll wonder how you ever got anything done without it.

        Hope you are doing well. Take care. Alan.

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        • #5
          Re: Photoshop - Polygonal Lasso Trace

          thanks seattle,
          yep you're right, I just tried the pen tool and yes it works alright
          I guess its matter of getting used to it.... I just find it a bit difficult of coasting back and forth between path selection tool and the pen tool itself,
          maybe modifying some kind of tool bar ... , not sure if thats possible...
          but hey thanks, I will use the pen tool on the next project and try to use it more ofter....

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          • #6
            Re: Photoshop - Polygonal Lasso Trace

            Yeppers, I agree with the others.. Look at the Path tool as a polygonal lasso tool on steroids.. it work the same as the polygonal lasso tool (Click,move click, move) but has added features.. if you can make good selections with the polygonal lasso tool then you can do the same with the Pen tool and when you have completed your Path turn it into a selection by using the keyboard shortcut Command-Return (PC: Control-Enter).

            After taking the plunge and getting comfortable with making simple selections/Paths you can investigate the other functions (the steroids parts) like moving the anchor points to finesse the selection, making a curve instead of a bunch of small straight lines to go around an area, and a bunch of other features available if you need them....

            TRY IT... You Will Like IT!!!

            OOPS, Guess I was late Posting.... Sorry!
            Last edited by 0lBaldy; 03-22-2010, 01:09 AM. Reason: I answered late

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            • #7
              Re: Photoshop - Polygonal Lasso Trace

              Dear Morph1...

              As with everything, there's a bit of a learning curve before it starts to feel natural. Having to use the Pen tool and then go to the Paths menu seems like a small price to pay for not losing complex selections when you're halfway through making them (that would make me crazy -- for me the key to doing terrific Photoshop is making effective selections). I'm also sure that there are lots of folks here who can help you figure out the shortcuts for selecting the current active path so you wouldn't even need to jump to another menu. The Pen tool is pretty cool once you get used to it. Again, it's not the right tool for every selection. But it's pretty amazing what you can do with it.

              Hope you are doing well. Take care. Alan.

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              • #8
                Re: Photoshop - Polygonal Lasso Trace

                I had a similar problem with the polygon lasso tool a long time ago when I bought a new computer. I replaced the video card with another brand, and it fixed the problem. But I do agree with the others, the pen tool is better all around, and you can save it even in an unfinished mode. You can also correct mistakes, and using it to curve and shape an outline is something you can't duplicate with the lasso tool.

                Gary Silverstein
                http://www.weshoot.com
                http://www.feelfreefoto.com
                http://www.bilbord.com

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                • #9
                  Re: Photoshop - Polygonal Lasso Trace

                  After you get your selection made with either tool, you can always use quickmask to touch up your selection. (bottom of toolbar under forground/background color blocks)

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                  • #10
                    Re: Photoshop - Polygonal Lasso Trace

                    One solution I found to myself is to use "save selection" frequently. I would make a rough selection of partial selection first and save it. If anything goes wrong I could always use that as a fallback position. The selection could then be modified by adding and removing parts of the selection (by hold Shift (add to the selection) or Alt (remove from the selection) keys while using lasso tool). Saving the updated selection from time to time ensures that you can simply go one step back should anything go wrong. Quick selection tool in CS3 and up is a fantastic way to make the initial selection.

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