Doing a PaintShop cut out is probably the most exact selection you will ever
make. Don't get me wrong here - I still like the Edit
method but if you need to be perfectly exact with very crisp edges then
making the selection with the Pen Tool can't be beat.
downside is that it takes somewhat longer to do and the time to
complete the task will depend on your ability to manipulate the Pen
A corresponding upside (other than the perfect cut out) is
that you can be happily working the pen tool around a subject and find
you have to put your work aside for awhile.
The Pen Tool always
works on Vector Layers and if you save the file as a .pspimage then the
Vector layer is saved along with the background meaning you can re-load
the file and start working where you left off.
Not a bad deal at all!
PaintShop Cut Out
This is the image I'm going to work with.
found this carved creature living in a downtown parkette and it seems
to me that something this well done is most respectfully served with a
nice or at least different background.
The well worn paths leading up to the carving are a testament to its
As mentioned earlier this is a technique that favors some facility with
the Pen Tool in PaintShop.
If you look closely you'll see some fiddly bits on the right side of
the carving - both the wing and the shoulder and back.
is a project that is easiest to complete with a graphics tablet,
however you will be successful with a mouse. A trackpad will
likely be quite a challenge but it will work as well.
OK - so let's get this PaintShop cut out tutorial off and running ...!
so you know where
you are going with this - here are the steps to follow ...
the Background Layer (important - don't skip this step - if you do then
you'll just come back here to start again - I know because I've done it
many more times than I care to admit).
Choose a starting point,
zoom in and select the Pen Tool. You can work around the
you are cutting out by working Point to Point (Bezier Curves) or with
the Freehand Pen Tool. If you've got a steady hand then it
more quickly using Freehand.
Set the Stroke Width to 0.00 (to
avoid distracting lines) and make sure the Background Color is set to
Transparent in the Materials Palette.
Make a loose yet close
outline of the object to be cut out. That sounds
doesn't it? Don't get tied up in knots trying to get your
perfectly placed in this step 'cause we're going to fix any
inaccuracies in the next few steps.
With the path closed go to Objects
> Edit > Select All and then Objects > Node Type
You can also right click and Edit
> Select All, right click again and Node Type > Cusp.
This step gives you the ability to change the curves
before and after a node and only affecting the side you are on.
Choose a starting point, zoom in, make sure the Pen
in Edit Mode
and start working your way around the object by clicking on a node and
then adjusting the curve to conform to the object you are cutting out.
This will likely take the majority of your time with this
project. Save your work regularly as a .pspimage file to
the vector layers intact.
If you find yourself with an area that
needs a node but there isn't one there you can add one by holding the
Ctrl down and clicking on the curve. A new node will be
Right click and select Node
Type > Cusp so that it's easy to edit.
Systematically work your way around the object and
the curves as necessary. Depending on complexity you may be
finished quickly or in days (remember to keep saving the .pspimage - it
might be a good idea to give each save a different name in the unlikely
event that you mess something up badly>
you've worked your way around the object and you are satisfied then
it's time to do the cutout. Here's how to finish the project.
Turn on the background color (by unclicking the
button in the Materials palette) which fills in the area within the
Select the Pick Tool (don't do anything with it -
Go to Selections
From Vector Object (this is the step that turns the
curve into a selection).
layer, go to Selections
> Invert (which
changes the selection from the object you just outlined to the
background) and press then Delete key. This will eliminate
stuff you want to eliminate (the Background), leaving a nice crisp
PaintShop cut out. You will see the PaintShop cut out when
turn off the visibility of the both the Vector layer
and the visibility of the Background layer.
You may, at this
point, notice that the Vector layer is a nice silhouette of your
object. Depending on what the object is you may want to save
perfect silhouette. If not then both the Background and
layers are no longer required and they can be deleted.
through Step 4 Visuals
Size Set to 0
Click > Edit > Select All
And then ...
Click > Node Type > Cusp
The cusp nodes makes it possible to adjust each side of the nodes
independently and that means the next, and probably longest
will be much easier.
The topmost node is Cusp and
the two handles are
The curve does not align with the object so the handle on the left
needs to be adjusted to bring the curve in line with the object.
If the curve won't conform then it may be a good idea to add a
node. To add a node when you are editing the curve press and
the Ctrl key and click on the curve. This will add a node and
now needs to be changed to a cusp node by right clicking and then Node Type > Cusp.
Just keep doing this all around the object, over and over and over
again until you've finished.
Now you're ready to make that perfect PaintShop cut out ...!
Once you've worked you way around the object it's time to make the cut
Turn off the transparency of the Background Color.
This will fill the object you've been working on with the Background
Color (white is a nice choice but you can use any color you wish).
The nodes you've been adjusting are still visible.
The next step is to select the Pick Tool - don't do anything with it,
just select it.
The Pick Tool gives the bounding box outlining the object.
The third step is to go to Selections
> From Vector Object.
This will give the marching ants around the cut out,
Copy of Background
Selections > Invert
Press Delete key
off Visibility of ...
Vector 1 and Background
Out Close Up
Here's a close-up of the carving after the PaintShop cut out.
you can see it is a really precise cut out so the effort was well worth
Now you can save the PaintShop cut out as a .png file. This
type keeps the background transparent which is a good thing after
you've done all the work to cut out the object.
For this cut out the identity of the artist on a gradient background
with a drop shadow looks nice.