photo of cropping in photoshop by Onur Binay on Unsplash

How to Crop in Photoshop: 5 Methods to Resize and Crop Shapes

Cropping and resizing images is a basic skill that every Photoshop user should know. Whether you're trying to frame an image more tightly or create a certain shape, knowing how to crop correctly can make all the difference. Cropping helps you focus on a specific area of an image and eliminates distractions from the rest of the photo.

Resizing allows you to change an image's dimensions and file size, which can be useful for web design or sending photos via email. In this article, we'll show you some different methods for cropping and resizing images in Photoshop, as well as how to crop them into different shapes.

6 Methods to Crop and Resize Image in Photoshop

There are a few different ways to crop and resize images in Photoshop. The method you use will depend on what you're trying to achieve.

Method 1: Cropping With the Crop Tool

The crop tool is an essential part of most photographers’ arsenal. It allows you to make subtle adjustments and changes to your photo without having any unwanted interference from other objects in the scene. To use the Crop Tool, select it from the Tools palette.

tutorial of Cropping With the Crop Tool

Then click and drag on the image to draw a cropping rectangle. You can also click and drag one of the edge handles on the cropping rectangle to resize it.

tutorial of Cropping With the Crop Tool

Once you're happy with the size and shape of your crop, press Enter on Windows or Return on Mac to apply the crop.

Method 2: Using the Control Bar

The Control Bar is a powerful tool that allows you to adjust various settings with one click. It's perfect for those who are new at editing photos or want more control over their work process,   as well as those who are experienced and seeking more precision.

By default, the bar is located at the top of your Photoshop window when using the crop tool.

tutorial of Cropping Using the Control Bar

You can choose your settings in the control bar, such as the width and height of your crop, the resolution, and the units (pixels, inches, centimeters, etc.). You can also choose how you want to constrain your crop (by aspect ratio or by width and height).

tutorial of Cropping Using the Control Bar

When you're satisfied with the crop's size and shape, press Enter on Windows or Return on Mac to apply it.

Exporting a Cropped Photo

If you want to save your cropped photo as a separate file, you can use the Export function in Photoshop.

To export a cropped photo, select the area you want to crop and then go to File > Export > Export As.

Tutorial of Exporting a Cropped Photo

In the Export As dialog box, choose your cropped photo's file name, Tag, and location. Then click Save.

Tutorial of Exporting a Cropped Photo

Method to Crop Different Shapes in Photoshop

There are a few different methods that can be used to crop into different shapes in photoshop. One method is to use the shape tools. Photoshop has a variety of different shape tools, each of which can be used to create a custom cropping shape.

The process of vector masking a specific shape on your photo is often done in easy steps. First, you need to open up the source image in whichever version of Photoshop and ensure you can see the entire photo.

Circle

To crop a circle using a vector mask, first, you need to select it from shape tools.

tutorial of cropping circle in Photoshop

Mostly by default, it is on Fill shape, meaning you will get a solid color and what you need is a path. Select the shape path.

tutorial of cropping circle in Photoshop

Then select shift and drag the mouse to ensure the circle is uniform.

tutorial of cropping circle in Photoshop

Select the Direct Select Tool in order to move the circle. And it will crop out the pieces that are needed.

tutorial of cropping circle in Photoshop

Convert the image from a background to a layer.

tutorial of cropping circle in Photoshop

Since you have a layer, which is the image, and the path, which is a circle, make sure you are still selected to the Layer. When you're happy with the size and position of the circle, go to Layer> Vector Mask > Current Path.

tutorial of cropping circle in Photoshop

This means that it will mask everything outside the current path and leave the image in the shape of a circle.

tutorial of cropping circle in Photoshop

Finally, crop out the photo so that when you export it, you do not have this big image, but you just have the circle you were looking for.

tutorial of cropping circle in Photoshop

Triangle

To crop a triangle using a vector mask, open the image to the original format. In order to select the shape, go to the tools palette, select the Polygon Tool, and then choose three sides.

tutorial of cropping triangle shape in Photoshop

Make sure you are on the path. Then move around the triangle in order to crop out the image.

tutorial of cropping triangle shape in Photoshop

Convert the image back to a layer.

tutorial of cropping triangle shape in Photoshop

Then click and drag on the triangular-shaped image and alter the size and position. When you're satisfied with the size and position of the triangle, go to Layer> Vector Mask > Current Path.

tutorial of cropping triangle shape in Photoshop

This will create a vector mask with the same shape as the triangle.

tutorial of cropping triangle shape in Photoshop

Heart

Photoshop has many custom shapes built in, but you can also decide and add your own custom shape. To crop a heart using a vector mask, open the image in the original format once again. Select the Custom Shape Tool from the Tools palette.

tutorial of cropping heart shape in Photoshop

Then click on the image to open the custom shapes menu. Select the heart shape from the menu.

tutorial of cropping heart shape in Photoshop

Hold shift and drag on the image to draw the heart.

tutorial of cropping heart shape in Photoshop

Once you're happy with the size and position of the heart, go to Layer> Vector Mask > Current Path.

tutorial of cropping heart shape in Photoshop

This will create a vector mask with the same shape as the heart.

tutorial of cropping heart shape in Photoshop

Conclusion

As you can see, there are a variety of different ways to crop and resize images in Photoshop. Whether you need to crop an image into a specific shape or simply resize an image, there's a method that will suit your needs.

By following the steps, you can create a beautiful and unique way to present your photos. Whether it's a heart for valentines day or a triangle for any other purpose, get creative and show off your photos in a new way!

Image Credit:

Crop Method 1/ 2 & Export: youtube.com
Crop Circle/ Triangle/ Heart Shape: youtube.com

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