How do I crop a marquee selection? [total newb question]

Chat about the original Pixelmator.
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2019-11-30 23:24:13

I’m so very keen to ditch Photoshop, would like to know how you can crop a selection made with the marquee tool? I can’t find a crop command anywhere, and I’ve looked through the forums & online!

many thanks, Jake 🙂
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2019-12-01 05:29:52

Hi Jake.
In Pixelmator vocabulary, cropping is a whole canvas action so will affect every layer. So think of this as deleting the bits of a layer that you don't want. Three (and a half) techniques come to mind. Each has advantages and disadvantages. They all start with the area selected.
Method 1. Edit > Invert selection (Shift-Cmd-I). Edit > Delete (Delete key). Advantages: quick and easy. Disadvantages: Pixelmator Pro will allow layers to overhang the canvas edge. This technique will clear only up to the canvas edge.
Method 2. Copy, Paste, Delete original layer. Rename new layer. Advantages: quick and easy. Will clear overhang. Disadvantages: Feels clunky creating a new layer.
Method 3a. Format > Mask > Add Mask (or Right click on layer and Add Mask). A mask will be created in the shape of the selection. Advantages: non destructive - I can change my mind about how much I want to keep/show later. Is my favourite. Disadvantages: Only works if I don't already have an opacity mask on that layer.
Method 3b (So you really want it gone?) Once you have masked as 3a, merge the mask with the layer: Arrange > Merge (or Right click on layer and Merge). This will merge the layer and the mask, cutting off everything outside the mask.
Hope this helps.
- Stef.
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2019-12-01 05:55:09

Oops. I accidentally gave instructions for Pixelmator Pro. They're pretty much the same in Classic Pixelmator except for the menu command in 3a should be Layer > Add Layer Mask. And 3b should be... well Merge doesn't work on single layers (v3.9) so create a blank layer and Layer > Merge Layers with that. You'll also need to deselect the selection if you don't need it any more (Cmd-D).
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2019-12-01 09:48:45

Thank you Stef! I’ll give that a spin. It’s so interesting how different programs have different philosophies!
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2019-12-02 12:45:51

That was brilliant Stef, just what I was looking for 😀 👍
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2019-12-02 15:29:40

Could I ask how you'd usually do this in Photoshop? A somewhat quicker way you can do this is using the Command-Shift-J keyboard shortcut, though you'd need to remove the original layer after. But I'd love to hear which workflow you're used to!
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2019-12-02 16:11:58

Hi Andrius: make a selection (regular marquee or irregular lassoo), then `Image > Crop` (which is normally ⌘K on Mac but not on Photoshop version I've been using). One more step in Pixelmator Classic but that's no big shakes It's way faster than Photoshop, I just need to get used to the workflow