Using the Marquee Tools

The Rectangular and Elliptical Marquee tools are the easiest and most straightforward selection tools to use. With these tools, you can select rectangular or oval (elliptical) areas. You can also select a perfectly square or circular area. You will often want to move a selection area (or marquee) to align it perfectly, and Photoshop Elements offers a couple of quick and simple ways to make these kinds of adjustments.

To make a rectangular or elliptical selection


From the toolbar, choose either the Rectangular Marquee tool (M) or Elliptical Marquee tool (M again) (Figure 4.10).

Figure 4.10. Simple geometric selections can be made with the Rectangular or Elliptical Marquee Tool.

The default setting on the options bar creates a new selection (Figure 4.11). See "Adjusting Selections" later in this chapter for more information on other options when creating selections.

Figure 4.11. The default setting on the options bar creates a new selection.


Click and drag to choose the selection area (Figure 4.12).

Figure 4.12. After selecting one of the marquee tools, just click and drag to make a selection.


  • You can create a perfect circle or square selection using the marquee tools by holding down the Shift key (Figure 4.13).

    Figure 4.13. To select a perfect square or circle, hold down the Shift key while dragging.

  • You can draw the marquee from the center outward by holding down the Alt key (Figure 4.14).

    Figure 4.14. To draw a selection from the center outward, hold down the Alt key.

  • To toggle between marquee tools, press the M key. In fact, this works for any tool with hidden toolssimply press the keyboard shortcut key repeatedly to toggle through all of the choices.

  • To select all pixels on a layer, press Ctrl+A. This creates a selection around your entire image window, and is useful when you want to make universal color corrections or special effects to your image.

To reposition a selection border


Once you've made a selection, with the New selection icon active, position the pointer anywhere inside the selection area.

The pointer becomes an arrow with a small selection icon next to it (Figure 4.15). Note that if the Add to, Subtract from, or Intersect with icons are active, the pointer indicates that choice and the selection can't be moved.

Figure 4.15. To move the selection area, position the pointer within the selection boundary.


Click and drag to reposition the selection area.

The pointer arrow changes to solid black as you move the selection (Figure 4.16).

Figure 4.16. Drag the selection border to a new location.


  • You can use the arrow keys on your keyboard to move a selection in 1-pixel increments. Holding down the Shift key changes the movement to 10-pixel increments.

To reposition a selection border while making a selection


Click and drag to create the selection area.


While keeping the mouse button pressed, press the spacebar.


Move the selection area to the desired location and release the spacebar and mouse button (Figure 4.17).

Figure 4.17. To move the marquee during a selection, just press the spacebar while holding down the mouse button and adjust the border's location.

Photoshop Elements 4 for Windows. Visual QuickStart Guide
Photoshop Elements 4 for Windows (Visual Quickstart Guide)
ISBN: 0321423356
EAN: 2147483647
Year: 2003
Pages: 178 © 2008-2017.
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