The marquee tool in Photoshop is a selector tool that has a lot of great features. Often dismissed, the marquee tool simply doesn’t get it’s due. Versatile and fast, the marquee is used to pick out different sections of a photo as per the user’s parameters.
For this tutorial I'm going use a photo from a recent shoot that I did for an animal rescue fundraiser
Time: A few seconds
A digital photo
A computer with Photoshop installed
Open the digital photo in Photoshop.
Select the marquee tool, which is located in the ‘tools’ panel, which is located on the left side of the screen by default. It is the second tool from the top.
The marquee defaults to a rectangular shape. An opal, also known as the Elliptical Marquee, or Column or Row shape can also be selected by right clicking on the marquee tool icon in the tools panel.
The M located next to the Rectangular and Elliptical tools are used for shortcuts
Tip: The rectangle tool and elliptical tool are the most popular shapes for the marquee. A quick way to switch between the two shapes is to hold down the shift button and hitting the letter m.
With the desired shape tool chosen, you can select a portion of the photo by clicking on the photo and dragging the mouse.
Tip: When using the rectangular marquee, you can make the rectangle a perfect square by using the shift button.
Refining your selection can be done a few different ways.
You can expand your selection using multiples of the same shape by holding down the shift button and dragging, as illustrated below.
You can remove part of your selection using the same method, except instead of holding down the shift key, you would hold down the Alt key in Windows or the Option key in Mac OSx.
Small snippets of your selection can be singled out by holding down both the shift and alt/option.
Tip: If you don’t like using shortcuts like the shift key, then you can use the Selection Boxes in the Options Panel.
Using the marquee tool is a great way to move a selected part of a photo onto another area of the photo.
You can also pull selections into a new image, or onto a new canvas.