Cutting II. in Photoshop Elements

Let’s cut out an object from the picture with the help of a far from unintelligent tool. Magnetic lasso can handle more complicated shapes as well. Let alone simple ones.

Load the photo in Photoshop Elements

Let’s crop this flower, make a copy of it and place it in another part of the picture.

Magnetic lasso

To do so we will now use the so called Magnetic Lasso Tool, which you will find at the sixth place among icons in the tools bar. If it’s not this icon in the sixth place, just keep the mouse button pressed over the toolbar and you can select it from a small menu.

Before setting about the action, check the lasso settings at the top of the window. We set the Feather, which is the soft edge option, to 2 pixels in order to have a somewhat transitional, blurred cropping edge. Tick the Anti-alias option, which will further aid eliminating zig-zag edges. We set Width to 20 pixels. With such clear-cut figures that emerge from the background so clearly, you can set such a high value. If this value is high, you can get away from the object a bit, still the selection line will stick closely to the outline of the object. In case of a small, detailed topic, set this to a low value and try to drag the mouse strictly following the outline. The essence of magnetic lasso is that you click on the edge of the object you want to select, then release the mouse button and cautiously draw around the object alongside the edges. It’s perfectly okay if your hands shake a little and run out of the outline, since we have a “magnetic” lasso here: It attempts to find out where the edges can be and constantly adjusts the outline accordingly. By setting Frequency, you can define how frequent these adjustments should be. We had it at 100, so the outline was corrected quite often. If your topic is a simple shape, let’s say an apple, you can set the value low, but use a high value with complicated shapes.

Once you have encircled the object, a small circle appears in the top right corner of the selection icon indicating that the outline can be closed. One click, and the selection becomes an outline, which means you have encircled the whole of the object.

On a new layer

We are basically done, but in fact, we tend to select something in order to do something with it afterwards. Let’s continue by making a copy of the flower.

Simply click Ctrl+C and the Ctrl+V, and the copy appears on a new layer in place of the original image. We will stay on this layer.

Moving places

Our copy is now over the original flower, but grab it with the Move tool (V button) and drag it a bit away and it becomes visible that there are two copies in reality.


Two identical copies in one picture may seem rather funny so we blurred it quite a bit with Filter/Blur/Gaussian Blur filter. The effect is that it appears as part of the background.

Make believe it

To make the background flower more realistic, let’s decrease its size and rotate it too.

With the Ctrl+T command you can freely resize the copy image, or you can set its size in the options above. We set width and height to 75-75%, and then rotated position with -27 degrees. Don’t forget to hit Enter at the end.

You can perhaps darken it a bit to make it even more realistic. You can do this in the Levels window after clicking Ctrl+L.

Humble in the background

The finished photo does not reveal at first sight that it has the same flower on it twice. The copy “lies low” in the background, and it’s just an addition to the picture.