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Photoshop Elements >

Cropping >

Circles & Ovals - Elliptical Marquee Tool

BTW—the Rectangular Marquee tool works the same way as this tool.

Below, the bear was highlighted using the Elliptical Marquee tool.

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Be sure to check off as you go along.

Preparation

1) Preserve your original file.

If you haven't already done so, go to Preserve Your Original File.

2) Create a Background copy layer.

If you haven't already done so, go to Create a Background Copy Layer.

Elliptical Marquee Tool

3) Make sure the Background copy is active (highlighted).

Background copy

Background

4) Select the Elliptical Marquee tool.

5) Click, hold, and drag to make the marquee.

Fine Tune

Here are several ways you can fine tune your use of the Elliptical Marquee tool.

Make a square

To make a square, press and hold Shift.

Then click, hold, and drag the marquee.

Drag from the center out

The center is where you place the cursor.

Press and hold Alt, to draw the marquee from the center, outward.

You can combine Alt with Shift to draw a square from the center.

Move the marquee

Use the arrow keys to move the marquee.

Or, click inside the marquee, hold, and drag it.

Feather the marquee

In the options, you can choose to feather the marquee.
Feathering creates an edge that fades out by becoming increasingly transparent and lighter.

Change the size of the marquee

There are two methods.

Method #1

Go to Select > Transform Selection.

Click, hold, and drag the handles on the corners and sides of the marquee.

If you press Shift, and click, hold, and drag one of the corner handles, the aspect ratio of the marquee is maintained.

Click the green checkmark.

Method #2

in options bar/Tool Options, you can switch the Mode box from Normal to Fixed Aspect Ratio or to Fixed Size.
Then, enter your values.

Check the dimensions of the marquee

Open the Info panel to see the exact dimensions of the marquee.

Look for W and H.

To change to inches from pixels, or vice versa, go to Preferences.

Rotate the marquee

There are two methods.

Method #1

Select the Move tool.

Place the cursor in the area outside the marquee.

The cursor will change to a curved, two-sided, arrow.

Click, hold, and drag.

Click the green check mark.

The angle of the rotation is shown in the Info panel.

Method #2

Go to Image > Rotate > Free Rotate Selection.
Then, place the cursor in the area outside of the image.
The cursor will change to a curved two-sided arrow.
Click, hold, and drag.
The angle of the rotation is shown in the Info panel.

Next

You have a selection.

Whatever happens next, happens only inside the selection.

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In the bear photograph, above, the bear was selected.

Then, the selection was flipped by going to Selection > Inverse.

So, everything was selected except the oval containing the bear.

A Levels adjustment layer was created.

The selection created a mask in the Levels adjustment layer.

The Levels adjustment layer was used to darken the selected area.

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Saving the Photograph

If you haven't already done so, go to Saving Files.