How to cut out one shape from another using Photoshop?


Given have two shapes for example. a star (blue) and arrow (no fill). The arrow has a green stroke.

How can I make the portion of the star which is behind the arrow transparent, but retain the green stroke on the arrow?

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9/27/2014 5:01:00 PM

  • Hold down the Command/Ctrl key and click the layer thumbnail for the arrow in the Layers Panel. This will load the arrow shape as a selection.

  • Choose Select > Inverse from the menu to invert the selection

  • Highlight the Star layer in the Layers Panel

  • Click the New Mask icon at the bottom of the Layers Panel new mask icon

This creates a mask which hides the portion of the star underneath the arrow shape.

It is difficult to know if the mask will be entirely correct because there are a couple of ways those shapes may have been created. The above assumes they are shape or vector layers. If the arrow is not a shape/vector layer, you may need to then grab a brush and paint black on the mask you just created in the center of the arrow to hide that portion of the star.

7/20/2015 2:22:00 AM

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