Have you ever wondered what the term clipping photos was about? The term clipping photos goes back the early days of printing. Newspapers, magazines, advertising design companies and catalogs like Sears employed stables of artists for clipping photos with paint brushes, scissors and cutting knives. The purpose of clipping photos was to remove an unwanted background in a photo or to isolate the subject. Today the job of clipping photos, sometimes called masking, is done by sophisticated software like Adobe’s Photoshop, Topaz Lab’s Re-mask and Vertus’s Fluid Mask. All of these applications describe clipping photos as easy to do, but in practice it’s only so on simple subjects with defined hard edges.
When clipping photos of a more difficult nature such as trees, flowers, plants andanimals, the process of clipping photos is not quite the same even with these sophisticated applications. Clipping photos of trees with tiny details and spaces between the leaves where the background or sky shows through is painstaking. Clipping photos of animals have fine hair and wispy tails is highly detailed. Clipping photos of flowers photographed with a busy, complicated background behind them, makes it difficult to extract them.
So what does clipping photos entail? A discerning eye for color, meticulous attention to detail and many hours of Photoshop classes and seminars. Technically speaking to be proficient at clipping photos, you’ll need a detailed understanding of Alfa channels, edge refinement, color separation, color spaces and clipping paths.
Is your time worth money? If so, why would you spend it clipping photos instead of doing what you do best which is shooting? We at Layercake are experts at clipping photos. We create large collections of meticulously masked elements that you can simply drag and drop into your photos. The work of clipping photos is done for you. So now you know the history of clipping photos. It’s nice to know, but who needs to even think about it when you have LayerCake for clipping photos.