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Learn how to use the magic wand tool in Adobe Photoshop CS3.
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Now we are going to take a look at one of the selection tools in Photoshop that a lot of people use because it's easy to use but it's really in my opinion the worst selection tool inside of Photoshop, and that is the Magic Wand Tool or what I like to call the Tragic Wand Tool.
So I am going to go ahead now, I am going to zoom back out of this image, I am going to switch to the Magic Wand Tool by clicking and holding down on the Wand Toolbox here and selecting Magic Wand Tool. Now that also houses the Quick Selection Tool and that's going to be in its own lesson here coming up, so I won't go into that right now. But let's go ahead and we will just switch here to the Magic Wand Tool. And the Magic Wand Tool is very popular with people simply because you have the ability to just click, and Photoshop automatically makes the selection for you. Now this is great for areas that have completely different colors like white and black or like red and black or something like that, something that has very high contrast ratios.
But for instance you wanted to make a selection, let's zoom in up here at the top and I will pan up a little bit by holding the Spacebar key. You will notice here that up here on these portions of the guitar that we're losing a lot of the detail up here because this Magic Wand Tool is not incorporating these into the selection because it's not reading those as being a continuous portion of the area that I wanted to select. So now you can come up here and you can play with the Tolerance to use the Magic Wand Tool a little bit better which is going to change the sampling color and all that kind of stuff. You can choose Contiguous and make sure the Anti-aliasing is turned on, all that different stuff is going to make it better, but it's certainly not going to make it the best.
The Magic Wand Tool is just simply not the best tool for making selections, and I will give you another example here. Let's say for instance that I wanted to only select this brown area of the guitar down here. If I click inside this area here, you are going to notice that it's going to miss several areas. If I zoom in here, see here it's missed this area here in the guitar, it's also missed all of these areas up in here and several of the smaller areas in here. Now you can Shift+Click to add these areas into your selection but it's really not going to include all of the gradations and things up here in the top of the guitar that you want to include. So this is another reason why I feel like the Magic Wand Tool is simply the worst tool inside of Photoshop to make selections.
So it can be useful like I said if you are selecting objects that have complete contrast from another like a black and white logo that you are wanting to separate from a background or something like that. Otherwise I suggest that you leave this tool alone because you are just going to get yourself into some trouble and making some very bad, very rough selections here inside of Photoshop.