In this tutorial, you’ll find out how to create, save and apply a clipping path to a JPEG in Photoshop - as well as how to access the clipping options in InDesign.

See also: 83 Best Photoshop tutorials 2016

Clipping paths are a traditional method of cutting out objects or people in Photoshop that allows you to create image files with transparent backgrounds for use in print layouts – whether magazine, brochure or book layouts – in software programs such as InDesign or QuarkXPress.

Whilst clipping paths were originally applied in Photoshop to automatically appear as cut outs, newer versions of the software can now pick up and utilise saved paths hidden within Jpeg files, giving you (or your client) the option to use either the full or clipped version of an image when deciding on layout.

This approach works best with objects or people with ‘hard’ (ie distinct) edges around the object or person you want to cut out. If there are semi-transparent materials, frizzy hair or other soft edges, it might be better to use the methods in this tutorial.

Time to complete

10 minutes

Software needed

Photoshop and InDesign CC

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