Photoshop Plugin: Fluid Mask 3

Jan Kabill
10 December, 2007
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It can be time-consuming and frustrating to isolate objects like hair, tree branches, or animal fur using Photoshop’s built-in selection and masking features. Fluid Mask 3.0.2, a Photoshop plug-in, can save you time and effort and help you produce natural-looking cut-outs.

The product really shines in difficult situations where foregrounds and backgrounds are similar, or where objects have soft, unfocused edges. Fluid Mask analyses an image and creates outlines at the edges of areas with distinct colour and texture, breaking the image into regions that you can choose to keep or to delete.

Fluid Mask 3 includes a number of enhancements over its debut version and the subsequent revision. The interface now fills the screen and its tool palette, tool options bar, and panels may look familiar to Photoshop users. The new Color Sampler tool, which selects colours directly from the image, is useful for building masks based on color. The Patch features come in handy for identifying and blending difficult edges in localised problem areas.

Macworld’s buying advice. Fluid Mask 3.0.2 offers a variety of useful features for tackling almost any difficult image, from wispy hair to complex foliage. Online video tutorials and live training sessions help ease the learning curve.

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