Using the Rectangular Marquee and Trim to Crop

In some situations, the Rectangular Marquee tool can prove more useful when you're cropping. For example, after a crop marquee is drawn, you cannot resize it precisely, whereas you can resize a selection marquee very precisely by transforming the selection (Select ^ Transform Selection). When a transform is active, use the text fields on the options bar to plug values or click in them and then use the Up and Down Arrow keys (located by the numeric keypad). Commit the transform by double-clicking in the marquee or pressing Enter (Windows), Return (Mac OS); then, choose Image ^ Crop.

If you made a selection with the Rectangular Marquee tool but find that when you use the Image ^ Crop command your image won't crop to the edge of the visible selection, make sure that the selection is not feathered. Enter a zero value in the options bar for the Feather option and try again.

The Trim command can prove extremely useful when you want to remove a block of color that surrounds your image. For example, if you take a screenshot against a white background, you can trim the excess in one fell swoop rather than spend time trying to marquee the content that you want to preserve. Include the command in an action, and you can save yourself considerable time over the course of trimming just 10-20 screenshots. To use the command, choose Image ^ Trim and in the dialog box specify the target pixels. You can choose between transparent pixels or colored pixels located at any one of the four corners of the image or all four (Figure 11-4).

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