Changing the red coating

By default, the protected region of an image appears in translucent red in the quick mask mode, but if your image contains a lot of red, the mask can be difficult to see. Luckily, you can change it to any color and any degree of opacity that you like. To do so, double-click the quick mask icon in the toolbox (or double-click the Quick Mask item in the Channels palette) to display the dialog box shown in Figure 9-11.

♦ Color 1ndicates: Choose Selected Areas to reverse the color coating so that the translucent red coating covers selected areas, and deselected areas appear normally. Choose Masked Areas (the default setting) to cover deselected areas in color.

You can reverse the color coating without ever entering the Quick Mask Options dialog box. Simply Alt-click the quick mask icon in the toolbox to toggle between coating the masked or selected portions of the image. The icon itself changes to reflect your choice.

Figure 9-11: Double-click the quick mask mode icon to access the Quick Mask Options dialog box. You then can change the color and opacity of the protected or selected areas when viewed in the quick mask mode.

♦ Color: Click the Color icon to display the Color Picker dialog box and select a different color coating. (If you don't know how to use this dialog box, see the "Using the Color Picker" section of Chapter 4.) You can lift a color from the image with the eyedropper after the Color Picker dialog box comes up, but you probably want to use a color that isn't in the image so that you can better see the mask.

♦ Opacity: Enter a value to change the opacity of the translucent color that coats the image. A value of 100 percent makes the coating absolutely opaque.

Change the color coating to achieve the most acceptable balance between being able to view and edit your selection and being able to view your image. For example, the default red coating shows up poorly on my grayscale screen shots, so I changed the color of the coating to light blue and the Opacity value to 65 percent before shooting the screens featured in Figures 9-7 through 9-9.

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