The untimely demise of floating selections

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As you may (or may not) recall, Photoshop 4 bludgeoned floating selections into a state of unconsciousness. While Version 5 didn't entirely kill them, it moved them to the critical list.

In case you're unsure what I'm talking about, a floating selection is an element that hovers above the surface of the image. Any time you move a selection or clone it, Photoshop floats the selection onto a temporary layer. This way, you can move the selection or nudge it into position without harming the underlying image. And if you press Backspace, Photoshop deletes the floater rather than filling the selection with the background color.

But that's all there is to floating selections now. The Floating Selection item that used to appear in the Layers palette is a thing of the past, so you don't even know when a selection is floating or not. And the only way to defloat a floater is to deselect it.

Tip Quite unexpectedly, Photoshop still lets you mix a floater with the image behind it by modifying the opacity and blend mode settings. After dragging a selection to * float it, choose Edit Fade (Ctrl+Shift+F). Then modify the settings inside the Fade dialog box to mix the floater with the background. The process is incredibly nonin-tuitive, but it works.

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