How to Crop Images in Photoshop with the Crop Tool

Well hey everyone, Steve Patterson here
from PhotoshopEssentials com. In this video, I’ll show you how to crop images,
how to straighten images, and how to crop an image non-destructively with
Photoshop CC. We’ll start with the basics and learn how to crop images using the
Crop Tool. Then we’ll learn how to straighten an image with the Crop Tool.
And finally, we’ll look at a great feature first introduced in Photoshop
CS6 that lets you crop an image without losing any of the original pixels. We’ve
got a lot to cover so let’s get started! We’ll start with the basics. Here’s the
first image I’ll be using. I downloaded this one from Adobe Stock. To crop an
image in Photoshop, we use the Crop Tool. I’ll select it from the Toolbar. You can
also select the Crop Tool from your keyboard by pressing the letter C. As
soon as you select the Crop Tool, Photoshop places a cropping border
around the image. And if you’ve used the Crop Tool on a previous image, the border
will be set to that previous size. So before we go any further, let’s reset the
Crop Tool to its default settings. In the Options Bar, we see that I cropped my
last image as an 8 by 10. To clear the preview settings and restore the Crop
Tool to its defaults, right-click or Control-click on a Mac on the tool icon,
and then choose Reset Tool from the menu. This resets the aspect ratio to just
ratio and leaves the Width and Height boxes empty. The problem is that it
doesn’t reset the cropping border itself, which is still set to that previous 8 by
10 size. To reset the border, press the Esc key on your keyboard. Then, if you
can’t see the border, select a different tool from the Toolbar and then reselect
the Crop Tool. The cropping border now surrounds the entire image. Tf you look
around the border, you’ll see little handles. There’s one on the top, bottom,
left and right, and one in each corner. The easiest way to crop your image is to
click and drag the handles to reshape the border into any size you need, The
area inside the border is what you’ll be keeping, and the area outside it will be
cropped away. You can also click and drag inside the border to reposition the
image inside it. I’m going to cancel my crop so we can look at another way to
work. To cancel it, click the Cancel button in the
Options Bar. Instead of using the initial crop border that Photoshop places around
the image, you can also click anywhere inside the image and drag out your own
border. Then drag the handles to resize it, or click and drag inside the border
to reposition the image. To reset your crop rather than canceling out of it
completely, click the Reset button in the Options Bar. By default, Photoshop lets us
resize the crop border freely without caring about the aspect ratio. But if you
want to keep the original aspect ratio of your image, press and hold your Shift
key as you drag any of the corner handles. This locks the aspect ratio in
place. I’ll click the Reset button to reset my crop. If you want to resize the
border from its center, press and hold the Alt, or Option key on a Mac, as you
drag the handles. Again I’ll click the Reset button to
reset it. And to lock the aspect ratio and resize the border from its center,
hold Shift+Alt or Shift+Option on a Mac, as you drag the corner handles. So what
if there is a specific aspect ratio you need? Maybe you want to print the image
so that it fits within a certain frame size, like 5 by 7 or 8 by 10. In that case,
you can set the aspect ratio in the Options Bar. For standard aspect ratios
like 8 by 10, click the Aspect Ratio option and then
choose from a list of presets, like 1 to 1 for a square or 8 by 10, 4 by 6, and so
on. I’ll choose 8 by 10. Photoshop enters the aspect ratio into the Width and
Height boxes. It actually enters 4 by 5, which is the same as 8 by 10. And as soon
as I select it, my cropping boarder jumps to the 8 by 10 ratio. To swap the Width
and Height values, click the Swap icon, or the arrows, between them.This lets you
easily switch between portrait and landscape mode. If the aspect ratio you
need isn’t found in the presets, you can enter it manually. Let’s say I want to
crop my image as an 11 by 14, and I want it to be in landscape mode so that the
width is larger than the height. I would click inside the Width box and enter 14. And then I would press the Tab key on my keyboard to jump over to the Height and
I’d enter 11. Photoshop instantly resizes the crop border to the 11 by 14 ratio. I
can then resize the border by dragging the handles. Photoshop will automatically
lock the ratio as you drag, so there’s no need to hold Shift. But you can still
hold the Alt or Option key to resize the border from its center. If you know that
you’ll need to use the same aspect ratio again, you can save it as a custom preset.
Click the Aspect Ratio option in the Options Bar. And in the menu, choose New
Crop Preset. Give the preset a name. I’ll name mine “11 by 14 landscape”. Then click
OK to close the dialog box. The next time I need it, I can quickly
select it from the list. If you’ve entered a specific aspect ratio and want
to go back to resizing the crop border freely, clear the aspect ratio by
clicking the Clear button. You can then drag the handles independently. Well so far, we’ve been cropping to a
general aspect ratio or a general shape. But you can also use the Crop Tool to
crop your image to a specific size and resolution. To do that, open the Aspect
Ratio menu, and then choose “Width, Height and Resolution”. Well let’s say that
instead of cropping my image to an 11 by 14 aspect ratio, I want to crop it so
that it will print at a specific size of 11 by 14 inches. Since I want the width
to be larger than the height, I’ll click inside the Width field and I’ll enter 14.
But instead of just entering the number, I’ll also enter “in” for inches. Then I’ll
press the Tab key on my keyboard to jump to the Height field and I’ll enter “11
in” for the height. Notice that we now have a third box as well, and this is
where we enter a Resolution value. Since the industry standard resolution for
high quality printing is 300 pixels per inch, I’ll enter “300” into the box, and
I’ll make sure that the measurement type is set to pixels per inch.
With my settings entered, I’ll resize the crop border,
and then to crop the image, I’ll click the checkmark in the Options Bar. You can
also crop it by pressing Enter or Return on a Mac. Photoshop crops the image, and
if we check the size of the image by going up to the Image menu and choosing
the Image Size command, we see in the dialog box that Photoshop has cropped
the image to 14 by 11 inches at a resolution of 300 pixels per inch. We’ll
be learning all about image resizing in separate videos, so for now, I’ll click
Cancel to close the dialog box. To undo the crop, I’ll go up to the Edit menu and
I’ll choose Undo Crop. And this returns the image to its original size. Before we
move on to learning how to straighten an image, let’s look at one more handy
feature of the Crop Tool, and that’s the Crop Overlay. I’ll click on my image with
the Crop Tool to bring up the cropping border. And notice the 3 by 3 grid that
appears inside the border. This grid is known as the Rule of Thirds. The idea
with the Rule of Thirds is that you can create a more interesting composition by
placing your subject at or near one of the spots where the grid lines intersect.
While the Rule of Thirds overlay can be useful, it’s not the only one that’s
available to us. To view the others, click the Overlay icon in the Options Bar. Here
we can choose a different overlay, like Golden Ratio. The Golden Ratio is similar
to the Rule of Thirds but the intersection points are closer to the
center. Finally, one more way to crop your image is to just double-click inside the
crop border. And that’s the basics of how to crop an image with the Crop Tool.
Let’s look at a different image so we can learn how to straighten a photo.
Here’s an image I shot myself, and notice that the horizon line is crooked. To
straighten the image, I’ll select the Crop Tool from the Toolbar. And then in
the Options Bar, I’ll select the Straighten Tool. Look for something in
your image that should be straight, either vertically or horizontally. In my
case, it’s the horizon line. Click on one end with the Straighten Tool, keep your
mouse button held down, and drag over to the other end.
Photoshop draws a path between the two points, and it uses this path to set the
angle that the image will need to be rotated. Release your mouse button, and
Photoshop rotates the image to straighten it. And because rotating the
image added some transparent areas in the corners of the document, Photoshop
also resized the crop border to keep those transparent corners out of the
image. At this point, I can resize the crop border myself if I need to. And then
to accept it and crop the image, I’ll press Enter, or Return on a Mac. And
that’s how to straighten an image with the Crop Tool. And finally, let’s switch
over to a third image so we can look at a great feature in Photoshop that lets
us crop our images non-destructively. I downloaded this image from Adobe Stock.
Again I’ll select the Crop Tool from the Toolbar. In the Options Bar, I’ll choose
the 8 by 10 aspect ratio preset, and then I’ll resize my crop border by dragging
the top hand hold downward. To crop the image, I’ll press Enter, or Return on a
Mac. So far so good. But what if I decide at this point that
I want to change the crop? Maybe I want to change its orientation from portrait
to landscape. In that case, I’ll go up to the Options Bar and I’ll swap the aspect
ratio by clicking the Swap icon. Photoshop again places the crop border
around the image. I don’t want to be cropped in so close, so I’ll drag the
handles outward to bring back more of the image. But notice that when I release
my mouse button, Photoshop just fills the surrounding area with white. And that’s
because Photoshop deleted all of those surrounding pixels when I made my
original crop. It’s filling those missing areas with white because it’s using my
current Background color. And the reason that Photoshop deleted those cropped
pixels is because, if we look in the Options Bar, we see that the Delete
Cropped Pixels option is turned on, which it is by default. Let’s look at a better
way to work, one that’s not destructive. I’ll cancel the crop by clicking the
Cancel button in the Options Bar. And then I’ll revert the image back to its
original size by going up to the File menu and choosing Revert. I’ll swap the
aspect ratio back to portrait mode, and then I’ll drag the handles to resize the
border, just like I did before. Bbut this time, before I actually crop the image,
I’ll turn the Delete Cropped Pixels option off by deselecting it. Then I’ll
accept the crop by pressing Enter, or Return on a Mac. And so far everything
looks the same as it did before. But watch what happens if I try to resize
the crop. I’ll swap the aspect ratio back to landscape mode, and as soon as I do, we
see something very different. The entire image reappears as if it was never
cropped at all. And that’s because, when Delete Cropped Pixels is turned off,
Photoshop just hides the cropped area instead of deleting it. I’ll drag the
corner handles outward to resize the border to include more of the image. And
then with Delete Cropped Pixels still turned off, I’ll accept the crop by
pressing Enter, or Return on a Mac. Another benefit of cropping the image
non-destructively is that, since Photoshop is just hiding the cropped
area, we can actually move the image around to reposition it even after we’ve
cropped it. To do that, select the Move Tool from the Toolbar. And then click and
drag on the image to move it around inside the canvas until you’re happy
with the composition. And finally, if you’ve cropped your image with Delete
Cropped Pixels turned off and you’re still working in your Photoshop PSD file,
you can bring back the entire image at any time by going up to the Image menu
and choosing Reveal All. And there we have it! That’s how to crop images, how to
straighten images, and how to crop your photos non-destructively, in Photoshop! As
always, I hope you enjoyed this video. And if you did, please consider Liking it,
Sharing it and Subscribing to our channel. Visit our website, PhotoshopEssentials com, for more tutorials! Thanks for watching and I’ll see you
next time. I’m Steve Patterson from


  1. Photoshop Essentials July 11, 2018 at 1:03 pm

    ► Watch Part 2 of this tutorial for my Crop Tool Tips and Tricks:
    ► Tired of boring rectangles? Learn how to crop images in a circle:
    ► Or learn how to crop and resize images to match any photo frame size:

    Hi everyone, Steve here. Thanks for watching this video where I show you how to crop images in Photoshop! We start with the basics and learn everything you need to know to crop your images with the Crop Tool (0:30). From there, we learn how to straighten an image using the Straighten Tool (8:42). And we finish off with a great feature, first introduced in Photoshop CS6, that lets us crop an image without losing any of the original pixels (9:49)! There's a lot to cover, so I've included a complete list of topics in the video's description. Please leave any questions, comments or suggestions below, and don't forget to Subscribe for more Photoshop tutorials!

  2. kstronautti August 1, 2018 at 3:50 am

    dude the way you are sharing information is craaazyyy!!

  3. PEMANDU KAROAKE December 6, 2018 at 11:07 pm

    Thanks bro…

  4. Vpprofフプロフ March 9, 2019 at 10:34 pm

    Very nice! I'll re-watch it definitely some time. Meanwhile, what's up with this movable "aiming circle" in the center of the image while you crop, what's that for??

  5. Galen Sinkey May 1, 2019 at 10:44 pm

    I thought I knew everything there was to know about cropping. Oh man was I wrong!! Thanks for a great video

  6. Damir Medvešek May 9, 2019 at 7:13 pm

    Thank you …you help me a lot , great work.

  7. llOnePiece4everll June 6, 2019 at 9:29 am


  8. Vicky Raj June 11, 2019 at 8:51 am

    I was searching this one. Very Thanks❤

  9. Romelyn Ramirez July 7, 2019 at 6:16 am

    will it work for version 2019 also?

  10. Tomás F. Rodrigues July 18, 2019 at 10:00 pm

    is it just me or that's some pretty gourmet asmr stuff?

  11. Anniesez5 September 15, 2019 at 9:00 pm

    Thank you

  12. SADIK October 12, 2019 at 5:49 am

    would you please inform me, how to crop the middle portion of a photo?

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