Goodbye, tedious masks? A.I. is about to make Photoshop selections even faster

Selecting an object inside Photoshop may soon only require a few clicks instead of tedious outlines and masking. On the heels of the Select Subject Tool, Adobe teased a new Object Selection Tool on Tuesday, October 29. The new tool uses Adobe Sensei — the company’s artificial intelligence — to turn a rough rectangular outline into a refined selection around an object.

The upcoming Object Selection Tool will be housed in the toolbar with the Magic Wand and Quick Select options. With the tool selected, photo editors draw a quick box around the object. Adobe Sensei then goes to work to recognize the object, drawing a selection around the edges of the item. Like the Quick Select tool, the new tool can also be used to subtract an object from a current selection.

Drawing a box around the object tells the program which item to select — if a quick box isn’t enough, the upcoming tool can also be used with a lasso to make a quick selection for the machine learning to refine from. The Object Selection Tool will also be added to the Select and Mask workspace to quickly select an item, then refine with the existing Select and Mask tools.

The upcoming selection tool is similar to Photoshop’s recent Select Subject tool. The Select Subject tool, however, examines the whole image to find the main object in the photo. The Object Selection Tool can be used to select a single subject in a photo with multiple subjects, or to select a portion of the subject, like the hat inside a portrait. The tool can also select less dominate objects that are not the main subject of the photo.

Selecting an object is one of Photoshop’s more tedious tasks, used to create a mask to apply any number of adjustments just to one area. Used in edits from removing the background to recoloring an object, selections are traditionally made with the lasso, marquee, Quick Select, layer masking and other tools. The Object Selection joins a number of recent updates that use artificial intelligence to simplify the selection process, including Select Subject, and Select and Mask.

Adobe did not share when the new tool will arrive inside Photoshop. Adobe Max, the company’s annual creativity conference, is set for November 4-6 and usually brings along with it several announcements for software updates.

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