How to Make Custom (and unique) Clipping masks

Have you used the shape tool in Photoshop Elements for a clipping mask lately?  And if you have, did you simply use a square or rectangle?  Well, then, try mixing it up a little and using basic shapes to create a composite shape.  You can come up with some fun figures to clip your pictures into. 

In the page I posted above about the Oregon Coast Aquarium, the comma or swirly shapes along the right side were created using the custom shape tool, with the half circle shape within in that.  You can watch the video below to see how I did it: 

Here's the kit I used to make my page: 

Here are the other pages I made that unique clipping masks: 

The page below has the half circle shape combined with a vertical rectangle.  Another fun effect for this page is that I used the text tool to create text on a rounded path, snugged it up closely to the photo mask, and merged (or combined it with the custom mask I just created.  So now, not only did I combine the two shapes together, the text adds another fun look to this clipping mask.  For a little more visual interest, I created an outline stroke that I offset from the clipping mask.  I love the way it turned out!  I can't link you to this kit, as it is no longer for sale, but it is the Snap Click Repeat kit by Celeste Knight.

The next page I made used these shapes: 

This was the first page I made using composite shape clipping mask.  I was extra proud of it because it made the Two Peas digital newsletter when that site was still up.  You can see from the example above I used a horizontal rectangle this time, then two quarter circle shapes.  I used the skew command (Image > Transform > Skew) to more or less make the rectangle a parallelogram, then skewed the half circles as well.  I rotated the quarter circles in opposite directions, then plopped them on the ends of the parallelogram, then merged the layers.  In the layout below, after I was finished making the shapes and duplicated them to create two other copies of the shape for my photo clipping masks.  I also made the shapes a little taller and not as wide so they'd be a more ideal size for my photos.   I also put an outline stroke around the clipping mask to make the shapes really pop from the page.   This kit I used here is by Jen Martakis.  It's another older one and has been discontinued.

So tell me...have you tried making clipping masks using this technique?  Or is it something you'd like to try?  Let me know if you get the chance. 

Thanks again for reading my post and I hope you'll check out the video.  Enjoy your day!


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