Creating masks with the Influence Panel

 

In Pixlr, the Influence Panel is used to create masks. You can then apply effects or modifications to these masks. All of the tools in this set are focused on creating masks.  

The influence panel is only available for Pro members.   

How do I select a color?

Use (color selection) to grab a color from your screen that's affected by the influence mask. 


Image courtesy of Julio Carvalho

Use its tolerance slider to either add more or less colors to your selection.

Use  brush selection to add to the mask before applying an overlay, such as explode.

Image courtesy of Julio Carvalho

How can I make a rectangular or elliptical selection?

Use  (marquee) to define rectangular or elliptical selections areas. Use  to add to or  to subtract from a selection.

Use  feather to set the softness of your mask edges, so they blend in better with the rest of the image.

Before

Rectangular marquee selection

Double exp applied to mask

 I want the influence of my selection to fade

Use  (gradient) to transition the sky to the water, one effect or adjustment into another, or if you want the foreground to be high-contrast and background low-contrast.

Choose the type of gradient mask,  linear,  radial, or  reflected.

This is the least. 

 

 

The middle is less affected.

 

The area most influenced by changes is defined by .

Before

Gradient linear selection

The pencil style applied to the mask

 I want to add a decal onto the side of a car

Use  (object selection) to specify the element you want to add the decal to. Use the blending tools to help it look like part of the original photo. See Blending for more information.

  1. Use the  object selection > + inside tool to select where you’d like to add the decal. Paint a rough outline and paint a bit within the area to help define the foreground element(s). Don’t worry about being perfect, you can always add to or subtract from a selection.


    Use - outside to brush outside your selection to
    define the background. Click preview. Once all this
    is calculated, you can modify your selections.

    Repeat this until you have a mask you are happy with and click preview again.

    Click done to apply these changes to the mask and create it.

  2. Use  brush selection > remove to refine the mask a bit more.
  3. Use feather to set the softness of your mask edges.
  4. Select a design from the tool tiles.

    Flame overlay applied to inside mask

  5. Use the blending tools to make the design look like it’s part of the object it’s applied to.

Tips

When adding something to the body of a car, such as a decal, try to find an image that has a plain surface. See the following example:

   
Good surface - double exp image displays nicely

    
Bad surface - double exp image is barely visible

Can I select an object in my image and place it in a different environment?

This isn’t about cutting something from one image and pasting it into another. Here we remove the background of an image and replace it with another.

Define the background of an image with any of the influence masks. Use  feather to soften the edges of your mask. Then, use refine > double exp to bring in another image for your background.


Before

 

New background added

How do I invert a mask?

Sometimes it is easier and faster to select the area you don’t want, then invert your selection.


Original mask
Once you create a mask, click  to access a menu and select invert.


Inverted mask

How do I duplicate a mask?

Sometimes you want to duplicate a mask, use it again, and just modify it a bit. For example, you’ve made a mask for a house.

You make a duplicate of the mask and remove the door from it, so the door is not affected by the second mask.

Once you create a mask, click  to access a menu and select duplicate.

    
           Mask of the house                    Duplicate with door removed

How do I rename a mask?

When editing an image, you may want to use a number of different masks. Use rename to label them for easy identification.

Once you create a mask, click  to access a menu and select rename.

How do I delete a mask?

Whenever you want to completely delete, not just clear a mask, use delete.
Once you create a mask, click  to access a menu and select delete.

 How did you do that?

    

                      Before                                             After

To change part of the main image and place it elsewhere, you need to create a bunch of masks, then use blending and double exp.

Making the masks

You will probably need at least 4 masks, one of the main image, another for what you want changed, a background mask, and shadow mask.

  1. Useobject selection to create a mask of the main object. In this case, a camel. Click  to select rename to label the mask camel.
  2. Click  for a new mask, then use brush selection to quickly paint over the part you want to change and create a mask (the seat on the back of the camel). Click  to select rename to label the mask seat cover.
  3. To quickly create a background mask, click the main object mask, click  to select duplicate, then invert. Next, click  to select rename to label the mask bkgd.
  4. Click  for a new mask, then use brush selection to quickly paint over the shadow of the main object and create a shadow mask. Click  to select rename to label the mask shadow.

These 4 masks will be found in the influence mask.

Changing the seat cover

I wanted to make the seat cover more interesting, so we will use the seat cover mask to achieve this.

  1. In the influence panel, tap seat cover to select the mask.

  2. In the tool tiles, select refine > double exp. Select an image for the seat cover and position and size it.

  3. In the double exp window, set a blend mode and play with the opacity, if needed, then tap apply.

Changing the background

Let's put this camel into a different setting. For this, we need the bkgd mask.

  1. In the influence panel, tap bkgd to select the mask.

       

    Influence panel     Bkgd mask displayed

  2. In the tool tiles, select refine > double exp. Select an image for the background, position and size it, then tap apply. If necessary, use fast > crop.

    Position double exp background image

     

    New background

Adding a shadow

We don’t want the camel to look like it’s floating in the water, so we will use the shadow mask.

  1. In the influence panel, tap shadow to select the shadow mask.


    Shadow mask displayed

  2. In the tool tiles, try using tools in refine to change the color and darken the shadow.  


    Final shadow

 

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