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When I select an area and move its contents, the selection snaps to the opaque pixels of the contents. How do I move a selected area while keeping active the selection border as I defined it? This is the default behavior in GIMP.

Alternately is there a way to crop a single layer?

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Sorry, you can't do this. Photoshop will never let you select something that isn't there. – Django Reinhardt Jul 1 '11 at 17:51

By default in Photoshop, when you move a selected layer, the selection remains active. Does it get de-selected for you?

To crop a single layer, make your selection on the active layer, then select Layer > New > Layer via Copy (Ctrl+J). This will create a new layer with your selection only. You can hide / discard the original layer.

Similarly if you want to resize a single layer, you can make your selection, then select Edit > Transform > Scale.

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No, it doesn't get deselected. When I make a rectangular selection and move the contents, the selection's border "crops" to the opaque pixels. What I want is for the selection's border to remain rectangular as I move it. And ctrl+J doesn't crop the layer, only the contents of the layer. I'm talking about redefining the dimensions of the layer's canvas. The same thing that happen when you make a selection and do Image > Crop, but only for a single layer. – herpderp Jul 1 '11 at 7:21
I'm sorry I don't understand the difference between cropping a layer and the contents of a layer. Does it not get rid of the contents outside the selection in both cases? – Chaitan Jul 1 '11 at 11:13

Photoshop indicates a selection region around pixels that are 50% opaque or more. This is by design and it doesn't mean that pixels outside the indicated region aren't selected.

If preserving your original selection region is really important, save it to a new channel (Select > Save Selection), and restore it by control-clicking on that channel.

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