Super User is a question and answer site for computer enthusiasts and power users. It's 100% free, no registration required.

Sign up
Here's how it works:
  1. Anybody can ask a question
  2. Anybody can answer
  3. The best answers are voted up and rise to the top

Sometimes in Photoshop I'm working with images at very close-up levels, such as small animated GIFs and emoticons. Often I'm zoomed in all the way, working at pixel level.

If I've got a selection loaded, but want to 'edit' it by adding - or removing - single pixels at a time, is there a way to do this?

It's a very simple thing I need to do: just click on individual pixels and somehow add/remove them from the current selection.

For example: in the image below, you can see the area I have selected, and I want to deselect the two blue pixels down the bottom left, from that particular selection.

photoshop pixel-close selection example

Does Photoshop actually allow such fine control over selection areas and shapes?


share|improve this question
up vote 4 down vote accepted

Yes it does. Just use the "Rectangular marquee tool", hold Alt, click on any corner of the pixel you want to deselect, drag your mouse to the opposite corner and release.

share|improve this answer
Ahh, I didn't think that I'd need to drag from one corner to the other of the pixel in question, I was trying alt/ctrl/shift but was only clicking on the pixel in question! And also as a helpful comment to anyone out there while we document this knowledge on the Internet: if you want to ever select a single pixel as a new selection, (with one-click ease), use any of the marquee tools, in its options at the top select style, choose fixed size, and 1x1. Add new additions to the selection with Shift +. Thanks m4573r! Now I can go forth and work with as much pixel accuracy and control as I like! – user78017 Apr 3 '13 at 9:09
You're welcome :) – m4573r Apr 3 '13 at 9:19
@frenchglen see also – Psycogeek Apr 3 '13 at 9:30

Your Answer


By posting your answer, you agree to the privacy policy and terms of service.