Photoshop: a "sweeping" single-row marquee selection.

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I'd love to have a key modifier (or other option) that would cause the single-row marquee to "sweep"; in other words it would keep selecting single rows as I move the selection left/right or up/down, as opposed to having to individually click each row. IMO this would be an incredibly useful modification to a tool I already use on a daily basis.
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Brian Pylant

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Posted 4 years ago

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Chris Cox

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Could you provide some detail on why you need this: how are you using the single row marquee that you need to "sweep" it?
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Brian Pylant

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Hi Chris-

I work in prepress so I'm often faced with less-than-optimal images to work with, that often require a fair amount of adjustment for print. We regularly receive entire designs created in Photoshop. And more often than not, we receive PDFs so when I extract the image out to edit it's flattened or merged into a single layer.

Here's one example of an edit where a sweeping single-row marquee would be useful:

Let's say I have a rectangular photo as part of a larger design done in Photoshop, and I need to make adjustments either to that photo or to everything else but the photo. I want to get a rectangular selection that precisely matches the edge of that photo.

Obviously step one is to draw a rectangular selection around it, but knowing that I'm unlikely to draw that rectangle perfectly** (it would probably be a few pixels too large or too small) I'm inclined to make it slightly larger because removing the excess selection is generally easier; I zoom into one corner and move the selection to precisely align with that corner, then go to the opposite corner diagonally and use the single row tool to tighten up the selection on the opposing sides.

If I'm only a couple of pixels off then it's no big deal to click each row individually, but if I'm more than five or six it would be easier to click on the closest row and then sweep outward to just remove all of them with one "gesture."

And come to think of it, if I had the sweep option I might not try to draw the initial rectangle as tight in the first place knowing that I could more easily tighten it up afterwards.

I hope this makes sense! :)

** I'd love to just zoom in to make the rectangular area fill the entire screen, but if I did that when the mouse approaches the edges of the screen Photoshop scrolls off rapidly. The only way to avoid this is to make sure the area you're trying to marquee is sufficiently away from the edges of the screen, and the more you're zoomed out the less accurate the selection.
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Chris Cox

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It sounds like you're just trying to crop, and using an odd workaround to achieve a tight crop.
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Brian Pylant

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No, I'm not cropping the image, I'm getting a selection around a rectangular area and using the single-row marquee to make sure it's pixel-precise. It would just be a lot easier IMO if I could sweep to tighten up the selection rather than individually clicking each row to do this.

If I was cropping a rectangular area I'd simply use the crop tool.