Photoshop: Subtract selection subtracts the layer as well

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  • Updated 8 months ago
  • (Edited)
Adobe CC 2014 (Cloud Subscriber Version)1. Create a layer and put a filled rectangle in it2. Use the marquee selection and select the rectangle3. Hold Alt and Subtract a portion of the selection4. Press V to move the selection upwards5. Press M to go back to Marquee6. Hold Alt to Subtract another portionWhat ends up happening for me is the subtracted selection also deletes the rectangle. This is not how it is supposed to work. It is only supposed to subtract the selection.
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Benjamin Wan

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  • frustrated

Posted 4 years ago

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Tricia Cunningham

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Figured I'd post here rather than start a new thread, this is still a problem in CC 19.0.1. An issue with all lasso and marquee tools as far as I can tell. 
1. Select part of layer with raster graphics using lasso.
2. Transform selection. Selection display changes to outline the opaque parts of the selection. 
3. Any marquee or lasso set to "subtract from selection" now subtracts from the graphic itself as well as selection.
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Jeffrey Tranberry, Sr. Product Manager, Digital Imaging

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This is an intentional behavior. When you nudge or transform a selection, it's put on a separate 'virtual' layer/floating selection. This behavior has existed in Photoshop since Photoshop 1.0.
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Tricia Cunningham

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Oh interesting! Is there any way to switch back to a normal selection rather than the sort of virtual layer so you can continue to work with the selection? Seems weird to me that there is no way to subtract from the selection after transforming it without deleting art.