How To Make Rounded Corners In Photoshop

Do you ever wonder how to round the corners of your photos? I used to. If you use Photoshop a middling amount, it’s not that hard. It’s simply a matter of learning “masks.” Masking is a graphics art concept that’s somewhat counter-intuitive until you do it a few times. So my advice… don’t read about it; just do it.

Once you know the trick, you’re not limited to rounded corners. You can do all kinds of cool things with photos and shapes, though rounded corners is probably what you’ll use most. Here’s how….

Step 1. Find your photo and prep it, including shrinking it if you need to. (Mr. Web Diva was climbing trees again yesterday — and taking gorgeous photos at the same time, so I’ll use one of those.)

The original photo

Step 2. Duplicate your photo in the layers palette.

Step 2

Step 3. This is the easiest step to forget and it won’t work without it. Between the two photo layers, insert another layer and fill it with your page’s background color (in this case white).

Step 3

Step 4. In the next to top layer (layer 3), put a rectangle with rounded corners using the shape tool.

Step 4

Step 5. Click on the top (photo) layer, and then enter the Layer / Create Clipping Mask command. Voila. A photo with rounded corners.

Step 6

Extra credit. For step 4, instead of using the rounded rectangle, go wild. Use a free-form shape, draw something yourself, or use a large font like this….

Step 7

11 Responses

  1. Dear Ty, Sorry you are having difficulty with steps 3 and 4. I’m not sure what the issue is. In step 3, to add a layer, you can use the “Layer / New” command. To fill it with the background color you can use the paint bucket tool. For step 4, to get to the Rounded Rectangle tool you click on the Shape tool, then select rounded rectangle, then create one by dragging your mouse from say the top right to the bottom left. Once you get the hang of it, it’s really easy. I promise. There are just a few humps to get over.

  2. Thank you so much, i was just stuck in this, i was trying to do this but the result was always disastrous, this is the easiest method. Thank you. But a problem, i want to make my corners transparent, so that they can be viewed on any page without any changing

  3. I got up to step 5, and then what? It created the clipping mask command but I don’t have rounded corners. Is there a step I’m missing?

  4. Shaheer – Sorry, but I don’t know how to do that.

    Maria – Did you use the rounded rectangle tool in step 4? I can’t think of anything else.

  5. Nino — Sorry I didn’t see your comment before. That’s a picture my husband took tree climbing.

    Tim — You click the shape tool in the main tool bar on the left, and from the options, choose rounded rectangle. Then on your image you click and drag out a rounded rectangle. Hope that helps.

  6. The create clipping mask was where I got last. I even googled how to do that, and I did it, but my edges weren’t all of a sudden round. Any ideas?

  7. This was so easy! But I have one problem. My corners aren’t as rounded. Its like the very tip of the corner is rounded, but not that nice round edge that you get. Any idea how to make them more rounded??