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Popular photo editing app Pixelmator Pro has been updated today with an overhauled set of AI-powered masking tools that make selective editing easier than ever. In the new 3.6 version of Pixelmator Pro masking has been “rebuilt from the ground up”, so it's faster to create and refine masks.

Hide Background is a new option that uses AI to non-destructively remove the entire background from an image with one click. The tool detects the subject of the image and adds a background mask to hide other objects in the image.

Masking a layer or creating a mask from a layer can now be done with the Arrange tool by double-clicking on the canvas, and then controls are available to resize and resize the mask. Pixelmator says this makes things like rounding image corners or clipping individual layers in a multi-layer composition easier.

Mask refinement tools are now available at the bottom of the screen whenever a mask is selected or created, so adjust transparency, change edge softness, invert the mark, add a new mask and more. It's faster to do.

Pixelmator also has support for vector masks, so layers can be masked to specific shapes. Adding a vector mask makes the area inside the vector shape visible, while other areas remain hidden. It is possible to mask a layer by selecting a shape from the Mask menu at the top of the Layers sidebar or by creating a mask with the Pen tool. Vector masks are editable, so each point can be adjusted like a regular shape.

The new features are available for free to existing Pixelmator Pro users. Pixelmator Pro costs $50 and can be downloaded from the Mac App Store. [Direct Link]

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