This lesson is exclusive to members

Adobe Photoshop CC - Advanced Training

How to trim the white away from the edge of an image in Photoshop

Daniel Walter Scott

Download Exercise Files



We’re awarding certificates for this course!

Check out the How to earn your certificate video for instructions on how to earn yours and click the available certificate levels below for more information.

You need to be a member to view comments.

Join today. Cancel any time.

Sign Up

Hi there, this video we're going to look at trimming out, say something like this, where there's a scan, there's all this kind of white area that I don't need, and just magically trimming it up right to the edge of the pixels, without messing around with the Crop Tool. Same here, where we open up an Illustrator file, is this kind of mysterious transparency that's appeared here, it's not what I need. It's when I trim it down, so it's right around the outside, ready to go. Let me show you how now. 

To get started let's just open 'Trim1.jpg' by itself first. So this trick is great for scans or anything that's just on a white background. Doesn't really matter what it is, but I do it often. I hand draw stuff with a sketch, bring it into Photoshop, I'll use the levels, just to get that nice strong whites and the blacks. Then I just want to trim it all up. Got all this kind of extra skin junk around. All this kind of extra white stuff around the outside. 

So just go to 'Image', 'Trim'. And what it's going to use, it's going to use whatever the color pixel is, in the top left hand corner, which is white, it's going to use that to trim. If this was on a blue background, it would use blue as its kind of trim color. You can decide to only trim away the top, left, bottom, or right. I'm not sure why you'd ever do that, but let's click 'OK'. It just trims it down to what we've got. Cool, huh? Save it. Nice and clean document. A lot easier than trying to drag out the Crop Tool, and trying to get it in there, and get the edges. 

Let's look at the second example. Let's go to 'File', 'Open'. We keep this separate because it's an AI file, Adobe Illustrator, so 'Trim2'. It's going to leave it all at the defaults, click 'OK'. And because of the way that this is constructed-- this happens to me a lot with logos that I've got from people, you open up in Photoshop, there's this mystery transparent box. Don't know where it came from, but you don't need it. So you want to trim this up, and works the exact same way. So you go to 'Image', 'Trim'. But there's another option here, it says, 'Transparent Pixels'. So I want you to remove all the transparent pixels, please, and get it to a nice tidy shape. Save this maybe as a PNG or JPEG, and you're ready to go. It's a nice simple tip, useful every now and again. All right, next video.