Home » Introduction to Photoshop » Lesson 64

How to Stroke Paths

Stroking a path draws an outline around a selected path. This capability is useful for outlining a rectangle for a text box, building buttons for the Web, or outlining letter forms you have saved as paths. You can create the outline by using any of Photoshop's painting or drawing tools for a wide range of effects. You can even specify the brush size, opacity, and blending mode for full control over the final result.


1. Open the File

Select File, Open to launch the desired file.


2. Create or Select a Path

Use any of the methods described in the preceding lessons to create a path.


3. Configure the Stroke Tool

In the toolbox, select the paint tool (such as a pencil or brush) you want to use to stroke the path. In the Options bar for that tool, configure the tool as desired. Select a brush and brush size from the Brush menu.


4. Select the Stroke Path

If it's not already open, select Window, Paths to launch the Paths palette. With the desired path active, select Stroke Path from the palette menu. (If the path is not named, the menu option is labeled Stroke Subpath.) The Stroke Path dialog box opens.


5. Stroke the Path

The tool you configured in step 3 should be selected in the Stroke Path dialog box when it opens. If you want to use a different tool, select it from the Tool drop-down list and click OK. A line is drawn, in the current foreground color, along the selected path using the tool you selected and applying the current settings for that particular tool.


6. Deselect the Path

In the Paths palette, click a blank area below the path title to deselect it. This action hides the displayed path and shows only the final result.