Understanding the Photoshop Eraser Tool
Photoshop has so many tools that it can quickly become confusing which one should be used to accomplish a certain effect or task. You've probably seen the little eraser in your tool bar and wondered a little bit about it. The Eraser Tool in Photoshop can come in handy, but it definitely has some pitfalls. There are three options to choose from when you choose the Eraser tool, the Eraser, Background Eraser, and Magic Eraser. I’m going to point out the differences between them to help you begin to understand which one you might want to use. It’s important to note, however, that the Eraser tool is a destructive tool. What that means is whenever you use the Eraser tool, the work that you do is permanent. There’s no way to get it back unless you keep telling Photoshop to "Undo". If you realize you made a mistake after already saving, then you’ll probably have to start over. Think of the Eraser tool as a real eraser. If you erase something in the real world, it's gone. You might wonder how you can get rid of things that you don't want in your image if you don't want to work destructively. It's as simple as adding a layer mask to the layer that you want to alter and using the Brush tool to mask out what you want to hide. You'll be able to quickly change any mistakes by using a layer mask. The layer mask also shows you what’s being masked. If you use the regular brush and mask with black, you can achieve the same effect as using the Eraser tool. If nothing else, by the end of this article you should understand that although the Eraser tool seems helpful, what you can do with it can be replicated in more efficient ways, like with a layer mask. Duplicating the layer that you're working on is a must if you plan to still use the Eraser tool, just in case you'll need to start over.