Did you know that the Crop Tool isn’t the only way to reduce the size of an image in Photoshop? Or to crop an image? Yes, it’s true. To crop, you can also take advantage of the Rectangular Marquee Tool (+ Image > Crop) or adjust the canvas size of the file. To reduce the size of an image, you can either use the Crop Tool or go to the Image > Image Size menu item and make your adjustment there. There are multiple ways to tackle this type of task.
I’d like to discuss one of the alternative methods here today. I’d like to tell you how you can safely adjust the canvas size of your photograph without permanently deleting any pixels. Normally, when you shrink your file’s canvas size, Photoshop will give you a warning that tells you that some clipping will occur. That clipping actually deletes data and if you go about reducing the canvas size of a normal layer, you’ll lose those pixels forever. If you need them in the future, they won’t be there. I’ll let you ponder the implications of that.
To safely reduce the canvas size of a file in Photoshop so you won’t delete any data, simply convert the layer you’re working (or the ones you’d like to protect) on to a Smart Object. Smart Objects protect from data deletion. Then, go into the Image > Canvas Size menu area and click. The Canvas Size dialog box will appear and it’s in this box you’ll make your adjustments. Make sure to click in the Relative check box and then choose which unit of measurement you want. From there, enter your dimensions. Be sure to type in the minus sign before entering the dimensions or you’ll actually be adding to the size, not subtracting from it. If you’d only like to remove one side of the image, click inside the Anchor area to dictate which side you’d like Photoshop to remove. Then, click the OK button and you’ll be finished. If you ever want to access the hidden area of the image again, you can go back into the Canvas Size dialog box and add to the size there. Or, you can use the Crop Tool and extend outward. You’ll see all of the parts of the photo you’ve previously hidden with the Canvas Size feature.
I hope this helps you in some way. If you have any questions about this type of task in Photoshop, please ask below.