cause i want to change the color of some black lines by locking the layer and coloring just the lines but since it's one page even the white space get colored. don't you guys have an easy way to do that beside wand and eraser. (cause i might have this probleme for all my images and i think it's annoying to use wand every time) enter image description here


Use your image as layer mask for a colored layer. Increase the contrast with curves tool to have both full black and full white. Invert the mask to make the original white areas transparent.

Coarse coloring under the lines is enough to make the lines colored. Here the blue background is added to prove the existence of the transparency. The colors can be arbitary. Here a gradient black-white-orange is applied.

enter image description here

How to:

  • turn your image to RGB (Image > Mode > RGB)
  • add a new layer on top in the layers panel, duplicate it
  • rename the top layer to Color copy
  • rename the 2nd from top layer to Background, fill it with some solid color to see the forthcoming result well
  • fill the top layer (=Color copy) with some other color that is good for the strokes
  • goto your image layer, select all and copy to the clipboard
  • goto the "Color copy" layer and insert a layer mask in the layers panel
  • click the mask icon in the layers panel holding the Alt key at the same time. This brings the mask onscreen (should be white now)
  • paste in place (Ctrl+Shift+V) the image to the layer mask
  • invert the layer mask (Image > Adjustments > Invert)
  • with the curves tool (Image > Adjustments > Curves) or with the levels tool adjust the contrast and brightness until the strokes have plenty of white and the background is black
  • click the image icon of Colored copy layer to make the colored image visible against the test background. You can do this also before applying the curves tool. The edits affect the layer mask if the layer mask icon is selected and the image is visible at the same time

You can fix the effect of the layer mask by "Apply layer mask", but I cannot see what benefits you gain with it except simplifying the game a little and, of course, your white has now literally changed to transparency.

Having the layer mask you can freely test different colorings without destroying your drawing. You can even wipe off something non-destructively using the eraser. It must be applied to the color, not to the layer mask.

  • thank you it was very helpful. i just wanna add that the grey color of the pencil get colored too even after using the curve adjustment and the contrast. so i had to adjust threshold a littlebit – animator Jan 25 '18 at 8:28
  • @animator You drawing has a continuous palette of greys and stroke widths. No software can reliably decide, which is actually intended to be black and which is accidental stroke, unintended smudging or remnants of erased parts during the work. But nothing prevents to try. Have you solved the problem or do you still need something which cleans the ghost greys off more intelligently than setting a stiff treshold which defines which is black and which is white? – user287001 Jan 26 '18 at 5:00

The fastest way to color black lines is to use the bucket fill tool with the chosen color as foreground and with blend mode Color.

enter image description here

To avoid coloring of light grey lines you may need to adjust the black threshhold of your source image.


You seem to be a newbie with PS? Do it by duplicating parts of the image and editing it. Use the marquee, lasso and magic wand and ctrl+j. Your portions will be in separate layers for you to edit. Do the edits and save.


First, you make a clipping path your wanted object using the pen tool after that you will be off your white space from your page.

  • This answer makes head hurt. – Jongware Jan 24 '18 at 15:15
  • I would down vote this but it seem cruel since you only have 1 point of rep. – Scott Jan 24 '18 at 16:21

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