Please look at the picture below - Photoshop Masked layer

I selected an area from a mask, when I hit delete key, it just paints that area as white. If I select whole canvas and hit delete, the whole area gets white. All I want to do is delete the selected area from the mask. I remember I could do that previously. So my best guess is I turned some options on/off that is preventing me from doing that. Please help me out.

2 Answers 2


Just figured out, if the background color is set to a light color, clearing the selected area will actually add to the area. If the background color is set to dark, selected area will be deleted from the mask.


From Star Wars A New Hope: "It's a trap!"
Actually it's a mask. A mask uses white for "full effect" and black for "no effect" with grays for "partial effect." If you use a selection when creating the mask, the selection becomes white, with black for everything outside the selection. You can't really delete parts of the mask, you just turn them on or off.

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