How do you effectively cut out triangles in Photoshop for a web design easily? Is the only way to use the polygonal lasso tool, which always gets me triangles of unequal sizes. I'm trying to achieve something like this:

Triangle effect


Personally speaking, I don't cut out. I create a triangle pattern which I apply to a rectangle. It's a lot easier.

To do this, create a new 6 x 3 (for example) image. Create guides around the bounds and one down the middle. Draw a triangle with the pen tool and make it the required colour. Then I save it as a pattern.

enter image description here

To repeat the graphic, I create a 3px high rectangle (to correspond the the 3, above, change if yours is higher) and apply the pattern using the pattern overlay layer style which repeats it over however wide the rectangle is.

enter image description here

Of course, if you want to, you can make this shape a selection afterwards and delete the selection from the image you want to 'cut'.


Use the Grid, Luke... Turn on the Photoshop grid using Cmd/Ctl-' and use that as your guide. You may have to adjust the grid spacing in Preferences to fit your needs, but that is the simplest way to ensure your triangles are equilateral, right triangles or isosceles (if that's what you need). There's no need to make more than one selection.

You can use hced's suggestion with path selected (second icon from the left in the control bar -- the one with the pen), then press Ctl/Cmd-Enter/Return to turn the path into a selection.

When you have the selections shape you need, delete, then move the selection to a different spot by dragging it with the Lasso tool, delete and repeat. The grid will help you maintain even spacing.

  • (+1 for the answer and for the sw reference) – Yisela Nov 21 '11 at 15:18
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    The image that's now been added to the question completely changes the answer. In that situation, I'd go with Scott Brown's answer. Why go to the pain of cutting out sawteeth when you can step and repeat by creating a pattern? – Alan Gilbertson Nov 23 '11 at 18:35

If you want to create triangles of equal side lengths, this is the way:

  1. Select the Polygon Tool (U) in the tools palette (fig. 1).
  2. Change Sides to 3 (fig. 2).
  3. Draw out your triangle while holding down Shift.

enter image description here enter image description here

  • Thanks, but I need to cut the triangles out, not draw them. I see what you did and I tried it, but how are we supposed to cut it as shown in that diagram? The original image is a black recangle, but I want to cut it. – Shikhir Nov 21 '11 at 5:04

To build on Alan and Scott's answers, use those techniques using a vector mask to achieve your goal. It's a good practice to learn to be non-destructive: should you need to move your serrated edge you simply adjust the mask to increase or decrease the area required.

In this way you don't have to figure out how to 'cut out' your original design, you simply draw the edge you want and off you go.

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