I have a text which has transparent space in it. I wanted to trace that space in order to use it as a clipping mask for an image.

enter image description here

I selected the space using magic wand. I some how did something and converted the selection into a visible filled space in a new layer.

enter image description here

I'm not able to do it again because 'Apply Layer Mask' is disabled right now; I don't know why.

Could someone help me out how to accomplish this? Thanks in advance.

2 Answers 2


This answer is an alternative to Vicki's method

You can select the inner spaces, then convert the selection to a mask.

  1. Add the image you want to mask and the text layer to PS.

PS img and txt

  1. Select the inner transparancy in the text with magic wand. (You can also ctrl-click the layer thumbnail in the layers panel, then invert the selection and remove the outer transparency from the selection)

select inner transparency

  1. Now select your image and click 'Add layer mask'.

add layer mask

  1. optional: hide the text layer

hide layer


Let's start over, since it looks like your happy accident produced a semi-transparent "Let's Ride" mask and it makes it hard to see what's going on...

To keep things simple, I'm starting with just a Background Layer (with the visibility turned off for now) and a Text Layer.

Start Here

  1. With your Text Layer selected, use the Magic Wand to select the space inside each of the letters. Hold Shift as you click inside each letter to continue adding to your selection. (Note: The Magic Wand's tolerance level defaults to 32, that should be fine for the type of selection you're doing.)

Step 1

  1. After all your letter shapes have been added to the selection, create a New Layer

Step 2

  1. Go to Edit > Fill to fill the selection on your New Layer with a solid color. Any color is fine, just make sure the opacity is set to 100%.

Step 3

  1. Now that your text shapes are filled in, deselect your selection (ctrl+D, or command+D if you're on a Mac), and click the eyeball icon next to the Text Layer to turn off it's visibility. You should only see your solid-colored Mask Shape now.

Step 4

  1. Let's mask something! Create a New Layer just above your Mask Shape, and paste in your image.

Step 5

  1. Right click your Image Layer, and select "Create Clipping Mask".

enter image description here

At this point you can toggle on your original Text Layer if you still want it, and/or your Background Layer to see things better.

  • There's no need for steps 2-5. You can create a layer mask directly from a selection. Just select the area you want and click layer mask (alt-click for inverse layer mask)
    – PieBie
    Commented Nov 26, 2015 at 10:06
  • @PieBie True! Glad you added it as an answer, got an upvote from me. :)
    – Vicki
    Commented Nov 26, 2015 at 22:19
  • Thanks Vicki! Got the 'revival' badge because of that :D
    – PieBie
    Commented Nov 27, 2015 at 8:17

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