Photoshop CS5: Subtract/exclude a vector mask from an existing mask

I am attempting to create very simple icon, which resembles a ‘dashboard’ of a car.

The first part of the icon (shape 1) was created by adding and subtracting shapes. The second part (shape 2) was created because the three parts of the shape needed to be placed accurately.

Is there a way to subtract shape 2 from shape 1? I am aware that shapes can be combined, but can they be “excluded” together?

Here’s shape 1:

enter image description here

and here’s the second shape that I want to subtract from the first:

enter image description here


  1. Select the path of shape 2 on its layer. Copy the path.

  2. Target the shape 1 layer.

  3. Paste.

  4. Activate a shape tool (rectangle, ellipse, doesn’t matter).

  5. On the control panel, click the “Subtract” icon (second from left).

  6. Turn off or discard the shape 2 layer.

Not nearly as simple or intuitive as it would be in a native vector application like Illustrator, but it’ll get you there.

Source : Link , Question Author : Greg , Answer Author : Alan Gilbertson

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