Drawing with the Shape Tools
Photoshop has a pretty good stockpile of built-in, vector-based shapes, which are perfect for adding artistic embellishments or using as vector masks. They include a rectangle, a rounded rectangle (great for making round-edged selections; see The Vector Shape Tools), an ellipse (handy for romantic, soft-edge vignette collages; see Masking with Paths), a polygon, a line, and a gazillion custom shapes (Drawing Multiple Shapes on One Layer). These preset goodies are huge timesavers because they keep you from having to draw something that already exists. And since these preset shapes are made from paths, you can use the techniques described later in this chapter to morph them into anything you want.