Select and Mask

Photoshop now has a new Select and Mask space.

Role : Lead Designer
On occasion the designers of Photoshop have to start with technology and craft that back to user benefit. This project start with : "Let's put in the latest algorithm for the quick select tool"  and  "the latest edge selection algorithm (previously in refine edge)".
From a Design Judo perspective we found momentum we could leverage to do the right thing for our existing and future customers. 
There are two main discrete types of selection:
Quick Low Effort
Quick group of marching ants allowing for targeted adjustments/changes/fills/copy etc : a low effort selection. (lasso)
Complex High Effort
A selection of a complex object in order to isolate it : a high effort selection (quick select tool)/masks/polygonal lasso
Complex, high effort selections where what we were working with. What could we simplify? What were the pain points and for whom. The users we were targeting were new new ps users / and generalists. Those types of users were not familiar with the term mask. Needed a clearer visualization of what was being selected. 
Early Ideation and Sketches

(after/during research and documenting conversations with the team)
What Shipped. So Far.
Thanks to the customizable toolbar work we were able to leverage the same investment to contextualize the tooling when entering Select and Mask the user is presented with a contextualized selection toolbar showing only what's needed/usable.

New visualization "Onion Skin" allows the selection to be shown on any layers visible below the layer. (in this case the layer below is a layer filled with forest green.) Commit buttons moved to lower right to help contextual UI shift read left to right top to bottom.
Quick select brush in Select and Mask space.
The edge selection tool is a top level tool (where it was more difficult to find in refine edge) in Select and Mask space it is fantastic for hair.
The final selections from Select and Mask should be easier to achieve not only because of the new algorithms but helped along by a new the new contextual task space.
This work is not "complete." There are many ideas for Select and Mask we hope to implement in the future... some of which are hinted at in the early drawings above. 
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