You can use the Move tool to copy selections as you drag them within or between images, or you can copy and move selections using the Copy, Copy Merged, Cut, and Paste commands. Dragging with the Move tool saves memory because you don't use the clipboard.
When you paste a selection or layer between images with different resolutions, the pasted data retains its pixel dimensions. This can make the pasted portion appear out of proportion to the new image. Use the Image Size command to make the source and destination images the same resolution before copying and pasting, or use the Free Transform command to resize the pasted content.
Depending on your color management settings and the color profile associated with the file (or imported data), you may be prompted to specify how to handle color information in the file (or imported data).
Pastes a copied selection into another part of the image or into another image as a new layer. If you have a selection, the Paste command places the copied selection over the current selection. Without an active selection, Paste places the copied selection in the middle of the view area.
Paste In Place
If the clipboard contains pixels copied from another Photoshop document, pastes the selection into the same relative location in the target document as it occupied in the source.
Paste Into or Paste Outside
Pastes a copied selection into or outside another selection in any image. The source selection is pasted onto a new layer, and the destination selection border is converted into a layer mask.
Hold down Alt (Win) or Option (Mac), and drag the selection.
To copy the selection and offset the duplicate by 1 pixel, hold down Alt or Option, and press an arrow key.
To copy the selection and offset the duplicate by 10 pixels, press Alt+Shift (Win) or Option+Shift (Mac), and press an arrow key.
As long as you hold down Alt or Option, each press of an arrow key creates a copy of the selection and offsets it by the specified distance from the last duplicate. In this case, the copy is made on the same layer.
Choose Edit > Paste Special > Paste Into. The contents of the source selection appear within the destination selection.
Choose Edit > Paste Special > Paste Outside. The contents of the source selection appear around the destination selection.
The Paste Into or Paste Outside command adds a layer and layer mask to the image. In the Layers panel, the new layer contains a layer thumbnail for the pasted selection next to a layer mask thumbnail. The layer mask is based on the selection you pasted into: the selection is unmasked (white), the rest of the layer is masked (black). The layer and layer mask are unlinked—that is, you can move each one independently.
A. Window panes selected B. Copied image C. Paste Into command D. Layer thumbnails and layer mask in Layers panel E. Pasted image repositioned
To specify how much of the underlying image shows through, click the layer mask thumbnail in the Layers panel, select a painting tool, and edit the mask:
You can use the Cut, Copy, or Paste commands to copy selections from Photoshop and paste them into other applications, or to paste artwork from other applications into Photoshop. The cut or copied selection remains on the clipboard until you cut or copy another selection. You can also copy artwork between Photoshop and Illustrator by dragging and dropping.
In some cases, the contents of the clipboard are converted to a raster image. Photoshop prompts you when vector artwork will be rasterized. The image is rasterized at the resolution of the file into which you paste it. Vector Smart Objects are not rasterized.
Smart Object: Places the artwork in a new layer as a Smart Object.
Pixels: Rasterizes the artwork as it is pasted. Rasterizing converts mathematically-defined vector artwork to pixels.
Paths: Pastes the copy as a path in the Paths panel. When copying type from Illustrator, you must first convert it to outlines.
Shape Layer: Creates a new shape layer that uses the path as a vector mask.
Note: When copying artwork from Adobe Illustrator, the default clipboard preferences in Illustrator may prevent the Paste dialog box from appearing in Photoshop. Select AICB in the File Handling and Clipboard area of the Preferences dialog box in Illustrator if you want the Paste options to appear when you paste the artwork into Photoshop.
If you chose Paste As Pixels in the previous step, you can choose Anti-aliased in the options bar to make a smooth transition between the edges of the selection and the surrounding pixels. You can also use Matting commands if you have already merged data and are trying to re-extract the rasterized data.
Drag one or more Illustrator vector objects into an open image in Photoshop. This creates a vector Smart Object layer in the image. Choose Layer > Smart Objects > Edit Content to reopen the content in Illustrator for editing.
To copy the vector object as a path in Photoshop, hold down Ctrl (Windows) or Command (Mac OS) as you drag from Illustrator.
To copy the contents of the currently selected layer in Photoshop to Illustrator, use the Move tool to drag the content from the Photoshop window into an open Illustrator document.
Choose Edit > Clear, or press Backspace (Win) or Delete (Mac). To cut a selection to the clipboard, choose Edit > Cut.
Deleting a selection on a background layer replaces the original color with the background color. Deleting a selection on a standard layer replaces the original color with layer transparency.