How do I copy the outlines onto a separate layer? Here are the steps.

Photoshop images start with a single layer: the Background. My first order of business is to copy the Background onto a second layer. I do that by using the Duplicate Layer command, which is one of the options in the menu at the top of the Layers Palette. (The same command is also in the Layers menu at the top of the screen.)

Once I've created my Outlines Layer I need to get rid of all the pesky white pixels on it that aren't part of the black outlines. My first step in doing this is to use the Wand Tool to select anything in the picture that is black. It could be anything. In this case I selected the dog's ear.

Before I click, though, I check the toolbar at the top of the screen to see whether the Wand Tool's "Contiguous" option is checked or unchecked.

Most of the time I keep this button checked, but for the operation I'm about to describe I want to select all of my black pixels whether they are contiguous (directly next to each other) or not. Which means for now I want it unchecked.
Artwork and the text for this demo are ©2001 by Howard Cruse / All rights reserved