clipping_path
Clipping Path

In image editing software, a clipping path is a closed vector path or shape used to remove portions of 2D images. After the clipping path is used, whatever is inside the path will be included, and everything outside the path will be eliminated from the result. Based on the abilities of the image editor, applying the clipping path results in either a hard (aliased) or soft (anti-aliased) edge.

Conventionally, the direction of the path determines what is within it. What is regarded as inside or outside is reversed when a path’s direction is changed. An inclusive path visually represents what is inside of that path line, and an exclusive path represents what is outside. Combining multiple pathways (inclusive and exclusive) with boolean operations to ascertain what the merged path contains results in a compound path.

Cutting objects that don’t need to be drawn since they are outside the audience’s viewport or hidden by display elements is a popular application for clipping paths.