The first thing to check is your Layers panel, which is not visible. Are you on a layer with pixels?
That message simply means that Photoshop cannot accurately display the selection and is not necessarily an error. The acid test is to complete the tutorial and see whether the edges of the image are blurred.
The Feather Radius is set to too high a value. Set it to a lesser number of pixels
Looking at your tutorial, it is really very out of date, these days nobody should be deleting pixels as it's a permanent modification and guessing what the feathering setting should be by trial an error is not necessary. Here is an alternative method that will do exactly the same thing but without destroying any pixels
1) Start with your image open in Photoshop
2) Make a selection-incidentally it can be elliptical or any shape
3) Press 'Q' on the keyboard to go into Quick Mask mode and it will look like this unless you have changed the default rubylith color
4) Go to the filter menu and select 'Gaussian Blur' A feather is just a blurred edge essentially
5) Use the radius slider to soften the edge of the selection. You will be able to see visually the effects of the feather like below
6) Press Q to exit the quick mask mode and click on the marked 'layer mask' icon.
7) You can now see the effect of the feathering applied
8) Finally create a new layer and place it below the master image. Fill with your chosen color and you have your completed image with soft edges.
So i was though able to use the eliptical marquee tool even though the rectangular didn't work?
I am unsure of the last step involving adding colours? Could you be more specific cos i want to blur it with black or maybe red on the edges not white as the magazine spread this image is going on has a black background. Thanks
is there any way i can blur the image with garrison blur and not have it a square but a png transparant blurred on edges so it blends into the magazine spread?
so i basically need a largeish black circular blur so it blends into the black spread, currently its white.
You might find this easier as it uses just the one (background) layer, and it happens to be my favourite method to apply a vignette as it is so controllable, and produces beautiful smooth gradients.
You can see I just have the one layer with no masks.
Filter > Camera RAW > fx
Post Crop Vignetting
If you start by reducing the feather down to zero to give the vignette a hard edge, you'll get a better idea of its shape and how it extends into the image. When happy, apply the feather. But just experiment with the sliders to get something that works for you.
Note: If you make your layer a Smart Object by right clicking, the Vignette will be applied non destructively. You'll be able to open Camera RAW again, as many times as you need, and fine tune / change the effect. That's how most of us would do it.
BTW The image would make a great meme on the subject of irony. A huge ghetto blaster driving ear buds!
You may be getting the error message with the selection because your feather setting is too high. Take the feather setting off before making the selection.
To add color just add a layer of color below the masked image layer.
I you are using InDesign for your layout spread you can simply place the Photoshop file with soft layer mask. If you place it on top of black, you will see the image blend into the black.
You can also export a PNG with transparency. Make sure the additional layers have the visibility turned off.
You would likely need to make the Photoshop image black background the same colour mode and value as the layout spread background to ensure that the two blacks seamlessly merge. Otherwise just save with no background with transparency.
PSD would be my choice.
Place the PSD in InDesign. There is no need for the extra step of exporting a png.