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Thread: Replacing a background

  1. Replacing a background

    I'm still learning to do extractions and such, but my question is what do you ladies do when a background is ruining the photo? I can delete the background, but then what? What do I put in its place, so that it looks right? Whenever I do a solid type colour it looks so cut and copied and I hate it. What would you put in its place to look more natural?

  2. #2
    I have not done too much of this, but I've been experimenting lately with using a textured/patterned paper so it doesn't look as "blank" as a plain color fill:

    I will post another example I like after I find it in my faves!
    Last edited by bluelemur01; 08-26-2008 at 06:06 PM. Reason: edit post

  3. #3
    here's one I like by the way she altered her bg here!

  4. you can also lasso your subject, select>inverse, and blur the background using one of the blur filters.


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  5. #5
    I have often cloned out something distracting from the background when possible, or burned the background to make a distracting element darker. Sometimes these techniques help if its just one or two things in the background and not the whole background.
    Lynn (also known as Lynnie!)

  6. #6
    I've done the blur thing on the background.

    Example here, a very uninteresting background, but I wanted to use the photograph. Only a slight blur.

    And then this one, it was a book signing but I've done a much bigger blur to blur out the books so it's just colour in the background.

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  7. All great ideas ladies, and I've yet to just blur the background like suggested...So I'm excited to try that. I have a few super great photos with backgrounds so distracting that I hope that would be enough...
    Thanks so much for the help!

  8. #8
    I am excited to try some of these things. I love extractions for the very reason amikasmom stated. The background can be so distracting. I always wanted to blur, but didn't know how. Thanks for the lessons.

    Another thing I have found is to just cut it out with the polygonal lasso. That way it looks like you cut it out quickly with a pair of scissors. Then you can paste it or tape it to any background and it doesn't have to look as natural. I did that in this layout:

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Apr 2008
    Ontario, Canada
    This is such a great question!! I'm totally going to try the blur option...learning something new everyday.

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  10. #10
    Here's an example where I softened a BG using a technique by Scott Kelby:

  11. #11
    A lot of times, not only do I blur the background, but I hike the saturation down a lot. That really lets the subject pop.

  12. #12
    If you have PScs3 or maybe PSE has this can erase the background (with the background eraser tool) and it will leave an unusual mottled blended effected...sometimes.
    just call me Uma

    I guess I SHOULD remove the blinkie.
    BUT I'm not gonna!



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