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Content Aware Fill

Lesson 2 from: Advanced Content Aware and Cloning

Lisa Carney

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Lesson Info

2. Content Aware Fill

Next Lesson: Content Aware Scale

Lesson Info

Content Aware Fill

Let's talk about the most basic, and my favorite... I love this now, I have to tell you I was slow to the show, I was absolutely slow to the show, there is a function called Content Aware Fill. It's under the Edit menu, I know this is a little basic, but bear with me here, so Edit, Fill, and you get Content Aware Fill. And what you wanna have, is you wanna have as a general rule Color Adaption. It did not used to default on, but it now defaults on to be very handy and helpful. And for some of you who are trying this and if you're new, if your Content Aware is showing, pardon me, if your Content Aware is not showing, it's cause you need to have a selection active in order for that to show. A little frustrating form some folks, I'm just gonna say. And I don't know who I'm talking about, who could possibly be frustrated by that, until she realized like, why is it not showing? It's all about personal experience, here. Alright, so let's talk about Content Aware Fill. And I'm gonna tell you ...

I 100% love this now, I have changed my workflow, and I now spot with the Content Aware Fill. What? Yeah, I spot with the Content Aware Fill. So what happens is in my industry, there's you know, people have blemishes, they have whatnots on them, and my heavens, the cross hairs. You know. You know the pain, right? Please, you have to, I'm not the only one who does Pantene hair ads and makeup. I do a lot of beauty work. The cross hairs are a nightmare. I can see some folks in my mind's eye, namely me, with that heal tool and trying to do it, and no, no honey, from now on, from this day forward, you are gonna be a Content Aware modi-fo-fo. So what we're gonna do, we're gonna use it for spotting, we're gonna use it for cross hairs, and blemishes. I probably am only gonna do it on the cross hairs, because I think you'll get the idea. But let's talk about it, and see how you feel about it. And we're just waiting for the tablet to wake up and say bonjour. Okay, so let's take a look. There's just a little bit of painted hair on top, and it's loosely done, but why do I have painted hair on a top when we're talking about a Content Aware Fill? Why I'm telling you that is, this is gonna look like a train wreck. Some of this is gonna look like a train wreck, and I really wanna talk to you about real world production. So when you're doing a job, and you have very limited time, often times you need to really plow through something, and it's not finessed. And is it not finessed because you know full well you're gonna paint hair over the top? So in my line of work, what happens with a job like this, I have to strip her out, she's gonna be masked out. And, I have to redo the hair anyway because it just needs some love. Because of that, what I tend to do, is I tend to do that hair pretty quickly on and take a look at it. I take it off, and I do my Content Aware, and why I do that is if I need to be very precise in here, I will be. If the client has said you're gonna fill it with hair, don't worry about it, like I want more of a sweep... They wanted more in here, they wanted it filled in, not so loose. I'm not gonna spend that extra ten minutes to get that section perfect. Why would you do that? If you're just gonna cover it up? So once again, with most of my classes, what I wanna talk about is real world. Yeah, I could 100% show you a perfect image of her completely cleaned out, but I'm not gonna do that on a job, and I don't want you to do that on a job if you don't have the time nor money. And I'm telling you, these jobs do not pay. These jobs are quick, and fast, and dirty, and it's all about speed. Bread and butter jobs, you guys ever hear that expression? Excellent, these are bread and butter type jobs. So, I'm gonna just do a before and after, and I'm gonna talk a little bit about what we're doing. So what we're gonna do, is we're gonna do the cross hairs. Now, I love this function, this function is not necessarily super fast, it is way faster, way faster than healing. So why I'm telling you this, in all honesty, is I want you to make a copy, I want you to get a cup of coffee, a little glass of wine, a cup of water, and what you're gonna do is do Content Aware. And in fact, just for demo purposes, I'm gonna go ahead and throw these other two away, so you don't see them. And you're gonna get your lasso tool, and you're gonna make a selection, and you're gonna go under the Edit, Fill, Content Aware, Color Adaption, Go. Now, what I do, I don't drink anymore, but I used to, I used to have a glass of wine, and I would sit here and do this. And you know this function, Shift/Delete fills with Content Aware. Fill, Shift/Delete, excuse me, Shift/Delete brings up your Fill menu, and it will be whatever you last set it up to, Content Aware, so that's what I have. Now that motion, do you see how well this does, by the way? I'm sorry I'm talking about it and I'm not even showing it. I'm silly like that. It's pretty good, it's pretty fast. Anybody in this moment notice that I wasn't hitting Shift/Delete? I was not hitting Shift/Delete. Do you know why I'm not hitting Shift/Delete? Because I happen to be partnered up with a guy who is the action king. I have partnered up with the action king. I hate writing actions, I hate it. It might be from my dyslexic background. I should be able to do this myself, and I'm gonna try to show you how to do it. I have an action that is in the bonus materials, Madame, and what you will get is a action that does Content Aware Fill if you hit F1. It undoes Content Aware Fill if you hit F2. Aren't you happy? You all want it, trust me. So what that means is rather than doing your lasso, and going to the menu, Shift/Delete, I mean you could do it if you want. Shift/Delete, but that's not speedy Gonzales, right? Left hand, circle, F1, F1, F1, F1. You picking up what I'm putting down? Now I don't wanna lie to you, this is not gonna be a three minute job. This is gonna take a little bit, F1, F1, and what Content Aware Fill is doing, I'm gonna deselect that, is it's saying oh, you don't want that line? Let me analyze what's behind that line, F1. Chances are you're not gonna be able to do this, a big, huge, full one. F1, I'm gonna Command H that. Alright that looked like cac. Can I say cac? Anyway, I can't even see it right now. Do you see how it kinda didn't do such a good job? Am I too picky for you? Is that possible? Is it hard to see? So, F2, I made a mistake, F2. I made a mistake, it's not a big deal. Circle a little bit, F1, F1. Do you guys see where the Merlot comes in? (audience laughs) Right? You understand what I mean? But, look at this you guys. And one thing also, I wanna talk about Content Aware Fill that everyone does and I don't know why, they'll do this, they'll do Content Aware Fill, they'll say, "well, that was crap." And they'll go back to the heal tool. No, my children. Patience. F2, undo it, circle it, and if it didn't work out, and you circled too much, F2, undo it. I'm saying F1, I'm saying F2, because those are my quick keys. When you get this action, or if you make your own action, set your own quick keys for it. I just like it cause it's on the far right of the keyboard, and you know it's this hand that's controlling all the goody bits. And I just wanna, circle, you can click off it, if you want just click your cursor, and select off it, F1, F1, F1, and I hope somewhere in here someone, or someone at home is going, "Oh my heavens, that would've saved me hours." So it still, it's a bit of time, but if you've ever had to do cross hairs... Now, do you remember at the beginning I said I don't worry about it if it's khaki... Oh, I just wanna show that real quick. Sometimes what happens with Content Aware Fill... Can you guys see this? It's a little small, let me zoom in. Sometimes what happens with Content Aware Fill, it doesn't do a necessarily good job, you ope, nope, not such a good job, right? No big deal, circle it again. Don't be afraid to keep using the Content Aware Fill, that's one of the larger issues I've noticed with folks who use it, don't be afraid. And you know, okay, there might be a patch here or two that needs some sugar on its own, but I assure you, I would rather have to go back to a few tiny little places and clone in a little goober, than clone out this entire face. I mean, oof, if you can imagine for a second... So let me just just for giggles, go back to History for just a second. And it might go back way too far and have too much in the file, oh, it's going to. Don't worry, don't look, don't look, nothing, nothing, don't look, nothing, don't look. I went a little too far back. Content Aware Fill, alright. You get it? Do you get how fast this can be? Seriously, and why, even thought it's a basic function, I'm telling you folks aren't using this. And can you for a moment think about the hourly rate for this kind of thing? How much would you charge to fix this? How much can they afford? Now I will tell you on my kind of volume of work, we all, I believe, as re-touchers live in a world of the high-end jobs and the low-end jobs. The low-end jobs are often bread and butter money, I need them too. Movie posters don't, I don't have movie poster work every day, I just don't, TV poster every day. So I need filler work. Also, filler work gets your chops up. What are filler work? Filler work are things like wedding re-touching. Filler work is gallery shoots. So on TV shows what'll happen is they'll give you 400 images of everybody they shoot for CBS, for every TV show, and you get paid edit, edit, edit, this is me editing. You get about seven minutes per image. Let me not talk about the rate, but I'll talk about the time, seven minutes per image. How much cleanup can you do? Well I'm telling you, I can lasso with the best of them. Content Aware Fill, this is how I do my bread and butter work. So while it might not be super, uper sexy, it's definitely very effective. Now I'm gonna give the action out, but I'm gonna just, I'm gonna take a little chance here, I'm a little scared, but I'm gonna write this action. There was a collective gasp across the universe just for a second, because I'm not an action writer, but I feel like I should go ahead and try this. And I know it's easy, look, internet people are probably commenting "it is easy," but for my brain, for whatever reason, writing actions gives me a heart attack. But, so what I'm gonna do is I'm gonna record a new action. And I'm not in button mode, so it should let me do it. Let's make a new action. Lisa is scared, (audience laughs) but I'm gonna do it anyway. Edit, Fill, Content Aware, it's not selected, I have to cancel and I have to start over. Do you remember the first slide I made? Do you remember what the first slide said? What happen, how do you not see Content Aware Fill? No selection, see, I love you guys. And I like to show my heiny when it helps you, and my heiny is showing and it helps you. Alright, so now I have a selection, now let's try this again. Second time. Selection is active. Fill, Content Aware, Color Adaption, OK, deselect, stop. Button mode, (gasp) I think I did it. Let's make a selection, let's go to an image. I did it. It's not exciting. And you can set F keys for it and all, or have a boyfriend who happens to be an action master, or get the bonus material and you have this and you don't have to write it yourself. It's so much easier, isn't it? Excellent. Well I hope you see the value of this particular sample for Content Aware Fill. And I'd like to show you another one. This one's a little unwieldy, but I like to show you unwieldy things. Because, you know, why not? Alright. So, recently had a fun job to do and there wasn't a lot of time or money for it. And I had to clean up a section. So it's just, there's the original, there's the next file, but that hand, that hand was not so good, alright? Now I'm taking a little bit of a chance here, because Content Aware Fill changes every time you make a selection, and how zoomed in you are. So I wanna be upfront about this right now, it never works the same way twice. So unless you have a path or a perfect selection, it's gonna work a little different, so bear with me for a minute. I'm gonna zoom in, I'm gonna take my lasso and I'm gonna start and let's have the F1 key work, oh, what I did... Do you remember when I started to make that action? I was a little nervous, and I threw away my actions. So I'm gonna take this off button mode, and I'm gonna reload my actions, I'm gonna throw this away, I'm gonna throw this one away. I'm gonna go find where I stored your class materials. You're gonna get, oh maybe I can do a little demo about this. So, hey, let's make this a teachable moment. You're gonna get an action called Content Aware Fill, you grab it by the lovely icon, and you drag it onto your Photoshop application. Aw, look at her, she's there, she's beautiful, we're happy. Alright let's start over again. Selection active, F1. Hey, don't freak out. Do another one. Okay, don't freak out, do another one. I'm serious, I know I sound, I hope I don't sound patronizing, but honestly, I find so many people give up if it doesn't work the first time. Don't, don't give up. Alright, maybe that's a little weird. Content Aware Fill, don't freak out, circle again, I know it's little in there, maybe I should zoom it up here. I'm getting a little bit of a goober. And then maybe you wanna clone out that line. I'm buying it, are you buying it? Right? Content Aware Fill. I didn't count, but I'm gonna, I did count once before, it took me five circles. Five circles and an F1, and that was done. Dude, could you do that without Content Aware Fill in five circles? You can now, see? So, Content Aware Fill, so look, let's, a really basic thing, I used it for two completely crazy different things. I used it for cross hairs, you can use it for blemishes. Cross hairs in eyeballs that cross over eyes, you know when the eyelashes have hairs going over it? Nightmare, right? Not anymore, Content Aware Fill, it's your best friend. Don't be afraid to circle it more than once. Don't be afraid to undo it. And then Content Aware Fill for large bodies. And it's only gonna get better, check out the new Content Aware Fill that's gonna come out eventually with Photoshop. Now, I just wanna reiterate another point, I don't think it matters for most folks, but let's just talk about it. This was a little bit of Content Aware Fill I did before, I'm gonna turn it off and on, and you can see what I just did. It never does it the same way twice. If you circle things differently, if you go in a different order. Who cares? I don't care, as long as your job is done. I just want to let you know that if you exactly have to duplicate stuff, it's not gonna work exactly the same. Alright, love this action. You've got it in Download. If not, if you're an action person, just write it. You don't need me or my boyfriend. But, I need him. So please use it, I think it's great, it's my favorite. When I go to other jobs, I have this on the Cloud, and I take it with me, because I can't, I mean, it's my baby. It's absolutely my baby. So, good for larger object removal as well, so I just demoed how to take the hand out pretty easy, pretty quick, five circles, and a hail Mary. Alright, so, this might be a little hard for you to read on the phone, but don't worry about it, it's on the bonus material. This is just a Photoshop way of telling you what Content Aware Fill is. I do not speak Photoshop. I don't. So I read this, and I'm like, wait, what? Look, it fills in with surrounding pixels. It guesses what you're trying to do. That's Lisa lame speak. And it does, this is important, though, it does not work on adjustment layers, layer masks, or individual channels. It does not work on individual channels, but you my friends, are not scared, because some of you have taken the fabric class and you know that channel pulling, you can copy a channel and put it in a layer. And do your Content Aware Fill there, and then move it back to the channels if that's where you wanna keep it, wherever you want. It's not up to me. And you cannot do multiple layers at a time, or layer groups. You don't need it, it's all good.

Class Materials

Bonus Materials with Purchase

Advanced Content-Aware Companion Handout
Clone Heal Tool Cheat Sheet
Content Aware Fill Action

Ratings and Reviews

Audrey Agin

Her Action for Content aware fill is the Bomb- great for photo restoration. I learned something in each lesson. I Will have to re-watch a few. She is good at what she knows. Her teaching style, she jumps around a lot, but I felt like she slowed down and explained things better in this course, than in other courses I have watched. I happened to watch Jesus Ramirez “Power tips and Tricks” – great course- it also had Content-aware scale and crop. So by watching both instructors, I now have a better understanding of this tool. Thank you both.

Amy Vaughn

Content aware was one of the best things to happen to Photoshop and this is a great comparison of the different tools that use it. I've been using the content aware fill action regularly since taking this class and now I want to go find a project that uses the vanishing point tool. Thanks Lisa!

Mary Villanueva

I thought the workflow tips were invaluable especially for someone as picky as I am. I would have preferred more demonstration over describing a process which I may or not be able to visualize. I realize, however, that time was of the essence which necessitated the need to rush through so I would probably skip the PowerPoint presentation to save a bit of time and just get to it. The technical details which are necessary to understand can be explained along the way. That said, I thought the class was good. It gave me quite a few tips that I can use. I'm a long-time Photoshop user who is always looking to improve my skill set and understanding of the program.

Student Work