How to Use Content-Aware Fill
Not every image needs something. Sometimes people just like to fiddle and it's like what can I do? What can I do to this image? So in this case, I was thinking how can I find some way to show you how Content Aware Fill works. And the reality is, sometimes when you've got an image and you were envisioning it a certain way in your mind, and then the reality didn't quite line up. Maybe you were framing your shot and just as you went to take the picture a person walks into the frame. Or a bird flies through the corner. Or something funny happens. Those are all little things that aren't really blemishes, they're not imperfections, but it's something that you could, if you wanted to, you could go ahead and re-touch that. So in this example, we're gonna just pretend that maybe we don't want to see this bird over here. Maybe we just wanna get rid of this little one sittin' down here and we want all the focus to be on this bird that has his wings extended. I've been working with a brand new rel...
ease of Elements and I think when I installed one of the updates that my Preferences file got a little bit messed up. If you are ever working with Photoshop or Elements or any of the products, the different Adobe products, if it ever starts not responding, or acting weird, or being really super slow, and just all around a pain in the you-know-what, one of the best things that you can do to try to fix that is to trash your Preferences file. For whatever reason when it acts silly a lot, it seems like the problems are related to your preferences. So what we did to fix the problem in this case was we re-booted the computer, closed all the software and everything, and then the way that you can easily trash your preferences, even if your computer is not being entirely cooperative, is with the software closed, I went down to my dock, my taskbar down here, and the software was closed, and I held down Command, Option and Shift. Or Control, Alt, Delete I guess on a--or, Control, Alt, Shift on a PC. And I held all of that down while I launched the program, and it opened and then a little message came up and said do you wanna re-set all of your preferences or re-set your Photoshop Elements? And I clicked yes. And then it instantly got a lot faster. So that's what you need to do, or at least try that if you find yourself in a similar situation. So we'll give this another go. We're gonna try to re-touch this bird over here. So I'm gonna zoom in, Control or Command, Space bar. Draw a box around it and zoom on in so we can see what we're doing. There's a lot of different ways that you can approach these retouching projects. And in this case what I'm gonna show you is something called Content Aware Fill. So you have to evaluate the image that you're working on to get an idea about which approach might work best. In this case, removing this bird is not something that we're gonna do with the Eraser tool. If I grab the Eraser tool and try to erase this bird, essentially what I'm doing is painting with this background swatch, right? Because I'm erasing the picture and I'm revealing the background, or if you think of it in the real world, I would be like revealing the paper backing. And in this case it's white because that's what's over here in my Swatches panel. So that's obviously not gonna work. I can't just erase this because then we're left with a hole and Photoshop doesn't know what to put here, and that's not the approach that we wanna take. So instead I'm gonna grab the Lasso tool. There's three members of this family. We saw this the other day. We're gonna stick with this Freehand Lasso and I'm just gonna draw a not-very-careful selection around this bird. Just something like that. So I'm selecting the bird but I'm also getting some of this background. And what we're gonna do is tell Photoshop to replace the contents of this selection with whatever it thinks belongs there. So we're gonna let Photoshop do the work for us. So if I come up to the Edit menu and I choose Fill, so Edit Fill, and I get the option here to fill, fill the layer or fill this selection with a number of different things. So this is a great way if you wanna just do a quick fill with a foreground color or a background color and you can't remember the keyboard shortcuts, this is one place that you can accomplish the same thing. You'll notice then that one of the options is Content Aware. So we'll leave it set to that. I'm gonna ignore everything else and just click okay. And this is when you do like a little cross your fingers move, and you think, you ask Photoshop please work, please work, please do it. And look at that. It's filled it in with this mossy, grassy pattern, and I think it actually did a great job. I'm gonna get rid of the marching ants so we can see by pressing Command or Control D to deselect. You could also deselect by coming up to the menu up here, the Select menu, and choosing Deselect. So that's pretty awesome. I mean, where was that bird again? He's gone. He is so outta there. So now we're left with this image, which I like, that we just have the one bird.