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Filling in Panoramas with Content-Aware Fill in Photoshop

Lesson 31 from: Travel Photography: The Complete Guide

Ben Willmore

Filling in Panoramas with Content-Aware Fill in Photoshop

Lesson 31 from: Travel Photography: The Complete Guide

Ben Willmore

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Lesson Info

31. Filling in Panoramas with Content-Aware Fill in Photoshop


Class Trailer



Course Introduction


Camera Gear for Travel


What Camera Gear Should You Buy?


Gear Bags for Travel Photography


Location Research and Pre-Trip Planning


Importing and Naming Conventions in Lightroom


Processing Images with Presets in Lightroom


Lesson Info

Filling in Panoramas with Content-Aware Fill in Photoshop

I'm gonna take an image here. I'm gonna just do command E on it to open it 'cause I'm not gonna do the smart object trick. And remember when we had a panorama, and with the panorama the... we ended up with a non-rectangular end result and it made us crop in too tight up here on the top. Well here's a trick you can do to fill in the empty parts of a panorama. And you don't have to remember how to do this, if you purchase the class (laughs) because the class comes with, I think it's about a dozen actions, and one of those actions is "fill in empty part of panorama" action. So all you're gonna have to do is click on the name of an action and hit the play button. But for those of you that don't purchase the class, I still want you to get value out of this so here's how it's done. First, go to your layer. Put your mouse on top of the thumbnail. We need the contents of that layer to be selected. So hold down the command key and click on that. That's the control key in Windows. Command clicki...

ng on a thumbnail in your layers panel does something special. What it does is it selects whatever's in that layer by just ignoring the checkerboard. It means select everything that doesn't look like a checkerboard in that layer. Select everything other than the empty parts. Make sense? Then I need the selection to be just the tiniest bit smaller, because right now it's just kissing the edge. I need it to overlap the picture. But not by much. So I'm gonna go to the Select menu. I'm gonna choose Modify, and I'll choose Contract. And I'll just type in one pixel, that's fine. Now it's gonna be overlapping the picture by one pixel. It's just like having a balloon full of air and just let the littlest bit of air out of it. It's the same shape, it's just a little smaller. And so it was the same shape of a selection, it just got the tiniest bit smaller. Then since I don't wanna change the middle part of the picture, I need the exact opposite of what I currently have. I need the checkerboard to be selected. I do that by going the select menu and choosing inverse. Inverse gives me the opposite. So now I have the checkerboard area selected, and that selection should overlap the picture, by just one pixel. That's what I need. Then I'll go to the Edit menu and I'm gonna choose Fill. And I think the default setting is Content-Aware and this little check box would be turned off. I have used this for something else and I didn't reset my preferences before we got started. Usually I would. We definitely need to have Preserve Transparency turned off otherwise it would preserve the checkerboard and not be able to change it. But we want Content-Aware, and then we're just gonna click OK. Doo do doo do, just waiting for it. Get some coffee, whatever. Yeah, I can have a beverage. But what it's gonna do is invent new content to fill in the checkerboard based on what the rest of the image looks like. The amount of time it takes depends on how big the panorama was. But if you look at what it just invented, it's pretty crazy. It's not perfect by any means at all. But it's usually good enough for skies, because they're usually pretty generic, it can do that easily and for some other areas. Usually things like gravel, where it's organic material that is not a pattern. The problem here is that this is like a tiled ground and there it has to be absolutely precise otherwise it doesn't look right and so if you look down there and you were critical about it, the tiles, they're there but they don't line up with the rest of tiles and things. But if you look up where the sky is, that's fine. And that's the part of the image I was concerned with. So it's not gonna work for areas that have patterns or straight lines and things. But it'll work great with organic material. Shrubbery, rocks, skies, that kind of stuff. So now I'm just gonna take this, and I'm not even gonna crop it here, I'm gonna crop it back in Lightroom. 'Cause then I could always un-crop it if I want to. I'll just type command S to save and then I'll close it. And we'll return to Lightroom, and it should come back here. There we are. And, where is it? There it is. Then I'll hit the letter D to got to Develop. Grab my crop tool and now I'll just crop up. Crop in. But it was the sky that I was worried about right here and I didn't wanna crop that in much. Do that. I might rotate a little bit. Just move my mouse outside the cropping rectangle so I can rotate. And then get out of the crop tool. There we go. So you see how we could fill in some of that so we didn't have to crop quite as closely.

Class Materials

Bonus Materials with Purchase

Lightroom Presets Quickstart Guide
Lightroom Preset Sampler
Pre-Trip Planning
Actions Sampler Guide
Travel Photography Handbook
Actions Sampler
Lightroom Keywords
Big Set of Lightroom Presets
Practice Images
Travel Photogtaphy Mobile Guide
Gear List
Lightroom Tips and Keyboard Shortcuts

Ratings and Reviews


This was simply an amazing experience! Without a doubt the best investment of time and money I have experienced in quite awhile. Ben's complete command of the subject, the practical tips, suggestions and reference information was outstanding. I have enjoyed point and shoot photography for some time and recently decided to invest in some decent DSLR equipment (Canon EOS D70). I have a trip to Cape Town and Johannesburg South Africa rapidly approaching and thought it might be a good idea to take some classes and make an effort to get up the learning curve ASAP to take advantage of this travel opportunity. "Discovering" Creativelive and Ben Willmore's class was literally an answer to prayer! There is nothing like sitting at the foot of wisdom, taking notes, and having numerous "ah-ha" moments! This was great....looking forward to more classes. Thanks for the high quality effort!

a Creativelive Student

Genius! Ben is a brilliant master teacher - focused, clear and holds back no information. The best! This course has condensed the equivalent of 10 courses into one. He is a perfectionist in his approach and knows how to present the material. He is the leader in photoshop and photography "par excellence". Highly recommend any of his courses. Save your time and start with the best - everyone loves Ben!!!!

Nichole Sams

I feel the title of this class, Travel Photography, is much to limiting for what you are really going to get. As a wedding photographer, who dreams of traveling, I attending the class live in Seattle, and was hoping to get some inspiration for on location shoots. What I got, however, was a WHOLE LOT MORE. I would recommend this class to anyone with a camera and Lightroom. What I learned about how lightroom works and how to integrate it with photoshop is invaluable. I actually think they should charge WAY more for this course. The bonuses with purchase from the keywords (we are talking every key word you could possibly imagine) and the presets (holycow everything you would ever need) are worth exponentially more than the course price itself. Ben is a gentle easy going teacher and nice to listen to. His ease of teaching pretty complex ideas was truly wonderful. If you are reading this you must buy this course, it is well worth it!

Student Work