Content Aware Fill and Environmental Portraits – Cleaning Up Distractions

by John Downey

I’ve played around with Adobe Photoshop CS5’s Content-Aware Fill for a while now but dismissed its application because I believe in getting the right shot SOOC, cleaning up the background as I go.  However, I believe there’s an “honest” use of this digital post-processing magic, especially with portraits.  Sure, there was a shadow and person in the background that I’ve erased, so the original image that’s “real” is below.  But what I wanted was a genuine environmental portrait of this shepherd girl in Guassa Conservation Area, Ethiopia.  That I had a second or two before she moved on to catch up with her goats meant I was going to get a clean background or not, given the time I had.  You be the judge.  Does erasing the distracting elements in the background work for a better image or would you dismiss it because I’ve intentionally erased them from the original?

Advertisements