Remove Background Using Photoshop Elements

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    Open the image that you want to edit. This method will allow you to delete more complex background without removing the subject of the picture..
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    Select the Background Eraser tool. Click and hold the Eraser icon until the Eraser menu appears. Select Background Eraser Tool.
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    Set your brush options. In the toolbar at the top of the window, click the arrow icon next to the brush shape. Set the Hardness to 100% so that the edges of the brush remove as much as the center. Set the diameter to a size that works well with the image you have. You will be making large, broad strokes with the brush.
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    Set the Limits to Contiguous. This will delete the color that you select in the circle, but only if the colors are touching. This will help keep from deleting colors inside the subject of the photo, while only erasing the background.
    • If you have spots of the image where there is background inside the subject (wisps of hair that can be seen through, for example), use the Dis contiguous option to remove the background from inside the isolated spots.
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    Set a low Tolerance. A low tolerance limits erasure to areas that are very similar to the sampled color. A high tolerance erases a broader range of colors. Set your tolerance between 20-30.
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    Bring the pointer near to the edge of subject. You will see a circle with small cross hairs in the center. The crosshairs show the “hotspot” and deletes that color wherever it appears inside the brush. It also performs color extraction at the edges of any foreground objects, so that color halos are not visible if the foreground object is later pasted into another image.
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    Click and drag to start erasing. You can allow the circle to cross over into the subject while erasing and you shouldn’t lose anything, but do not allow the cross hair in the circle to touch the subject, otherwise you will start deleting those colors..
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    Check your progress. As you click and drag you’ll see the checkerboard pattern appear in the areas you have erased. The checkerboard represents transparency.
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    Continue erasing around the subject. In some places you will need to reduce the size of the brush to ensure that you don’t accidentally erase part of the subject. For example, in this image you would want to change the size when erasing between the petals.
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    Focus on erasing on the exact edge of the subject. Once you have the subject properly outlined, you can make broad strokes with a standard eraser to remove the remaining background.
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    Smudge the edges. If you want to soften the edges of your subject so that it will blend in better with the whatever background you put it on, use the Smudge tool. Set it to a low strength (20% or so) and drag it around the edge of the subject. This will soften any hard lines.


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