How to Extend & Smooth Your Background | Bee Trofort | Skillshare

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How to Extend & Smooth Your Background

teacher avatar Bee Trofort, Bee Fearless N Create

Watch this class and thousands more

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Taught by industry leaders & working professionals
Topics include illustration, design, photography, and more

Watch this class and thousands more

Get unlimited access to every class
Taught by industry leaders & working professionals
Topics include illustration, design, photography, and more

Lessons in This Class

4 Lessons (30m)
    • 1. Introduction

    • 2. Separating Layers

    • 3. Using the Clone Stamp tool to Extend & Smooth Background

    • 4. Using Brush tool to Extend & Smooth Background

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About This Class

This Class will teach you two methods of how you can extend and smooth the background in your image in Adobe Photoshop.

The first method we will use the clone stamp tool, the gaussian blur filter, and the noise filter. The second method we will use the brush tool, the gaussian blur filter, and the noise filter.

Meet Your Teacher

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Bee Trofort

Bee Fearless N Create


Hey guys! I'm Bee Trofort, a full-time commercial fitness and lifestyle photographer based in Los Angeles! I will be providing photoshop tutorials as well as photography tutorials, showing you all my process of creating and editing!

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1. Introduction: Alright, guys. So today's workshop I'm going to teach you how to extend and smooth a background in your image while using photo shop. All right, let's get going. 2. Separating Layers: All right, guys. So today I'm going to teach you how to smooth the background and have to extend the background in your images. There's multiple ways that you can do this, but I'm just going to show you a couple of ways that I do them. Okay, So first things first. I have my image here, and as you can see, the background was jailed. But it was also a little bit Brinkley. So it was a wrinkly gray background, and I had a reginal on this side and the blue gel on this side and because she was jumping up, we can still see some of the floor. So the first things first, the first thing that you can do is you can separate the subject from the background, so there's multiple tools that you can use to select the background. Um, a couple of tools that I usually like to experiment with is the quick selection tool. The quick selection tool is great, but at the same time, because it's the computer generating the selections, you may have to go inside and tweak a little bit. So I'm gonna first increase the size. You can use different short cut. So to increase the size, you can use the bracket, the right bracket increase or the left bracket to decrease. Or you can just go up top here and you can just increase and decrease the size. So I'm gonna increase my size, and I'm just going to do like a quick little wraparound just clicking away. There we go during a quick little wrap around, just to see how much of this is going to select says you can see right here whenever I try to click right underneath her arm, it selecting too much of it. Some points to undo that and not just gonna zoom in. So I like to zoom in the shortcut. For that, it's command plus or minus. I'd like to zoom in just to make sure that the selection is perfect. So as we can see here, there's some imperfections in the selection. So what I usually do, you can either go back using the you can go back using the quick selection tool and just click minus so that you're still subtracting from the selection. As you can see here we go here, yet be very, very meticulous on this end, especially when you're editing. When your subject is a person, you definitely want to make sure you're not cutting any of the body parts off for anything like that. So we're going thru just like here. Perfect. There we go. Another tool that you can also use that I usually like to use if you're using a mouse or if you're using a Wacom tablets much, much easier to use is I love the Poly that I just call it the partly tools eso with here. I'm going to put it back to the selection, and you could just click away. The perfect thing about this tool is that it's very very, um, it gives you straight line says you can see if I'm just selecting right here is just giving me perfect straight lines. It's not doing any around this or anything like that. So whenever you're selecting, you're allowed you it make it really enables you to go in and have nice specific lines. Perfect. Okay, so I went a little bit too much on the nail here, so I'm just gonna go back and add also, when you're using this tool, you see, it has the minus sign. So the minus sign is selecting is subtracting from the selection. And the plus sign is adding. So if you're doing if you wanted to assure could instead of clicking up and down here to keep changing it to plus or two minus, you can use the shift. If you hold the shift button, it will add. And if you hold the option but and it was subject our vice, we're going into here, it's gonna keep you want to make sure that especially on the skin, that the lines were smooth as well. So I loved going in with the parley tool because it allows you to get like, a nice straight line and doesn't give you, like, rigid edges on the skin. If it All right, So now I'm gonna also go into this little area here, so there's other tools that you can use. So, for instance, you can use the magic wand tool here, which is also another good selection tool. So, you see, it's actually give me the selection that I need. That was actually perfect. So I'm just gonna go in back with the party tool and just find tweak anything. Where I see it needs to just be a little bit smoother. Sisi, like right here, is bending into her skin was like little triangle something a smooth this out a bit, you know, And usually after we separate, the image from the background will be able to see it much more, and you'll be able to understand the need of making it more specific. So for the hair, one thing that I do fix that part here one thing that I do is I don't remove all of the flyaways. You still wanted to be as believable. It's possible. And you don't want the hair to look fake, you know? So with her having a lot of curly hair, she has a lot of flyaways, so I don't want to remove all of them. So you see these little selections here? I don't want to remove all of those. Especially says we're not. If we're cutting her out for a flyer, for we're gonna change the background completely, then you can do a little bit more different fine tweaking. But for this image says, all we're doing is smoothing. The background is well, it's extending the background. We know that we're gonna keep the background the same color. So what I will do is I'm just going to like a nice little outline for her hair. And then when we goingto editing it, I'll show you guys exactly the difference. So all this area here now, I'm also gonna do one more adjustment. So let's say that I wanted I didn't want this one random piece of hair right here was disturbing for me or just for the image in my preference, you know? So if I wanted to remove this, I can. Actually, in this election, since it's gonna be me editing the background, I can say OK, well, you know what? Let's have the curl and right here. So keeping this little crow area here and I'm just going Teoh make this selection perfect. That I'm going to just minus right here. Right. Perfect. So now we're gonna go to the next side of her hair, you guys. So it's different with each person in each subject, as everyone has different hair. So for here, I'm just pointing Just do a little outline, right? Perfect. And I'm just gonna do again. I'm just going zoom back in and I'm just going to make sure that the her body parts and everything, that is a smooth selection. So this is just me going in just fine tweaking. I'm just clicking away using the minus parley tool. Right. This is perfect. I was going a little bit more. It will be, is getting her fingernail perfect. And I'm going through her clothes, which everything looks good. Our fix now, just fixing her shoot, could you can see it's not getting the full sold of her shoe. And then this area, especially where is overlapping where there isn't the background with a background in the floor meat. We definitely want to make sure we select very, very meticulous and very, very tight here because this is where we're gonna be extending the background. So we have to look as believable and blend as good as possible. So, you see, I'm gonna zoom in. Actually, as you can see, I'm not going right on the edge of, like wears black or anything because those colors aren't true to the background colors. So what I'm doing is I'm selecting using the partly two buttons going. I'm inventing a little bit more so keeping the color of the shoe. But I don't want to get that grayish floor because you can sell this separate from the background, right? Perfect. And then I'm going to just add to this election. Just, uh, in this corner here. Perfect. As you can see, the shoe laces aren't done, so we're gonna go so nothing can go. You can go back with the quick selection tool. And I'm just going to chat. So you see, with these tools, it doesn't see the image. You know what these told you're doing? They're breaking funded. They're creating their selection based on the color and the texture of the image. So, as you can see, it's not a perfect selection because of that is not like it can see that this is a person that is their shoe. You know, the computer is selfish, is breaking down the textures and pixels. So that's why it's always good to just make sure you're going in there and you're fine tweaking. And you're not just trusting the magic Wander trusting any of these quick selection tools, right? Perfect. So going through her legs, everything looks good. Okay, so right here is gonna add here, you guys just very, very meticulous. There's other ways that you can do this. There's other ways that you can edit the background if you just wanna go separately. But this is one of the best ways. The most inches is an intricate way, but it's one of the best ways to make sure that you're getting you have more control over how you edit it. Because even with this background how we're doing this editing process, you can even use the same technique if you want to change the background color if you want to edit the background if you want Teoh, if you want to put the person in a different background, being able to use this technique will give you that freedom. So this selection technique does not just work to change the background, but you can adjust your photo in a variety of ways. By the way, your subject in the back on interact with each other with this selection did so because there's some motion blur. I'm just rounding out issue. I'm not getting in this blur area here, all right, so let me just find tweet with the shoes. - Perfect . Let me under So also big Careful, like these little selections, it's sometimes hard to see, like if resuming out. You can't really see it that well, but make sure make sure you remove those selections because that can really mess up your image in the long run. Right? So let me just go back in. So add to the selection and I'm gonna leave this gap here in the shoe lace Onley because, like I said before, we're not changing the background color. But if we were to change your background color, I would definitely definitely select this area. There we go. Perfect. So all right, so now our selection is good to go. Perfect. So the first thing you want to do after you have your selection, we do not want to delete. So a lot of people, their initial thing would be overcome, just deleted. Or we could just cut the background that what we're not gonna do is cut the background out yet. Um, because what you want to do is you always want to make sure in case you mess up, that you have the background that you have the original image to go back into, so that you don't have to start from scratch. So the first thing I'm going to do is I'm going to duplicate this background layer. So I'm gonna do that one more time so you'll go right to the backdrop background and you'll drag that layer to where it's like a It looks like a square with folded corner. Right? All right, so now the next thing I'm going to do is I'm going to copy this layer, so that got the background. Later, I'm going to right click, and I'm gonna put layer via copy. So now we have just the background on its own layer. So if I turn off all these layers, you have just the background. So when I'm going to do one more time is I'm going to hold the command key and I'm going to press this layer. So now I have the selection again. So one more time, when you hold the command key and you press on that layer, it will make the selection. So if it's a mask, layers, if it's unclear, with the cut off, it's a layer with the whatever shape it is. Even I say we go to the background is going to give us a full square. But with here click it is going to give you this election, and what I'm going to do is I'm going to create a mask. So to create a mask, you would. With this election, you'll just click and that we have the You click the square with a circle in, and now you have the mask. The reason I'm using a mask is just in case we want to add or anything or subject or anything like that. We're not the leading from the original image. We're not removing any content from the original image that we've edited from. Okay, Perfect. So what would the first step be? So now that we have this, there's multiple ways that you can go about this, but what I'm going to do is first, I'm going to duplicate this layer again. I'm just one of those people that loves to duplicate layers just to make sure I don't mess up anything and to know I always have a backup just in case. So what I'm going to do is I'm going to turn off this layer and I'm going to currently I'm going to disable this layer mask. So what I want to do is I want toe use this background to actually make it one full background image. So although we have deleted here, what I want my goal is to be able to fill out this entire this entire spread this entire sheet to make it look like a full background without the subject in it. 3. Using the Clone Stamp tool to Extend & Smooth Background: so there's multiple ways that you can go about it. What some people would do is that would zoom in. They would use the stamp tool, the clone stamp tool, and you could easily just start with the passing. At 100 you can start clothing so crawling away. This is just one way to do it. So even with the textures and as you can see, I'm going, I'm clicking multiple times. I'm not just doing one full spread or anything like that. I'm actually clicking multiple times, even getting the wrinkles to make it as seamless as possible. You can see it's like the red, and there's a lot of different photo, very color variations happening in this background even here. Guys, this is just one way of doing it. This is just using the clone that did so because the subject was here. We can really see you can't really clone how the light would blend. Um, but don't worry. I'll show you guys how we can fix that. And another thing you can just even with this floor here, I'm just gonna clone from up here. All right, so then with this blue area here, I'm just going to just smooth it out a little bit more, right? So right now we have a wrinkly background, and if we turned this background layer that's turned the mask back on, you have now the floors extended. But it's still a wrinkly background, right? So what we can do is, and it's just one method. I'm gonna show you guys some method. I typically would do this just one minute it. So what I'm going to do is I'm going to unlinked the this image that's layer from the layer mask. The reason I'm unlocking it is because I'm about to use the blur technique whenever use Gaussian blur. If you have the link on with your layer mask, any adjustment or filter you make to your layer will actually happen to the selection as well. So, for instance, if I'm blurring the image as you can see, it's still going in on the skin because the layer mask here is being blurred as well. That's not what we want, so I'm going to unlinked the layer mask, and then I'm going to use the Blur again. I'm going back to Gaussian Blur, and, as you can see, that I'm adjusting the blur. The background is still the same, and it's not affecting the subject where it's not affecting the layer underneath. So they regard just raising up the background. I'm raising up the blur. So now this is the original, and this is with the blur. And then what I typically would do as well is when you turn this layer off, you see, the background has a little texture to it, right? It has a little grainy texture. So what I usually would do after I blur it, I will go to filter noise and then I will go to add noise. So I'm gonna go to uniform point to go to uniform and I'm gonna breathe. I'm a bring it down, Gonna bring the texture down. So right now I feel like this is still a little bit too grainy. It's I was gonna bring it down to let's see about toe about four. Perfect. So now we have a little bit of texture in the image in the background. So that was not to green, right? And then now so we see this selection with her hair is little. It's hard. You can see the separation could see the difference. So now we can't go back into our layer mask. When I'm going to do is with the paintbrush. I'm going to blur the later I'm going to blend in the layer mask. So as you can see, the white is the background. The black is the subject. So the black is what's being a race from the layer so that we can see the back of the subject in the area. So I'm just gonna start painting away. So I'm just painting around the outline because there here's cruelly um, you could just have your hardness at zero, and you could just paint about way and just make it nice and smooth and nice and soft. Now she had a pony told or something you would want. It should be a little harsher, since it was more of a slicker hairstyle. But because your hair is curly and you know there's a lot of flyaways with the crows, you can easy just being the harness down and blend it see? But I'm assuming here I would even lower the A pass iti a bit. I'm just going a little bit more into the girls, then you can add. So if you want to add like let's say, I want some more of the hair, you could just use the black to paint it back in perfect. So that's one way of doing it. So that's using the clone. There we go. So that's using the clone stamp tool to call in the background. That's blurring it with the Gaussian blur, and then that's adding the noise at a bit of texture perfect. 4. Using Brush tool to Extend & Smooth Background: So now the second method that you can do the same to to get the same results. What I took people, I'm gonna duplicate this later. One more time. So I'm gonna feeling this clone from State clone Blur and noise. I know everything I did on this layer. So with this layer here, what I'm going to do for this background, I'm going to use the pain blur, and then I'm going to use the noise. So now we're gonna turn this layer off against, and now we have a blank slate. What I typically another way that you can do to fill in the background or to extend the background and to smooth out the background is you can manually paint the background. So knowing that I already have all of the different colors that I can select from knowing how I want the background to look, I can just paint it away. So what I'm going to use is that tapers tool now on the same layer using the paint brush tool. I have my harnesses zero I have my opacity upto 100 and I'm going to keep my finger on the option. But in the option, but it is the eye dropper, but in to make sure that I'm selecting the right colors because this is another way that you can smooth the background and extend the background. So here I'm going to start here with the blue and I'm just gonna paint away. You see, I'm not doing one full motion like this. I mean, we could Let's say we want to change the background. We can do that. Be able to mask. You can do that, you know? And they see actually reading the evil it You can do that, you know, you can fill it in that way. But for this, cause we're not going to fill it in all the way coming disabled sleep mask again. And you see, I'm just pressing, I'm pressing and I'm just moving. So click clicking using the eyedropper and P and I'm gonna lower the a passage just a little bit just so we can get like a nice blend So even at the bottom here with the floors is gonna keep clicking away and keep adding Sorry to be high this mornin Perfectly See, I'm just clicking away figure You just keep cleaning away perfect. And then we're gonna go back to the handy dandy blur tool. The Blur tool is just the perfect way to I want to use the Gaussian Blur. It's just a nice way to actually get, like, a smooth transition, per feeds. And, um, some people, you may see this in your image. Whenever you paint, you make it like these little lines that are happening. Some computers, you'll see a some you may not. And that's another reason why at the noise texture leader, the noise would actually help add some grain to the image which will actually smooth it. So you will not see that these lines. I don't know if you can see them here. We can see, like this line going here usually whenever you're blurring or if you're doing be touching her, whichever sometimes just the images have, like these weird tweaks to it. So now I'm gonna go back to noise and add noise. And as you can see, you barely see them. I could just raise the noise up a little bit perfect. And then I'm going Teoh enable the Liam ask, and I'm gonna turn the background later on, and why not so and then you can go back in again. Like we said, you go back into the layer mask and you just find tweak. If it's the hair, if it's the arm. If, like if this like, let's say do this really quickly, let's say you cut off the arm a little bit, you know, with the mask. If you made make, like if there was an accident this election, right? The best thing the great thing is that although this may have happened because you have a layer mask, you can just paint it back in. He'll still have all that information. So he's going to get the start from scratch or pulling back in or anything like that. So I was gonna go back with the layer mask, Parness zero and then to the smooth that no and that you guys remember how there was that one hair here. See, the original image was that here, but we were able to cover that up. So now we have. There's a visual image. This is when we use the paintbrush, the blur and the noise. And this is when we use the clone tool, the Blur and the noise. Also, one more. Yeah. All right. Well, I hope that this tutorial is very helpful. I'm gonna send you guys this image so you can actually practice on. And you could work on it together and be on the lookout.