Removing Distractions in Photoshop

Removing distractions in Photoshop is an effective method for improving our images. It is an issue we can face often in our editing. This can be from shadows across our images, or pesky changes in colour or tone in water, and so on. The fix can be as easy as cloning, and sometimes it requires an alternative method.

This tutorial uses a previous version of our luminosity plugin, the techniques are still relevant with our current plugin.

Bradley Brand challenged me to remove a water stain on an architecture image. I show two methods to remove the water stain, one using cloning and a second using Luminosity Selections. Working with luminosity is overkill for this task. We can encounter complex situations where creating luminosity masks may be helpful, so it’s worth learning.

Method 1: Tonal Adjustments

I’m always going to propose that the easiest method is always tried and used first for any task in Photoshop. Using the method shown with luminosity is overkill for this issue, but may be very useful in other scenarios. This part of the tutorial is more based on tonal adjustments.

There are two things that we need to consider when we’re trying to make one area match another in colour and tone. Simply by modifying the brightness of an area, it will not make it match the surrounding area, we also need to modify colour. In this tutorial I show you both how to increase the tonality of the stained area to match its surrounds. I then match the colour of the surroundings to bring it all together. 

This is a very effective method for fixing areas with large amounts of texture and detail. It’s also effective when you don’t have a lot of similar items to copy or clone from.

Method 2: Cloning and Healing for Removing Distractions in Photoshop

In these scenarios, my first attempt will always be to use cloning, healing or a content aware tool. These often work well, and there is no need for the use of more complicated methods. This was a fairly simple cloning job, that could also be used throughout other areas of the wall.