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Removing background haze in Photoshop

Discussion in 'Retouching and Post Processing' started by carauction, Sep 16, 2008.

  1. Wondering if any can recommend the best way to select the background in Photoshop, and use a Levels adj. to remove background haze.

    Much appreciated

  2. Wileec

    Wileec Guest

    It depends on the image. I'd suggest you post a low-res version for people to see what you are talking about.
  3. rocketliv

    rocketliv Guest

    When I want to select the background, I use the magnetic lasso to go around the main subject and anything I want to keep and then Layer>> Select Inverse. This changes what is lassoed to the background. I then make it its own layer separate from the original photo layer and do the adjusting there.
  4. Thanks.

    Using the magnetic lasso tool, could I accomplish the same by selecting my background, instead of my subject. Then making an adjustment edit using levels? Not familiar with feathering. Would I benefit by feathering, and how much?

  5. Like Mel Blanc said, post an image for an example. Selection tools in Photoshop varies so widely it's hard to give one general technique.
  6. Yes.

    This is the thread that shows my images. The background haze is from a large pond in the background behind the horses.

    Thank you

    Last edited by a moderator: Mar 15, 2017
  7. bharada


    May 25, 2006
    SF Bay Area, CA
    Typically I'll make a duplicate layer then use the Extract tool to remove the background on the top layer. Then I can make adjustments to the bottom layer as needed.

    Russell Brown (one of the PS development team at Adobe) has a lot of tutorials on PS.

    Scroll down the page to the "Advanced CS3 Masking with Monsters! (The Series)" section for tips on using the Extract tool.
  8. rocketliv

    rocketliv Guest

    Feathering may be needed depending on how much you change the colors and contrast between subject and background. But I always recommend a new layer rather then just selecting and editing. Its too permanent!
  9. If this is what your looking for, I'll write what I did.

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  10. Thanks Liv & Greg & Bill

    gonna need to open my CS3 books...I guess:rolleyes: 

    Appreciate your work and help. Now I have some notes to lead me along.

  11. to bust the haze there is a simple method using USM. Basically you apply a usm of 25,50,0 (amount, radius, threshold, ) and it appears to bust away some of the background haze. A little bit of a crude tool but helps lift away the haze. If you do not want to apply it to the whole image, copy the part of the image you want busted to a new layer. Or similarly apply a quick mask then use the usm
  12. Wileec

    Wileec Guest

    The "haze" is primarily an issue of how it was shot and post processing. Which it is more from I can't tell since I didn't see the real thing. Just about anything you do will draw more attention to the background, and therefore remove more from your main subject. Also, depending on how you approach this, it's going to directly screw around with the dirt that's in the air in that area and that is, in my opinion, an important part of showing the action of the shot. Likely, you need to make a selection that includes the areas you want to address, but it shouldn't mess with the dirt, too - that may be a bit challenging, without some tedious layer mask work.
  13. Thanks Wileec, Phil and Peano. More info. to go on.


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