Different methods to cut/remove image background in Photoshop

Different methods to cut/remove image background in Photoshop

Different methods to cut/remove image background in Photoshop

adobe photoshop CC
adobe photoshop cc

with and without feather

There are lots of applications that can be used in cutting/removing the background of an image like Corel Draw, Illustrator and etc. specifically, I will be focusing on Photoshop in this guide.

There are several ways one can use in removing the background of an image in Photoshop, though the techniques works depending on the image in question which you intend to work on.

Before I will proceed I will briefly give a basic explanation what Photoshop is about, Photoshop is an Image Editing software which helps in enhancing the looks and feel of images, as you may know, Photoshop can be used to edit, create or design complex graphics and manipulations with its plugins, actions, and tools.

Having explained some briefs about Photoshop lets go to the various ways on how to cut/remove background image and the kind of images each process works best for.

Removing Image background with the Magic Wand tool (W).

magic wand tool 2
magic wand tool 2

The Magic wand tool is a powerful tool in Photoshop that selects a background of the same color, to select this tool press the “W” key on your keyboard.

Note: they are two (2) tools which the “W” Key activates, the Other tool is the “Quick Select”, so you need to check always check which is selected before usage and also try to differentiate them via the icon representing them.

To switch between the tools hold “Shift + W”

Magic Wand works perfectly with an image with a plain background with one color an example of this is a passport photograph taking with a white, blue or red background.

How to Use the Magic Wand tool to cut/remove the image.

  • Import the image with the plain background in Photoshop
  • Select the magic wand tool by clicking on the icon in the toolbar or press “W” if Magic wand is not active kindly switch as mentioned above.
  • After selecting the magic wand tool, click on the background of the image and it will select all the areas with the same color
  • It would be highlighted; at this stage, you need to check the selected area if it covers the unwanted and also if it selects the area you don’t want to remove.
  • To highlight other sections not highlighted, hold down the “Shift” or “Option” key on the keyboard then click on the area you need to include.

And also, if you want to remove highlight or selection, hold “Alt” on the keyboard to deselect the unwanted area.

Once you are satisfied with the selection, then you can remove the background.

SEE ALSO: How to Create Adjustment Layers Based on Color

How to remove the background of Image

I will always make reference to this step to removing the background of an image in the rest of the article, so kindly take note of this in other not to get confused in the long run while trying to remove background with other tools in Photoshop.

Adding Feather: this is not mandatory in all image there are some images you can remove background without adding a feather to it, feather helps to blend the edges of the image to the newly inserted background, after the explanation on how to add feather I will illustrate below with two images, one with feather and on without feather for better understanding on how feather works.

How to Add feather

  • After highlighting/selecting the area you wished to remove with your preferred tool, right-click on the background and select feather in the option that displays.
  • Feather selection dialog box displays, enter the preferred feather radius, kindly note the higher the number the more it blends. For picture photographs, it’s advisable to use from the range of 0.3 to 3, depending on the image quality.
  • After entering your figure press Okay.

You can also use your keyboard to pop up the feather selection dialog box by holding “Shift + F6” or “Option + F6” for Mac. Then enter preferred value and press Okay.

Different methods to cut/remove image background in Photoshop

Possible ways to remove Selected Background

Unlocking the background Layer: after completing the step listed above, the next is to remove the selected/unwanted background.

Though I see this step as a long way of removing/changing plain or complex background, nevertheless let’s proceed

Double click on the locked background layer to unlock it; a dialog box will display as shown in the image below.

Then press ok, the back background will be unlocked. Lastly, press Delete on the keyboard to remove the background.

Now you can insert your preferred background to it.

Layer via Copy: using this method will enable you to change the background image without unlocking or removing the original layer.

Once you are done selecting the unwanted background as stated above, right-click on the background of the image and click select inverse in the options that display or hold “Shift + F7” to select inverse

Note make sure it’s the main image character you intend to use that is selected, if it’s not the one selected then you have to select inverse again.

Once you are sure of selecting the wanted section, right-click on the background image, and click Layer via copy in the options that display, you can use the keyboard also by holding the “Ctrl + J” to copy without right-clicking and selecting Layer Via copy.

The image will be copied from the main background to another layer, now you can add your new background.

Inserting Color Directly: this works perfectly when you want to replace with a plain background, after selecting the unwanted area or section of the image.

Click on the set background color, and choose the preferred color you intend to use and click okay.

The hold “Ctrl + Shift + backspace” or “Ctrl + Shift + delete” to change the background at once.

There are other ways of removing background in other not to make this article too lengthy, let me switch back to other techniques or method to remove background with other tools.

Different methods to cut/remove image background in Photoshop

Removing background with the Quick Selection Tool (W)

This is one of the tools I used frequently while removing background images, it works perfectly on a plain and complex background.

As mentioned earlier both the quick selection tool and the magic wand tool can be picked with the “W” key so don’t forget to switch if it’s not active after pressing the “W” key.

How to remove background with the Quick Selection Tool

Once the tool is selected, left click and drag through the area you wish to select, to continue selection, hold Shift and drag, to remove an area selected hold alt and drag towards that area, the clip below will explain more on how to use the quick selection tool.

Once this is done then you can choose any of the possible ways on how to remove the selected background as stated above.

SEE ALSO: Customizing Photoshop Shortcut Keys

Removing background with Polygonal Lasso Tool (L)

This is the most frequently used tool, it gives you the access to trace the outline of the image you intend to remove, to pick this tool press the “L” key on the keyboard.

Note: you can also select the Magnetic Lasso tool and the Lasso tool with the “L” key to switch between these tools hold “Shift + L”.

Each tool in the lasso family does the same thing but different ways or methods of usage.

How to remove background with Polygonal Lasso Tool

Before proceeding, it’s important to know how to add and remove the selection, always hold “Shift” key and click at the beginning when you’re about to start tracing, this help in adding selection, once this is done you can release the shift key before continuing tracing the image. To remove selection hold “Alt” and click then release the alt key before continuing the tracing.

The clip below will give you a better illustration of how to trace with the Polygonal Lasso tool.

Once you are done tracing you can now follow the instructions stated at the beginning section of this article on the possible ways to remove the background image.

Note while tracing you need to click on several intervals to add selection and press backspace to remove the added selection.

Removing background with Lasso Tool (L)

If you are good at tracing with the mouse, I will recommend this tool to you, it’s just like using a pencil to trace an image while drawing.

How to remove background with Lasso tool

To use this tool, you need to point to the beginning where you intend tracing from, Left click and hold then trace through the edges of the entire image, once you are satisfied with the trace release the left mouse button.

The clip below will illustrate better for your understanding.

Once done, follow the steps on any of the possible ways to remove the background.

Removing background with Magnetic Lasso Tool (L)

This tool is easy to use, unlike the Lasso Tool that traces manually, the Magnetic Lasso tool helps you do the job automatically. Once this tool is activated it follows traces of the mouse to select the regions its being pointed at.

Different methods to cut/remove image background in Photoshop

How to remove background with Magnetic Lasso Tool.

  • Pick the tool with the “L” key on the keyboard
  • Point to any preferred position you want to begin tracing from and click
  • Follow the edges of the image you intend to remove background by moving the mouse over
  • The tool automatically follows the path of the mouse, tracing any solid edge it comes in contact with.

The clip below shows how it works.

Once you’re done tracing kindly make reference on the possible ways to remove background as stated above.

Other means of cutting/removing the background from the image are:

Removing image background using the pen tool

Using background eraser to cut/remove image background

A detailed explanation of how to use these tools will be updated soon.

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Note: it’s necessary to try out all the methods to know which one works best for you and when to use them because it can save you lots of stress and time management.

So far did this guide meet your demand, was it helpful, what are your suggestions, questions, and contribution, drop them in the comment section of this article.

Author: zazasco

I am Isaiah Isaiah Joel, simple in nature love fun and tourism. To know more about me, ask me in person.

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