How To 

How To Use Photoshop’s Content-Aware Move Tool To Extend an Object

The Content-Aware Move tool takes the magical Content-Aware algorithm and allows you to apply it to basic object repositioning and transforming. When you change its mode to “Extend”, it can help you expand or contract objects by analyzing the image and recomposing the moved portion of the object to create a seamless transition. This is how to use it.

1. Open the Content-Aware Move tool and draw a selection around your object.
Starting with the lasso function of the Content-Aware Move tool, draw a selection area around an object. Make sure to include some space between the object and its background, as the Content-Aware Tool will use this information to smooth the expansion and the transition around the selection edges.

2. Adjust the Content-Aware Move parameters.
You can find these in the options bar. Start out by setting the Mode to “Extend” and checking “Transform On Drop”, which allows you to scale your object to its new location. We’ll also adjust the Structure and Color values, which denotes the amount of image structure adherence, as well as the algorithmic color-blending applied to the patch.

3. Move and transform your object on top of the extension area.
Begin by clicking and holding the center of the object to move it to the area you want to extend. Once you’ve released it, you’ll notice that a frame with corresponding handles will appears around the object. This allows you to transform the object as if it were in “Free Transform” mode - you can grab the handles to adjust the size of the object and move outside the frame to access a rotation mode. For this example, we’ll only need to adjust the scale of the object so that it fits on top of the new column area.

4. Commit the transform.
With all changes made, simply click the checkmark button on the options bar to apply the Content-Aware move.

5. Deselect the Content-Aware Move selection.
Once the Content-Aware move is applied, Photoshop will analyze the original object area to make the extension more natural and apply blending to the borders of the moved object so that it better matches the background. A selection area will still be enabled - to deselect this, simply hit Cmd+D (or Ctrl+D on Windows). In the screenshot below, we repeated the whole process for the second column in the image.