How To 

How To Work With The Content-Aware Fill Command in Photoshop

If you want to remove an object but you’re finding it too large or too complex to simply use the “Spot Healing” brush, the Content-Aware Fill command will attempt to replace an entire swath of the image by analyzing the surrounding area. This tool also allows you multiple options so that you can fine-tune the replacement to make it as inconspicuous as possible. Here’s how you do it.

1. Select a Lasso Tool.
You’ll want to include a portion of the area surrounding the object you want to remove, so the “Magnetic Lasso” is not preferable in this scenario as it clings to differences in color and brightness values. To remove the woman in this picture, we are going to use the regular “Lasso” tool.

2. Select an area around the object you want to remove.
Do not leave too much of a space between the object and the surrounding area, as this adds image data that might confuse the Content Aware fill. If your object intersects with the canvas’ border, make sure to select an area outside of the document window.

3. Open the “Content-Aware Fill...” command.
This is located under the “Edit” tab of Photoshop’s menu bar. A new workspace should open to the right of your document window.

4. Adjust the selection area by using the command’s lasso tools.
You can use the lasso tools just as you normally would to add or subtract from the selection area. Hitting “E” while using this tool will cycle through the modes “New Selection”, “Add to Selection”, “Subtract From Selection” and “Intersect With Selection”. For this project we will use “Subtract from Selection” to fine-tune the border around our object.

5. Adjust the sample area by using the sample brush tool.
You can use a brush to delete from the sample area by clicking the “minus” icon in the options menu. After adjusting the brush size with the bracket keys (“[“ for a smaller brush and “]” for larger), you are now able to subtract from the sample area. You can also use the the “add” sample brush to subtract from these changes.

6. Adjust the Fill settings.
In the new “Content-Aware Fill” workspace, you will see several options under the “Fill Settings” tab. “Color Adaptation” adjusts the level of color and brightness matching for the selected area. “Rotation Adaptation” sets the level of matching content rotation, useful for areas with significant curves or patterns. Selecting the “Scale” box to allow for content resizing (such as repeating patterns under a fixed perspective” and the “Mirror” box allows content to match a horizontal symmetry (for example, filling in one side of a person’s face).

7. Output to your desired destination and click “OK”.
You have the option of outputting to your current layer, a new layer, or duplicating the original.