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Extracting a cat from it's background

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  • Extracting a cat from it's background

    I took a PhotoShop class at LVS Online and one of the lessons was using the smudge tool to bring out hair, grass, fur or anything fine.

    Create a new background and duplicate the original cat image. Select the cats as close as you can with the Lasso tool then start erasing. After you have erased all you can, be sure your layers are in the following order.

    Extracted copy of cats
    Original photo of cats at reduced opacity (this will be your pattern)
    New Background (I used black on this so you could better see what I have done.)

    On the extracted copy of the cats (top layer) choose a small brush size for the smudge tool and start pulling out hairs. The brush should be set between 95-99%. Be sure to have “Use All Layers” turned off, or you will be blending the hair with the new background. When you’re through, delete the middle layer.

    Attached is a close-up section of two cats using this procedure.
    Attached Files

  • #2
    Thanks very much for that tip Sharon. It looks like a sure winner, which will go to the top of my "tips" file.



    • #3
      Excellent tip, Sharon! This one goes directly in "most useful" file...keep 'em coming!!! Thanks....Tom


      • #4
        I just want to echo Tom's remarks. It's tips like this that make RetouchPro such an outstanding resource.




        • #5
          Wow, a real keeper Sharon. Thanks!!!


          • #6
            Thanks neighbor
            That will come in very handy for hair on humans too! That was a great tip!


            • #7

              I read your tip last night and had to try it out right away on the cats -- it worked for me, too! Anything that helps with "the dreaded HAIR issue" is a real winner - THANKS for sharing a wonderful tip!


              • #8

                You're a lifesaver!!!

                Now that's one less thing I have to get stressed over is cutting out hair and having it look good..LOL!!!

                Thanks sooooo much for this lesson, I tried it and it's great.



                • #9
                  Hi Sharon,

                  I am always struggling with hair cutouts. Thanks for the help. This is really useful.



                  • #10
                    Hi All,

                    I am really pleased that so many of you found this helpful.



                    • #11
                      Great info Sharon - I signed up to the site on the strength of it !! See my profile to find out why ! Can't wait to try out your tip next time I process a cat pic. Cats are great in general but as far as digital masks are concerned they suck !


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