Video tutorial: Remove background distractions in Photoshop

Use Photoshop to turn an average shot into a winning image by removing unwanted background objects and making your subject stand out.

All too often, a good shot would look great if it wasn’t for a distracting element in the background. When shooting spontaneous action, such as a toddler’s first steps, you can’t afford to fiddle around composing the shot to avoid background clutter – take your eye off the action and you’ll miss the decisive moment. Luckily, Photoshop offers all the tools you’ll need to clean up the scene long after the special event has been captured on camera.

In this walkthrough, we’ll show you how to select the child in our source image and remove the supporting parent in the background so that your subject is the main point of focus. You’ll need to replace the areas occupied by the adult with appropriate pixels from the rest of the shot, for which we’ll use the Clone Stamp tool. You’ll also learn how to protect fine details, like the child’s hair, from being cloned out with the rest of the adult.