Please Note: I recommend using the Refine Edge command (Photoshop 1.13 [refine edge]) instead of the background eraser.
- Begin by opening Adobe Photoshop CS3. You will now need to open the photograph / file you would like to extract/isolate.
- From the tool palette, select the Background Eraser Tool. (The tool is often under the regular eraser tool, you can access it by clicking and holding on the regular eraser to bring up a context menu where you can select the other eraser tools.) [premium content]
- The Background Eraser Tool has several options. You can find these options in the tool bar at the top of the page. First, you will need to set the tolerance, this option determines the color range to be erased (the higher the number, the larger the range to be erased). You can also select “Limits.” I find either the “Continuous” option (meaning pixels must be continuous to be erased) or “Find Edges” (which looks for high contrast edges) to be the most useful. You can also select the brush size you would like to use.[premium content]
- Select a sample background color by holding down the “alt” or “option” key and clicking on the background color you would like to erase.
- Begin erasing. You may find this technique works best on high contrast images. Images with similar color backgrounds are harder to erase.
- After you have isolated the object, you can use the magic wand, lasso, or marquee tools to select and the “delete” key to erase the remaining background.
- You may also wish to use the regular eraser (with a small brush) to fine tune your erasing.
- An optional step to this tutorial would be to set a history point before performing the background erase, then using a history brush to add back accidental erasures.
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