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What's your way of removing tricky backgrounds?

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Hi!

 

Affinity Photo has some nice tools for automatically selecting stuff, which can be used to remove a background from a photo of an object, for example. However, in many cases, backgrounds aren't as clearly separated as in the nice tutorials  ;) .

 

Grabbing a random example from Google I found this: http://www.schmittfurniture.com/css/1422/SlideShows/Home%20Page/2%20KH%20Casbah%20Sectional.jpg– say I wanted to remove the background and keep only the sofa.

 

I'm just wondering what you usually do in these cases? So far, I've tended to resort to manually drawing a vector path around the object and using that for a selection. Do you think it's worth persisting with the Selection Brush and refinements etc. even for "less-than-optimal" backgrounds?

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That is a tricky one indeed -- the wood & pillow colors are so similar that the selection brush, even carefully refined, required some manual tweaking. What I did was use the brush, refined as best as I could, & then added back a little of the wood & other tricky areas before deleting the background. Then I used a small, softened erase brush to clean up the excess.

 

Not perfect, but it took about 5 minutes to get something like the attached, a jpeg compressed version with a background fill replacing the wall & cabinetry.

post-3524-0-33210200-1484998732_thumb.jpg

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Thank you for taking the time to try your hand at the image!

 

While it's a random example from Google, it's quite representative of images that come my way every now and then. Using my usual technique of drawing a vector path for the selection manually, I got the attached result in a bit less than 10 minutes (not even bothering with curves, just lots of straight segments). There are a couple of weird areas due to the example chosen...

 

Anyway, I suspect some practice with the selection brush could get me better results quicker. Thanks!

post-341-0-89287100-1485092560_thumb.jpg

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