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Hi everyone! I´m very new to Image editing, and I have been working with affinity photo for about 2 weeks, trying new things and tutorials around the web. Yesterday I decided to take a challenge, mask some girl´s hair, bute I can´t! Can someone help me do this? I don´t know what settings to use when refining edges around the hair and how to get some good selection. I put here the image to you so you can try it and if you are able to select and mask that hair pls let me know how you did it!!


Thanks everybody!!!





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I have an idea seeing how the girl's hair is the darkest color on the image. In the Layers tab, click on the Blend Ranges icon (the gear). Then in the new window and under Source Layer Ranges, bring that second node all the way down and then to the left about 50% or just enough to isolate other elements that are not her hair. Close the window and then go to Select > Selection From Layer. You will now get a selection that is most of her hair. From there on, I would use the Selection Brush Tool. I know that the selection will not be perfect, but this should give you a good way to start off.

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Hi simgonzalo


Make use of the 'Selection Brush Tool'[Selection_Brush_Tool_Icon.png.59ae6b2aebc0c393015c3710267825ef.png] to roughly highlight the Hair and leave the strands of hairs outside,as they will be selected using 'Refine'[Refine_Button.png.6018f3c0faab874a298762eab7fdd98b.png] option on the toolbar. Now click the 'Refine' Button and use the brush selection to highlight strands of hairs outside to apply the edge refinement algorithm and switch to 'Black and White' overlay option in the 'preview' dropdown to see how much strands of hair are selected and repeat it to get the result you want. Here is a screenshot of the selection i was able to make using this. White Color Shows the selection you have made and black here indicates unselected areas.




I have also attached the editable affinity photo file[File Name = Perfect Hair Selection - Tip.afphoto ] with the selection saved as an Editable mask. Go ahead and open and experiment with this. I Hope this is helpful for you.


This is how the final selection mask looks like:


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Thanks everybody for your help!!

So, what I did was using the contrast between the hair and the background in the blue channel to make a better selection. Then I saved it on a separate channel and redefined on the real image, with some tweaks using ramp and feather. I think i got some decent results!! Then i changed the background to see good it was made.

Here you have my work

difficult hair.png

difficult hair.afphoto

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Selection brush tool and refine to run over hair strands. One pass. I am impressed with how well the iPad version handles these sorts of tasks with ease.




IPad Pro 10.5/512GB   lpadOS 15.3 Apple Pencil (1st gen), Affinity Photo 1.10.5 Affinity Design 1.10.5

Official Online iPad Help documents (multi-lingual) here: https://affinity.help/

PDF Help files available here:

Affinity Photo 1.9.2-help.pdf 

Affinity Designer Help File 1.9.7.pdf

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  • 3 weeks later...
  • 1 year later...

Most, if not all examples of background removal to retain hair are done with simple and plain backgrounds. No one (or videos) that I have seen have been prepared to explore more intricate operations where the background is multi-coloured because it's a nightmare. Plain backgrounds are easy so people will always post their work demonstrating it. It's not impossible to remove busy backgrounds, but man, it's certainly hard. 

Some scientists claim that hydrogen, because it is so plentiful, is the basic building block of the universe. I dispute that. I say there is more stupidity than hydrogen, and that is the basic building block of the universe.

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