Perhaps you captured strangers in your shot, or a person didn’t make it entirely into the frame. You can remove them easily in Adobe Photoshop CC.

Toddler boy feeding deer through fence.

With our practice file, or a photo of your own, use a selection tool to trace around the subject you want to remove. We used the Lasso tool to select the man on the right.

Toddler boy feeding deer through fence, distracting man squatting to the right of the photo is selected with the lasso tool.

Use Content-Aware Fill (Edit > Content-Aware Fill) to automatically fill the selection of the person with other parts of the image. The green overlay shows the areas of the picture that Photoshop samples from. The area on the right shows the preview of the results. If unwanted parts of the image are included in the sampling area, you can choose Subtract from overlay area (the “–” icon at the top) and use the brush to paint over the green areas to remove portions of the sampling area.

In this case, Content-Aware Fill did a good job with the selection we made, so we’re ready to apply the fill. We chose New Layer as the method to output the newly selected content and clicked OK.

Man is selected while Content-Aware Fill samples from the rest of the photo. Output to New Layer preserves original image.

With this setting, Photoshop generates a nondestructive edit by putting the new content on its own layer. This way, the original image is still on a separate layer if you need it.

The original image and the new content are on separate layers in the Layers panel.

See how removing a distracting element creates a beautifully framed image.

Before: Toddler boy is feeding deer through a fence, man is squatting beside him. Before: Toddler boy is feeding deer through a fence. Content-Aware Fill has filled in the area where the man was.

Now you see how Content-Aware Fill can help you declutter more of your otherwise amazing shots.

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