Sky Replacement and Object Removal Guide to replacing and removing objects in photos in Adobe Photoshop


The world doesn’t always match our vision when we’re out and about with the camera. Post-production, or photo editing, is a major part of any photographic process. Without it, many photos would come out looking dull and uninspired. 

A huge piece of what makes or breaks a photograph isn’t the subject of the shot, but rather the elements around it which add to the setting and the mood of the photograph. Sky replacement and object removal are key to turning what the world throws at you into your own vision, and making that winning photograph.

If you’re interested in learning how to edit, you’re in the right place. With a series of tips and tricks, whether you’re figuring out whether Lightroom or Photoshop suits you the most or working through the challenges of Photoshop, our blog covers everything beginners need to know.

Still, figuring out how to replace and remove objects in Photoshop? Read on as we discuss why object replacing and removal works and how you can do it like a pro.


Why replacement and removal is important

The subject of your photograph isn’t the only feature of your photograph. The setting of your picture helps define the mood. If a picture is dark and full of grey clouds, the image will be moodier evoking a tenser atmosphere. If you instead have a clear, blue sky with the sun beaming down, your picture will seem happier and positive.

Whether you need to replace the sky or not is entirely down to the setting when you initially took the picture and the effect you want your photograph to have.

The same goes for removing objects from your photo. 

If you caught a photograph of a model and an unwanted person stood in the background, chances are that you’ll want to remove the background so it doesn’t distract from your model. Similarly, if you were to take a moody shot and a tall building with flashing lights stood in the background of your shot, it would take away from the grey and dull atmosphere you were trying to create.

By simply removing these objects, you can easily mould the photo into your image, creating whatever you’d like.


Sky replacement in photos


How to replace the sky in your image

Replacing the sky in your photograph is much simpler than you might have initially expected, and can be done in 3 easy steps:

    1. Open your photograph and choose Edit > Sky Replacement.
    2. Choose the sky you want to replace it with.

Once you’ve completed the first step, a properties box will appear. Select a new sky from the images already included with Photoshop, or add a sky of your own by browsing through your own files.

3. Adjust your settings.

Finally, you must adjust your settings to blend the new sky with your picture. The original sky will be masked and the new sky will be displayed based on your options. Use these settings to fade edges where necessary, move edges if they’re not in the correct place or even change the size of the sky among other things.

Once you’ve completed these easy steps, your old sky should be masked beneath the newly edited sky of your choosing, making your picture suit your vision just that little bit more.


How to remove a simple object from your photograph

There are several ways to remove an object from your photograph based on your needs. If the area you want to replace is small and simple there are a few easy ways to remove the area:

    • If your object is small, use the Spot Healing Brush Tool
    • If your object is larger but is a simple shape, use the Patch Tool
    • If your object is a more complex shape, use the Clone Stamp Tool


Interested in learning these easy techniques? Here’s how:

Spot Healing Brush Tool

    1. Find the object you want to remove.
    2. Select the Spot Healing Brush Tool > Content-Aware Type.
    3. Simply brush over the object you want to remove. Photoshop automatically patches pixels over the area type which match the colours around it.


Patch Tool

    1. Find the object you want to remove.
    2. Select the Patch Tool.
    3. Draw a shape around the object you wish to remove, then drag the object to an area that you would like to use as a patch sample (an area of the same colour).


Clone Stamp Tool

    1. Zoom in on the object you want to remove.
    2. Select the Clone Stamp Tool.
    3. Hold Alt until your cursor turns into a crosshair, then click the area which you’d like to take as a sample.
    4. Brush over the object you want to remove. The pixels from the sample area will be used to make the area the same colour, removing the object.


Skyline in photographs


How to remove multiple larger objects

If you’re interested in quickly removing larger objects, you might decide to use the Content-Aware Fill tool.

This tool analyses the image, finding the best details to replace the area with while also letting you edit the final result. This tool is most useful for removing larger objects even when they’re against a complex background. 

    1. Use the Object Selection tool to select your initial object. While the other selection tools may be used, the Object Selection tool is by far the best choice for selecting a single thing.
    2. The Object Selection tool will usually make a tight selection at the edges of an object. To help the Content-Aware Fill tool create a better fill, expand to include the area around the object by choosing Select > Modify > Expand and then entering just a few pixels to create a thin border between the object’s edge and the selection.
    3. Choose Edit > Content-Aware Fill to open the Content-Aware workspace. The image on the left displays a green overlay that shows the sampling area Photoshop will use to create the new fill. The view on the right is the preview of how the fill will look. Use the tools and controls offered in the workspace to edit how the fill will look.


If the preview doesn’t provide a result you’re happy with, try using the Sampling area options on the right of the workshop to control which area Photoshop samples from. Don’t forget, you can still make small edits in Photoshop after the fill if there are minor errors in the Content-Aware fill.


Sky replacement and object removal in photo editing might seem daunting at first, but in reality, it’s quite simple. These easy steps should help you work on your post-production techniques while developing your photographs into the image you want them to be.

If you find yourself struggling or need complex corrections making on your photograph, Splento’s professional editors can help. For as little as £0.49 per photo, Splento offers quality photo edits and touch-ups with a fast turnaround time of under 24 hours. More information along with the easy to use upload tool can be found here.


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