How Do I Remove Reflections In Photoshop?

So you want to learn how to remove reflections from the car and little dirt specs? Well, lucky for you I’m here to show you how it’s done. This can seriously take your shot from 0 to 100 real quick. Real f%cking quick.

If you don’t know what the selections tools are then you should check out the Selection Tools article. You need to know that stuff before you read on.

How is it done?

Okay so first you need a picture, any raw picture that hasn’t been edited will do, or even if you already edited a picture but didn’t take care of the reflections, you can use that. If you don’t have one then you can use mine, just click on it for the full size:

_DSC0080before

Open up the image in Photoshop and grab the Clone Stamp Tool, you can click on it from the toolbar or just press S on your keyboard. Make sure you get the right size for what you need and keep the hardness close to 0% so that the edges blend in with the rest of the car. You can either right click on the image to pull up the size and hardness or you can go to the tools panel at the top and do it there.

I’m using my own shot of my own car and I have circled in red the parts that need to be cloned out for you to see what we’re working with. I know, I know, I missed the lines on the hood. We all make mistakes. That’s what makes us human, right?

Using the Clone Stamp Tool is pretty easy once you know what to do, so I will make this easy for you.

Press and hold the alt (windows) or option (mac) key and you will see the circle of the tool become smaller with crosshairs in the middle. While you’re holding that, click somewhere on the car where you want to take a sample from. For example, I want to get rid of the little dots on the front bumper so what I will do is hold down option and click somewhere fairly close to those dots, I will also grab a little of the black part right above the dots because it’s a straight edge and I can line it up when I use the stamp.

Now that you have another part selected you can let go of alt/option and it will go back to that bigger or smaller circle (depending on the size you chose). If you move your cursor around you will notice the part that you selected is inside the circle no matter where you move it. So go ahead and find the thing you want to get rid of, for me it’s the little dots on the bumper, and just click on that spot.

Bam!

All gone!

No? Okay then you need to repeat this process several times, moving from one spot to the next, or change the size of your brush to get the different sized particles/reflections.

Make sure you don’t do it too much in one spot because it will start looking bad and everyone will know you photoshoped it. You don’t want that!

Here is the before and after of my finished shot. The after has been completely edited, not just the reflections but don’t worry about that, I want you to focus on the reflections and the rest of the things I cloned out.

Just a few tips

  • The bigger your circle, the more it will “sample” when holding down alt or option
  • You can use the Spot Healing Brush for some spots but I tend to stick to the Clone Stamp most of the time for a cleaner look.
  • For bigger parts you can simply select a part of the car using the pen tool that will match your reflection then copy and paste it over that spot (make sure to use a soft eraser around the edges to make it blend in more)
  • If you’re working on one section you can just keep clicking on what you want to remove, no need to keep pressing alt/option every time.
  • If your CAPS lock is on the circle won’t show up

That’s all folks

I highly suggest you try this out because it will make your shots look that much cleaner.

I know this one is a little longer than the usual posts but I just had to get it all out there and it just couldn’t fit in a smaller post. I still didn’t cover everything like what the Spot Healing Brush actually does but I will do that in a future post so stay tuned 🙂

If you are having trouble with the tool feel free to leave a comment below and I will gladly help you out because I really think this is something that everyone should know how to do.

 

Feature image credit: Daniel Böswald
share post: