Photoshop 12 and content-aware fill - does it work for you?

Discussion in 'Digital Photography' started by spinnerlys, Apr 30, 2010.

  1. spinnerlys Guest

    spinnerlys

    Joined:
    Sep 7, 2008
    Location:
    forlod bygningen
    #1
    Hello.

    I just downloaded the nice trial of Adobe Photoshop and serious as I am, I tried the fanciest thing and wanted to see how good content-aware fill (CAF) is. But I don't get any satisfying results with it. Do you have any experience with PS 12 already and know a trick or three?

    from this
    [​IMG]

    to this
    [​IMG]

    I know, it might be a bit complex, but I also tried a simpler image (which isn't mine, thus no show off) with clouds and some snow and a small tree line. But selecting the darker snow and erasing some tracks via CAF, it inserted parts of the sky onto the snow.

    Hmm, I was just wondering, it's not that I will use that feature that much. I'm more into colour "correcting" and fancy frames and such "advanced stuff". But as I plan to make something else, I thought this CAF would be a good feature, and for me an opportunity to NOT go through the tedious masking processes.
     
  2. Stratification macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jan 17, 2005
    Location:
    Spokane, WA
    #2
    I'm not really sure what you were hoping to accomplish with that photo. If I can't even figure out what you wanted I can guarantee that CAF has no idea. It works best where there are similar areas it can pull a pattern from. A straight shot of a wall you want to pull a window out of, or a cloudy sky you want to extend. It's not magic, it's just another tool. A very cool and powerful tool, but like any tool it has its place.
     
  3. spinnerlys thread starter Guest

    spinnerlys

    Joined:
    Sep 7, 2008
    Location:
    forlod bygningen
    #3
    I know, the image I used is hardly worthy of CAF, but even an image of clouds doesn't work. It was just something I tried with the new trial. I will take a deeper look into later, when I have access to my full library.
     
  4. Westside guy macrumors 601

    Westside guy

    Joined:
    Oct 15, 2003
    Location:
    The soggy side of the Pacific NW
    #4
    Well, we know it works with photos of golf courses...

    Obviously if it's not pretty much automatic - if you have to jump through hoops to get it to work the way you want - it would seem to me there's not a lot of point to the feature.
     
  5. TuffLuffJimmy macrumors G3

    TuffLuffJimmy

    Joined:
    Apr 6, 2007
    Location:
    Portland, OR
    #5
    It wouldn't be photoshop if it didn't fight back a little. You need to beg photoshop and hold its hand to get it to do what you want.
     
  6. Policar macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Nov 21, 2004
    #6
    What are "fancy frames" and how is that a more advanced use of photoshop than image retouching and compositing, which require good painting skills, a good knowledge of how light falls, and painstaking use of clone/dodge/burn, matte painting, etc. even in relatively basic cases?

    Content aware fill isn't any more magical than the "magic wand" or adaptive lasso and like those tools it has to be used correctly and then supplemented by further manual adjustment. How it works is there's an algorithm that looks at pieces of the image in the selected area you seek to delete and matches those areas against other parts of the image you're using. Then it takes those bits on the periphery of the matched pieces and interpolates them for the fill. Content aware fill isn't really aware of perspective, however, so it struggles with lines and will often pick inappropriate pieces of the image to use based on high-contrast lines and not on what's behind them--which is exactly the case here.

    What are you even trying to delete here? That part of the image looks okay and I'm not sure what result you want. If photoshop returned the image virtually unchanged it would have failed, too; inherent in your choice to use content aware fill is that something in your selection has to be deleted and replaced and photoshop identified that.

    Read the manual, ars technica's review, and watch adobe's tech videos if you plan to use content aware fill extensively in the future. Like the clone tool and healing tool, it's another means toward an end--and not some sort of magic algorithm that just reads your mind. Before attempting something like this again, have the exact image you want in your head before clicking anything and then plan the best workflow to get there.
     
  7. spinnerlys thread starter Guest

    spinnerlys

    Joined:
    Sep 7, 2008
    Location:
    forlod bygningen
    #7
    That was tongue in cheek, as you might see from the PROPAGANDA link in my signature, I use simple frames, and I know there is nothing advanced about this. The only advanced techniques I employ is colouring and sometimes the way I embed the text into the photo.

    And as I said in my OP, I also tried a relatively conform image with clouds, a bit of snow and a small tree line, and it didn't work there either, like with the example of the image with the park, the bench and the tree on the left side.

    When I have access to my library I will try it with easier images. It just sounded like magic in all the promo material, but I realize, that they used "easy" examples.
     
  8. Policar macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Nov 21, 2004
    #8
    My b...it's not like I'm a photoshop pro or anything so i shouldn't talk.

    It's not just that adobe chose images that worked well with its algorithm, it's also that they made selections just perfectly for those images, which is what using the software well is all about.

    Most of the situations where this tool should excel are actually very, very hard to deal with under normal circumstances. Simple backgrounds show errors more clearly than complex ones so even if it's not perfect, this is going to save a lot of people tons of time with the clone tool. Even if it takes twenty minutes to touch something up with content aware fill, it's better than like twenty hours repainting it by hand.
     
  9. NathanCH macrumors 65816

    NathanCH

    Joined:
    Oct 5, 2007
    Location:
    Stockholm, Sweden
    #9
    Content-Aware is NOT Magic

    Content Aware is not some magical thing like they show in the low-resolution videos we see online. Unfortunately, Adobe made it look like magic in their tests. As a result, I think a lot of people will be very disappointed with this new feature, not because it sucks, but because it's not as good as they have seen. In reality, it's guess work, even in seemingly simple situations. Here are some simple tests I did to see how it works on my photos.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]


    This one had much better results:

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    As you can see (barely) there are some lines left where the selection was, but with a simple blend they can be removed with ease. But let's see how Content-Aware works versus me, a human!

    In the following photograph I spent about 3 hours removing the powerlines, and blending the sky and clouds. I was very happy with the final result, and while tedious, it wasn't difficult. How can Content-Aware stack up in 10 - 15 seconds?

    Original Unedited Photo:
    [​IMG]

    My Final Copy:
    [​IMG]

    Content-Aware Attempt (5 Minutes of playing around)
    [​IMG]

    Obviously it's difficult to compare 5 minutes of work and 3 hours of work, but at this moment, it seems to me that Content-Aware is simply the healing brush that you can make selections with. Even when removing simple lens dust it made errors (similar to how the spot healing brush does).

    So what about creating something from absolutely nothing? Here are two photos. The first is completely unedited with 500 extra pixels (250px to each side). The second is how Content-Aware filled them in.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    Perfect? No. But surprisingly good, especially the left side. What about something a bit more complex? For this photo, I did the same thing and here are the before and after results:

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    If you had never been to Vancouver, you might think there are actually two BC Places. Disappointed, I tried again but a very similar result appeared. It seems to be the case with both removing and adding content, anything complex gets seriously distorted or simply repeated. This repetition can be seen in this panorama where I added 500 pixels to each side. 500 pixels is a lot of space to fill in, so I'm not surprised by the result.

    [​IMG]


    In summary, as I've said it's not the magic fix, but it's not terrible either. Due to the unworthy hype, however, I feel many people will be hugely disappointed when they try it out. Perhaps they will be silly enough as I am to attempt to add 500 pixels to each side of their photo, and as you would realistically expect, it can't do that. But overall it's a nice new feature that will continue to improve over the years. But I feel Adobe hyped it to be more than it is.

    My $0.02
     
  10. FrankieTDouglas macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Mar 10, 2005
    #10
    I'm not really sure what you were expecting here. Looking at how it actually worked, it done its job. All of the lines match up, there is no horrible side-effects. It's just that the subject doesn't make sense, but it is created in a correct way, based on angles and etc.
     
  11. Stratification macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jan 17, 2005
    Location:
    Spokane, WA
    #11
    Some of these may also work better with tighter selections (not square, maybe rough approximations with the lasso). In testing what selection you use can make a huge difference. Obviously Adobe demos used images that worked great, and they'd had the time to play with it and understand the quirks. What it comes down to is that it can be incredibly powerful, but in many cases the tools you are used to are still the best for the job. Having been on the beta though I will say after some time with it I do use it fairly regularly with good results now that I understand the limitations.
     
  12. bocomo macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Jun 29, 2007
    Location:
    New York
    #12
    it does have limitations but it does a surprisingly great job in a lot of cases

    overall, i'm really enjoying CS5

    out of curiosity, i tried two select-and-deletes with your truck image and got this...

    not bad for 10 seconds
     

    Attached Files:

  13. NathanCH macrumors 65816

    NathanCH

    Joined:
    Oct 5, 2007
    Location:
    Stockholm, Sweden
    #13
    Poo to the moderator that merged my thread into this one. I spent more than an hour making that post and now it's buried in this crappy thread? Glad to know you guys don't appreciate quality post. And before you saying "we dont want duplicate posts", go take a look at the first page of this forum.


    /rant
     
  14. bocomo macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Jun 29, 2007
    Location:
    New York
    #14
    quality post?
     
  15. leighonigar macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    May 5, 2007
    #15
    The substance from which quality posts are made from.
     
  16. NathanCH macrumors 65816

    NathanCH

    Joined:
    Oct 5, 2007
    Location:
    Stockholm, Sweden
    #16
    Forget it, I was just pissed off. Also some idiot has been trolling me through Private Messages.:cool:

    Can you see what I removed in this photo? Hint: there was a giant pole in front of the building:

    [​IMG]
     
  17. TH3D4RKKN1GH7 macrumors 6502a

    TH3D4RKKN1GH7

    Joined:
    Mar 25, 2009
    #17
    Love It!

    Just installed my copy of CS5 Master Collection and started messing about in Photoshop. Literally 10 seconds.

    This bit at the bottom middle of the screen was really annoying me and ruining the image.
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    Yeah.Awesome.
     

Share This Page