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Use the Spot Healing Brush Tool in Photoshop CS5

Photoshop’s Spot Healing Brush tool quickly removes blemishes and other imperfections in images. Adobe Photoshop Creative Suite 5 takes this concept a step further with the new Content-Aware feature.

To see the difference this new feature makes, follow these steps:

  1. Using the default settings, click a blemish.

    The Spot Healing Brush tool paints matching texture, lighting, transparency, and shading to the pixels being healed. It doesn’t require you to specify a sample spot — it automatically samples from around the retouched area.

  2. Now check the Content-Aware option on the Options bar.

    Painting with the Spot Healing Brush sets into action an incredible number of calculations that attempt to render pixels similar in detail to its surroundings.

    Using the Spot Healing Brush tool with the Content-Aware option enabled.
    Using the Spot Healing Brush tool with the Content-Aware option enabled.

Does this work every time? Of course not. Does it work often enough to save you hours of work? Yes!

You can also take advantage of the Content-Aware feature by using the Fill feature. Simply follow these steps:

  1. Select the area to be replaced by the new content.

  2. Choose Edit→Fill and, in the Fill dialog box, select Content-Aware from the Use drop-down menu.

    The content is replaced.

    Use the Content-Aware feature in the Fill dialog box.
    Use the Content-Aware feature in the Fill dialog box.
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