Originally released in Photoshop CS5, Content Aware Fill was a tool ahead of its time. Using texture replacement synthesis, which was originally developed from space-time video completion as a means to correct corrupted data in video. In Photoshop however, we use Content Aware Fill to remove unwanted objects, patterns or even expand image areas.
However, when used arbitrarily, the tool can often produce unusual and undesirable results.
For instance, if we were to simply try and remove a bird or airplane from a clear sky, Content Aware Fill shouldn’t have any issues filling in the selection area. But if we’re trying to remove a person from a group photo with a busies background, we’ll quickly see that it struggles to properly fill in the space when the selection neighbors different textures and objects.
This may leave many retouchers feeling frustrated and apprehensive making them unlikely to use the tool as a reliable means to remove objects or fill in areas within images. But there is a way to help this tool do a better job in more complex situations.
The following tutorial will allow you to dictate a source area instead of using the entire image as a source reference. While the end result is not absolutely perfect, it is much more accurate and will greatly reduce the time needed to clean up anything it misses.
Hopefully this tutorial will convince you that Content Aware Fill can be a powerful tool when used correctly.