Photoshop Sky Replacement is more sophisticated than it sounds

JC Torres - Sep 22, 2020, 7:19am CDT
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Photoshop Sky Replacement is more sophisticated than it sounds

Let’s face it. Despite concerns over easily “Photoshopped” fakes and advice to keep photos real, there will always be times when you’d wish a more dramatic sky was available in your photo. True to its original calling as a photo editing software, Photoshop’s upcoming Sky Replacement feature will offer users the chance to have a more emphatic background to go with their images. But before you knock the feature off as something that can be done with simple selection tools and layers, Adobe is unsurprisingly explaining that there’s quite a lot of AI and machine learning involved here as well.

Any good tool makes it almost too simple to create seemingly magical results and the Sky Replacement tool for Photoshop definitely qualifies as one. Using it is too easy, allowing you to simply select a sky background from a preset collection or add your own. It’s really as simple as that.

Of course, there are a few options available to fine-tune your final image. You can move the background around and sliders to set edges, color temperature, and brightness. You can also organize the collection of skies to your preference, just like any other Photoshop asset.

The real magic, however, is in how the feature uses Adobe’s Sensei AI to determine which is the sky and which are the foreground objects in a photo. This comes in handy because Sky Replacement can automatically adjust the foreground color tone to match the sky behind it. Even if you move the sky background around, the foreground’s colors will always adjust to match.

The most powerful part, Adobe says, is that all these effects are applied as layer stacks and effects that preserve the original image with non-destructive adjustments. So, in the end, it is really just using Photoshop’s existing tools, just with a little or actually a lot of help from AI.


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