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Musings

Changing Relationship History - Removing People

Posted on November 25, 2014 at 10:05 PM

There's an (over) abundance of photographs all over the internet that have been altered to remove an unwanted person.  Some results are good, you would never even know they had been in the picture in the first place.  BUT some "fixes" end up badly composed with odd arrangements.  For example, take the following reenactments below based on actual "retouching" as seen on the web:

 

Prom Date Before and After:

 


It's clear there's something missing in the "restored" version.  Who says the photo has to remain the original dimensions and size?  Why have prom guy all by his lonesome off to the side when you can just crop the date out and turn it into a portrait?  Now the big question, why does mom not like her? 

 

Wedding Party Before:

 

 

Wedding Party After:

 

  

If this one's absolutely necessary (and who am I to judge the removal of a bride in an obvious wedding portrait?), I would think that eliminating the negative space by bringing the other people closer together would have been a help.  How about making separate, smaller pictures instead? 


Of course, there are photos that benefit from extracting someone.  Maybe it's unflattering, it could be only a portion of the person, or you might want to feature the other as more of a formal portrait.  The trick is to create a finished picture that doesn't look obviously tampered with or leave the viewer with unanswered questions.


Removing a person and recreating the background isn't cheap or quick, especially if it's done right.  In many of the samples, the backgrounds didn't line up and some were left with weird spotting.  When having retouching done, it's important to think about all available options and know that you're not limited to the restrains of the original photograph. 

Categories: Retouching, Restoration, Object Removal