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bulleteraser.gif Basic tool settings 

Unless you are very expert with the tool, you should always start with the default settings of the Precision Background Eraser and then adjust them to match the needs of your image.  The default settings are these.

04_BGE_Default_Settings.gif

The settings in the upper row of this Tool Options Palette, along with Opacity in the second row, are standard for all brushes.  The remaining options are specific to the Precision Background Eraser. Size, Hardness and Step are the most important of the brush-specific settings. 

  05_BGE_Reset.gif
If you forget your settings,
you can always reset to defaults
by clicking on the arrow next to the Presets icon
and then pressing the Reset icon (circled in red).

 

bulleteraser.gif Choosing the Size setting

Provided you have a large enough brush to properly sample image colors - say 20 pixels or more -  the Size of the brush is only important relative to the size of features in your image. You will choose the Size of the brush depending on the color distribution of your image.

For example, if your object has internal colors similar to your background, you may get more selectivity by making the brush small enough to avoid those regions or by simply moving the brush a bit further away from the object as shown in image 06.

06_BGE_Size_And_Position.gif
image 06

A similar situation occurs when the background varies in color.  In the example image 07 there is blue in the background far from the object and green close in.

Positioning a large brush centered on the blue color will not erase the green around the edges of the object. Making the brush smaller and bringing it closer to the object edge will do the tricky job of removing the green around the object. The blue is then easily erased using Spacebar to make the Precision Background Eraser erase unconditionally.

07_BGE_SizeAndBackground.gif
image 07 

As you set the Size of the brush you also have to take into account the width or softness of the edge of your object. A small brush can be used when the object has sharp narrow edges. However, when the object has wide soft edges the brush must be large enough to span the entire edge in order to erase it correctly. This is illustrated in the image 08. Such a soft edge may also require a reduced Sharpness setting (see below). Bear in mind that if you have a slow computer a smaller brush size will make the brush faster.

When you have natural images containing busy textures such as grass you may find that the background is more completely erased with a smaller brush since there is less variability in the color under a smaller brush. In such a case you should concentrate on getting clean erasing in a narrow region around the edge of the object and then unconditionally erase the rest of the background by holding down Spacebar as you use the brush. Unconditional erasing is faster than normal erasing since the brush doesn't have to do any color analysis.

08_BGE_SizeAndEdgeSoftness.jpg
image 08

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