How to blur background in Photoshop

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blur background

Hello to all those who came to my blog. The weather is so cool today. It finally feels like spring. And with this spring mood I would like to tell you about one thing. A lot of people already have cameras with which we can take great portrait pictures with the main characters clearly shown and blur background.

But still not every camera has this function (mostly only SLR cameras), and most people use smartphones, which also can not shoot with a blurred background, and you want a beautiful photo. Am I right? There is a way out as usual and today I will tell you how to make a blurred background in photoshop. It is not complicated at all.

The Archive Brush

The easiest way to do this is to use the familiar Archival Brush tool. But first, let’s open the image in Photoshop, where we want to blur the background.

  1. In the main menu at the top, select “Filters”, then select “Blur”, and from the next drop-down menu select “Gaussian Blur”. This is a special filter that blurs the entire image. 
  2. You will now see a window with the filter properties where you can increase or decrease the blur mode. I decided to blur the entire image by 6 pixels. Now click OK and you’ll see what happens to the image. 
  3. And now, take the familiar Archival Brush Tool, right-click on the mouse and choose the hardness of the brush (percent 50) and brush size (here look to make it comfortable for you to paint the girl), and start carefully painting the girl without touching the background itself. It turns out that we are returning her to her original state. 
  4. Do it carefully. If you have touched too much, you can always go back one or more steps. But don’t do everything in one click. It’s better to periodically release the mouse, so that you won’t have to go back to the beginning if you make a mistake.

So that’s pretty much it. It looks nice. But let’s look at a couple of other ways to broaden our horizons.

The Eraser

This is basically the same as the previous example, but with a small exception.

  1. Create a duplicate layer for our image. To do this, right-click on the layer and choose “Create Layer Duplicate”. Or hold down the left mouse button on the image in the Layers palette and move it to the “Create New Layer” icon in that panel. This way you will have 2 identical layers. 
  2. Now on the top layer, do a “Gaussian Blur” on our old pattern.
  3. Then select the “Eraser” tool and start erasing the girl from the top layer. In this way it will turn out that we have destroyed the girl on the top layer, but replaced her with the girl from the bottom layer. That’s how we created the effect we wanted. I think it’s great. What do you think? 

Many people prefer to use the layer mask in such cases, though I do without it. But I’ll show you anyway, just in case. It doesn’t take much time.

blur background

The Layer Mask

  1. Load the image and create a duplicate of the layer as we did in the previous example.
  2. Now select the “Gaussian Blur” filter again. You already know how to do this, so you shouldn’t have any problems with it. That way your top layer will be blurred and your bottom layer won’t.
  3. Now make sure that you are on the blurred layer and then activate the QuickMask mode. We already used it when we were rounding corners, but just in case, let me remind you that you have to click on the circle icon at the bottom of the Layers palette. After that, you’ll have a mask added. 
  4. Now select the Brush tool and select black in the color palette and start painting over the girl. But don’t be scared. The girl will not turn black. On the contrary, she will return to her original state and will be clear, but the background will remain blurred. And if we choose white, our friend will become washed out again. 

No, Photoshop is a wonderful tool for working with images. I still wonder what a powerful, handy and interesting editor it is. And at least knowledge of the basics will always come in handy in everyday life.