In this video we’ll be looking at how to change the background color in Photoshop. As you will find out, this will depend on good you are at making selections.
We will be looking at how to use the Select and Mask tool to fine-tune our selection.
Once you learn this skill, you can not only use it to change the background color, but also to make the background transparent (deleting it) or replace green screen with any background or make any background white.
Here is the video:
When it comes to changing the background color, a lot of tutorials on YouTube make it seem like its a very easy task.
In those videos, you see the instructor changing the background color conveniently in under 60 seconds.
And these videos go viral!
However, when you try to implement the same thing on your own images, it’s suddenly not so convenient.
Because those YouTubers cheat.
They cheat because making a difficult thing appear simple is how they want to impress you so you can give them likes and shares.
They cheat by taking very convenient images. In fact, they spend more time on finding a convenient image than making the actual tutorial.
So what is the truth?
The truth is that how easy it is to change the background color in Photoshop depends on one very important thing – the characteristics of your subject.
That’s because the degree of quality by which you are able to change the background color depends on the degree of accuracy with which you are able to select the background, while avoiding selecting any part of the subject.
If your subject is devoid of any soft and complex edges, then it’s very easy to change the background color, simply because it’s very easy to make a selection of the background in these cases. For instance, it would be very easy to change the color of the background if the subject was an apple, simply because it has hard edges, so it’s very easy to select the background.
But what if you are shooting a portrait where your subject has strands of hair or a pet with a lot of fur. Here, making an accurate selection of the background is difficult because it;s tough to accurately avoid selecting those soft edges when selecting the background.
In these cases, you need to use the Select and Mask tool in Photoshop to refine your selections. And using Select and Mask is no easy task.
So your ability to change the background color actually depends on your skill level of making selections in Photoshop. You can check out my Master Selections in Photoshop course, which has 6 hours of video content, where I teach you how to master the art of selections in Photoshop, with a heavy emphasis on using the Select and Mask tool.
The video on top of this post shows you the actual way of changing the background color in Photoshop in a challenging portrait.
About the Author
Hi there, I'm Kush Sharma, the founder of Creative Pad Media, an organization dedicated to simplifying photography and videography education.
We have over 40 online courses that cover various genres in photography & videography, catering to both beginners as well as professionals. These courses are available via Udemy.com. Our courses have been downloaded in over 170 countries.
I hope to see you inside a course very soon!