The topic of watermarking is and will probably remain up for debate for quite a long time. Some, seeking to protect and at the same time market their work, do watermark their pictures. Others, considering all it does is cause distraction from the image itself, refuse to apply it.
In one of our previous tutorials, we’ve showed you how to add a watermark in Photoshop. Today, in this new tutorial we are going to show you how to remove a watermark using Adobe’s software. When and if you feel the need to get rid of that identification mark, it’s important to know that there are several methods you can employ in order to accomplish your goal.
Ideally it would be to restore the original image, but if you don’t have it, the first and most basic way to remove a watermark is to use the Crop tool. All you have to do is to simply crop out that specific area of the image, but this is not the best option possible since you can risk losing some important data in the process.
Remove Watermarks with Content Aware Fill
Another method is to take advantage of the Content Aware Fill feature. Here’s how to do it:
Open the image in Photoshop. Next make a selection around the text or logo watermark. You can do this using several tools, either the Pen tool, the Quick Selection tool or the Magic Wand one. Regardless of which tool you opt for, the selection around the watermark should look like this:
In this step we are going to make minor adjustments to the selected area, more precisely expanding it in order to incorporate some background pixels. Go to Select > Modify > Expand. In the newly opened dialog box, expand the selection by the number of pixels you want and hit the OK button.
Now let’s take advantage of the Content Aware Fill feature and its capabilities to remove objects from an image.
Go to Edit > Fill. In the Fill dialog box that just popped up, select Content Aware in the Contents section, leave Color Adaptation unchecked, set the Mode to Normal and the Opacity to 100% and click on the OK button.
This is how your picture should look like after applying the Content-Aware option:
Deselect the selection by pressing Ctrl+D on your keyboard. Now you’ll probably notice that the area where the watermark used to be is filled with the background color. But the outline of the watermark is still visible and we need to remove it too.
In order to remove the text outline we are going to resort to the Clone Stamp Tool, so select it from the left side toolbar (or just press S). Next hold down the “Alt” key (notice that the cursor turns into a target) and begin taking samples around the watermark. Now you can retouch the picture by clicking and dragging the cursor over the watermark’s outline area. Stop when there are no more traces of the original watermark left.
Use the Clone Stamp and Healing Brush Tools
Another way to remove watermark from photos is to resort to other post-processing tools, like the Clone Stamp and the Healing Brush. Here are the steps you need to follow:
Open the photo you want to edit in Photoshop and grab the Clone Stamp tool from the left side toolbar. Once you’ve selected it, make sure to set the brush size and the hardness to match your retouching needs by right clicking on the image.
Position the cursor in the area where the watermark is placed. Next hold the “Alt” key on your keyboard (the cursor will become a target) and click on the area where you want to extract the pixels from, near the watermark.
Once you’ve finished taking samples, release the “Alt” key. Next hold down the left mouse button and begin painting over the watermark.
Select the Healing Brush tool from the left side toolbar, used for removing marks or clearing up various spots and traces. Now right click on the image and choose the suitable settings for the brush size and hardness.
This is the step where you begin the healing. Hold down your “Alt” key and take samples from an area around the original watermark. Next start painting with small clicks until all the traces of the watermark are gone.
Disclaimer: Bits&Coffee does not encourage users to steal the original work of photographers by removing text or logo watermarks from images. This blog post is simply taking advantage of Photoshop’s post-processing tools built to remove various objects and information from photos.