How to Remove Haze in Photoshop

Written by steve heap
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How to Remove Haze in Photoshop
Haze over a city caused by air pollution and mist (Ryan McVay/Stockbyte/Getty Images)

As the air around cities becomes more polluted, landscape pictures often show a fading of detail in the distance and can also have an overall blue colour. The details are lost and the image is generally of low contrast -- with little difference between dark and light elements. Adobe Photoshop is an advanced image editing system used to enhance a photograph by removing the haze and restoring the full beauty of the scene.

Skill level:
Moderately Easy

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  1. 1

    Open the image in Photoshop. Click on the "New Adjustment Layer" button in the centre of the icons under the "Layers" panel and select "Levels" to open up the Levels adjustment panel.

  2. 2

    Click the arrow to the right of "RGB" above the histogram and choose "Red." Slide the left black arrow to the right until it just reaches the edge of the black shape in the histogram. Repeat for the white arrow at the right hand edge of the histogram and slide to the left.

  3. 3

    Select the "Green" channel and repeat the same step so that the black and white arrows are aligned with the edge of information in the histogram.

  4. 4

    Select the "Blue" channel and repeat the adjustments. In Photoshop CS5, there is no need to click "OK" as the adjustments are automatically applied.

  5. 5

    Toggle the eye symbol to the left of the "Levels" adjustment layer in the "Layers" panel to confirm that the haze has been reduced.

  6. 6

    Select "File>Save As" to save the image under a new file name.

Tips and warnings

  • Clicking the "Auto" button in the "Layers" adjustment panel is often an easy fix for many photographs
  • Use a mask to limit the effect of the adjustments if only part of the photograph is hazy
  • Always save the file under a new name to avoid overwriting the original picture

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