Photoshop: How to Remove the Flash Light

Written by darrin koltow
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The attention of someone viewing your photos goes directly to the area of highest contrast. For a picture showing the flare of a flashlight, that area of maximum contrast is the flare. Photoshop has several approaches for eliminating the flare. Many of them involve using tools that replace areas suffering from flash light with healthy image areas. The "Patch" is one such tool. To use it, you outline the area with the flash light, then select a nearby area without the light. Photoshop will transfer image information from the healthy area to the flash light portion, which will remove the light.

Skill level:

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  1. 1

    Click the "File" menu, then click the "Open" command. Use the dialogue box controls to move to a photo from which you'd like to remove the flash light, then double-click the photo to load it into Photoshop.

  2. 2

    Click the magnifying glass icon on the tool palette to run the "Magnify" tool, then click above and to the left of the region with the flash light. Drag down and right to surround the flash light, then release to complete the zoom region. Photoshop will zoom the view into this area, which will make it easier to see your flash-removal work.

  3. 3

    Click the tool palette icon that looks like a fabric patch to run the "Patch" tool, which lets you substitute a defective image area with a healthy one. Click the "Source" option above the canvas, which tells Photoshop that you'll select the flash area first.

  4. 4

    Click an image portion that shows the flash light, then drag the mouse carefully to trace out only the portions with the light. Release the mouse when you've selected the complete flash area.

  5. 5

    Click the mouse anywhere inside the area you just selected, then drag the selection to a nearby picture area that doesn't have the flash light. Notice the flash area you selected displays the area over which you've dragged the mouse.

  6. 6

    Click the mouse to replace the flash light with the area currently under the mouse.

  7. 7

    Repeat Steps 4 through 6 for the remaining image portions that have the flash light.

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