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What is Magic Eraser Tool in Photoshop

12 min read

Hello guys, this time we are going to learn the Magic Eraser Tool in Photoshop. It works same as Magic Wand Tool but, unlike magic wand tool, it is used to delete. The main purpose of this tool is to delete the nearby pixels that have the same shade of color.

Last time I discussed Removing Background using Background Eraser Tool which is pretty much good technique and you should know that.

I am going to show you how this tool works with the help of a few steps. I guess this technique is better than theoretically explaining how this tool works.

So let’s start.

Step 1

The first thing we need to do is to grab the Magic Eraser Tool from the tool panel or by pressing Shift+E again and again.

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Step 2

Now let’s understand how this tool works with the help of a picture that is shown below.

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The first thing that needs to be remembered is that this tools always goes for same shade of color. For example, the shade of the sky is different from the beach. So if I click on the sky, then only sky will remove or delete, not the beach. In simple words, the sky is blue in color and the beach is in yellow. So if I click on the sky, Photoshop will look for blue color in its adjacent areas and delete it as long as it encounters any different color.

The sky also has different shades of blue. You can be more or less specific by setting the tolerance in the option panel.

Step 3

Now let’s understand its option panel.

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  • Tolerance: This setting helps Photoshop to be more or less picky. If it is set to a higher value, Photoshop will be less picky. Below are the two images where I used Background Eraser Tool at two different tolerance values. The first image is at 80% and the second is at 10%. You can easily see that in the first image, Photoshop is less picky and it deleted a huge amount of shades of blue while in the other image Photoshop is pickier and deleted a small amount of blue.

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  • Anti-Alias: With this feature turned on, Photoshop will smoothen the edges and leave no hard edges after deletion. I have already explained Anti-Alias in a separate tutorial.
  • Contiguous: A small advice: never turn off this feature. When this feature is turned on, Photoshop will only look at the adjacent areas to delete. When this feature is turned off, Photoshop will search the whole image for that shade of color. For example, if I had a blue color on the bottom left of my image, it would have been deleted also.
  • Sample All Layers: I guess you already know this. If turned on, Photoshop will take all layers into consideration.

Step 4

Now let’s use this tool. The reason this tool is called as Magic Eraser Tool is that it magically deletes same shade of color. This tool also helps in removal of background. In the below image, suppose I want to change the background (I know you don’t want to change the background because it is looking perfect, just some clouds are missing), I just need to click on it. Do it multiple times then you get an image with no background. That’s all.

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This tool is not a ‘very good’ tool for the removal of background but for a beginner, it works.

And this is all about this tool.

I hope you found this tutorial helpful.

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