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#37 Using the Spot Removal and Red Eye Removal Tools

Camera Raw is equipped with the Spot Removal tool, which is very effective at general retouching. You can use it to remove or reduce unwanted distractions, blemishes, dust, scratches, and so on. The advantage of retouching in Camera Raw, as opposed to retouching in Photoshop, is that it is nondestructive and doesn’t drastically increase your file size. On the other hand, keep in mind that it’s better to perform fine retouching in Photoshop, since that program provides more detail control.

To begin retouching in Camera Raw, follow these steps:

  1. Choose the Spot Healing tool on the Camera Raw toolbar and choose from the Type menu the kind of retouching you want to do: Heal or Clone (see the sidebar “Clone and Heal in Camera Raw”) (Figure 37a).

    Figure 37a

    Figure 37a Choose the Spot Removal tool and then choose Heal or Clone.

  2. Move the Radius slider to the right or left to increase or decrease the area affected by the tool.
  3. Move the Opacity slider to the left to create a more transparent retouch.
  4. In the image, click the spot to be retouched. Two circles will appear: A red circle shows the area being retouched, and the green circle indicates the source area for retouching.
  5. To reposition either circle, simply drag within it. To increase or decrease the size of either circle, hover over the circle edge until the cursor becomes a double arrow, and then drag (Figure 37b).

    Figure 37b

    Figure 37b Resize the Retouch tool by dragging the edge of either circle. You can also drag either circle to reposition it.

Red eye removal

Most cameras today come equipped with a red-eye reduction flash setting. However, this feature doesn’t always do the trick, especially when using small point-and-shoot cameras whose flash units are very close to their lenses.

To remove red eye using Camera Raw:

  1. Choose the Red Eye Removal tool from the toolbar (Figure 37c).

    Figure 37c

    Figure 37c The Red Eye Removal tool.

  2. Drag a rectangle around the eye. It is best to create a rectangle that is slightly bigger than the iris (Figure 37d).

    Figure 37d

    Figure 37d Drag to create a rectangle a bit bigger than the iris of the eye.

  3. When you release the mouse button, the selection will reduce to the size of the red area (Figure 37e).

    Figure 37e

    Figure 37e The red area is selected.

  4. Modify the Pupil and Darken sliders to fine-tune the correction.

    Repeat these steps for the other eye(s) that needs correction.

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