Manual vs. Automated Tools to Remove Image Backgrounds – Basic Shaped Objects on Single Color Contrasting Background

Review of Manual vs. Automated Photo Editing Tools to Remove Image Background – Experiment #1

Adobe Photoshop has given us the ability to do things manually in astonishing height. But, with the growing demand, many automated tools came into the market to ease operations in graphics design. With these automated tools, you can upload an image and they will return you back an edited image.

The photo editing experts have been editing photos manually from the starting of the photography. But, now there are many automated photo editing tools available in the internet. The tools are doing many things to draw the attention of the graphic designers. Recently, we have tried such 3 automated online image editing tools: Auto Clipping, Background Burner, and Clipping Magic. And tried to see whether it matches the quality of manual editing by hand. The result is not that satisfying. That goes to say: manual photo editing is still the best option for photo editing. We worked to remove the background of some photos and got a bitter experience with these automated tools. They do quick job for simple shaped object and different single color background. But, when you deal with complex object and similar color background, they almost ruin the images.

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Single Color

  • Basic-shaped object
  • Simple-shaped object
  • Compound-shaped object
  • Complex-shaped object
  • Group Shot

Gradient Background

  • Basic-shaped object
  • Simple-shaped object
  • Compound-shaped object
  • Complex-shaped object
  • Group Shot

Single Color

  • Basic-shaped object
  • Simple-shaped object
  • Compound-shaped object
  • Complex-shaped object
  • Group Shot

Gradient Background

  • Basic-shaped object
  • Simple-shaped object
  • Compound-shaped object
  • Complex-shaped object
  • Group Shot
  • Transparent Subject
  • Translucent Subject
  • Blurry Background

Basic Shaped Object

Single Color Contrasting Background:

We selected a cell phone image for removing the background. It has a basic rectangular shape and the background also has a single color, which is a bit contrasting to the original object we want to extract.

At first, we wanted to edit the image by autoclipping.com. It is a pretty cool online automated tool. Using the image upload button, we uploaded the image and tried to remove the gray-like single color background.

gray-like single color background

The tool has a red brush option to select the background and a green foreground brush for selecting the main object. We dragged the red brush on the background and the green brush on the foreground image. We noticed interestingly the main image is getting selected. On the other split, the edited image was shown. When it was finished, we downloaded the image, but while zooming the image we got frustrated because the edge of the image was not looking as we wanted.

Score for Auto Clipping: 50%

Breakdown:

Performance Fields Marks
Working with Soft Edges 4%
Work on Curved Areas 5%
 Work on Shadows 5%
Maintain Image Resolution 4%
Time it takes 10%
Work on Holes 5%
Re-utilization benefit 0%
Securing subject pixel 4%
Background Color on Subject 5% 
Skills Required for Editing 8%
Total 50.00%

Next, we opened the same image on Background Burner. Here, we got something more interesting. A dragon came with fire in its mouth and burnt the background. It produced three different background removed images keeping a retouch option. But again, we got the result which could not satisfy us, though it looks better than the first one. Its edge remained messy and did not look natural while zooming.

Burner Bonanza

Score for Background Burner: 58%

Breakdown:

Performance Fields Marks
Working with Soft Edges 7%
Work on Curved Areas 9%
 Work on Shadows 5%
Maintain Image Resolution 5%
Time it takes 10%
Work on Holes 5%
Re-utilization benefit 0%
Securing subject pixel 4%
Background Color on Subject 5% 
Skills Required for Editing 8%
Total 58.00%

It was time for clippingmagic.com. This tool was same as the autoclipping.com. It also offered a red and a green brush. We dragged these two brushes on the image and got the same result. We lost the shadow and delicate edge of the image.

clippingmagic

Score for Clippingmagic: 51%

Breakdown:

Performance Fields Marks
Working with Soft Edges 3%
Work on Curved Areas 5%
 Work on Shadows 4%
Maintain Image Resolution 6%
Time it takes 10%
Work on Holes 5%
Re-utilization benefit 0%
Securing subject pixel 5%
Background Color on Subject 5% 
Skills Required for Editing 8%
Total 51.00%

Manual 

Finally, being dissatisfied with these automated tools, we tried to cut out the background manually in Photoshop and got a desired result. It looks different. The color, resolution and the edge with shadow of the original image is nicely present. The background is transparent and usable anywhere.

Score for Manual Photo Editing: 69%

Breakdown:

Performance Fields Marks
Working with Soft Edges 8%
Work on Curved Areas 7%
 Work on Shadows 9%
Maintain Image Resolution 9%
Time it takes 2%
Work on Holes 8%
Re-utilization benefit 10%
Securing subject pixel 8%
Background Color on Subject 8% 
Skills Required for Editing 0%
Total 58.00%
Object Background Manual AC BB CM
Basic Shaped Object Single Color Contrasting Background 69% 50% 58% 51%


Conclusion:
The automated tools actually do pretty fast job. But, in terms of quality of the output, Manual Photo Editing is still rocks. By the way it seems that manual editing in photoshop is the best for the image of the single color contrasting background. The designers can remove or add any background of any image. If needs, they can manipulate the file for more perfection.

 

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