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by Wendi Elizabeth Martha Scarth


Remove Blue Eye 
Photoshop Elements


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  Remove Red/Green/Yellow Eye (In Animals) - Using The Sponge And Burn Tools
Suitable for Adobe Photoshop Elements Editor
Skill Level - Intermediate

Jeoffrey with his liquid eyes
Our Thomas - The Adorable Terror

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This tutorial demonstrates how to remove green, blue and yellow (flash) eye from animals utilising the Sponge and Burn Tools. To work along exactly, you are welcome to download the cat image (Jeoffrey) Here.  Unzip the file and open the image onto Elements’ workspace.

Alternative Tutorials
Removing Human and Animal Red Eye Red Eye Tool

Removing Human and Animal Red Eye with the Colour Replacement and Burn Tools

General Flash Eye Notes
Red, green, yellow or blue eye, occurs when a photograph is taken with a flash. Light from the camera’s flash is reflected onto the retina at the back of the eye, and in humans, (and sometimes dogs) results in red eye, caused by the blood vessels. Animals; including, dogs and cats, have special reflective layers (tapetum um), over their retinas - similar to mirrors, and this aids their nocturnal vision. This results in the strange green/yellow/blue eyes often displayed in photographs of indoor pets, (taken with flash). As animals age, their eyes become cloudy; exacerbating the spooky appearance caused by flash.

Undo Note
You can step backwards at any time by clicking the top menu’s Undo Tool.

Open your Start Image onto Elements’ workspace Ctrl/Cmd then O.

Elements 11, 12, 13, 14 & 15 - Tool Options Palette positioned at the bottom of the workspace. Although the palettes have been redesigned the tools work in more or less the same way.

To centralise your image - snap it to the top menu’s orange horizontal line by dragging it towards it: in addition, activate the Zoom Tool and zoom into the eye area.

Then from the left-side Toolbar, activate the Polygonal Lasso Tool

And set the following Add to selection and Feather 2 px attributes into its Options bar.

Tip - Retracing Your Steps
Whilst stretching the Lasso Line - and before the Selection Marquee has been applied: to go back one step, press either the Delete Key or the Backspace Key. Press your chosen key for however many steps you want to go back - this is for Window PC users, currently I am unfamiliar with Macs.
Macs and Windows Shortcuts, on-line PDF.

Cancel The Selection Marquee Tip
To cancel the Selection Marquee whilst applying it: press your Keyboard’s ESC Key.

You are looking to click-and-stretch a Lasso Line (Selection Marquee), around both eyes. Therefore, click and stretch a Lasso Line around the first eye, in a complete circuit: then pass your cursor over the exact point where you began, then double-left-click. This converts the Lasso Line into a Selection Marquee, as illustrated below.

Now, click-and-stretch a Lasso Line around the second eye.

After you have isolated both irises with a Selection Marquee, you are ready for the next step.

If you prefer, you can create a New Layer from the Selection Marquees by pressing Ctrl and then tapping your J Key: - Layer then New then Layer Via Copy. Then apply the Sponge Tool to the New Layer.

From the top menu, choose Enhance then choose Adjust Colour then choose Remove Colour: (Shfi+Ctrl+U). This removes the pupils’ colour, subsequently converting them to greyscale.

Alternatively, from the left-side Toolbar, activate the Sponge Tool.

And set the following Desaturate settings into its Options Bar.

Quickly adjust the Brush Size by tapping your Keyboard’s Outer Bracket Keys - ensuring your Keyboard is set to Lower Case.

Then paint inside the Selection Marquees, to remove the pupils’ colour.

Sponge Tool Note
Depending on whether you choose the Sponge Tool’s Desaturate or Saturate Mode, when repeatedly applied, it will either remove the colour - turning it to greyscale; or will deepen the colour’s saturation.

        Satuarate Mode

Desaturate Mode

To darken the pupils further, (ensure the Selection Marquees remain active), then from the Toolbar, activate the Burn Tool.

If you are working with my Start Image, then set the following attributes into the Burn Tool’s Options Bar. (If not, for personal results, experiment with the Burn Tool’s settings).

Burn Tool Notes
Depending on the pupils’ colour - you may need to experiment with the Range and Exposure settings. 

Quickly adjust the Brush Size by tapping your Keyboard’s Outer Bracket Keys - ensuring your Keyboard is set to Lower Case.

Now, ensure the Brush Size is larger than the pupil: then hover your cursor over the
left pupil, and repeatedly left-click until the pupil is darkened to a hue you like.


Repeat the last Chapter (Chapter 4): this time darkening the right pupil: then tap Ctrl then D to remove the Selection Marquee. (Select then Deselect).

To finish, soften any harsh lines between pupil and iris using the Blur Tool, setting the Strength to around 15%.


Congratulations, your work is complete and is
ready to save.

Now you know the best Tools for the job, you can quickly remove blue/green flash eye from your favourite animal photographs.

Wendi E. M. Scarth. 
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