Tag Archives: genAI

Photoshop’s Generative Fill Isn’t Great, But It Works Well at Fixing Other GenAI Images

One problem with generative AI is that it’s difficult to get exactly what you want. You can often get something that’s good enough but more often than not, you get 90% of the way to what you want and getting the AI to make the correct changes to get to a 100% is daunting.

(which is why I’m a little skeptical about GenAI for video. For generic B-roll stuff, sure maybe, but wrangling the correct prompts for a 30 second video that needs to be exactly this or that is going to be difficult to say the least. It’s hard enough for a single still image.)

Photoshop’s Generative AI (called Generative Fill) is pretty subpar when compared to some of the more cutting edge ones (DALL-E, Stability AI, etc) for creating images from scratch. However, what it does pretty well is extending images. i.e. If you’ve got an image that you want wider or more head room than it was originally shot with.

OR… if you’ve created something with another AI tool, like DALL-E, as I’ve done here. DALL-E gave me more or less what I wanted but without much of a tail. I spent another 20 minutes or so trying to get DALL-E to give me this fish with a tail before giving up. It really wanted to redo the entire image. So it got frustrating.

This is where Photoshop’s GenAI turned out to be useful. To be fair, they market it as more of a way to extend/improve existing images than creating stuff from scratch. It can create from scratch but the results often aren’t great. But when it comes to extending images, there’s a big advantage to being in Photoshop… selections!

You can make the canvas wider, select the empty area to the side and type in ‘extend image’. Boom.

Now of course it gave me some other variations that didn’t work at all, but doesn’t matter. It gave me a great variation that did work.

Also, prompting something like ‘extend image with skeleton of an angler fish’ didn’t work. It was the simpler prompt ‘extend image’ that did the trick.

(Prompts are weird and a whole art unto themselves. Figuring out what the AI is going to respond to takes a LOT of trial and error. And then you still need to get it to do what you want.)

I then selected the other side and it created that easily.

You can see slight seams where the image was extend. When having Photoshop create the extensions, I tried both selecting the area by itself and selecting a little of the original image (including feathering it). It didn’t really make much difference. You got slightly different imagery but the seams tended to show up no matter what.

The tail was the worst problem however. There was an obvious change in style from the original to the Photoshop extension.

So I selected just that bit and ran Content Aware Fill a few times to cover up the seam. And that worked reasonably well despite CA Fill not being AI. It’s just sampling from other parts of the image.

Selecting the seam and running Generative Fill (prompt: ‘remove seam’) on it created three variations. Two of the three didn’t work but the third one arguably looks better than CA Fill. But they’re both pretty good. So just realize CA Fill can help touch up slight imperfections as well.

Getting DALLE, Midjourney or whatever to give you exactly what you want can be difficult. If you get most of the way there, but are having trouble prompting those tools to fill in the details, Photoshop’s Generative Fill may be able to touch things up or extend the image more easily.

Here’s the final image: