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How to Use Clone Tool to Remove a Disturbing Object on a Photo in GIMP

Unless you are taking a photo of a static object, it’s not an easy job to get perfect composition on the frame when you are taking photos. Sometimes, you will see unexpected objects inside the frame that bother your photos. Digital editing allows you to remove unwanted, disturbing objects on a photo. This post will show you how to remove a disturbing object on a photo using GIMP.

GIMP has a tool called “Clone Tool”. This tool works by duplicating a selected source area (the clone source) to the other areas within your photo. You can use the Clone Tool to remove an unwanted object by ‘painting over’ it with what you have copied from other areas (the clone source). We have the following image as an example.

If you are observant enough, you will see a man’s back on the bottom-left of the frame. We will remove it with GIMP using Clone Tool.

First and foremost, launch GIMP and open the image by going to File -> Open. Or, you can press Ctrl+O on the keyboard (download 27 essential GIMP shortcuts).

Once the image is open, activate the Clone Tool by clicking its icon on the Toolbox.

Press the Ctrl key on the keyboard and click an area on your image as the clone source. Then, paint over (by performing clicks) the object you want to remove.

The Clone tool itself uses a ‘brush’ to duplicate the selected clone source. Before start clicking the object you want to remove, you can set the brush type as well the brush size on the Tool Options box beneath the Toolbox.

The technique of removing an unwanted object using Clone Tool takes patience. To get the best result, you need to select the clone source a couple of times. You need to choose a clone source that has high similarity with the object you want to replace with it. To select another clone source, simply re-press the Ctrl key on the keyboard and click the new clone source. Zoom in your image to get a more detailed image area.

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