Refining an Automatic Sky Selection


Today’s Question: The Select Sky command in Photoshop does a pretty good job for most images, but is there any way to adjust the settings for this selection option when it doesn’t work great on a certain image?

Tim’s Quick Answer: No, you can’t adjust any settings for the Select Sky command in Photoshop. Your only option is to refine the automatic selection after it is created by using other selection tools or commands.

More Detail: The Select Sky command (as well as the Select Subject command) is an automatic selection command in Photoshop that uses artificial intelligence to analyze the image and create a selection. Therefore, there are no settings for these selection commands, and they operate completely automatically once selected.

While the results from both commands is often quite good, they are generally at least a little less than perfect. To improve upon the selection, you would need to use other selection tools or commands.

For example, you could make use of other selection tools to add to or subtract from the initial selection. In most cases I recommend creating a layer mask based on the initial selection and then making modifications from there. Among other things you can use the options on the Properties panel for the layer mask, such as the “Color Range” or “Select and Mask” commands to further refine the layer mask to perfection.