Getting Rid of Pesky Tourists

The downside to visiting the wonderful treasures of the world is that everyone else is visiting the same wonderful treasures of the world.  I like to be alone or with a few close friends when I’m out seeing the sites of the world.  Unfortunately, thousands of other sightseers are trying to do the same.

It’s crowded out there.  Hoards of people have the time and money to visit world heritage sites and other popular destinations.  It seems impossible to take a photo today without getting someone in the shot.

Photoshop to the rescue.  It’s possible to take eight or ten photos of the same scene and then ask Photoshop to eliminate the people who strolled through the photo.

Here’s how:

In the field take eight or ten photos of the same thing.  Use a tripod or hold your camera steady.  Space the photos a few seconds apart so no one is standing in the same location in each photo.  If using a tripod, take the photos minutes apart.  (Damn those people who decide to eat a sandwich while standing still out in the open. This technique won’t eliminate them.)

Later open Photoshop.  Click on File>Scripts>Statistics

Screen Shot 2017-10-21 at 11.52.48 AM

That leads of a new screen.  Select Median at the top.  Then Browse your computer for the series of images.  Check “Attempt of Automatically Align Source Images.”  Click OK.

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Your computer will chug and churn depend on it’s age and capacity.

Seville; Spain; Plaza de Espana
This is ten photos blended together to eliminate most of the tourists in the busy Plaza de Espana in Seville, Spain

Here’s another one from the same location.  This was taken on a busy Sunday afternoon when the plaza was filled with tourists and locals.

Seville; Spain; Plaza de Espana
This is ten photos blended together.  Notice some people are blurred and some are solid.  The general throng of tourists in the plaza are gone, though.

Here are single shots from each of the photos above.  Look at these to see how the tourists have been eliminated.

Spain; Seville; Plaza de Espana
One piece of a blended image.  Notice the tourists talking from the right to the fountain.
Spain; Seville; Plaza de Espana
A blend of eight photos.  Notice that the tourists walking around the plaza have been minimized.