Clipping Magic Helps You Easily Remove Picture Backgrounds

Clipping Magic Dog

Here’s a tool you may not have heard about but may useful at some time in the future. It’s called Clipping Magic, and it’s designed to remove backgrounds from user-uploaded pictures.

The concept is rather simple, you upload an image, mark the areas in the background you don’t want in red, and mark the areas in the foreground you do want in green. The website’s algorithm takes over and (hopefully) produces a background-free picture. Sounds simple, doesn’t it? But how does it fare when used for an image with a background you actually want to remove?


I tried it for myself with an picture I snapped of a friend in Los Angeles. At the advice of Clipping Magic, I marked some of the background in red and some of the foreground in green. I emphasize ‘some’ because you needn’t go wild and blanket the background and foreground to get the desired result.

Bertrand on Clipping Magic

While I found the tool to be reasonably accurate, it didn’t quite remove all the background from the three images I uploaded, even with fine tuning. That’s okay, too, because Clipping Magic is currently in alpha, and it’s very much a work in progress.

The site’s designers note that faint and blurring edges will lead to “a bad result”, and the algorithm has trouble with partially transparent clothing. It also seems to have trouble with hair, but these issues are expected to be cleared up in further development.

Give it a try and let us know what you think!

ClippingMagic (via Reddit)

  • Greg McKay

    One step closer to not needing that Adobe subscription huh????

  • Jeffrey Silvers

    wouldn’t it be even better if you could replace the background too?

  • steve

    I think it will be much harder to fix the issues this has than they think. Isolating things like hair isn’t going to be straightforward.

  • james ascott

    Absolutely. Its hard enough to isolate hair and fine objects manually in photoshop.

  • generous

    it is much harder i think it must be made much better

  • barb

    I can not get it to work all the time why

  • barb

    it will not work all the time

  • Anonymously Harry

    It used to be free now you have to pay for it.