I took a picture where the sun was just to the left of the subject with my mobile camera. Due to the sun I couldn't see my screen after I'd taken the photo and didn't realise there was a slight green streak running diagonally across the screen.

I imagine I'd have to mask the streak and apply curves adjustments, however are there other ways to remove this streak?

The original image is a lot larger, this one has been sized down and compressed a little.

enter image description here

  • Perhaps taking the same approach for "window-glare" removal might do trick here?
    – turnip
    Feb 23, 2017 at 9:39

3 Answers 3


No program can decide was it a flare or the wanted light from your target. Only a manual attack gives usable results.

I have cloned something believable into the areas that are fully overexposed, if possible. Often a big chunk of the sky has been repainted. Sometimes a light flare has been compensated by a carefully masked adjustment layer that reduces the brightness and increases the contrast or reduces one color. Here the big green flare in the middle reguires quite complex processing:

  • add a hue & saturation adjustment layer
  • select the adjusted color = green
  • reduce the brightness and saturation, adjust the color limits until the result is usable on the flare, do not care the environment too much, but keep the color range as narrow as possible
  • add total black layer mask
  • paint carefully white onto the flare area with soft brush until the flare is gone.
  • do not forget to readjust the hue & saturation layer parameters. With the mask you see better. (multiple iterations with different color settings are possible, in my example only a single processing cycle is done)

The result, only the big green flare is attacked:

enter image description here

Much complex work and often the result is not good. It really pays off to keep the direct sunlight out of your lens. The back to the sun is the best, but not allways possible. An umbrella is good because it can be held also by yourself if you're alone. The lens hood is of course connected all the time at least in the sunlight. (note: I know this all, but unfortunately the lazyness still rules)

ADDENDUM: The green flare masking is made more accurate and fixed also the left top corner:

enter image description here

BTW: If you had the RAW image, you could also adjust the building to have a good light and contrast. From JPG the result will be much less believable. But nothing prevents to try. Here's the result:

enter image description here

  • Didn't downvote because this does work but this seems overly complicated so didn't upvote either.
    – Ryan
    Feb 23, 2017 at 12:55

60 Seconds: How to remove green flare (please consider subscribing)

  1. Convert the image to Lab color mode
  2. Create a Curves Adjustment
  3. In the B Channel put two points in there - one on the green and one off it. You can use the top left tool that looks like an up/down arrow with a finger on it if it helps you. They are very close together so you might need to put the whichever you do second a little further away for it to work and then you can move it in once you have it on the Curve. Then just level those two points. Congrats, now the amount of green is even and the streak is gone. No masking or complex things needed.

enter image description here

If you feel the image is a bit too red as a result just do another Curve and adjust the A channel without adding new points to it, I also added a tiny bit of yellow in the B channel. Notice how very subtle my adjustment is in the Curve:

enter image description here

  • 1
    That's a real lesson, buddy! The underhood understanding really helps.
    – user82991
    Feb 24, 2017 at 1:10

enter image description here Fortunately the flare don't cover anything important on the photo so I would just remove it with spot healing brush and then proceed with corrections as normal. Maybe play with LAB channels rather than RGB.

  • 3
    I think you're missing the rather large streak that goes through the centre of the building (which OP does mention) :)
    – Cai
    Feb 23, 2017 at 8:54
  • 1
    That's why I would use LAB. The streak is almost not visible in the b channel so normal photo corrections should mask/remove it from a and Lightness channels. Feb 23, 2017 at 9:18

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