For my first post I thought I’d share something that always pleases those who haven’t already discovered it. Beginning with Office 2010, Microsoft began including some really wonderful features in PowerPoint, and one of my favorites is the ability to edit photos. The same features are available in Word, but I like to use PowerPoint because the landscape layout feels like a canvas, similar to photo editing software.
Editing features including:
- Background removal
- Color corrections for sharpening and brightness
- Artistic effects
- Improved frames with formatting
You’ll find all the editing features when you select a photo and go to the Format tab.
Here’s how to do it!
For my example I’ll work with two photos and combine them to show you some of the options.
My starting images:
Remove a Background (Image 1)
- Select Remove Background from the Format toolbar.
- Use the handles on the marquee outline around the image to select the area you want to keep. If the part of the picture you want to keep is in sharp contrast to the background, this may be all you have to do. If not, select Mark Areas to Remove and use the pencil tool to mark the sections to remove.
- When you’re satisfied with the image, select Keep Changes.
Adjust the Color (Image 2)
- Select Color from the toolbar.
- Choose one of the automatic options, or select a color from More Variations.
Add an Artistic Effect (Image 2)
- Select Artistic Effects from the toolbar.
- Choose one of the artistic options.
- You can also choose Artistic Effect Options to choose tweak the option of your choice. For instance, I chose Film Grain and then increased the grain size.
Note: To create the look I want, I placed Image 1 in front of Image 2 and cropped Image 2.
Save Image (Image 1 & 2)
- Select both photos, right click and choose Save as Picture.
- Choose a location, name the image and choose the file type.
Add a Frame (New Image)
- Insert the file you just saved.
- Select a frame from the Picture Style gallery.
- Save the image by using the Save as Picture function again.
Note: If you don’t save the pictures together and reinsert, each picture will be framed seperately with the style you choose from the Picture Style gallery.
Voila! I’ve combined two images, added multiple effects to make it appear as though this couple is watching a black and white film at a drive-in theater and placed it in a formatted frame.
By far, my favorite effect is simply removing the background of images – it drastically increases the usability of many photos.
Give these features a try and let me know what you think.