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Combining Images

There are many reason that you might want to combine pictures (adding hats, adding a frame, putting people in a photo or taking them out, etc.) and there are many ways to do it! This file will show one way to use the online Graphics Editor - to combine some photos.

So, if you've been wanting to put yourself standing in the front of the sphinx or standing by a celebrity, you might be able to accomplish that using these directions. At any rate, you might have some fun trying!

You may be lucky enough to find an image that you want to add that already has a transparent background. In that case, you can skip on down to putting the two images together. However, if you need to remove the background around the part of the image that you want to use in a photo, you can upload the image to pixlr and use the eraser tool:

Erasing Backgrounds from Images

  1. Click on the image from which you want to remove the background. This will make it the active image.
  2. Click on the layer that you want to work on. (There may only be one layer and that's OK)
  3. Click on the Eraser Tool.
  4. Click to choose the style of the Eraser. You can choose fuzzy brushes that will make part of the erased section translucent to allow for more mistakes, LOL, or you can choose solid erasers. You can choose circles or squares by size.
  5. Start erasing. Don't worry. If you make a mistake, all you need to do is go to "Edit" in the top menu and click "undo". That will take you back one step. In fact, you can go back many steps - one step at a time.

One of the main things here is to be sure that the layer you want to work on is the active layer. See #1 in the screenshot below:

pixlr erase tool

Help! It won't let me erase!

Sometimes the Eraser Tool won't work on the original photo you uploaded (which may happen if it is a jpg). If that happens the following is one way you can prepare the photo so that you can erase the background:

A.  Go to file and make a new transparent image with the same width and height as the original.

B.  Then click on your original photo and copy and paste it into the transparent image you made. If you're not sure how to do that, here are the steps:

  • Go to "Edit" in the top menu of the program (not your browser) and click on "select all".
  • Go to "Edit" --> copy.
  • Click on the transparent image to make it active
  • Go to "Edit" --> paste.

pixlr new image

Using Zoom to make things Easier

You can Zoom in on the image to make it easier to erase around the edges or the interior of the image:
pixlr zoom

Combining the Two Images:

This is simply a matter of copying and pasting the transparent image onto the other image. Well, nothing is ever really simple, LOL. It is seldom that the image you want to paste into another is exactly the right size. However, there are things you can do.

Transforming the Pasted Image

Go to Edit --> Transform in the Pixlr menu. A box appears around the image you just pasted. You can click and drag on one of the blue boxes to resize the image.

pixlr transform

Resizing - Copying and pasting:

You may need to adjust the size of one or both of the images. To change the size of an image:

  1. Click on the image to make it the active image.
  2. Go to "Image" in the program's top menu and click on "Image Size". It's set on default to make the changes proportional.
  3. Put in a new width and then save the new image size.

Arranging the Layers:

If you are putting more than one image into another image, you might want one to appear partially behind another. You can move the layers backward and forward:

1. Choose the layer you want to move
2. Go to "Layer" --> "Move layer up" or "Move layer down"
3. If you want to move another layer, be sure to click to make that layer active.

pixlr combine

Saving the Combined Image:

1. When you are satisfied with the image, click on the combined image to make sure it is active.
2. Then, you can go to "Layers" --> "Merge Visible
3. Go to "file" --> "save" in the pixlr menu. A window will pop up.  
BE SURE to give the image a DIFFERENT NAME than the original.
4. Use the dropdown menu to save it as a png or jpg image. Click OK
5. Wait for the regular download box to appear. (The dialogue box that appears whenever you download something)
6. Click to save it and then browse to where you want to save it when the next popup appears.


You could use this for all types of projects. Maybe you'd like to "jazz up" your head shot with a new hair style. Perhaps you want to put yourself standing in front of ocean waves, a mansion or a new car. Maybe you want to edit that Thanksgiving Family photo and cover up that ex-grandson-in-law that you never really liked anyway.

This help file was created before the youtube videos were found. To see some of these steps in action, you might want to view these Youtube videos:

Creating a Banner at pixlr  Very good video!

Make Header Graphics in Just 5 Minutes Using Pixlr Editor - shows how to use the text tool. You don't need to download a font. You can use what you have.

You'll surprise yourself by what you can learn to do. If you mess up a step, you can always use "Edit" --> "Undo"!