One of our readers posed a question to me yesterday and I thought that I would share the answer with all of you. The reader had been scanning scrapbook pages and wanted to know how they could separate the scanned pages into individual pictures. There are hundreds of ways to do this, however, I would like to show you how I would accomplish something like it. Plus, I have a free program suggestion, which makes this tutorial that much better!
The first thing we need to do is download a free program called Paint.Net. This is a pretty nifty program. Here is a little blurb from their website to give you a little background on the program.
It started development as an undergraduate college senior design project mentored by Microsoft, and is currently being maintained by some of the alumni that originally worked on it. Originally intended as a free replacement for the Microsoft Paint software that comes with Windows, it has grown into a powerful yet simple image and photo editor tool.
Once you have the program downloaded and installed on your computer, open up an image. In this tutorial, I am going to copy a piece of a picture and paste it into a new picture. Let’s say, for example, I want to cut my picture out below and make a thumbnail of my head.
If you look on the left side of the screen, there is a floating toolbar. Here, you will find lots of really cool tools you can use to edit your picture. Let’s find the “rectangle select” tool. You can see it highlighted in the image below.
Click the “rectangle Select” tool. Click and drag over the area of the picture that you would like to cut out. In the image below, you can see where I highlighted the area around my face.
In this tutorial, I don’t want to crop this picture because that would affect the original image, which I want to keep as-is. What I want to do is create a new image from the selected area above. To do this, I need to copy the selected area. Click the edit menu, as pictured below, and select copy from the menu.
Now, here is the really cool part. Let’s click the “New” button in the upper left corner of the screen. Paint.Net actually recognizes the size of the image that you copied onto the clipboard. Notice in the picture below, there is a dialog box that pops up with image size already filled in.
Once you click OK, there will be a blank picture perfectly sized for the image that is on the clipboard. Now, all you have to do is go to edit and click paste, as pictured below.
There you have it! The selected area from the original picture is now a separate picture. I will point out that if you look in the top right corner of the screen, there are thumbnail images that show you all the images you have open. See the image below for an example.
Paint.Net is one of the easiest image editors I have ever used. I hope to do more tutorials soon. It has a lot of the functionality of Photoshop, but it also is intuitive for people used to using Microsoft products. Since it’s free, you can’t beat the price.
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