Formatting pictures in Word can enhance their appearance. Use and format pictures to better suit your Word documents.
Video: Formatting PicturesWatch the video (4:34).
There are a variety of ways to format pictures in your document. Depending on how the images are used and where they are placed, you can use Word's picture tools to personalize and modify them in interesting ways.
Optional: Download our practice document.
To crop an image:
When you crop an image, a part of the picture is removed. Cropping may be helpful when a picture has a lot of content and you want to focus on only part of it.
- Select the image you want to crop. The Format tab appears.
- On the Format tab, click the Crop command.
Clicking the Crop command
- Cropping handles will appear around the image. Click, hold, and drag a handle to crop the image.
Cropping an image
- Click the Crop command again. The image will be cropped.
The cropped image
The corner handles are useful for simultaneously cropping the image horizontally and vertically.
To crop an image to a shape:
- Select the image you want to crop, then click the Format tab.
- Click the Crop drop-down arrow. Hover the mouse over Crop to Shape, then select the desired shape from the drop-down menu that appears.
Selecting a shape
- The image will appear formatted as the shape.
The image cropped to a shape
To add a border to a picture:
- Select the picture you want to add a border to, then click the Format tab.
- Click the Picture Border command. A drop-down menu will appear.
- From here, you can select a color, weight (thickness), and whether or not the line is dashed.
Changing the picture border
- The border will appear around the image.
Word offers several options for changing the way images appear in your document. For example, you can add a frame, make image corrections, change the image's color or brightness, and even add some stylish artistic effects. These options are located in the Adjust and Picture Styles groups on the Format tab.
Image Adjustment Options
When you're ready to make adjustments or experiment with the look of an image, select the picture and choose one of these options from the Format tab:
- Corrections: This command is located in the Adjust group. From here, you can sharpen or soften the image to adjust how blurry or clear it appears. You can also adjust the brightness and contrast, which controls how light or dark the picture appears.
The Corrections command
- Color: This command is located in the Adjust group. From here, you can adjust the image's saturation (how vivid the colors are), tone (the temperature of the image from cool to warm), and coloring (changing the overall color of the image).
The Adjust Color command
- Artistic Effects: This command is located in the Adjust group. From here, you can add artistic effects such as pastels, watercolors, and glowing edges.
The Artistic Effects command
- Picture Styles Group: This group contains a variety of styles you can apply to your picture, such as frames, borders, and soft edges.
The Picture Styles drop-down menu
If you intend to email a document that contains pictures, you'll need to monitor its file size. Large high-resolution pictures can quickly cause your document to become very large, which may make it difficult or impossible to attach to an email. Additionally, cropped areas of pictures are saved with the document by default, which can add to the file size. Word can reduce the file size by compressing pictures, which will lower their resolution and delete cropped areas.
To compress a picture:
- Select the picture you want to compress, then click the Format tab.
- Click the Compress Pictures command.
Clicking the Compress Pictures command
- A dialog box will appear. Place a check mark next to Delete cropped areas of pictures. You can also choose whether to apply the settings to this picture only or to all pictures in the document.
- Choose a Target output. If you are emailing your document, you may want to select Email, which produces the smallest file size.
- Click OK.
The Compress Pictures dialog box
Removing the background from an image
Video: Background RemovalWatch the video (3:05).
Removing the background from an image can give it a cleaner appearance. If you're printing your document, it can also save ink.
About Background Removal
With Background Removal, Word uses special algorithms to determine which parts of the image are the background and then removes these areas from the image.
To remove the background from an image:
- Select the desired image, then click the Format tab.
- Click the Remove Background command.
Clicking Remove Background
- Word will try to guess which part of the image to remove and mark the background with a magenta fill. It will also place a box with selection handles around the image.
Background areas are marked with magenta
- Drag the selection handles until all of the foreground is inside the box. After you do this, Word may readjust the background.
- At this point, you may need to help Word decide which parts of the image are in the foreground and which parts are in the background. You can do this by using the Mark Areas to Keep and Mark Areas to Remove commands:
- If Word has marked part of the foreground magenta, click Mark Areas to Keep and draw a line in that region of the image.
- If part of the background has not been marked with magenta, click Mark Areas to Remove and draw a line in that region of the image.
Marking areas to remove
- After you add your marks, Word will readjust the image.
After adding marks
- When you're satisfied with the image, click Keep Changes.
Clicking Keep Changes
- The background will be removed. You can adjust the image at any time by clicking the Remove Background command again.
The finished image
- Create a new Word document. If you want, you can use our practice document.
- Insert an image from a file into the document.
- Crop the image. If you're using the example, crop the image in the Pool Re-Opening & Celebration section into the shape of your choosing.
- Experiment with different image corrections and color settings.
- Add an Artistic Effect to the image. If you're using the example, add an artistic effect to the image in the New Online Resident Portal section.
- Try compressing an image. If you're using the example, compress the image in Memorial Day Barbecue section.
- Remove the background from the image. If you're using the example, remove the background of the image in the Important Contact Info section.