Layers in Photo Editing Programs or in PowerPoint

The concept of layers is basically the same among photo editing programs and even PowerPoint. Most people are more familiar with PowerPoint than a specific photo editing tool, like Photoshop, so this example is done with PowerPoint.

Play with paper

Get several different kinds of paper in front of you. Make one sheet yellow, one transparent and colorless, another white, and the last sheet black.

Draw a big, red X on your yellow paper, right in the center of the paper. Draw a green star on your white paper and a house on your black paper. Draw a cloud on your transparent paper.

Now, stack the papers. Put the transparent paper on the bottom, then the yellow, white, and the black. If the black paper is on the top of the stack, all you can see if black paper with a picture of a house on it.

Re-order your stack. This time, put the black one on the bottom, then the white, then the yellow, and then the transparent paper. Now you can see the cloud you drew on your transparent paper in addition to the big red X and the yellow paper.

From this, you should garner a few pieces of information about layers. Each layer has some properties.

Transparency

Is the layer transparent or opaque? Can you see through it? When you’re using PowerPoint, every shape, text, graph, or smart art is its own layer. Select the shape. Right click on the shape and then select “Format Shape” from the menu that comes up. Go to the “Fill” section. Click on “Solid Fill.” Then, underneath the fill color, is a slider bar with transparency. If the slider is set to 100%, then the layer is completely transparent. If the layer is set to 0, then it is completely opaque.

This is a little different from the paper example, however. In the paper example, the cloud you drew was not transparent. In PowerPoint, the entire shape is its own layer and has the same transparency level.

Order of the layers

Just like you controlled the order of the papers in your stack, you can control the order of your shapes (your layers) in PowerPoint. Right click on any object and a menu will pop up. The menu has “Bring to Front” and “Send to Back” options. If you hover on the “Send to Back” option, another option appears to “Send Backward.” “Send to Back” puts the layer on the bottom of the stack of images. “Send Backward” just sends the layer one back.

How can I make part of the shape transparent?

If you want part of the shape transparent and part opaque, you can use the “remove the background” feature to make parts of the picture transparent. This only works with photos, so if you want to do this with a normal shape, you need to save the shape out as an image and then reload it into your document.

For example, say you have a photo that has a cloud in the sky, and you want the center of the cloud to be transparent with a dog showing through.

Size the dog so it will fit in the cloud.

Click on the picture that has the cloud in it. Go to the “Format” tab. On the left hand side, click on Remove Background. PowerPoint 2007 doesn’t give you a whole lot of control here, but 2010 is much better. Use the plus sign to mark areas to keep. Use the plus sign to mark everything that is not a cloud. Use the minus sign to mark the cloud to remove. Leave some of the edges of the cloud there. If you don’t like the results, click on “Remove Background” again and modify your work.

The Best Photo Editing Software Revealed – How to Choose the Perfect Photo Editor

The first step to choosing photo-editing software is determining how you want to manipulate photographs. In part, this will depend on your level of skill. If you are an amateur and just want to “mess around,” you would just want the most basic photo-editing software. If you are an experienced user, you may want more features like creative effects. Next, you will need to decide on a budget. Photo-editing software can be quite expensive. If the software is for a student, find the academic versions. These versions will provide everything a student would need and they offer a very large discount.

Once you know what you need and the amount you can afford start comparing programs. Consult the following list to begin your research:

The Top 5 Photo-Editing Software Programs

Adobe Photoshop Elements 7

Adobe Photoshop Elements 7 is an easy to use program that offers a wide variety of features for both the beginner and the expert. Some of its more unique features include a beginner’s guided editor and online functions through adobe express.

Corel Paint Shop Pro Photo X2

For years, Paint Shop Pro has been and excellent choice for beginners and professionals alike. The easy to use interface makes it perfect for beginners and the reasonable price appeals to professionals. Paint Shop Pro X2 is almost as powerful as Photoshop Elements 7. However, it does not offer some of the less popular features.

Serif Photo Plus X2

This is the perfect program for someone just starting out editing photos. It is easy to use and offers sound assistance. The program contains all the necessary features for beginners but offers some of the more advanced features also. The beginner will not easily grow out of this program.

Ulead Photo Impact X3

This program is a little more difficult to use as Adobe Photoshop Elements 7. However, once the basics have been mastered the program becomes much easier to use. The program can be used in two modes – expressfix and full edit. Ulead Photo Impact X3 also has the ability to make web pages.

ACDSee Photo Editor 2008

This program combines photo editing, graphic design and presentation projects. It features How-To projects to help the novice learn some of the more complex features. However, it does not offer much in the way of sharing or organizing.

Supplementing College Costs As A Digital Photographer and Photo Editor

The other day I was talking to a brilliant up-and-coming photographer. She was busy taking college courses, and was also an artist. She had experience with black and white film, and all the new digital technologies. She was well-versed with the best photo editing software as well. Since she was going to college she spent most of her time studying, but she still loved her hobby.

She hadn’t spent a lot of time making money with all of her talents, but it did make sense to me that she should be supplementing her college costs while going to school doing digital photography and photo editing. Okay so let’s talk, because maybe you are the same situation?

There are many authors that put together digital books. These writers get the format and templates online, then they create a digital book in Microsoft Word. Next thing they know they are selling it on Amazon as a Kindle e-book, or at Barnes & Noble as a Nook Book. Interestingly enough, Google and Apple also have digital books available in their catalogs.

But you know what helps sell a digital book best of all? It’s the digital cover which is displayed as a thumbnail, or can be expanded on the catalog page for those who might like to purchase the book to take a look at. It turns out that people really do judge a book by its cover, even a digital online e-book. What I’m saying to you is this; if you’re a college student and you are good with this digital technology, and photo editing you might find plenty of work helping authors who produce e-books create compelling covers.

You might be surprised that they would pay you as much as $50-$75 for each cover you create. If you are really good at it you can probably do it in a couple of hours. Those authors who produce many e-books or even writing clubs might bring you a tremendous amount of work. Plus, it is exceptional practice. Those same authors will need more digital photo editing for their websites, and those who are writers often know lots of people, and they can get your business off the ground by referring you from there.

They say practice makes perfect, and it takes a lot of practice to become a good photo editor. This might be one way to get paid for practicing, and it would sure help the bills of a college student trying to make ends meet, and worried about student loans. Indeed I hope you will please consider all this and think on it.

Choosing The Perfect Photo Editor Software

Making good photos requires lots of skills, professional cameras, perfect weather conditions and most importantly a good photo editor software. If you visit news websites, popular online photo galleries or even view a photo magazine, you will notice that their images are of the highest quality, professional and are really good looking. How do you think they achieved this? After taking photos with their cameras, these photographers use professional and cutting-edge photo software to retouch their images.

There are hundreds of photo editor software available on the market. While many of them are available free of charge, you will need to purchase a license for the most professional ones. Choosing the perfect photo software can be a difficult task especially if you are new to photo editing. Which software to buy will also depend on the level of editing you want to achieve. If your photos are going to be used online or in magazines then a professional software will be required else if it is just for personal use, a free or low cost software will be the best choice.

I’m sure before you purchase a product online you look for reviews and testimonials from other users. That’s a great idea! You should do the same before selecting a photo editor software. Most software authors provide a list of their software’s features on their website. This makes it easy for you to compare the features of several photo software to see which one will best suit your needs. There are also several photography blogs and forums from where you can find reviews and testimonials from other users.

If you are going to purchase a commercial software then it might be a good idea to download a trial version first. Most commercial photo editor software come with a 30 day trial or limited amount of use. This gives you ample time to try all the features of the software and also make sure that it can run on your computer. You will also be able to see if the photo software meets all your requirements.

There are some basic features that you need to look for in a photo editor software. You should be able to level or rotate your images, crop, resize, remove red eye, sharpen, remove noise, adjust color, saturation, brightness, contrast and add special effects to your photos. Moreover the software should have an easy to use and friendly user interface. An accompanying documentation on how to use the software will be a plus for you. There are endless options of photo manipulation software but before selecting one, make sure you compare their prices and features offered. And most importantly, make sure the photo software meets your requirements!