Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Layering Digi Images in MS Word

I use Microsoft Word to print my digital images, and I wanted to show you how easy it is to layer Doodle Pantry images.
(Note to keep in mind:  My Word program is older... 24 bit depth, and the PNG's are saved at 32 bit depth, so PNG's "appear" a bit pixelated on the screen in my Word document... but  they print just fine.  If you ever place a PNG and it "views" this way, it is likely that it is NOT the quality of the image at all, just your program or computer screen... it will probably print just fine.)

MOST Doodle Pantry PNG files are "white filled", meaning that the image can be placed on top of another digital file and the image below will be covered by the image on top, without manually having to "erase" the image behind.  (There are a few images in which I did not fill though,  the Pasque flower is one of those.)
This allows creating a scene of several images, a snap. 
I do not know how other companies save their PNG's... but the few that I do know of are outlines only, and you see other images through them when layering, which does have it's benefits for some applications, just not for easy layering in Word program.

First, add the image you want that will be below or behind.
Below, you will see what happened when I tried to layer a JPG of the gift sheep on top of another JPG of the gift sheep.  It is not a seamless overlap... half of the sheep "behind" is blanked out.
But, add a JPG of your first image and then a PNG version of another on top (after) you place the first one, and as long as the PNG file has been "white filled", you will get a seamless overlap. See below... the JPG has been placed first, and then a PNG file is placed second, overtop.  Most of Doodle Pantry images are white filled to allow you to do this.

Additionally, you can use the JPG image below and a PNG sentiment above your image and won't have to worry about the white bounding box overlapping and covering any part of your image.   Place either a JPG or PNG of the image down.

Now place the PNG file of the sentiment and move it to the desired location.  See below.
If you had tried to place the JPG of the sentiment, the entire middle section of the birdies would have been covered up with white space.

One last tidbit of information.... my Word 2000 on my mini laptop doesn't seem to allow me to rotate or flip my images. For some reason that combo just makes that option to flip or rotate, disappear.  So for a while, I was at a loss on reversing my images, until I discovered that my Photo editing program, Photoscape, does it perfectly AND I can save the flipped copy!

If you also have the free photo editing program Photoscape, just open your JPG or PNG digital image file using Photoscape, then save a copy of it in the same folder and name it something else, like with an R at the end of the name. 

Now open the copy image, then in the left sidebar area of Photoscape where you can see all your thumbnails within that folder, right click on the image you want to reverse, then select flip vertically. Viola!  you don't even have to save the copy that you just flipped! (That is why it is important to save a copy of the original FIRST and then flip the copy)  You will have to navigate to a different image and then back to the one you flipped, for you to see the newly flipped image on the screen.

Now I have a reverse copy of the gift sheep to create a new scene below. The sheep on the left is the flipped version.

There you go, a crash course on JPG and white filled PNG images and PNG sentiments, and saving a reverse copy of an image.

I hope there was some useful information for you!


Cassie said...

Great tutorial, Laurie! Thanks! I often wondered why we needed both versions of the image. I only use the PNG, but now I know ;D

Heidi Brawley said...

Thanks for the awesome tutorial!!!
~Heidi Brawley

Mary Duffek said...

Laurie!! Love the new blog and your tutorials.... So excited!

Pat (mspfd) said...

This is a tremendous help. Thank you!

Dawn Frost said...

Laurie fabulous tutorial! I didn't know some of this stuff and I'm going to put some pics together, thanks!

Sue said...

Laurie thank you very much for these helpful hints. I had forgotten about the jpeg vs png in layering. What a wonderful world of creation you have just inspired!

Your images are just beautiful and charming. TFS

Linda said...

Laurie, thanks for the tutorial on this layering. I never thought to do it that way. I have used many of your digi's for card for the Cancer Center in Texas for the children and they are much loved. This gives me more ideas now so thanks for the inspiration.