How to Make an Image with a Transparent Background in Adobe Photoshop Elements

By Filonia LeChat

For certain types of images, transparent backgrounds are essential. Icons, for example, are small pictures that are found on desktops, smart phones and other electronic devices and must be able to be situated on any kind of background. When you use the Adobe Photoshop Elements image-editing and graphics program, you can create images from scratch using electronic backgrounds, giving you the ability to customize logos, avatars, Web graphics and more.

Step 1

Open Photoshop Elements. Click the "File" menu. Select "New." In the "Name" box, type "TranspImage." Enter your desired dimensions in the "Width" and "Height" boxes. Click the "Transparent" option in the "Background Contents" menu. Click the "OK" button. Elements opens a canvas that has a gray-and-white checkerboard background, which means that the background is transparent.

Step 2

Click the "Brush" tool on the toolbar. Click the color selector, which is near the bottom of the toolbar. Choose the first paint color for the image and then click "OK."

Step 3

Position the brush over the canvas. Click and drag the cursor to form the outline of the image.

Step 4

Click the "Paint Bucket" tool, which is located below the "Brush" tool. Click inside the outlined drawing to fill it with color. Do not click the background, or it will fill with color. If this happens, click the "Edit" menu and select the "Undo" option.

Step 5

Switch back to the "Brush" tool. Choose a new color and add additional designs to the image. Continue to add designs and colors until the image is complete.

Step 6

Click the "File" menu. Click "Save As." In the "Format" menu, select either PNG or GIF; both allow for transparent backgrounds. Choose where you wish to save the image and then click the "Save" button.