How to Stretch a Photo in Paint

By Victoria Gorski

If you want to increase the size of a photo already saved to a computer you can use the pre-installed accessory, "Microsoft Paint," to re-size your image quickly. Paint is a free image editing software installed on Windows operating systems and, although it can only edit basic attributes of a picture, is effective for making quick and simple changes to an image.

Direct Method

Step 1

Click "Start" at the bottom left of the computer screen. Click "All Programs," select "Accessories" and click "Paint."

Step 2

Select "File" in Paint. Click "Open." An Explorer window should now appear. In the Explorer window, navigate to the location of the picture you wish to edit and click on the file once. Click "Open" in the bottom right corner of the Explorer window.

Step 3

Select "Image" from the top toolbar in Paint. Click "Re-size/Skew." Change the values in the "Horizontal" or "Vertical" boxes to re-size or stretch your image. The image will be re-sized by percentage; for example, if you change the value from "100" to "75," your image will be re-sized by 25 percent. Keep both Horizontal and Vertical values the same to avoid image distortion; if you would like to stretch the image in one direction and don't care if the image becomes distorted, enter in the desired values. Click "OK" once finished.

Step 4

Select "File" and click "Save As." Save your stretched image as an alternative name to the original image name in the Explorer pop-up box to avoid overwriting the original image. Click "Save" to save the new file.

Shortcut Method

Step 1

Follow the first two steps in section one to open your image in Paint. When your image is loaded in Paint, press the "NUM LK" button on your keyboard. Hold the "CRTL" and "A" key simultaneously to select the entire image.

Step 2

Hold "CTRL" on your keyboard and press the "-" key on your keypad to reduce the image size or the "+" to increase the image size. This method will stretch the image equally horizontally and vertically.

Step 3

Select "File" and select "Save As." Save your file using an alternative name to your original photo to avoid overwriting the original file.

Tips & Warnings

  • Stretching or increasing the size of an image in Paint may reduce the picture's quality. If you need to increase the photo size significantly, use a trial version of an image editing program such as Adobe Photoshop or Adobe Elements that maintains image clarity even when stretched 100 times more than original size.