How to Make a Background Transparent in Paint

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How to Make a Background Transparent in Paint
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Microsoft's Paint software application is a core addition to computers running the Windows operating system. Although Paint falls behind sophisticated software programs such as Adobe Photoshop in terms of flexibility and available resources, it provides a set of basic image editing tools that may be useful, particularly for amateur artists and casual users who are taking their first steps into the world of digital art and photo editing.

Making a background transparent in Paint is an example of a task that may be more efficiently accomplished in other programs. That said, it is still manageable using a few relatively straightforward steps.


Making a background in transparent in Paint is accomplished using a variety of relatively straightforward methods. Depending on your specific needs, you may decide to use either the standard Paint program or the more advanced Paint 3D application.

Basics of Transparency in MS Paint

In programs such as Paint, which allow for the creation of stacked layers of images, transparency is particularity useful in the creation of complex artwork or edits. Unlike some of the more powerful image editing programs, however, creating a transparent background in Paint requires a bit of legwork on your part.

The most straightforward method of creating transparency in Paint is to use the Transparent selection tool in combination with the Free-form selection option. You use this particular combination of tools to trace an area on your original image that is maintained while the rest of the image becomes a transparent background. For example, if you want to cut a single item out of an image and move it to a different image or a new background, this method is ideal.

To successfully transport part of an image from a file after you complete the previous steps, use the Ctrl + C key combination to copy the portion of the image you want to transport and then press Ctrl + V to paste the selection into the new file.

Other Transparency Options

If you are using Paint 3D, you can take advantage of an additional set of tools and layering features. Although Paint 3D does not explicitly provide users with the option to create and manage layers, there are methods you can use to create fully transparent areas of images that can then be substituted with images found in subsequent layers.

After opening the Paint 3D application, open your preferred image and press the Canvas button found on the sidebar. Select the Transparent canvas option on the sidebar to ensure that any areas that you delete on the image are converted to transparency. Use the selection tool to isolate the specific area of your image you want to convert to transparency. When the area is selected, press the Ctrl + X key combination to delete that specific area from the image, leaving transparency.

The transparent section of the image can be supplemented by saving the quasi-transparent file and opening it in combination with another image in Paint. You can then reposition the image with transparency as needed to achieve the desired effect. Ultimately, this allows you to create highly complex image layers that are impossible to achieve without the use of transparency.