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Modern digital cameras take beautiful photos that make your worksheets look great, but the files can be quite large. That's not a problem if you are looking at a file on a new laptop or desktop computer, but downloading large files to an iPhone or other smartphone can take some time. In this movie, I will show you some techniques to reduce image size and how to remove an image's background to make it more versatile. The first thing I will show you is how to crop an image. Cropping means that instead of resizing it, you actually take part of the image away. So I will show you what I mean. I will click the image, and then on the Format Picture contextual tab, which appears when you select an image, I will click Crop.
When I do, Excel outlines the photo with these black crop handles. So if I want to crop an image, basically what I need to do is take away any part of the image I don't want. So my goal is to crop the image, so the only thing remaining is this top left - it's about a quarter, basically going from here, down to this part of the bottle, and across. And cropping an image is a lot like resizing an image; you use the same skills. So in this case, I can grab the crop handle at the bottom right-hand corner, and when my mouse pointer is in position, it turns into a pointer that reflects the crop handle that I want to use, and I can just start pulling the image from the right side.
Anything in gray will be gone when I click the crop button again. So I will just drag it to here, and this is approximately what I wanted. So when I click the Crop button, Excel removes the part of the image that was in gray, and I am left with just this part. If you want to undo a crop operation, you can press Command+Z. And to remove the crop handles from around your image, you can click the Crop button again. If you are working with a large high- resolution image, you can also change the image so that it has fewer pixels per inch.
In other words, it's of a lower resolution. To do that, you select the image and then click Compress. So you can compress pictures by reducing the number of pixels per inch, and when you click the Picture Quality, list box's down arrow, you can select any one of these items. The setting that I am going to use, if I am going to keep my image online and I don't worry about printing it, is 96 pixels per inch. So, when I click that, I can remove any cropped picture regions.
I don't have any in this case, because I undid my changes. And then also, I can apply this change to all the pictures in the file or selected pictures only. There is only one image in this file. It doesn't really matter. But in this case I will leave it to All pictures, click OK, and Excel reduces the image's resolution. And it was subtle, but you could probably tell that there was a little bit of change in the image. The last skill I am going to show you in this movie is how to remove the background of an image. This image has already had its background removed, but what I'll do now is click to the Glass worksheet and show you an image that still has its background, and that's this blue part here.
If I want to get rid of the blue, I can select the image, and then on the Format Picture contextual tab, click Remove Background. When I do, Excel does two things: first, it tries to identify the foreground and background of the image, and it also gives you information about the Background Removal tool. So I will just click the Close button to get rid of that for now and concentrate over here. Excel has done a pretty good job of identifying the background and foreground of this image, but I am going to need to adjust it a little bit. And as you would do with other image management techniques, you can grab and drag the handles around the image.
So in this case, I want to drag this handle, pull it over to the left, and now anything in purple is considered background, and anything that's the regular image is considered foreground. So all I need to do is just make a few small adjustments, one on each edge really, and I have a little bit of the lip that's still purple. I can drag beyond that, and I'll just pull up here, and it looks like everything is good. Now that I am done, I can go back to the Ribbon and click the Remove Background button, and Excel displays the image as it is, with the background removed.
So now if I put this image in front of anything else in the worksheet, for example if I were to type some data over here and move the image over top of it, you see that where previously the image's background would have obscured the data, now it won't. When image size is a concern, you can use the techniques I have shown you to reduce the image's file size, whether by cropping or compressing it. Also, for many photos, you can remove the background, so you can put the foreground image over other parts of your worksheet without obscuring what would otherwise have been behind the image's background.
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