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Correcting images with the improved picture correction tools

From: Word 2010 New Features

Video: Correcting images with the improved picture correction tools

The saying "a picture is worth a thousand words" means that complex ideas can be illustrated with just a single photo, that the right image is often more meaningful to your readers than paragraphs of text. But what if the picture you need to work with requires some correction? Word 2010 provides new and improved editing tools to fine-tune your photos and graphics to position images and to remove backgrounds. This single page document has three images, two photos and one line art logo.

Correcting images with the improved picture correction tools

The saying "a picture is worth a thousand words" means that complex ideas can be illustrated with just a single photo, that the right image is often more meaningful to your readers than paragraphs of text. But what if the picture you need to work with requires some correction? Word 2010 provides new and improved editing tools to fine-tune your photos and graphics to position images and to remove backgrounds. This single page document has three images, two photos and one line art logo.

The first photo, an image of a tree, would benefit from some correction. In Word 2010, it's easy to sharpen or soften an image, and to adjust brightness and contrast all at the same time. We begin by selecting the photo, and Word displays the Picture Tools Format tab. We'll click here and go to this new Corrections dropdown. At the top we have choices to soften or sharpen. When we soften an image, it become slightly blurrier.

Notice that the frame is around zero sharpening, right here in the center. So you can always tell where your image is. If we make this image softer, notice it's blurrier, almost like a painting. If we sharpen it, on the other hand, it gets much crisper. Now Brightness and Contrast are below. So if I simply slide down, notice there it's very bright. So what we have is a sharper image. It's sharpened by 50% and Brightness has been kicked up 40%, and therefore Contrast down 40%.

And I can continue to move down the list until I find a setting of Brightness and Contrast that work with the sharpening I have already applied to give me a really crisp-looking photo. So here we have a 40% increase in Brightness, no increase in Contrast. Let's take a look and see what happens as I remove Brightness, notice the picture gets darker, or as I remove or add Contrast. So one of these choices, perhaps a little reduction in contrast, a little sharpening, too dark.

We need a very bright picture. I think I like that right there. So notice that I was able, really easily, to use this very intuitive control. Now I can say I also want to make it sharper. So let's just sharpen it by 50% - nice crisp image. Word 2010 also has improved tools for positioning relative to your page. So when you choose Position from the dropdown list, we of course have In Line with Text which separates the text from our image, but then we have With Text Wrapping nine positions around the page.

Here is the center, upper-left, upper-right, center, on the right, lower left-hand corner, we have to scroll down to see that, or I can un-zoom my page a little bit. So notice I choose different positions. They will be positioned relative to the page. Now I'd actually like this image to either be here or here, and go place it right there. We'll take this other image then and position it to the lower right-hand corner of our page.

Don't forget also you have the other enhancement tools, including things like frames and glow and reflect that you can apply. So if, for example, on this image I wanted to blur it into the corner, perhaps for both of these, those tools still exist from Word 2007. Now the page background here is colorized so that we have a light green, which lets us notice the cream color here on the corners of this logo. We have a couple of choices about how we might want to attack that, but we're actually going to use the Remove Background tool, another new feature in Word 2010, to get rid of the background color behind our Two Trees Olive Oil logo.

Select the image again. On Picture tools, choose Format, and we're going to select Remove Background. With Remove Background, you can remove the background from any image. It quickly and easily remove simple backgrounds from graphics. This is a relatively simple background so we'll first stretch to say, look at all of this, and notice that as I do it discovers that there is actually a background-ish color here, and it turns it pink. Now I'm going to zoom in here a little bit because we need to do some focused and fairly precise work.

When we choose Background Removal, everything that's going to go away right now is pink, and we're happy to have this section go away here. That's what we're trying to eliminate, but we don't want to lose our Two Trees logo. If, for example, I kept changes right now, okay, I would lose some of the sharpness here as well as losing the background. So I am going to do Undo and again stretch this out, and I'm going to say that there are some areas that I actually want to keep. Click Mark Areas to Keep, and I am going to keep that T, this W, both sides to the O and notice as I mark on them, they are returning back to the background color, which actually matched this color down here.

Don't spend a lot of time thinking about why it is that we're getting half of a letter. It's just how this feature works. It's a reflection of how the line art was created. So now I've accurately marked the pieces I want to keep, and we're going to lose the background here, and I'm going to keep my changes, and now notice how this fits, and I don't have that cream color background taking up space on my light green document. So if we have a simple background, it's relatively easy to work with.

If you have a very complex background you need to remove, for example, a background from a photo, this might not be the tool you want to use. Let's take a look, just so you all have an idea of how this would work. We are going to remove background, and it has captured part of the olives in the front as being not part of the background, but as I would choose to mark areas to keep, for example, and choose that I'd like to have a little more of that olive, I really have to do it almost piece-by-piece. The reason is there are a lot of different colors in these olives, and they are not that different from the background.

So if you have to remove background from visually complex background in a photo, you might decide to use a different application for this kind of background removal, but for the kind of removal we did here or relatively simple backgrounds, backgrounds with only a few colors in them, this feature works very, very well. The third new feature I'd like to discuss is actually a cropping feature. So we'll discard all of the changes that we made to this photo. You have always been able to crop here, but the new feature is called Crop to a Shape, and it let's you automatically apply a shape while you're cropping.

Now notice that the logo here for Two Trees has a curve to the bottom of it. So we could actually apply a similar curve, for example, to this photo or to this photo to sort of carry this curve into the design of our page. So I'm going to choose our olive branch, I am going to choose Crop and Crop to Shape, and we're simply going to choose a shape that actually has a curve to it. There are several to choose from. We can point to any of them and choose, but I think we'll choose this one, just to see what that looks like.

If I wanted to choose a different shape, it's really easy. I can simply undo. This isn't the permanent change. And I could choose to crop to a different shape, for example, the oval. This is a true crop, as opposed to simply a style that we would apply here. There are similar styles here that will end up with a round image, but those actually don't crop the photo. We're doing a crop here that crops to a particular shape that we've chosen. There are only a few shapes that are available for framing, basically circles and polygons in different shapes, but if you wanted, you could crop to almost any type of a shape that you would create here.

You could crop to a smiley face, you could crop to an arrow, you could crop to some of these shield shapes and come up with a specific kind of a look that you wanted to have in your graphic. So Crop to Shape, a new feature here in Word 2010. During this session, we've looked at the new and improved editing tools, positioning tools, cropping tools, and tools to remove background. 21st-century documents are becoming image-rich blends of text, art and photos, that combine to tell a story in a compelling way.

Word 2010's picture editing features help you create documents, even when the pictures and the images that you are working with need to be corrected, cropped or positioned precisely.

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Word 2010 New Features

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Gini Courter
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