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How to Layer Clip Art (with text or multiple images)

Category: Clip Art Tips
Posted: 08/05/2011 06:11 PM
Views: 38126
Synopsis: Learn about layering images & text... this is helpful for typing on top of borders or banners.
Also, learn how to layer images together... like how to put the hat on the bear.

For starters... let us just say that a good graphics or photo program will make your life SOO much easier when it comes to clip art. If you want to layer & play with the images a little bit, try a program other than Word.

PLEASE NOTE: You can easily layer with: .png, .wmf, or .eps images because the background is 'transparent' or see-through. But .jpg, .tiff & .pict images have white backgrounds... so if you try to put a .jpg hat on a bear... you'll see a white box around the hat. Try .png if possible... all downloads & newer CD's include .png & .jpg files. :)

In MOST programs, you can layer additional images & text boxes very easily. Simply add the image(s), shapes or text boxes to your project... and move them around & resize until they fit where you want them.

Adding a text box is usually a tool marked with a 'T' or 'Insert Text Box.' Then you can change size of the area you want to type in, the font or color, size etc. Adding a shape is usually a rectangle or circle in the tool box or 'Insert Shape.' This is handy for adding a matte behind an image or a block of color to type on.

To change the order (or put an image/object in front or back of another object)... simply right-click & choose 'send to back' 'send backwards' (behind 1 object at a time), or front. Sometimes this option is labeled 'Order' or 'Position' in your tools menu.

To Layer in WORD is a little bit more complicated. There are two different ways to do this: you can type first, and then add your picture behind the type... and adjust either one accordingly. OR... you can add the picture first, and then put a text box on top of the image.

If you prefer to type first... simply type up your information & then insert your image/border into the document (click here for instructions on how to do this). Your image will automatically go to the last place your cursor was. Right click ONCE on the image & select ‘Format Picture' (or choose Format/Picture from top menu). This will bring up a new dialog box that contains several different tabs of options.

Select the ‘layout’ tab, & click on the image labeled ‘behind text.’ You can also choose where on the page the border goes with the alignment options (center horizontally for the middle of your page). (You can also select 'Advanced' for further options to customize your image.) After you click OK… adjust your image/border by using the markers on the corners of your image to re-size, and the four-way pointer to move the image. You can adjust your text using space bar, tab & return. Make sure you choose a cute font that matches too! (Click here for more information on re-sizing or editing your image.)

If you’d rather add the picture first, and then type over it... you’ll need to start with a blank page & then insert your image (see above link for instructions if needed). Move or re-size the image as desired, until you're ready to type (see above link for how to resize or move an image).

Next go to Insert, & select ‘Text Box.’ This will bring up a new box at the top of your document. First click on the text box, then when you see the 4-way arrow while hovering over the image, click & drag it around (while you hold the mouse button down) to move this box on top of your picture. Then you can re-size the text box until it fits nicely over your image/border.

Most often by default, the text box with have a white background with a thin black border. To remove or change those features: right-click & choose ‘Format Text Box’ (or Format/Text Box from the menu). This opens a new window with different tabs on top. Select ‘Colors & Lines.’ The Color/Fill is set to white… so pull down the options & choose ‘No Fill.’ For the ‘Line/Color’ choose ‘No Line.’ Click OK to apply changes.

Then you can choose a cute font, color, & size... & start typing! With the curves of hand-drawn images, you'll often need to play with tabs & spaces to make it all fit just right if you're typing a lot of information on top of an image.

To layer multiple images in Word, both images must be added & then use the 'Format Picture' button on each one individually. They will default to the order they are added to your page. If you want to change the order of the layers... right-click, choose 'Order' and change to desired position.

TIP...if you use a text box on top of your image & you need to move the picture or text box around separately from each other, choose ‘Format/Picture, Layout’ tab, then click 'Advanced' & choose the ‘Picture Position’ tab. There are some boxes that are automatically checked. Remove the check from ‘move object with text’ & click OK. Ta Da! Now you can re-size & move both as needed. (See above links for information on how to 'format picture' or re-size & move images.)

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