Adding images to documents in Google Docs is easy, but placing text over those images requires an extra step. By using text boxes, you can overlay custom text on top of any image. Here’s how to do it.
Insert an Image
First, you need to add the image that you want to place text on top of. To insert an image in Google Docs:
- Click Insert > Image in the top menu.
- Select the option to Upload an image from your computer.
- Find and select the image file you want to use.
- The image will now be placed into your document.
You can also insert images by linking to their URL, taking a screenshot, searching Google Images, or selecting from your Google Drive storage.
Add a Text Box
With your image inserted, now it’s time to add a text box. To do this:
- Click Insert > Drawing in the top menu.
- Select the Text box icon (shaped like a ‘T’).
- Click and drag your mouse on top of the image to draw the text box.
Pro Tip: Make the text box semi-transparent so the image shows through. To do this, select the text box and click Text box options > Fill color > Set transparency to 50%.
With your text box created, add your desired text:
- Click inside the text box and start typing.
- Customize the text style, color, alignment, and more through the formatting options.
- Resize and reposition the text box as needed.
Pro Tip: Right click the text box and select Send backward or Send to back to ensure the text sits on top of the image.
The final step is adjusting the image and text box to perfect the positioning:
- Resize the image larger or smaller by clicking and dragging the corner handles.
- Move the image behind text by right-clicking it, selecting Wrap text, then choosing Behind text.
- Similarly, right-click the text box and use the Order options to adjust its layering.
- Use the arrow keys to nudge the objects into precise alignment.
Take time to refine the layout until the text overlays the image just right.
- Set the text box fill to 0% transparency to make it invisible.
- Add multiple text boxes for different text areas.
- Layer text boxes and images to create visual interest.
- Rotate or skew text boxes using the rotate handle or Rotate options.
If you’re having issues getting the text to overlay correctly:
- Check the text box Wrap text setting is disabled.
- Ensure the text box and image are grouped together (right-click > Group).
- Use the Order > Bring forward/backward options.
- Reset the image wrap to In line with text.
With some tweaking, you’ll be able to achieve the perfect text overlay effect in Google Docs.
Examples of Text Overlays
Here are some examples of how text overlays can visually enhance documents:
A simple sans-serif text box with subtle drop shadow:
Minimalist text overlay example
Bold header text behind the focal point:
Modern text overlay
Text box with paper texture, grunge effects, and decorative font:
Vintage text overlay
Simulate handwriting with a script font and brush stroke borders:
Handwritten text overlay
The possibilities are endless! Apply these steps to add polished text overlays to posters, social posts, logos, invitations, brochures, and any other documents where you want to integrate text with images.
For more advanced effects, you can also:
- Skew or rotate text boxes into dynamic angles
- Layer multiple text boxes over each other
- Incorporate text box shadows for depth
- Use transparency gradients and solid shapes
- Animate text boxes to slide in/out
Google Docs has all the tools you need to take text overlays to the next level. The key is experimenting with blending options, arrangement order, shapes, and text effects.
Text overlays open up new creative possibilities for enhancing your documents. Simply insert an image, add a text box, and start perfecting the positioning.
Some ideas to spark your inspiration:
- Event posters
- Blog headers
- Magazine covers
- Photo collages
- Logo designs
- Marketing visuals
- Presentation slides
The options are truly endless. So grab some images and text, fire up Google Docs, and see what captivating designs you can create!