Remove the Background of a Picture with Microsoft Word

490823 Remove the Background of a Picture with Microsoft Word

Removing the background of a picture in Word is easy with the built-in Remove Background tool. This allows you to eliminate distracting backgrounds and make your images pop.

In this article, you’ll learn how to remove backgrounds from pictures in Word in just a few steps.

Why Remove Image Backgrounds

Here are some reasons you may want to delete the background from a picture in Word:

  • Emphasize the main subject. By removing busy or unattractive backgrounds, you can make the main focus of your image stand out more. This helps improve visual hierarchy.
  • Create transparency. Deleting the background allows you to overlay images on color blocks or other pictures. This can help you make cool effects.
  • Improve document aesthetics. Getting rid of messy backgrounds simply makes your Word docs look more professional. The cleaner your images, the better the finished product.
  • Change the mood. Swapping out a background can change the feel of an image. For example, you could remove a light background and add a darker color to make the mood more serious.

Step 1: Insert Picture

First, insert the image you want to edit into your Word document. To do this:

  1. Click on the Insert tab.
  2. Select Pictures.
  3. Choose an image from your computer to insert.

Once inserted, the picture will appear in your document.

Step 2: Select Picture

With your picture inserted, click on it to select it. This displays the Picture Tools formatting tab.

You’ll use the tools in this tab to remove the background next.

Step 3: Remove Background

Here’s how to eliminate the picture background:

  1. Go to the Picture Format tab > Remove Background.
  2. The background pixels will become magenta colored to show what parts Word will delete.
  3. Adjust the magenta areas as needed with the Mark Areas to Keep and Mark Areas to Remove tools.
  4. Click Keep Changes once finished.

The background disappears, leaving only the main image!

Step 4: Refine Selection

In some cases, Word won’t detect the ideal background area on its own. When this happens:

  1. Click Remove Background again after finishing Step 3.
  2. Manually select which parts to keep or delete with the Mark tools.
  3. Click Keep Changes when you have the optimal selection.

Go back and forth between Steps 3 and 4 until the subject looks right.

Tips for Better Background Removal

Follow these tips to further improve the background deletion:

Use High-Quality Images

Complex or low-quality images are harder to edit. Start with a sharp picture with good lighting and separation between the subject and background.

Adjust Contrast

Increasing contrast before deleting the background makes it easier for Word to detect the foreground and background boundaries accurately.

Use Simple Backgrounds

Plain, solid-colored backgrounds are the easiest to remove cleanly. Busy backgrounds with lots of elements and colors turn out trickier.

Save Selections

If you need to remove backgrounds from multiple similar images, save your background selection. Then load it again to skip manual editing.

More Picture Editing Options

Along with background removal, Word provides extra tools to enhance your images:

  • Filters – Change brightness, contrast, color tone and more
  • Compress – Reduce file size while maintaining quality
  • Resize – Make pictures smaller or larger
  • Effects – Add shadows, glows, reflections and 3D
  • Styles – Apply borders, bevels and other preset formats

So you can fully edit images right within Word without needing Photoshop or other software.

Insert Screen Clippings

Additionally, Microsoft Word allows you to take screenshots and insert screen clippings into documents.

This makes it easy to grab images from web pages, software or anything else displayed on your screen. And you can remove the backgrounds afterward using the technique above.

Let’s Recap

Removing distracting backgrounds makes pictures clearer and documents look more professional.

With the built-in Remove Background tool, you can easily delete backgrounds right within Microsoft Word in a few clicks.

To quickly recap, here is the process:

  1. Insert picture
  2. Select picture
  3. Remove background
  4. Refine selection as needed
  5. Optionally, use editing filters and effects

Now you have the power to remove picture backgrounds directly in Word!

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