Using Paint

Microsoft Paint is a free tool found on most Windows operating systems. But did you know that you can us Paint to create professional looking book covers? Well, you are welcome to the world of creativity. God is creative, so we are. I will take you through few steps below on how to create a book cover with Paint, but the creativity is 100% yours.

Step 1: Running Paint

You can start Paint like any other program. Click the Start button, then look on your left hand side for Paint icon. If you cannot see it there, then click the all programs link below the start menu to browse to all programs. Click the accessories folder and then left-click on Paint. Or just type “Paint” in the search box on the Start Button and then left-click on Paint icon when appeared. Remember these steps are taken using Microsoft Office 2007. A different office suit may differ greatly!

Step 2: Editing photos

You may already have an image that you want to edit with Paint, or you may create one from scratch. Whatever situation you are in, I hope these steps will help you. To edit an image that is already on your computer or on your external drive, you have to use the copy and paste commands on the ribbon. You can paste from file meaning you will have to locate the image and then open it in Paint. You may also right-click the image and choose Paint as the program to open it in. This is the longest step and we discuss it in details as shown below.

Painting the picture – now, when you have successfully opened your image in Paint, you will have to edit it or paint it. There are many tools to use here. But before using any painting tool, you have to know where to find them. Now, let us explore the basic features of Paint.

Hope Tab – Home tab is where you find the tab groups with different commands under them. We have clipboard, image, tools, shapes and colors under home tab in Paint. Please bear in mind that these features may change depending on what view you are using!

Clipboard Group – Under clipboard group there are cut and copy commands that you can use to cut or copy text or any selected item. On the left hand side of clipboard is the “Paste” command which you can use to paste copied or cut item into the current image. Clicking on the little arrow under paste gives you two options, such as paste, or paste from. The paste from link/command makes you paste from a file or from a drive on your computer. Paste from will open the open file dialog window when clicked and you have to located the picture you want to paste and then paste it into the current image.

Image Group – Under the image group, you can see commands such as crop, resize, rotate and select. Use the select to select the area in the image where you want to apply certain color (more later) on this. Use the rotate command to rotate the current image 90 degrees left, 90 degrees right, 180 degrees, or flip vertical or flip horizontal. The resize button allows you to resize pixels or percentage of the current image. You can even skew the image if needed!

Tools Group – Under tools you have pencil, color picker, fill with color tool, eraser, text and magnifier. These tools are useful when drawing an eye-catching book cover.

Shapes Group – You have many types of shapes that you can use for your cover. You may not need all of them all the time depending on what image you are currently working on. You can also use the fill and outline formats when an image is selected. These will appear in-active if nothing is selected.

Colors Group – Between colors and shapes, you can also choose the size of the selector or pen. Under colors group you can see many colors added to the ribbon, but you can still edit colors or add new colors to the ribbon for quick access. Use the “edit colors” command to open a dialog box and select colors you need to add to the ribbon and then click the OK button to add them. You must also take note of color 1 and color 2 buttons. Color one is meant for text and color 2 for the background formatting of your image. The ruler on top and left sides is for measuring your image. When you resize images, their size also get increased even when you are only resizing the pixels! Don’t worry, simply save your image and close Paint after you are done.

Get the full book here (Kindle Edition).