Image Editing

Some of my favourite programs to use for editing images include PowerPoint, Picasa, Adobe Photoshop Elements and Pixlr Express.  You can achieve some amazing results with a little time and know-how.  Here’s what I’ve been working on.


Blurring background images is a really effective way to create engaging visuals.  Here are some examples of how I’ve used blurred images – I created the blurred effect in PowerPoint.



Using Pixlr, you can turn any plain background into something more interesting.  I added a “Retro – Beam” plus a “Grunge” effect to this background.

This image has a “Vintage – Karl” and “Overlay – Summer” effect.

I tried out a few different effects on this original image – “dusty”, “paper” and “stitched”.

I worked with this image in Pixlr – using “Sharpen”, “Saturation” and “Vibrance” settings.

Working with the colour effects in Pixlr can produce some interesting images.

Pixlr has functionality to do amazing things with your images – here are some more ideas using overlays and borders.

I used the “Pencil Sketch” Artistic Effect in PowerPoint to work with this coloured image and turn it into an almost black and white sketched background that I can use in my e-Learning design. Once I’d selected the Pencil Sketch effect, which creates a black and white image, I adjusted the transparency to bring back in a small amount of colour.


These images were also edited in PowerPoint – using the “Cutout” Artistic Effect and adjusting the number of shades of colours option.

I edited this image of the Melbourne skyline in PowerPoint using the Artistic Effects “Blur”, “Cutout” and “Paintbrush”.


Comic book images

For these four images, I again used PowerPoint and chose the “Cutout” Artistic Effect with 6 shades of colour.  For some of the pictures I adjusted the “Color Saturation” setting under Picture Colour, and the “Transparency” and “Intensity” settings under Artistic Effects.

I then added a wide  black border – with the brighter colours and black border I think these images are much more like a comic book style.

I used Picasa to edit this photo of a Stop sign I took – applying the “Focal B&W” and “Comic Book” effects.

These are images taken by me – edited in Picasa using the Comic Book effect with a “Boost” of colour and borders added.

I worked with these background images in different programs to show the variety of editing you can use to produce very different effects.

Here is an example of how I edited an original image and combined two images, using one as an overlay to create the effect below.  I used the “Cutout” feature in PowerPoint and then the “Pencil Sketch” feature in Picasa.


And here’s how I used the final image on a slide in the Airline Safety Training course demo I developed.


In these examples, I experimented with how I could change the look of icons using “Pencil Sketch” and some other effects in PowerPoint.


How did I do this?

Thank you to Jamie for taking the time to comment on this post. Here’s a short video with more information on how I used Artistic Effects in PowerPoint – including the blurred image effect.


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Here’s a PDF file of this page if you have any problems loading the page in your browser.

4 thoughts on “Image Editing

  1. I would love to see and learn these examples. However, most of the images won’t load. I tried refreshing the page. Can you help me please?

  2. Thanks for your comment Kendra. The images do eventually load – but I’ve added a PDF file to this page now so you can view the entire article without having to worry about loading the page.

  3. Hi Dianne, this is perfect for what I’m wanting to do. So with the blurred backgrounds in PowerPoint for example, how did you actually do it? Do you have a step by step guide or anything? Thanks

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