There are many free and paid apps and websites that can remove backgrounds from images. This can be useful if you accidentally took a photo with an unwanted background or downloaded a photo with a background that doesn't match the photo's subject. Microsoft is now adding this same functionality to Paint.

Starting with version 11.2306.30.0, the Paint app has a new feature that can identify the subjects in an image and remove the background with a single click. So, you don't need to pay for third-party image editing applications or online services to do that.

In this post, we'll show you how to make a background transparent in Paint and Paint 3D on Windows 11.

Using the new 'Remove Background' Tool in Paint

Removing Background in Paint is easier than ever with the new background remover tool. It used to involve several steps and different tools, but now you can do that with a button click.

  1. Launch the Paint app on your computer.
  2. After that, click on the 'File' tab and select 'Open'.
  1. Pick the image you want to make transparent and then click 'Open'.

Alternatively, navigate to the image in File Explorer, right-click on it, and select 'Open with' > 'Paint'.

  1. Once the image is loaded into the Paint window, simply click on the 'Remove Background' button (an icon of a person with striped lines), located in the 'Image' section on the toolbar.
  1. In a few seconds, your image will magically turn transparent. The checkered background behind the image means its background is transparent.
  2. You can compare the before and after images to see how it turned out.
  1. If the tool misses any parts, you can fine-tune it using the 'Eraser' tool to make specific areas of the image background transparent.
  1. Once you're satisfied with the result, it's time to save the image. To do that, click on the 'File' tab, choose 'Save as', and select the 'PNG picture' option to save your image with a transparent background.
  1. Finally, choose where you'd like to save the image, rename the file, and click the 'Save' button.

The tool accurately detected edges and automatically removed the background without any major flaws in the final output.

Another great thing about the app is that your image resolution will stay the same, so you don't have to worry about it being lowered while using Paint.

Using the Transparent Selection Tool in Paint

Although the background removal tool in Paint is effective, it can struggle to mark all the areas in darker photos or photos with frames with similar shades of color. For those cases, you may prefer the manual transparent selection method. Here are the steps:

  1. Start by launching the Microsoft Paint app on your computer.
  2. To load the image you want to work with, click the 'File' menu and select the image. Alternatively, right-click the image and click 'Open with' then select 'Paint'.
  1. On the toolbar, click the 'Selection' or 'Select' button and select 'Transparent selection' from the menu.
  1. Now, click the 'Select' or 'Selection' again and choose 'Free-form selection'.
  1. Now click and drag your mouse pointer around the foreground area you want to preserve from the original picture. (the unselected part will be turned transparent). For example, if you want to create a transparent image with this dog image, you want to trace around the dog's body.
  1. Once you are done tracing, a dotted rectangle will appear around your selected area.
  1. When you click and drag the selected area you will notice that it is cropped or movable.
  1. After that, you can just, click the 'Selection' menu again and select 'Invert Selection'.
  1. Then, click on the background and press 'Delete' to delete the background.

Alternatively, Now, you can either copy or cut the selection by pressing Ctrl+C or Ctrl+X shortcut keys. After that, press Ctrl+N to open a new Paint window. When you see to save your work, click 'Don't save'. Then, right-click on the new window and select 'Paste' or press Ctr+V to paste the cutout foreground.

  1. To save the image with a transparent background, click 'File' and select 'Save as'.
  1. Choose 'PNG' as the file type and select 'Save'.

You can also open another image and copy and paste this transparent image onto it. Then, save it as a new image.

The images with a transparent background created using Paint will only remain transparent while they are still open and being edited in Paint. Once you save the image as a PNG file, the transparent background will be converted to a white or black background.

This is because the PNG image format does not support transparency by default. To save an image with a transparent background in PNG format, you need to use a different image editing program, such as Adobe Photoshop or GIMP.

Remove Backgrounds from images in Paint 3D

Paint 3D represents a slightly more sophisticated iteration of Paint, offering an array of added features, including the capability to work with 3D models. Let me walk you through the steps to create a transparent background in Paint 3D:

  1. Search for 'Paint 3D' in the Windows search and launch it. Download and install the app if you don't have it. It's a free app available in the Microsoft Store.
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  1. Once you have the app running, click 'Menu'.
  2. Then, navigate the 'Open' menu and click on 'Browser files'.
  1. Next, pick the image you wish to edit and click the 'Open' button.
  1. After your image loads, locate the 'Magic select' tool in the top bar and click on it.
  1. Now, bring the borders of the selection closer around the subject so the tool can detect the edges properly.
  1. Afterward, click 'Next', and the app will automatically identify the subject based on your outline.
  1. If any part is missed or too much is selected, you can use the 'Add' or 'Remove' buttons to fine-tune your selection on the right-side pane.
  1. If Paint removed too much of your image, click the 'Add' button, and mark the areas with the cursor (white marker).
  1. If the Magic Select tool didn't remove a part of the image that is part of the background, you can select the 'Remove' tab and use the mouse (Black marker) to select those areas. The tool will remove the selected areas.
  1. Once you're satisfied, click 'Done'.
  1. On the next page, you have options to rotate, flip, and make stickers out of the image.
  2. Switch to the 'Canvas' tab on the ribbon and turn off the 'Show canvas' option.
  1. Now, go to the 'Menu' and choose the 'Save as' option. Then, select the 'Image' file format on the right pane.
  1. Choose the 'PNG' file format from the drop-down menu under Save as type and adjust the image resolution (if needed). Then, turn on the 'Transparency' option and click the 'Save' button.
  1. Select where you want to save your transparent image and click 'Save'.

That's it! You've successfully made your image background transparent in Paint 3D.

Paint 3D may need more manual adjustments for edge detection than the classic Paint app, and it takes multiple steps to make the background transparent. Paint, on the other hand, can remove the background with a single click.

Other ways to make a background transparent

If you find the above methods complicated, you can use these two tools:

  • Adobe Photoshop: Photoshop is a popular photo editing software that has a Magic Wand tool that can easily select a certain color and remove it. However, it is a paid software.
  • Online photo editing websites: There are several online photo editing websites that can make the background transparent on an image. You can upload the image and wait for the website to process it and download it. However, these websites may have size and format limitations.

    Try website for a perfect online replacement of Paint's remove background tool.
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