Round images in 7 steps

We already wrote a dutch blog about round images  in Prezi.

Today we’re going to take it one step further, because we’re going to explain you how to create round images with a transparent background. We’re going to do this with the online editing program Pixlr, because not everyone has Adobe Photoshop on his or her computer.

In the other tutorial we worked with a mask, but because of the transparent background this isn’t necessary now. You can place the image for instance in a round frame or on another image.

For this tutorial we’ll use a template from Prezi. Because we’re going to work with round images, we’ve chosen the “Organic” template. This template already has a path; nice! So we won’t have to look at that.

The image:
Before we’re going to work with Pixlr it’s important to look for the right photo material. In this tutorial we’ll use images from the Internet. Be aware that you’re images need to be copyright free.

To stay in the theme of the template, we’ve searched for a photo of a centipede. Go search for a nice image and save it on your laptop or computer (right mouse click -> save image as).
Tip: Save the image in a logical place so you can easily find it again.

Step 1: Pixlr
Open a new tab in your browser and go to You’ll now enter the homepage where you can choose from three different options. Choose the left option: Pixlr Editor. The editor will open.

You saved the image on your computer, so that’s why we’ll choose “Open image from computer”. Choose the image you’ve just saved. This one will be opened in Pixlr.

Step 2: Selection frame
At the left side of the screen you can see all different kinds of tools. Pretty impressive, but fortunately we’ll only need one tool.

We click on “Selection frame tool”, as shown in the image. We now can drag a rectangle frame on our image. But, we won’t do that because we want a round frame. To change the shape of the frame we’ll click on the round shape in top of the screen.

Now we can drag a round frame on our photo, but wait! We want our frame to be perfectly round and Pixlr has a great tool for that. In top of the screen you see “Restriction”. This option will normally stay on “No restriction”. We now choose “Aspect ratio”, so our frame will be perfectly round.


Drag it!

Now you can drag a frame on the image. Take the best part from the photo. You can select a big part of the image, but you can also choose a detail. Dragged it? You can now move it to the right position.

Step 3: Invert selection
You’ve selected the part of the image you want to use. Now we need to delete the other part from the image, the one we don’t want to use. When we choose “Delete” now, the selected part of the image will be erased. So that’s why we’ll turn the selection. To do this, we click “Edit” and then “Invert selection”. The selection has been turned.

Step 4: Unlatch the image
Before we’ll erase the background definitive it’s important to unlatch the image. When we don’t do that the background of the image will stay white instead of transparent. At the right side of your screen you see different windows, under which “Layers”. In this window you see a layer named “Background”. Behind this name you see a lock, which means the image layer is locked. Double click on the lock to unlock the layer, the lock will disappear.

Step 5: Erase the background
Now we’ve unlocked the image, we finally can erase the background. Click “Edit” and then “Erase”. You can also delete the background by using the “Delete” button on your keyboard. You can see grey blocks in the background now, it means your background is transparent now.

Step 6: Save image
We now have our image with a transparent background which we can import in Prezi.

Before we’ll do that, we first need to save the image with the right format. Choose “File” and “Save”. A new window will appear.

Pixlr automatically wants to save the image as a .JPEG but that’s not what we want. .JPEG is a file format that can’t adjust transparency, so the background will turn back white again. Instead .JPEG we’ll choose file format .PNG. This format can handle the transparency. Don’t forget to name your image, in our case centipede. Click “OK” and choose a logical location. Your image has been saved.

Step 7: Import into Prezi
Import your photo into Prezi and place it in one of the circle frames. You can walkthrough these steps again for other images so all your circles will be filled with round images. You can also minimize an image and place this at the edge of a circle frame to create a nice effect.
See here our result!

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  1. Patrycja
    Posted February 23, 2014 at 1:02 PM | Permalink

    Hey guys!
    I think that the website you mean is, not (probably a misspelling!)
    Thanks for the tutorial 🙂

    • Prezi University
      Posted April 9, 2014 at 7:40 PM | Permalink

      Yes! Of course it’s Thank you so much to mention our typo!

  2. Posted September 2, 2014 at 10:33 PM | Permalink

    Great Tool! congrats

  3. sam
    Posted September 10, 2014 at 3:16 PM | Permalink

    How do i lock the image into the circle shape, so i can move them and add animation to them (circle+image) together?

    Specifically, I am trying to animate circles with images and having a hard time since the animation selector is such that its difficult to select the circle with the image – instead, either the circle or the image ends up getting selected, leading to the circle or image appearing separately when animated onto the screen. Help?

    • Prezi University
      Posted September 19, 2014 at 11:51 AM | Permalink

      You can select both by first clicking one object, then holding down the Shift key and then selecting the second object. Another method is to click and drag a rectangle around the object while holding down the Shift key.
      Hope this helps?

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