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Make Transparent PNG: How To Remove a Logo Background

In this guide to making a background transparent PNG, we’ll give an overview of transparent PNGs and how to make an image/logo background transparent with Adobe Photoshop, Canva, and Snappa.

Skip ahead with these quick links:

Tip: You can also hire someone for $5 USD to make your image transparent. Turnaround is typically 1 day and as fast as 1 hour. Check it out here on Fiverr.

What Is a Transparent PNG Background

A PNG is an image file type that allows you to have no background color. Most images cover a certain number of pixels and have color in all of those pixels, even if that color is white. A transparent background has nothing in the background pixels, allowing what’s behind it to show through.

In this screenshot, you can see that the header with the “Emergency Chapter Housing Campaign” logo has used an image with a transparent background because the blue behind it is showing through.

In contrast, you can see here a logo with a white background:

The white box behind the logo itself is the background. It looks unprofessional and messy, and can clash with the background color websites, brochures, or other designs.

Whether you have a website for your freelance work, small business, or nonprofit, you’ll want to ensure that your logo looks good on any page.

Unless you want to change the colors on your site, you need to make a transparent PNG that seamlessly integrates with your page and designs.

PNG vs JPG vs GIF

A PNG is only one type of image format that you can use on your website, and it may not be the one that you’re most familiar with. However it’s definitely useful and you should probably familiarize yourself with it. Let’s look at some of the image options.

JPGs are a common choice for images on websites because they have a relatively small file size. This helps your website to load faster and without problems. However JPGs don’t support transparent backgrounds, and when they are compressed they lose image quality.

PNGs are a better choice when you need a transparent image or want something with incredibly crisp, clear lines (like a line drawing or other iconic graphics).

Another option is a GIF. GIF files can have transparent backgrounds, however there are some benefits to using a PNG over a GIF. PNGs have better compression, so the image size is smaller. In addition, GIFs only allow one color to be specified transparent. PNGs have better transparency options.

Each file type is the best option in some cases. JPGs should be used for the majority of basic online images that don’t require high contrast. PNGs should be used for any images that require a transparent background or need high contrast. GIFs should be used for animated images.

One thing to note about PNGs is that there are a few different types of PNG files. These include palette-based, grayscale, and RGB. You will generally want to use an RGB format with transparency. This ensures that your image will be in full color and gives the option for full transparency.

What tools can you use to make a transparent PNG?

The go-to tool for editing PNGs is Adobe Photoshop, but it’s not the only tool out there. We’ll be looking at these three programs to edit PNGs:

Let’s take a look.

Make Your Background With a Transparent PNG Using Adobe Photoshop

If you have a logo with colored background, you must first make the background transparent. Then you can convert the file format into PNG, which is the file format designed for transferring images onto the internet. Here’s how to do it on Adobe Photoshop.

1. Open The File Of Your Logo

transparent-logo-photoshop

2. Add A Transparent Layer

Select “Layer” > “New Layer” from the menu (or just click on the square icon in the layers window).

transparent-layer

The new layer should automatically be transparent.

Drag this new layer below your image’s layer and select your content layer.

transparent-logo-layer

3. Make The Background Transparent

Using the magic wand or lasso tool, select the area of the image you want to be transparent. Use a tolerance setting of 32, or also experiment with different settings to get the result you want.

background-transparent

Hit the Delete button. The selected area will be removed and the transparent background becomes visible.

delete-background-logo

If you have circles, or any shapes in your logo that are not connected, you may need to repeat the selection and deletion process on those other areas of your logo (as you can see, I need to delete the background from the outside of my logo image and from within the circle as well

transparent-logo-background

4. Save The Logo As A Transparent PNG Image

Click “File” -> “Save As”. Select “PNG (*.PNG) as the file format. Note that though a transparent background looks checkered in Photoshop, it will actually be transparent in the final PNG file. Now you can upload this logo with a transparent background onto your website!

4 PNG - save

Tip: You might need to go to “Mode” -> “RBG Color” to change your image’s color format into RBG, which supports transparency.

For a video walkthrough, watch this video

Make Your Background Transparent Using Canva

Canva is a free program that you can use through an internet browser. You’ll need to begin by making an account with Canva. This lets you save your designs and come back to them later. 

The transparent background feature is only available in their pro plan, which is $12.95/month. 

1. Start by creating a design 

When you click on the “create a design” button, you’ll have options of the size you want to create. You can use any dimensions, but I would recommend looking at the dimensions of your logo and using those.

Once you’ve created your design you’ll see a screen that looks like this:

2. Upload image

You simply have to drag and drop your logo into the left hand panel and it will begin uploading. You’ll see its progress in the “Uploads” tab. 

Once it’s finish uploading, click on it to add it to your design.

You can change the size to fit the space as you see fit.

Note: We added a colored background so that I could see when my background disappeared.

3. Remove background

Click on the image you’ve added to your design. You’ll see a number of menus appear, including “Effects”. Choose effects. The first option you see will be “Background Remover”. 

Click it and you’re all set! Easy!

Before:

After:

Tip: You can add a colored background to double check that it has worked, but make sure you remove it before you save the image by clicking the background and pressing delete.

4. Download the image 

Select download in the upper righthand corner. You’ll see this menu:

Make sure that your file type is PNG, and that you’ve checked the box that says “transparent background”. Then click download!

Check out Canva here.

For a video walkthrough, watch this video

Make Your Background Transparent Using Snappa

Snappa is a free online tool for photo editing. In order to remove backgrounds, you will need a premium account, which is $10 a month.

1. Specify image dimensions

To remove a background, you’ll create a graphic by specifying the dimensions you want. It’s a good idea to start with the same dimensions as your logo.

Once you’ve selected your dimensions, you’ll see a screen like this:

2. Upload image

You can add your logo by dragging and dropping it into the left hand menu or by clicking “Graphics” and choosing to upload. 

Once you’ve added your logo, it will show up under the “Graphics” tab and you can add it to your design by clicking on it.

Note: We’ve added a background to my image so that you can see what it looks like before and after.

3. Remove background

To remove your background, click on your logo and simply toggle the “Remove image background” button.

4. Download image

Once you’ve removed your background, click on download. Make sure you select “Transparent Background”, and then choose the format you’d like. A high-res transparent PNG is a great choice.

You’re all set! 

Check out Snappa here.

For a video walkthrough, watch this video

Best Image Editing Programs

We’ve whittled it down to a few of the best image editing programs. When using mobile editing apps and tools don’t forget to take note of the file size and ensure that the quality of your logo still remains high for publishing on desktop sites.

  1. Adobe Photoshop is the gold standard in any type of image editing. You can create transparent PNGs as well as do a host of other professional image editing. Comes with a free trial and month to month plans.
  2. Canva is a super easy to use online editing tool, helping you create beautiful designs without complexity. We liken it to a light-weight online version of Adobe Photoshop.
  3. Snappa is a quick an online tool to help you create online graphics for social media, ads, blogs, and much more. It’s free, similar to Canva.
  4. Lumina is a desktop application (Mac and PC) that ties in traditional image editing with AI technologies. In your images, you can erase objects, change the color of the sky, and much more automatically.
  5. InPixio is a desktop application (Mac and PC) that is designed to help you remove unwanted objects in images. Check this one out since they have English, French, German, and Spanish support.
  6. Background eraser: superimpose  is a mobile app that can be downloaded free for IOS users. You can just touch the areas of the screen where you want to rub out the background, and then export your image as a PNG file. It’s so easy!
  7. Ultimate Background Eraser is a similar app to Background Remover, but this one is for google play/Android users.

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