How can I remove the background of a jpeg

  mick27 09:38 21 Feb 2006

I need to remove the background on a large number of jpeg images of products for website so that just the product shows.

This would enable the background colour of the page to show through without an ugly box of a different colour spoiling the look of the page.

I have a few graphic packages including Paint Shop Pro 6, ShotoStudio 5.5, Photo Shop 7, ImageReady 7.
Hopefully there will be an easy solution that does not take hours of work on each file?

  rmcqua 09:57 21 Feb 2006

As far as I am aware, mick27, it can't be done, at least not easily. I have used the freehand selection tool in PSP (tedious) to cut an image away from its background, but that's about it (as far as I know, but I'm happy to be educated).

  brambles 10:19 21 Feb 2006

In Photoshop 7 - which I use `select the lassoo tool & go round the part of the image you want to retain.

Now click on Select/Inverse so that everything - other than what you want to retain is selected.

Now hold CTRL key down & press DELETE.

This will replace your background with a white background. Now this is OK if you are putting on a white background web page. If you aren't then whilst the new white background is selected take the background eraser and paint over it to make the background transparent.

You will have to do some tidying up though - but it works. The new Photoshop Elements 4 has a tool that speeds this operation up!

If you happen to be using Microsoft Front Page as your editor there is another way.
Hope this is of some help

  mick27 10:21 21 Feb 2006

I see many web sites with the effect I am looking for, so it must be possible, but how easy this is to do is the question.

The page URL below shows the results I am looking for.

click here

  jack 10:26 21 Feb 2006

This is the only way
A fairly comprehensive Photo editor- Paint shop Pro is a good one but most of the other larger programs.
Use the Eraser tool set to remove background
Another is to the free hand selection tool or the Magic Wand variant

Work at a large magnification and hack away

Practice makes perfick- but its the only way I know of.

  Rigga 10:29 21 Feb 2006


The answer depends a lot on the original images.

Do they have a single colour background?

If they have a single RGB colour background then it is a fairly simple process of setting that colour to be the transparent colour when saving your GIF/JPEG.

If they do not have a single RGB colour background, then you must do work on the images to make the bits you want transparent to have a single RGB value. Which is where the advice given above comes in.


  Simsy 10:32 21 Feb 2006

but I didn't think jpeg files support transparent colours, do they?

Unless the images are rectangular you'll have to sve them as .gif or, (I think!), .png to get a transparent section for the web.



  Simsy 10:37 21 Feb 2006

and I've found this site;

click here

Which seems to be helpful.



  Rigga 10:48 21 Feb 2006


You are quite right, my mistake, JPEG's do not support transparency.

Sorry mick27, use a GIF or PNG instead.


  mick27 10:49 21 Feb 2006

Simsy, the link you gave looks as though this might have the answer.

Will try the GIF route and let you know the result.

It may take some time to get to grips with, but at least you have all given me food for thought.

Thank you all.

  Diversion 12:48 21 Feb 2006

If you choose the magnetic lassoo tool in Adobe Photoshop 7, It will follow the contours of your object. you can select duplicate layer and copy and paste the item to any new background or if you don't need the background in the jpeg just fill the background with any colour that you choose.

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