Corel Draw: Cropping Graphics

Corel Draw allows users to remove unwanted parts of a graphic image quickly and without difficulty. The technique is referred to as cropping. There are actually several ways of cropping an image. Here are three of the most commonly used tools.

Crop Tool Use

The first one involves what is known as the Crop Tool. There are two ways of accessing the feature, depending on the version of the graphic editor program. With more recent versions, it has become much easier to access and make use of the feature. Beginning with the X3, developers have included a Crop Tool icon with the toolbox. In previous versions, the crop function was only accessible in certain situations under the Bitmaps menu bar.

Using the crop tool is the most basic and straightforward method of removing unwanted areas. It is most effective when the result is square or rectangular shaped. The user can specify which areas should be retained, rotate the cropping area and even resize it. To use, find the crop tool flyout. From the crop tool flyout, select the Crop Tool indicated by an icon with a square image. Click on one area of the image that the user wishes to retain. Hold and drag to create a bigger area or drag any one of the corner handles. For a more exact size, input the values on the respective boxes at the property bar. To reposition, simply click on any spot within the cropping area and move it to a different location. In order to rotate, select one of the corner handles and rotate. Again the property bar may also be used for a more precise rotation angle. Double click within the cropping area to finalize all changes. Any text or image located outside the cropping area will be removed while the remaining area will be converted into curves.

Using the Shape Tool

The Crop Tool becomes more powerful when combined with other features of the program. Use the Shape Tool to modify the shape of the cropping area. After creating a cropping area using the Crop Tool, select the Shape Tool from the same flyout and modify the shape of the cropping area. Additional grips or nodes may be added or removed depending on the user’s needs and preference. Each of the nodes can also be repositioned or rotated to create curves or tracing around images. This allows the editor to create unusual and complex shapes for cropping.

The PowerClip Feature

Another tool included in more recent versions of the program is the PowerClip. Using this feature, the cropping area automatically changes to assume the shape of the container or image used as the basis for the cropping area. This is convenient for filling fonts or complex shapes with another color or background image. For this to work, an image of the bitmap must be placed behind the container. Select the PowerClip from the Effects option then click "Place inside container." Once the tool is selected, click the text or shape that will be used as the container. The bitmap will then be cropped according to the container shape selected.