How to resize a photo to use as your Desktop Wallpaper

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As a follow-up to my previous post, how to set your own photo as your Desktop Wallpaper, I’m going to show you how to adjust the size of a photo being used as your desktop wallpaper. By resizing a photo you avoid any distortion which can be encountered from time to time. I tend to find that either the photo is distorted and people’s faces often look squashed or a part of the photo is chopped off to make it fit.

The important part of setting a photo as your desktop wallpaper is ensuring that the width and height of the photo will match the proportions of your computers’ monitor. Computer monitors come is so many different shapes and sizes now that it’s impossible to ensure that your photos are going to match the dimensions without any issues.

I will now show you how to use Microsoft Paint to resize a photo for use as the desktop wallpaper for Windows 7 and 8 as well as Windows 10.

Using Microsoft Windows 7 and 8

  1. Right mouse click on the desktop area and select Screen Resolution
  2. Make note of the Resolution setting

resize-wallpaper1

  1. My screen resolution is set to 1366 (width) x 768 (height) pixels, so I need to make sure my photos are set to 1366 x 768 to ensure they are not distorted when displayed on my desktop
  2. Locate the photo or image on your computer which you wish to use as your Desktop wallpaper
  3. Right mouse click on the photo and select Open with…
  4. From the list select Paint

resize-wallpaper2

  1. The photo will now open in Paint
  2. Use the Zoom tool in the bottom right corner to zoom out of the image so you can see the photo correctly
  3. You will now need to take note of the width and height of the photo displayed, which can be found on the status bar at the bottom of the Paint window

resize-wallpaper3

  1. We will now select a new area of the photo which will match our screen resolution in width and height
  2. From the Home tab click the Resize button

resize-wallpaper4

  1. The Resize and Skew dialog box will appear

resize-wallpaper8

  1. Change the measurement to be Pixels
  2. Now you will need to change just one (1) of the measurements. Usually to make the photo fit you will need to trim either the sides or top/bottom of your photo. Generally, I resize my photo to be the exact width I need and then trim some excess from the height however you can do the opposite depending on what you want to be included in your photo
  3. Enter the Horizontal width of your screen resolution e.g. mine is 1366
  4. You will see that Paint will automatically change the Vertical measurement to ensure your photo does not distort. So my photo height has been set to 910 pixels. I need to trim this down to 768 to ensure it fits without any distortion or cropping
  5. Click OK
  6. Now adjust the zoom setting again so that you are at 100% zoom
  7. Click the Select button and choose to Select all
  8. Use the status bar as a guide and adjust the resize handles (the little white squares displayed on the corners and mid sections of the border of the photo) so that the exact screen resolution of your screen is selected. E.g. mine is 1366 x 768

resize-wallpaper5

  1. The photo will now be cropped to the size required
  2. Click the Paint button

resize-wallpaper6

  1. Select Save As

TIP: Do NOT select the normal save option or you will save the changes over the top of your original photo

  1. Give the photo a new File name, I like to just append the word “wallpaper” to the file name
  2. Click Save
  3. To set the new photo as your desktop wallpaper, click the Paint button again then choose Set as desktop background
  4. Your photo will now be displayed perfectly on your desktop background

Using Microsoft Windows 10

  1. Right mouse click on the desktop area and select Display Settings
  2. Make note of the Resolution setting

  1. My screen resolution is set to 1366 (width) x 768 (height) pixels, so I need to make sure my photos are set to 1366 x 768 to ensure they are not distorted when displayed on my desktop
  2. Locate the photo or image on your computer which you wish to use as your Desktop wallpaper
  3. Right mouse click on the photo and select Open with…
  4. From the list select Paint

  1. The photo will now open in Paint
  2. Use the Zoom tool in the bottom right corner to zoom out of the image so you can see the photo correctly
  3. You will now need to take note of the width and height of the photo displayed, which can be found on the status bar at the bottom of the Paint window

How to resize a photo to use as your Desktop Wallpaper

  1. We will now select a new area of the photo which will match our screen resolution in width and height
  2. From the Home tab click the Resize button

How to resize a photo to use as your Desktop Wallpaper

  1. The Resize and Skew dialog box will appear:

How to resize a photo to use as your Desktop Wallpaper

  1. Change the measurement to be Pixels
  2. Now you will need to change just one (1) of the measurements. Usually to make the photo fit you will need to trim either the sides or top/bottom of your photo. Generally, I resize my photo to be the exact width I need and then trim some excess from the height however you can do the opposite depending on what you want to be included in your photo
  3. Enter the Horizontal width of your screen resolution e.g. mine is 1366
  4. You will see that Paint will automatically change the Vertical measurement to ensure your photo does not distort. So my photo height has been set to 1024 pixels. I need to trim this down to 768 to ensure it fits without any distortion or cropping
  5. Click OK
  6. Now adjust the zoom setting again so that you are at 100% zoom
  7. Click the Select button and choose to Select all
  8. Use the status bar as a guide and adjust the resize handles (the little white squares displayed on the corners and mid sections of the border of the photo) so that the exact screen resolution of your screen is selected. E.g. mine is 1366 x 768

How to resize a photo to use as your Desktop Wallpaper

  1. The photo will now be cropped to the size required
  2. Click the File tab and select Save As

    TIP: Do NOT select the normal save option or you will save the changes over the top of your original photo

  3. Give the photo a new File name, I like to just append the word “wallpaper” to the file name

How to resize a photo to use as your Desktop Wallpaper

  1. Click Save
  2. To set the new photo as your desktop wallpaper, click the File tab and then choose Set as desktop background
  3. Your photo will now be displayed perfectly on your desktop background

I hope this has assisted to customise your computer’s desktop background with your own photo. If you are interested in more articles working with images, why not check out my article on how to crop an image using Microsoft Paint.

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