Can You Blur Lines Between Pictures in Publisher?

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When you overlap pictures in your Microsoft Publisher layout, you end up with a sharp line where the images join together. To make the line less noticeable, use Publisher's edge-softening tool. The tool blurs the edges of your picture, making it blend together more smoothly with other pictures. You can still see where the pictures join, but the sharp lines disappear.

1 Open the Publisher file

Open the Publisher file containing the pictures.

2 Click one

Click one of the pictures to select it.

3 Click the Picture Tool Format tab on the toolbar

Click the "Picture Tool Format" tab on the toolbar.

4 Click the Picture Effects icon

Click the Picture Effects icon in the Picture Styles section of the ribbon. The icon, which is not labeled, is the middle of the three small buttons in the section.

5 Select Soft Edges

Select "Soft Edges" from the options.

6 Click 5 Point

Click "5 Point" to blur the edges of the picture. This setting is just enough so that you can blur the lines between pictures, but not so much that it's noticeable around the outside edges.

7 Click the other picture

Click the other picture and repeat the procedure, so that both pictures have blurred edges.

8 Move the pictures

Move the pictures closer together so that the blurred edges overlap. For more precise control, use the arrow keys on your keyboard to move a picture one pixel at a time. When done, the sharp line between the pictures should be gone.

9 Plan to resize them

Group the pictures if you plan to resize them; otherwise they will spread apart. To group the pictures, select both at the same time, right-click the pictures and select "Group," and then resize the pictures as a single image.

  • Information in this article applies to Microsoft Publisher 2013. It may vary slightly or significantly with other versions.

Alan Sembera began writing for local newspapers in Texas and Louisiana. His professional career includes stints as a computer tech, information editor and income tax preparer. Sembera now writes full time about business and technology. He holds a Bachelor of Arts in journalism from Texas A&M University.