Microsoft® Paint, which is available on most Windows computers, has limited capabilities when it comes to turning color photos to pure black & white rubber stamp images. This is a before and after of how Paint does it.
As you’ll see, changing the color photograph below to pure black & white using Paint has disappointing results. Here is the original photo of Digger the Dog:
Paint has a feature in the “Save As” menu setting that allows you to convert a color image to a “monochrome bitmap”. Select “Save As…” from the File menu and then choose “Monochrome Bitmap” from the dropdown list options at the bottom of the window. Here is the result:
What happened to the details? Digger’s nose looks like a vast hole! Half of the lighter tones have been turned solid white and the other half have been turned solid black. While this image could be made into a rubber stamp, it would’t be a very good likeness of lovable Digger. Maybe he would look better as a black dog? Paint lets you swap the colors. Choose “Invert Colors” from the Image menu. This is what you get:
Yipes! Maybe that wasn’t such a good idea. Unfortunately, this is about all you can do in Paint for rubber stamp images. Because Paint doesn’t dither, it can’t create shades of gray using random speckling effects. However, if your image contains just a few shades or only lines, Paint works great. Paint is a useful tool for cropping photos and other basic image tasks and, as an included Windows accessory, you can’t beat the price.
But, to properly convert a color image for rubber stamps, you need a photo-editing program with more features. Many are available for a free 30-day trial. Visit our brief tutorials on how to convert color images to pure black and white using Photoshop® Elements and Adobe® Fireworks®.