How to Put a Picture Inside Text with Clipping Masks

Clipping mask with text. Image as font. See-through text over your image. You’ve heard it described a zillion ways, but here at PicMonkey, we cal them "text masks." This awe-inspiring text look can be both polished and fun, and in PicMonkey it’s super easy to achieve. Follow along with these steps or check out our video tutorial and we’ll have you on your way to text masking mastery in no time.

1. Pick your background image

Note the image dimensions, or at least general size. You’ll want it to be roughly as large as your finished product, otherwise you may lose quality by stretching it. Need some inspo? Check out these free stock photo sites to find quality pics that’ll stretch your imagination.

2. Start with a blank canvas

From the PicMonkey homepage, click Create new and size your canvas, if desired, by using Crop under the Edits tab on the left.

3. Add text to your canvas

Using a white background color allows you to isolate your background so it shows through black text. Whenever you open a blank canvas its default color is white, so this should be easy-caprese.

To pick your text, click the Text icon (the “Tt” on the left side of the Editor). You can also add graphics (by clicking the butterfly icon), or anything else you want to be filled with your image. Just be sure that whatever you add is black. We’re going for lots of chunky text (like the Montserrat typeface) to create lots of space for the image to shine through.

5. Flatten your image

Click the Layers icon in the bottom toolbar and then click the Flatten image button in the bottom left corner of the Layers palette.

6. Add your image

Click Add an image in the top toolbar to bring in your photo. Select it from whatever location you've stashed your pic. You could alternately choose a stock photo from our collection of over a million pics. Your text will be hidden by the image until you adjust the blend mode (which we’ll cover in the next step).

7. Adjust the blend mode

With the photo on top of your flattened text, set your blend mode to Lighten or Add to finish off the look. You’ll find this option in the drop-down menu in the Graphics palette.

BONUS TIP: If you want to use a black canvas instead of a white one, you can totally do that. Just make sure your text and shapes are white, and that you set the blend mode to Darken. Try it with pictures of the stars!

Want even more text masking goodness? Check out our article on 3 Fresh Looks for Text Mask.

Get a PicMonkey membership and fuel your ascent to photo editing perfection!

This article was written by PicMonkey Staff, a multicellular organism of hive-minded sub-parts who just wanna get you the ideas and information you crave, so you can make powerful images that level up your business.