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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 probably heard this visual described a zillion ways, but here at PicMonkey, we call 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 and we’ll have you on your way to text masking mastery in no time.

Start with a blank canvas

From the PicMonkey homepage, click Create new and choose the size you want — or you can type custom dimensions in the upper right corner.

Add text to your canvas

To pick your text, click the Text tab (the “Tt” on the far left side of the editor). You can also add graphics (Graphics tab — the shapes icon), or anything else you want to be filled with your image. Chunky text (like the Montserrat typeface) works nicely to create lots of space for the image to shine through—you've got a zillion font choices in PicMonkey.

Select the layer you want to put an image inside of and then click Fill with image on the Text Tools panel or the Graphics Tools panel.

Add an image to fill your text

Choose a photo from your desktop, cloud drive, Hub, or from our vast stock photo library. Click Add fill.

Use the Edit image fill button to adjust the look of the photo behind your text: rotate, flip, or adjust the saturation of the photo's colors. If you decide later that you want to replace or delete fill, just select the layer and return to Edit image fill to make your changes.

You can adjust to your heart's content by selecting the text block, then hitting up all the controls in the Text Tools panel that appears to the side.

Edit your text mask like you would any text

After you've applied an image fill to your text, the textual sky's the limit for further stylizing your words. Add shadows, change the font, curve or circle your text, add an outline, and adjust the spacing or font size.

Of course, add more to your design if you like—a shape or background color. You can do it all in PicMonkey!

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As PicMonkey's content director, Cooper says her goal is to make words happen good. She's been spearheading PicMonkey editorial since day one, relying on insights from her years working at Microsoft, other startups, and producing television programs for PBS and NBC.