Using Shape Cutouts to Frame Your Photos

Using Shape Cutouts to Frame Your Photos

Back in the day, when our ancestors used to bring their film (a strip of cellulose nitrate coated with emulsion) into a drugstore (kind of like Amazon’s health and beauty section, but in real life), their photos would be spit out of a machine in neat rectangles and promptly inserted into albums (a book-like object with clear plastic sheets).

Nowadays, with digital photography, photos don’t need to be confined within a quadrangle. They can be shaped as a circle, star, heart, hexagon, and more. That’s what our Shape Cutouts frames are all about. Just select a shape from eight options, size it as you want, choose a transparent or colored background, and you’re on your way to a shapely photo that’ll stand out from the crowd. So go ahead, think outside the box!

Put a ring around it

The PicMonkey circle shape cutout puts a spotlight on your subjects.

Using a circle shape puts a spotlight on your photo, ensuring it gets all the attention it deserves. You can use the circle cutout to make extraneous background noise disappear and place added focus on the part of your photo you want to emphasize. Circles can give your photo or design a retro feel (think opening credits of a 70s TV show—“The Love Boat” anyone?) or they can give you the sense that you’re looking through a peephole (or a porthole, as the case may be).

A star is born

Give your photo some star power with PicMonkey's star-shaped cutout.

You don’t have to go all the way to Hollywood to become a star. Just choose the star cutout in the Frames tab and instantly transform yourself or your subject into a luminary. Did your child get a featured role in the school play? Use the star shape to frame a photo of them on stage. Are you creating an ad for a party or event with different performers? Frame their pictures with the star shape and produce an old school flier or poster.

Tip: To make a poster, save your photo cutouts and check the Transparent background boxes. Then create a colored canvas with the Design tool. Add the shape cutout images on top of it by clicking the Your Own button at the top of the menu in the Overlays tab.

Burst of information

PicMonkey's burst cutout is perfect for highlighting products, sales, and special offers in your online store or marketing materials.

If you have an online store, the burst cutout is perfect for highlighting products, promoting sales and offers, or letting customers know when a particular item is out of stock. Just create a blank canvas in Design, change it to a bright color, and then add the Shape Cutouts frame (make sure “Transparent background” is checked). Add text such as “Special” or “Sale” and save it as a PNG to preserve its transparency. You can add your image as an overlay via the Your Own button so you can use it again and again as needed.

Hearts on fire

PicMonkey's heart-shaped cutout is perfect for adding a little love to your designs and photos.

What would shape cutouts be without the good ol’ heart shape? It might seem cheesy, but if you want to show your affection for someone, frame their photo with a heart and you’re guaranteed to produce loads of lovin’ feelings. You can use the heart shape in a multitude of ways: for your parents’ anniversary, your child’s birthday, your sister’s wedding announcement. It’s love without limits!

Circular collages

It's easy to make a circle collage with PicMonkey's collage tool.

If you really want to break out of the grids that bind you, try making a collage out of your circle cutouts. Photo collages are traditionally made up of square and rectangular images, but there’s no reason you shouldn’t shake things up with circles if you want to lend a more fluid, organic feel to your collage. You can easily create circular images right in the Collage tool. Click on the paint pallet icon on the left to go to Background. Move the Corner rounding slider all the way to 100% to create circular images.

 

Let your creativity run free when you upgrade to PicMonkey Premium.

Start your free trial!

Molly Shapiro
Before joining PicMonkey’s editorial team, Molly wrote about topics as varied as politics, finance, global health, and online dating. As a fiction writer, she’s published two books, both available on Amazon through totally non-sketchy retailers. A midwestern transplant who now calls Seattle home, Molly firmly believes that the Space Needle is way cooler than the Eiffel Tower.