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How to Shrink a Photo Without Using Adobe Photoshop

May 1st, 2009

shrink-photo-microsoft-paint.jpgThis article by PSoh is a quick tutorial on how to shrink a photo or reduce the size of an image without having to learn Photoshop or mess around with complicated graphics editing programs. Perhaps not surprisingly, it involves the use of that classic tool of amateur graphics editing, Microsoft Paint. It’s not a bad solution for doing simple things like cropping and posting screenshots to forums, although by the time I started this blog, I had moved on to using another free image editor called Irfanview. If you find yourself needing to resize images frequently, I would recommend going with this one over MS Paint if you have a few minutes to learn the basic functions.


These days, cameras come with increasingly large mega pixel capabilities, some even going as high as 15 MP. However, uploading such large files, be it as an attachment to an email or to Facebook or a blog, can be a pain. To shrink a photo in Windows without using Adobe Photoshop or similar photo editing programs, simply follow these four easy steps:

1. Right click on your photo file and select “Open with Paint”. Your photo will then be opened using the Windows Paint program, that is preloaded on every Windows-based computer. This program will allow you to shrink a photo with no fuss.

2. From the Image menu, select “Stretch / Skew” or simply press Ctrl + W. This opens the Stretch and Skew window.

3. In the Horizontal stretch box, type in a number less than 100%. If you want your modified photo to retain the same size configuration as the original, type in the same number in the Vertical stretch box. The lower the number you type in, the smaller your file size will be. However, you don’t have to go too low. For example, shrinking a picture file by 80% reduces the file size from 2.11 MB to 515 KB.

4. To save your file, choose “Save” from the File menu. If you want to keep the original file, simply choose “Save As” and save your modified photo under a different file name.



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