I use Microsoft Paint to generate a lot of explanatory images. For the benefit of visibility, I often wish to display my resulting image in the center. This often means I have to include spacing along the vertical borders of the image, as other formatting options are not available. A good example of such a situation is here, on Stack Exchange, but it is not the only time I run into this problem.

enter image description here

I like to ensure pixel perfect symmetry, whenever possible, simply as a personal preference. I have to ways in which I would often go about this.

If I have the time, I will draw perfect diagonal lines, by drawing a diagonal line while holding SHIFT. The lines provide clear steps to allow measurements; in most cases, I can simply select the diagonal line with the rectangular selection tool, paste a copy of the selection, performing a horizontal flip, and place it inline with the image on the opposite side. These diagonal lines then act as a guideline to provide equal spacing, before I remove the lines from my final image.

enter image description here

Other times, I will simply make a marker at the global center point. By ensuring I only select the area encompassing my image, I can align this marker with the local center point of my selection, which gives me a reasonably accurate center position. I can than simply crop the bottom area, removing the marker in its entirety.

enter image description here

Adding the space, in these ways, are not necessarily a time sink; I have no problem continuing to do so in this manner, but I wonder if there may be an easier way. I am aware that Microsoft Paint has its limitations, which are quite severe, in comparison to other image editing software. At the same time, it provides the basic necessities I require, and nothing else.

Is there a more efficient way to add uniform spacing to center an image?

  • Can Paint use layers? If so, start by importing a grid. – Tetsujin Jun 15 '17 at 7:05
  • @Tetsujin, it can not; though you can enable a background grid. I only just discovered that feature, along with a ruler. However, "ruling out the space", as I have found, is actually far less efficient than my current methods. – Gnemlock Jun 15 '17 at 7:11
  • Then, tbh, if you want more sophisticated editing, you need a more sophisticated editor. Photoshop does this kind of thing automatically, snaps to 'key' points. Maybe try Gimp, which is a freeware cross-platform 'photoshop copy' - it may be able to do something similar. It can certainly use layers, at least. – Tetsujin Jun 15 '17 at 7:14
  • @Tetsujin, I have already looked into these options. As I say, in my question, I am curious if there is a suitable more efficient way; however, apart from this tiny component I have to manually complete, it offers exactly what I need and nothing else. I tend to default to Gimp, in times where I need transparency or the use of layers. I do not think this particular requirement is as sophisticated, as it is a niche. Thank you for your suggestions, though. – Gnemlock Jun 15 '17 at 7:21

I think this question has been open for more then enough time, and Paint is not really the most user friendly application.

I think it is safe to say that there is not a more efficient way to add uniform spacing to center an image; especially with the recent Microsoft decision to remove Paint as a default application.

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