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How to Convert a Photo Into Clip Art

Updated April 17, 2017

Cartoon photos can be a fun addition to an online profile, e-mails, or to jazz up a newsletter or other printed material. While there are thousands of clip art photos online, you are not limited to these. You can create clip art using your own photos. Follow the tutorial below to turn your real-life photos into cartoon images using Photoshop.

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  1. Check to see that the photograph you want to convert to clip art is saved on your computer. Do any editing, such as cropping or lightening, before proceeding.

  2. Start Photoshop and open up the original image.

  3. Click on" Filter" then scroll down to "Brush Strokes". Choose "Ink Outlines". A box will appear that will allow you to adjust a number of features to change the look of your image, such as the stroke length and light intensity. Adjust the sliders until you achieve the look you desire.

  4. Examine the image to see if it appears blurry. If so, go to "Filter" and click on "Sharpen" to make the image appear cleaner.

  5. Make the final transition from regular photo to cartoon clip art by click on "Filter" again. Next, go to "Distort" then "Spherize". A box will open. Locate the Mode option. There, you will see an option labelled "Horizontal only". Move the sliding bar until the image appears the way you want it to look.

  6. Save the image with a name that includes "clip art."

  7. Open the photo you wish to turn into clip art in Photoshop.

  8. Adjust the photos brightness and contrast, under the "Adjust" option, if desired.

  9. Go to "Filter". Choose "Blur" then click on one of the Blur options, such as Gaussian Blur or Smart Blur. Adjust the Radius and Threshold options until the image appears to your satisfaction.

  10. Save the image with "clip art" in the title.

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Things You'll Need

  • Computer
  • Adobe Photoshop

About the Author

Gail Logan is a magazine editor and freelance writer based in Atlanta, AL. She received her B.A. in Journalism from Patrick Henry College. For the past four years, she has written home design, travel and food features for national magazines, including "Coastal Living," "Texas Home and Living," "Log Home Design," and "Country's Best Log Homes." When not writing, she mentors inner-city children.

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