Image editing with Irfanview

Editing photos for a WordPress website using Irfanview
Why do I need to edit my images?

Irfanview is deservedly popular image editing software that enables you to easily crop, resize, add text or a watermark to your image, and optimise the file size for the web.
And it’s free*!

  • Download and install Irfanview for free* from: Irfanview
    (Click the Download button in the centre of the page.)download Irfanveiw button

    • *Free for private & educational use
  • Then download and install all Irfanview Plugins from here:
  • Find the photo you’d like to use (from where it’s saved on your computer in a folder) and right click on it, then click ‘Open with’ -> ‘Irfanview
  • To undo an action – click the blue ‘undo’ arrow on the task menu

    Undo button on Irfanview

    • NB: Only 1 previous action can be undone.
  • Do not enlarge small photos – they will become pixilated.
  • Optimising photos that have already been optimised may also cause problems.

How to crop an image to a predetermined size:

(e.g. Cropping the Barn Owl from this landscape photo at a size of 700px x 525px):

  • Crop the image to the desired height first (leave the width at maximum for now)
    • Click and draw a rectangle on the image where you want to crop it. You can adjust the size & shape of the box by clicking on any edge – then drag & drop.
      • To drag & drop: keep the left mouse button pressed down while moving the mouse – then let go when the line is where you need it.
    • Click ‘Edit‘ -> Crop selection from the top drop-down menu.

cropping to a predetermined size

  • How to set the height (e.g. to 525 pixels):
    • Click ‘Image’ (on the task menu) -> then ‘Resize/Resample
    • Check ‘Pixels‘ and enter the height you want into the box (in this case 525),
    • Make sure ‘Preserve aspect ratio’ is checked. (For most photos uncheck ‘Apply sharpen…)
  • Click ‘OK’.

setting height to a predetermined size

  • Then crop the resized image to 700px width by dragging and dropping as before.
  • The size you are cropping to can be seen along the top edge of the screen. (The inner 2 numbers, where it says ‘Selection’.)

cropping width to a predetermined size

You now have the option to add a watermark or text before optimising the file size and saving your image.

How to add a watermark image to a photo:

Crop &/or resize the photo first (but don’t optimise the file size yet.)

  • Click ‘Edit’ -> ‘Insert overlay/watermark image’
  • X-Coord: = 30
  • Y-Coord: = 30
  • Start Corner = Right bottom (or wherever is appropriate for your image.)
  • Choose the file location of your image or watermark. (The Choose button will open the folders on your computer – navigate to the image you want.)
    • Watermark images are best created as a PNG file type which allows you to have a transparent background.
  • Click on the button to see a preview – adjust the position if necessary.
  • Click ‘OK

adding watermark in iview

How to add text to the photo:

Crop &/or resize the photo first (but don’t optimise the file size yet.)

adding text

  • Drag and drop to draw a box in bottom LH corner (if a watermark is in RH corner) – or wherever you want the text. Leave some space around the box (don’t draw the box right up against the edge of the photo.)
    • To drag & drop: keep the left mouse button pressed down while moving the mouse – then let go when the line is where you need it.
  • Click ‘Edit’ -> then ‘Insert text
  • Type the required text in the box that appears
  • Click ‘Append copyright’ to add the copyright symbol
  • Click ‘Font’ to open a window where you can select font style & size:
    • For example, try Arial, size 14
  • Click ‘Color‘ to open a window where you can select the font colour:
    • Try white – or if this won’t show up – try black.
  • Other settings to try:
    • Background = Transparent
    • Text transparency = None
    • Text alignment = Left

Click ‘OK’.

About image copyright

How to optimise the file size and save for the web:

Under ‘File‘ Click the ‘Save for web’ option:  


  • Click the  ‘JPEG’ tab (unless you are working with a simple graphic image, such as a diagram – use GIF.)
  • Set the ‘Quality’ slider button to about 85; (Outdoor shots with a lot of detail, such as leaves, may need to be saved at a lower quality – perhaps 70.)
  • Check the image file size – this should be between 20 and 85 KB. Around 30 – 50 KB is often ideal – but it depends on the image. (Over 100 KB or less than 10 KB might cause problems.)

save for the web - iview

Click ‘Save

  • File name: type in a new file name which describes what is in the photo (e.g. barn-owl-flying-daytime)
    (See Naming Images)

Other Irfanview tools:

Under ‘Image’ on the tool bar there are other tools which may sometimes be useful:

  • ‘Rotate Left’ & ‘Rotate Right’; (Use to correct a sideways photo)
  • Horizontal Flip’ & ‘Vertical Flip’; (Produces a mirror image.)
  • Custom/Fine rotation’ (Can help if your photo is at an angle.)
  • Sharpen(Can sometimes help with a slightly blurred photo.)
  • ‘Auto adjust colors’ (Sometimes helps with a dull photo.)

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