How to Make a Background for a Website

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Background images for websites may be created from scratch with the use of a graphics program. Popular commercial software includes Photoshop, Illustrator, Fireworks, or CorelDRAW. Free ones are Microsoft Paint (which is included with the Windows operating system) and Gimp, which you can use in Linux or Windows or current Macintosh systems.
Background images may also be created from photographs or images you already have. In this case, you will need to use the graphics software to resize and format them properly for a web page.
Background images usually have small dimensions and small memory requirements. This is in order to control how fast the web page loads, which is significant to users with slower Internet connections. Image size is also a factor in controlling tiling, which is how often an image repeats in the background of a web page. So whenever you create a background, make sure it is reasonably small, especially in terms of memory.

Things You'll Need

  • Graphics-editing program Sketch pad
  • Decide if you want to create a background from an image you already posses, such as a photograph, or if you wish to create one from scratch.

  • Design a rough draft of the background you wish to create. If you are using a photo instead, scan it (if it is not already digitized).

  • Open your graphics program and create a square image. Three standard sizes are 200 by 200, 128 by 128, and 70 by 70 pixels. If you are using an image you already have, and you do not wish to resize or modify it, skip to Step 6.

  • Using your rough draft as a guide, fill in the color, and add objects and textures according to your design.

  • Save the image as a GIF or JPEG.

  • Make sure the image does not use too much memory. It should not be more than a few kilobytes. An optimum size is 5 kilobytes or less. If it is too large--say, over 10 kilobytes--reduce the image resolution, the size or both.

  • Preview the image by placing it as a background in a web page. Readjust the parameters or the design as necessary.

Tips & Warnings

  • You may wish to use a transparent background if you are using a photograph. If you have a very large image (for example, 1,000 by 1,000 pixels), but it uses only a few kilobytes of memory, it may still be used as a background. Use CSS programming and/or filters in your graphics program to control tiling.
  • Photo Credit http://www.absolutecross.com/
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