Help cutting an image out

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For some reason when I save my circle image there seems to be a load of white outside the circle saved with it but I don't know why!?


It saved as transparent.

When I try to add it to my forum on a dark background I can see a horrible white outline on it.

I've tried cutting it out on the red of the circle using the pen tool, then adding a black outline to the circle via stroke but it still shows the white outline!

I'm at a loose end as to why it won't cut out properly!

Any help at all from anyone?!

Many thanks
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You're using GIF, which can only have one transparent colour (something it has in common with 8-bit paletted PNG). That means that the pixels that are completely white are transparent, but the ones that are merely "white-ish" are not. Any shape other than a rectangle is going to either have antialiased (blurry) pixels around its edge, or will have a stair-stepped, ragged look that is every bit as ugly as the background halo you're getting now.

If you want smooth edges without halos, you need to use a file format that supports partial transparency (an alpha channel). On the web, that means full-colour PNG, and your files are going to be quite a bit larger. Create the image on its own unlocked layer or with a transparent background (different software works differently), and remember that anything that you do want to appear white in the final image needs to be added as white. Check your options when you save as PNG to make sure that you have alpha transparency, and are not using an optimized palette. The pixels at the edge of the image will be partially transparent, letting the background of the web page show through to varying degrees so that the edges appear smooth.

If you're actually cutting something out of another graphic (one you didn't make, or saved with the wrong options -- always try to save work you'll re-use in a working format like PSD or PspImage), you'll probably have to recreate the outer shape(s), then paste in a smaller selection (contracted by a pixel or so).