Pixlr Editor: reference document edit

Pixlr Editor is free online browser-based graphic software that allows you to edit images (photos) and create computer art. Programmed in Flash, this application lets the user create, modify and save images on the user's local computer or alternatively, on the Web. These images can be imported or images may be created from a blank canvas.

This book aims to be a reference for the functionality offered by this application.

This book was last updated in 2016 and is not complete. I intend to change this book into something you can use to learn photo editing. I make no claims to be a Pixlr expert but many people particularly beginners who use Pixlr Editor should find this helpful. Please feel free to add your comments, suggestions, and changes.

Sample - Before
Sample - After

Pixlr Editor is a powerful free graphics software/photo editor and has many of the capabilities of much more expensive photo editors. The photo to the left was edited and improved using Pixlr Editor. My goal is to introduce you to photo editing through Pixlr Photo Editor. It is a start but in no way complete. Photo editing can be simple or quite involved.

It is important when using this book, that you have Pixlr Editor open to see what is being discussed since illustrating screen shots have yet to be added. See "Getting into Pixlr Photo Editor". There are no photos in this document as of yet. However, I believe this document will be useful if used with Pixlr open in another window. Try it and tell me what you think. I intend to add screen shots as I can at a later date.


“Click on” means to left click using the left button on your mouse. Right click means to use the right button on your mouse. When Pixlr is noted, it refers to the Pixlr Editor. In Pixlr as in other Windows programs, boxes highlighted in blue can be selected by pressing “Enter” or clicked on. I use the following format for instructions. For example to undo an action, I state “Edit-Undo” The left click is understood. Using the Ctrl key with a letter as shown in various windows does not work with Windows Internet Explorer or Edge. When it does not work, click on the appropriate item in the window to take the desired action. When making adjustments to images, you usually press “Enter” to finalize the adjustment. This is understood unless otherwise noted. When a box is highlighted in blue, you can usually press “Enter” or click on the box to make the adjustment. When typing in a text or number block, you have to use either the Backspace or Delete keys to remove whatever is in the block and then type in the new text or number. Pixlr does not allow you to overwrite or highlight text or numbers in the blocks.

Dragging a tool icon, i.e., keeping the left click button depressed while moving the icon is also referred to as painting. For example, if you wish to color a portion of your image, you use the Brush tool to paint over that area.

If you leave your cursor, i.e., arrow over an icon for a few seconds it will usually bring up a name for the icon.

Table of Contents edit

  1. Getting into Pixlr Photo Editor
  2. A few concepts
  3. Contents
  4. An Overview of the Pixlr Screen
  5. Menus offer the user functions to apply to the current selection, the layer, the image as a whole or the software environment. Menus regroup items representing functions of similar nature, often requiring further information, and sometime proposing keyboard shortcuts to access them. NOTE: Item with ellipsis (...) that follows a menu item indicates that further information is required in order to complete its function.
    1. File
    2. Edit
    3. Image
    4. Layer
    5. Adjustment
    6. Filter
    7. View
    8. Language
    9. Help
    10. Font
    11. Freebies
    12. Free Tool
  6. Windows
    1. Image windows
    2. Tools palette
      1. Selection tools
      2. Drawing tools
      3. Modification tools
      4. Various tools
      5. Color settings
    3. Navigator
    4. Layers
    5. History