Introduction: Colorizing Simple Clip Art Using Adobe Photoshop Elements and Pixlr Online

About: Pinterest directed me to Instructables. I'm not sure if that was a good thing or bad - but now I'm hooked. I have made jewelry since 1988. I have had some designs published, taught jewelry at Michael's Hobby …

Have a flower clip art you just wish was a different color to match your theme? This tutorial will show you how to change the color using Adobe Photoshop Elements and Pixlr online. This is not for intricate, detailed clip art. But for simple lined designs.

Step 1: Daisy Clip Art Project

These instructions are using the attached Daisy clip art.

Step 2: Photoshop Elements or Pixlr Online

These are basic instructions using Adobe Photoshop Elements or Pixlr online (free photo editing software). The video tutorial gives the step-by-step with an attached list of the overall steps.

Step 3: Photoshop Elements Video

Photoshop Elements video using Version 7.

Step 4: Photoshop Elements Steps

  1. 1. Open the clip art file.
  • Make sure it is a simple, lined clip art. We are only using one color overlay in this tutorial.
2  Make sure default colors are black and white.
  • Check the color selection box at the bottom of the side Tool Box. Make sure BLACK is the foreground color and WHITE is the background color.
3.  Under EFFECTS click on the FILTERS icon then SKETCH in the drop down menu.
  • I am using Version 7 in this tutorial. So your desktop may look different. Find your EFFECTS menu to the side of the work area.
  • OR go to the top menu bar and choose FILTERS, SKETCH.
4.  Choose PHOTOCOPY.
  • Adjust the detail and amount of black to your liking. Click OKAY.
5.  The file should now be black and white.

6.  Click on ADJUSTMENT LAYER icon. Choose SOLID COLOR.
  • Choose the color you wish.
7.  While holding ALT, hover your cursor over the line between layers. When it becomes the “mouse” icon, left click.
  • The color should be “cut” to the exact outline of the clip art.

9.  Place cursor over one of the two layers.

10.  Right click and chose MERGE VISIBLE – both layers should become one.

11.  Save your newly colored clip art file. Remember to save as a PNG extension. Uncheck the box marked COPY.

Compare the screen shots as you go along.

Step 5: Using Pixlr Online Video

There is a FREE photo editor online that is very similar to Photoshop Elements. It's a great way to find out if you even want to invest in a higher level software.

Step 6: Pixlr Step-by-Step Outline and Screen Shots.

1.  Open Pixlr online. Choose Pixlr ADVANCED option.

2.  Open file FROM COMPUTER.

3.  Change the image to black and white by choosing ADJUSTMENT and then HUE & SATURATION.
  • Change the settings to SATURATION to -100 and modify the lightness to your liking. The black details will show up.
4.  Use the MAGIC WAND, click on the background of the flower.


6.  Using the NEW LAYER icon – make a new layer.

7.  Select the color you wish to use.
  • If you are using any POD this color must be using RGB. Click that tab. Using the sliders, find the color that you would like.
8.  Using the PAINT BUCKET tool, click anywhere on the flower window. The color should fill the flower.

9.  Change the BLENDING MODE from Normal to MULTIPLY.

10.  With the cursor on one layer, right click and choose MERGE VISIBLE.

11.  Save the file using a PNG extension and uncheck the copy box - you do not want to save as a copy.
  • You can save the file in a variety of places. I save mine on my computer.

Step 7: Go Wild With Colors.

You can use these simple steps to apply color, pattern, and gradient to any simple clip art you own. Play with the degree that the black lines and detail show through. 

Remember to ALWAYS SAVE AS A PNG extension if you do not want a "white" background. The transparent background is the only way you can have the image as "floating" and can place it on top of photos you already have or even make decals out of.

If you have ANY questions or a piece of clip art you're wondering how to do this - just let me know. I'll be glad to help. Check out and like me on

It's an easy way to correspond with me. I'd love to see your work.

Color your world!