How to Flatten an Image in Microsoft Publisher

Flattening an image means reducing the file size of the image, which will make saving and printing much easier. So, if your Microsoft Publisher publication contains multiple high-quality graphics, reducing their resolution by compressing them will improve printing performance. how-to-flatten-an-image-in-microsoft-publisher

How to Flatten an Image in Microsoft Publisher

Before compressing a picture, determine its size on the page first, as a picture loses detail when it is compressed in Microsoft Publisher, and lowers its quality if it is later enlarged.


  • Step 1: Right-Click on the Picture and Select Format Picture

    Start your Microsoft Publisher application and open the publication where you have the picture you want to flatten or compress. Once opened, perform a right-click on the picture. Then, from the pop-up menu that displays, select the Format Picture option.

  • Step 2: Click the Picture Menu and Hit the Compress Button

    A Format Picture dialog menu will appear after clicking the Format Picture option and, under it, choose the Picture menu. Then, click on the Compress button at the lower-left part of the menu.

  • Step 3: Choose the Compression Settings that Meet Your Needs

    Under the Target Output setting in the Compress Pictures dialog box that appears, do one of the following: select Commercial Printing to reduce the image resolution to 300 pixels per inch (ppi), select Desktop Printing to reduce the image resolution to 220 ppi, or select Web to reduce the image resolution to 96 ppi. After that, move to the “Apply compression settings now” setting and select whether you want to compress all of the publication’s images or only the ones you selected. Then, click Compress and select Yes if a message appears asking whether you want to apply picture optimization. The original high-resolution image or images are replaced with a compressed version of the same image after you click OK.


How can I know the effective resolution of a picture in my publication?

If you want to know the effective resolution of a picture in your publication, go to the View tab, choose the Graphics Manager option, click on the arrow-down in the “Select a picture” option at the right side of the screen, select Details, and the resolution is shown in dots per inch (dpi) in the Effective Resolution field.

What does “dots per inch” mean?

Dots per inch (DPI), a measurement of a printer’s resolution, effectively describes how many ink dots are applied to a sheet of paper or other surface per square inch.

What is pixels per inch or ppi?

The term “pixels per inch” (ppi) is used to describe the resolution of a digital picture or video display and which is most often used to refer to the display resolution, or pixel density, of a computer monitor or screen (the greater the pixels per inch (ppi), the greater the detail in the image or display).