I want to crop a rectangular image to a non-rectangular shape. I realize that if you take that completely literally, it's not possible. What I want to end up with is image X, cropped to shape Y, on a transparent background.
Let's say for example that I want to take a picture of the Idaho flag and crop it to the shape of the state of Idaho. I imagine I would do something like this:
- Create an image that has opaque pixels for the shape of Idaho, transparent pixels everywhere else
- Read and store some kind of bitmap for this Idaho state image
- For each opaque pixel location in the Idaho state image, copy the corresponding pixel from the Idaho state flag image and place it on a blank, transparent canvas
Step 1 would obviously be done manually, but the rest would be done programatically. I think I have the right idea in general but I don't know how I'd approach the specifics. Can anyone point me in the right direction?
As far as implementation technology goes, I'm a PHP guy, so using gdLibrary or something that works with PHP would probably be the best way for me to go.
I would think it would be much easier to do by simply adding a bitmask or alpha channel. In that case you would use a negative mask image of your shape and then simply apply it to he regular image as a mask and then save out in a transparent format. Ive never actually done this with GD or ImageMagick but i would think its available as Jerry suggests.
Acutally here is a blog post form a similar SO question that might help: http://about.phalacee.com/geek/creating-mask-layers-using-php-gd
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