I want to create a .png icon with transparent pixels to show what is beneath. How do I change the white pixels to be transparent using Adobe Photoshop CS4?

  • Can you edit your post and attach a screenshot of the image file in question? I am pretty sure I know what you are asking but a visual would be nice. – ricbax Jan 26 '10 at 21:36
  • Not readily since I have to get the image hosted. Basically, I have an icon with up arrow that is on a white background and I want a transparent background so that when over something, only the arrow part obscures. – WilliamKF Jan 26 '10 at 23:02

Delete the background layer.


  • It should be noted that you also can select to start with a completely transparent picture when creating a new one. – Joey May 5 '10 at 13:04

Modify the alpha channel. Go to layers assistant, channels tab, select alpha. white == opaque, black == transparent, anything else == in between. If it's not there, you might have to create it in the layers menu.

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