How to Use Photo Cutout on iOS 16

Want to learn how to create and use Photo Cutout on iOS 16?

The long-awaited iOS 16 has finally made it to all compatible iPhones, with so many cool new features that have thrilled the iPhone users’ community. It includes extreme customizability for wallpapers and widgets, and improved media editing tools, like Photo Cutout.

Separating subjects from photos and videos might have seemed like a very difficult task before, one that requires the know-how of professional apps, but not anymore. With the new iOS 16 Photo Cutout feature, the process becomes extremely simple.

It is the coolest addition to Apple’s Visual Lookup System so far, as it immediately became the talk of the town. If you’re still unfamiliar with the feature, don’t look any further. Simply read this guide and start making amazing stickers.

So let’s get started right away!

1. Create a Photo Cutout.

Fortunately, the Photo Cutout function is not limited to Apple’s default program. You may also use the cutout media in third-party apps to access or upload supported media files. Now, before you jump straight to using the cutout subject, you need to create it first.

There are multiple ways to do so, but let’s just take a look at some of the most commonly used methods.

To create a Photo Cutout using the Photos app, follow the steps below:

  1. Go to the photo or video you want to isolate a subject from.
  2. If it’s a picture, tap and hold on to the subject and select Copy from the options.
copy photo cutout
  1. If it’s a video, choose the frame with your subject, tap and hold on to it, then tap on Copy from the options.
Use Photo Cutout on iOS 16

This copied sticker will be added to your clipboard to be used later on. You can also create a Photo Cutout using the Files app. Here’s how to do it:

  1. Navigate to the photo or video, then tap and hold on to it.
  2. From the context menu, go to Quick Actions.
quick action in files app
  1. Then, select Remove Background. The cutout will be saved as a new image in the same location.
remove background option iphone
  1. If you only wish to isolate the subject, open the image then tap and hold on to the subject. From the options, select Copy.

You can follow similar steps to copy a Photo Cutout from Safari, Messages, Notes, and other applications on your iOS 16 device.

2. Use Photo Cutout on iOS 16 Messages & Social Media Apps.

Now that you’ve copied the Photo Cutout, it’s time for you to paste it into the desired application. Usually, people use the feature to send stickers to their friends and family through Messages or any other social media application.

Keep in mind is that each app will convert the cutout differently so the result may be a bit unexpected. Here’s how to paste your Photo Cutout into any messaging application:

  1. Open the application and navigate to the chat of the person you want to share the Photo Cutout with.
  2. Now, tap and hold on to the text field.
  3. From the options that appear, choose Paste.
paste on imessage app
  1. If you want to add a message below the pasted cutout, do so, then hit Send.

3. Use Photo Cutout in Photo/Video Editing Apps.

If you love designing and editing photos/videos, you’ll be relieved to hear that you can use Photo Cutout on iOS 16 editing applications as well. Where you had to spend hours or minutes selecting the foreground precisely to separate it from the entire frame, now it can be done with only a few taps.

Simply copy and paste subjects from a photo or a video and paste it onto your drawings, designs, or even other pictures you’re editing to create unique compositions. To better understand, let’s take Canva as an example to show you how you can make the most of the Photo Cutout feature on iOS 16.

Below are the steps you need to follow:

  1. Begin by launching the Canva app on your iPhone or iPad. 
  2. Then, choose a recent design or create a new one, based on what you prefer.
canva app iphone
  1. Next, long press your canvas.
  2. A layover menu will show up on your screen. From the options, tap on Paste with a clipboard icon.
paste photo cutout
  1. Tap on Paste again to confirm your action.
paste option
  1. The cutout you copied earlier will be pasted as a PNG on your design canvas.

You can add as many cutouts on your canvas as you want to create some interesting designs. Other applications will have similar steps to paste cutouts if not the same.

4. Use Photo Cutout in Your Documents.

Now you may also need to paste pictures and reference images into your documents like Word, Excel Sheets, PDFs, and more. Luckily, you may also include your copied cutouts in such documents, if desired. 

Since most people use Google Docs for cloud documents, let’s take that as an example to guide you through the steps. Take a look below:

  1. First, open the Google Docs application on your device.
  2. Add a new document or launch an existing one.
  3. Take your cursor at the location where you wish to paste the Photo Cutout.
  4. Then, long press on the cursor and choose Paste from the options.
paste photo cutout in notes

This will successfully paste the Photo Cutout on your document.

5. Drag Photo Cutout Between Apps.

Another great thing about the Photo Cutout feature is that you can use it between compatible apps with the drag-and-drop option. Although there’s a limitation in the number of supported apps, it is still an excellent resource when available.

  1. Open the image from which you want to copy the cutout.
  2. Long press on your subject to trigger the Photo Cutout feature.
  3. Keep holding your finger on the subject and use your other hand to switch between the two apps.
Use Photo Cutout on iOS 16
  1. Finally, drop the cutout in the desired location to paste it.

That was it! You’ve finally made it to the end of our guide on how to use Photo Cutout on iOS 16. We’ve explained all the different ways you may do so. However, if you still have any confusion, feel free to leave a comment below. We’ll surely respond and guide you further.

If this guide helped you, please share it. 😊


  • Aimen Choudhry

    Aimen Choudhry is an architecture student who has always been fascinated by science. She now finds her therapy researching and writing about the latest technology and the issues that come alongside. Otherwise, you’ll find her playing video games, listening to music, or watching fantasy/sci-fi movies.

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