I'm looking to save a PNG on a white background with an active clipping path.

Whenever I reopen the file however, the clipping path is gone.

Any suggestions? These files MUST be PNGs.

These are requirements given to me by the client, they require all images submitted to be PNGs with an active clipping path saved on a solid white background (no transparency).

I suspect, someone who doesn't know what they are talking about made those requirements. I wanted to be absolutely certain that this was impossible before I go to them and look like an idiot.

  • May want to give some background information as to why you need a PNG file and why you need an active clipping path. This would help us give you a more accurate answer to your issue.
    – AndrewH
    Oct 11, 2018 at 16:56
  • 1
    What program are you using?
    – Welz
    Oct 11, 2018 at 16:58
  • 2
    There's no support for clipping paths or layers in the PNG file format. Sorry about that.
    – Billy Kerr
    Oct 11, 2018 at 17:11
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    Question: pngs support alpha-channel based transparency - what is the use-case for a clipping path with a png, and in WHAT software? In almost any scenario I can envision, that transparency channel should be not just adequate but preferable, as given you're already working with a png which is a raster image, the fact that you can achieve a wide range of transparency values in the raster alpha channel seems more appropriate than using a vector clipping path. Can you give us some context here? Oct 11, 2018 at 18:31
  • 3
    That properitary software is probably Fireworks @GerardFalla. Anyway no other software can read or write it, only Fireworks can. Nothing stops me from putting random data in the PNG stream, but its then not standard and can or can not be supported by other software.
    – joojaa
    Oct 12, 2018 at 5:33

1 Answer 1


You cannot save a PNG with an active clipping path. I would suggest the following.

  1. If all PNG's use the same clipping path, save an extra file that can store a clipping path. Or if every PNG has a separate clipping path, then save each image as a PNG and a file that can store a clipping path.

  2. Save as a TIFF with layers file, but this would mean it isn't a PNG file.

  • Thanks for your response. You're saying exactly what I suspected. Oct 11, 2018 at 17:01

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