Is it possible to design a graphic that is transparent to text? What I'm looking for is something like MS Word’s send to back, which sends the picture behind text, so the text will be visible. In Excel, that can't be done. Graphics in Excel are above text and grid lines. One can send a picture to be behind other pictures but it cannot be behind text.

I have scanned a stamp and pasted it to an Excel form, thinking that I don't need to stamp the forms anymore. I can just print the form with stamp already on it. Since pictures in Excel cannot be behind text, the printed forms look unreal.

My thinking is that if I can't send the picture behind the text, maybe there is a way to make the picture transparent, so the underlying text will be visible when overlapped.

Is this possible?

  • Have you tried overlaying the image with a text box? See Add copy or delete a text box
    – Billy Kerr
    Commented Jun 24, 2019 at 8:49
  • @Kerr To do so, I would need to convert the form into many text boxes. Yes. That would work but it seems a lot of work.
    – joehua
    Commented Jun 25, 2019 at 3:22

1 Answer 1


Images are images. They don't know what is behind or in front of them. There is no way, I'm aware of, to create an image which acts in some specific manner simple because it happens to be above or below text.

A possible option may be to export/save the Excel file as a PDF and add your stamp as a watermark in Adobe Acrobat. That process could be automated for PDFs.

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service and acknowledge you have read our privacy policy.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.