I was wondering if Inkscape has the ability to select the outline of a shape, and then be cropped or copied and pasted over another shape?

I remember being able to do this in Illustrator but you can't seem to do it in Inkscape.

Setting a clip for an object keeps coming up (in searches) but that doesn't seem to do anything. If you paste it just pastes the object with a rectangle still around it. All I want is to select a shape and then paste it with a transparent background. Can Inkscape do this?

Any help much appreciated


2 Answers 2


Looks like the key is in step 2 below. Drawing a shape around the image you want opaque.

  1. Import the picture
  2. Draw a shape with the line tool that covers the object you want to keep
  3. select both and do Object > Clip > Set

The bitmap should be clipped to the area contained by the shape, making the rest disappear.

Inkscape Forums


I just tried importing some clip art saved from the web, which had some transparent sections. saved from the web as .png, then opened by importing from the file menu. the transparency was retained.

I found a second method. after importing an image, if you use the fill button, it will create a new object in the proper shape, which then behaves as if it had transparent sections.

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