Altium Designer Documentation

Working with a Picture Object on a Multi-board Schematic Document in Altium Designer

Created: June 15, 2017 | Updated: April 10, 2021
Now reading version 20.2. For the latest, read: Picture for version 21
Applies to Altium Designer versions: 18.0, 18.1, 19.0, 19.1, 20.0, 20.1 and 20.2

Parent page: Multi-board Schematic Objects

A placed and selected Picture box objectA placed and selected Picture box object


A Picture object is an image container that can be placed on a multi-board Design schematic document and populated with a standard image file (*.png, *.jpg, *.bmp, etc.,).


An Image container object is available for placement in the multi-board schematic editor as follows:

  • Choose the Place » Graphic command from the main menu.
  • Click the  button in the graphic objects drop-down on the Active Bar,located at the top of the design space. Click and hold an Active Bar button to access other related commands. Once a command has been used, it will become the topmost item on that section of the Active Bar.
  • Right-click in the drawing design space then select Place » Graphic from the context menu.
The default settings for the Picture object are available in the Multi-board Schematic - Defaults page of the Preferences dialog.


After launching the command, the cursor will change to a cross-hair and the editor will enter the Picture container placement mode. Placement is made by performing the following sequence of actions:

  1. Click to define the first corner position of the Picture box.
  2. Move the cursor to adjust the size of the box (and opposite corner position) then click again to complete placement.
  3. Select a suitable image from the file browser.
If the Maintain Aspect Ratio option is checked in the Properties panel (the default setting), move one of the Picture box editing nodes to sync the box aspect ratio to that of the source image.

Graphical Editing

This method of editing allows a placed Picture object to be selected in the design space and then graphically edit its size or location.

When a Picture object is selected, editing handles/nodes are available at each corner.

A selected Picture object is resized by dragging an editing node. If the aspect ratio is not locked, the image can be distorted to any shape. A selected Picture object is resized by dragging an editing node. If the aspect ratio is not locked, the image can be distorted to any shape.

  • Click and drag on any part of the graphic object to reposition it on the document.
  • Click and drag a node to alter the size of the picture container – the displayed image will automatically resize to fit. If the Maintain Aspect Ratio option is unchecked in the Properties panel, the container size can be set to dimensions that do not match the image file aspect ratio.

Non-Graphical Editing

Properties page: Picture Properties

The non-graphical method of editing a Picture container object is available in the multi-board Properties panel, which provides editable property fields for the item that is currently selected in the design space.

The Properties panel when a Picture object is selected.The Properties panel when a Picture object is selected.

To open the Properties panel and access the properties of a placed Picture box:

  • Double-click on the Picture object.
  • Right-click on the Picture object then select Item Properties from the context menu.

If the Properties panel is already active:

  • Click on the Picture object to access its properties in the panel.
To manually open the Properties panel, select View » Panels » Properties from the main menu or click the button at the bottom right of the design space then select Properties from the pop-up menu.
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