I want to rotate an image in preview but I only need to move it a few degrees. Is this possible? Or can you only rotate 90 degrees?
Unfortunately, Preview can only rotate in 90* increments and flip images.
If you want to rotate a different amount, you'll have to use a more-powerful program, like Photoshop or Pixelmator.
From Preview Help:
If you're not averse to using the command line, you can use the sips command to rotate images. For example…
sips -r 23 --padColor FFFFFF image.jpg
…will rotate image.jpg 23 degrees clockwise and "fill in" the empty space with white. (If you rotate PNGs, the alpha channel should be retained.)
Worth reading the man page for sips as it can do other useful stuff.
There is a way to do it using Preview, although it is imprecise.
You can use a two finger twisting gesture to arbitrarily rotate the image within preview. Now, it snaps back to normal once you let go, but if you take a screenshot to clipboard while maintaining the rotated view, then paste from the clipboard into preview, then save. Then I open the image again and do a little bit of cropping to get it looking nice.
I mapped the 'screenshot to clipboard' function to a key combination that was easy to hit while maintaining my twist.
Obviously a dedicated app will do the job better, but I thought it was worth mentioning my OS only workaround which I discovered.
Copy-paste the image into another image or new file (cmd+N) and twist the pasted object with two fingers.
(as shown here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UvE2DHJOTCE)
I found an online website that does it (probably there are many others):
- LunaPic (http://www140.lunapic.com/editor/)
No need to register or install anything. Just upload the picture, type how many degrees should be rotated and done.
There's no current way to do that with Preview, although you can use ImageMagick's
convert command to do it:
convert your_input_image_name.png -rotate X new_output_image_name_path.png
This command will rotate your image X degrees, accepting a positive or negative value.
Finally, you'll probably want to remove the white background:
convert rotated_image_name_path.png -transparent white final_output_image_name_path.png
Apparently, it used to be possible by holding down the option key while rotating (using the button on the toolbar), at least according to this forum entry from 2005:
But it didn't work for me on OS X Mountain Lion, all the option button did was change the rotation direction (for the rotation button on the toolbar).