Microsoft’s free graphics editing software Paint.net was developed on the .NET framework by Rick Brewster as a student project for the Washington State University. However, the reception of the software resulted in it becoming the replacement for the original Microsoft Paint program. In its nascent stages, the freeware was fairly simple, much like the one it replaced. However, as it evolved and underwent updates, it transformed into a raster graphics editor.
Well, enough with the history lesson! In this post, we’re going to talk about how you can add exciting fonts to your Paint.net font library so that you can do more with the freeware instead of being limited by the basic fonts included in the program. So, read on to know how to add fonts to Paint.net.
Step #1: Download the fonts
Before you can start adding new fonts to your Paint.net font library, you’ll need to first download the new fonts. There’s no dearth of free font sites on the internet and all you’ll have to do is a simple Google search to get to those sites. Keep in mind that for Paint.net, you’ll need to download TrueType fonts, the extension for which is .ttf. Most fonts are downloaded in either .zip or .rar formats (compressed) and you’ll need to extract them after they’ve been downloaded.
Step #2: Extracting the fonts
To extract the fonts, simply go to the folder where the .zip or .rar file containing the fonts was downloaded and then follow these steps:
1. Right-click on the .zip or .rar file and then from the ‘Open with’ option, select ‘Windows Explorer’
2. The compressed fonts will then be displayed in a fresh Explorer window that has a ‘Compressed Folder Tools’ tab at the top. Click on the ‘Extract’ option that’s located right under the ‘Compressed Folder Tools’.
3. You should now be able to see the ‘Extract All’ option. Click on it.
4. A dialog box will appear where you’ll have to mention the path where you’d want the fonts to be extracted. For example, if you automatically want the software to create a folder called ‘Paint.net downloaded fonts’ on your desktop, the path will read something like this:
C:\Users\Username\Desktop\Paint.net downloaded fonts
You can enter the path manually, or you can click on the ‘Browse’ option located next to the space where you have to enter the path for selecting a folder of your choice.
5. Once you have selected the path/destination, click on ‘Extract’.
Tip: Check the ‘Show extracted files when complete’ box below the space where you need to enter the extracted destination of the files to view them after the extraction process has been completed.
Step #3: Previewing the downloaded fonts
You may have seen the font styles on the website that you downloaded the fonts from, but in all likelihood, they were only samples. In some cases, downloaded free fonts may be corrupted, which is why you need to preview them post-extraction before you add them to your Paint.net font library.
To preview one of your downloaded fonts, go to the folder where you’ve extracted it, right-click on it, and hit the ‘Preview’ option. A dialog box will appear that will show you how the font looks like. If a font file is corrupt, the preview won’t work. Once you’re done with previewing the downloaded fonts, you can start installing them from the preview dialog box itself.
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Step #4: Installing the downloaded fonts
To install the fonts from the ‘Preview’ dialog box, simply click the ‘Install’ button that will be located at the top left-hand side of the dialog box. The font will be installed in a second or two, following which you can go ahead and test it out on Paint.net. Congratulations! Now you know how to add fonts to Paint.net on Windows 10.
Tip: It’s recommended to close Paint.net and all other applications across which you want to use your newly downloaded fonts post-installation. Open them again after the fonts have been installed successfully and you should see them in the font library.
Step #5: Putting the font to use
Now that the downloaded fonts have been installed, it’s time to test them on Paint.net. Once Paint.net has loaded, head over to the toolbar menu and select the ‘Text’ tool and place it on the blank canvas to insert it. Next, open the font drop-down box and find the downloaded font that you want to use and then select it. That’s it! Now type what you want and follow the same process for any other new font that you want to download and use in Paint.net.
Step #6: Deleting downloaded fonts
If you think you’ve made a mistake by downloading and installing a particular font, don’t worry! You can delete it just as easily as you downloaded and installed it. Here’s a step-by-step guide on how you can do this:
- Open the ‘Control Panel’ by right-clicking on the Start button in Windows 10.
- Look for the ‘Fonts’ folder in the Control Panel. If the Control Panel view is set to small icons, you can enlarge it by changing the view to ‘Large icons’ by clicking on the ‘View by’ option on the top right-hand side of the Control Panel window.
- Once the ‘Fonts’ folder opens, find the fonts that you wish to delete. You can either do this manually by scrolling through the folder or you can use the search bar in the top right-hand side and enter the name of the font.
- Select the fonts that you don’t want to use anymore and click on the ‘Delete’ button located on the panel just above the main folder view.
- A confirmation dialog box will appear once you click on the ‘Delete’ button. Confirm your move by clicking on Yes or you can cancel the deletion by clicking on No.
Font installation tips for Windows 7 users
Microsoft has stopped rolling out driver updates for Windows 7, which has pretty much rendered the operating system obsolete. However, Windows 7 is still one of the favorite operating systems to use for Windows users due to its user-friendliness and if you want to know how to add fonts to Paint.net on Windows 7, this section is for you.
- Follow the same procedure that you would on a Windows 10 PC for downloading and extracting the fonts.
- Once the fonts have been extracted, go to the folder where they have been extracted, select them all by using the Ctrl + A shortcut on your keyboard, and then use the Ctrl + C shortcut to copy them.
- Now, left-click on the Start button and choose Control Panel from the list of programs on the right.
- Open the ‘Fonts’ folder in the Control Panel and once you’re inside the folder, use the Ctrl + V shortcut to paste the copied fonts.
After the newly downloaded fonts have been successfully pasted to the folder, open Paint.net and you should be able to see the new fonts in the font library.
Why use Paint.net?
In this last section of our post, we’ll talk about what makes Paint.net such a great program. Photo and graphics editors typically tend to favor Adobe Photoshop, but unlike Paint.net, Photoshop has to be purchased. Let’s take a look at some of the advantages of using Paint.net:
- Easy to learn for beginners: If you’re someone who’s just starting with basic photo and graphics editing, it’s best to learn the ropes on software that has a simple interface and that’s Paint.net’s core strength. The user-friendly interface allows amateurs to feel at home while using the software, unlike more detailed software like Photoshop, where the endless array of options and buttons may end up overwhelming beginners.
- Support for third-party plugins: Third-party plugins and additional modules add to the existing features of Paint.net and while they won’t transform it into Photoshop, they can still be of use to intermediate-level users. Plugin files, available as .dll files, need to be copied to the following folder:
To start using the newly installed third-party plugins and extensions, restart Paint.net.
- Less demanding of computer systems: Unlike heavy photo-editing software such as Photoshop, Paint.net works well even on systems with modest configurations. Here are the minimum system requirements for running Paint.net:
OS: Windows 7 SP1, Windows 8.1, or Windows 10 Version 1607 or newer with .NET Framework 4.7.1
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Hard drive space: 200+ MB
Compare this to Adobe Photoshop’s minimum requirements:
OS: Windows 7 SP1 or Windows 10 Version 1809 or newer
Processor: 2GHz AMD or Intel processor with 64-bit support
Hard drive space: 3.1GB
All in all, Paint.net is much less resource-intensive than Photoshop and other heavy-duty graphics editing applications, making it not just a great alternative, but the best editing application for those who don’t have computers with specifications that meet Photoshop’s minimum requirements.
So if you’d like to get started with photo and graphics editing basics, choose Paint.net, and now that you know how to add fonts to Paint.net on both Windows 10 and the older Windows 7, you can really get creative with your editing efforts.