Do you want to fix common image issues in WordPress?
WordPress comes with some pretty neat tools to manage and edit images. You can easily upload images, align them, and even edit them inside WordPress. However, it can take users a while to discover these image-editing features.
In this article, we will cover the most common image issues in WordPress and how to fix them.
Since this is a detailed article, here is the list of image-related issues that we will cover in this article. You can use these quick links to skip to a certain topic:
- How to Upload Images in WordPress
- How to Align an Image to the Left or Right in WordPress
- How to Add Captions Below Images
- How to Display Photos in Columns and Rows
- How to Create Responsive Image Galleries in WordPress
- How to Fix Missing Post Thumbnails / Featured Image
- How to Add Cover Images in WordPress Posts and Pages
- How to Fix the Featured Image Appearing Twice Issue
- How to Crop Images in WordPress
- How to Add a Header Image in WordPress
- How to Add a Background Image in WordPress
- How to Find Free Images for Your WordPress Blog Posts
- How to Tag Images in WordPress
- How to Import External Images in WordPress
- How to Require Featured Images for Posts in WordPress
- How to Set a Default Featured Image in WordPress
- How to Create Additional Image Sizes in WordPress
- How to Prevent Image Theft in WordPress
How to Upload Images in WordPress
WordPress makes it super easy to upload images to your posts, pages, and non-content areas like sidebars.
To upload images in WordPress posts and pages, you simply need to add the Image block to the content editor.
You can also add the Image block by simply typing /image into a Paragraph block.
The editor will start showing blocks you can insert as soon as you start typing.
WordPress will now add the Image block to the editor.
You need to click on the ‘Upload’ button to select and upload the image from your computer.
You can also select a previously uploaded image from your Media Library.
After uploading the image, you will see a live preview of the image in the content editor.
You will also see image settings in the right panel. From there, you can provide image alt text, select the image size, and customize the image style.
How to Align an Image to the Left or Right in WordPress
With WordPress, aligning images to the left, right, or center is easy. Simply select the image by clicking on it, and then click on the alignment button from the block toolbar.
You may have noticed how some popular WordPress blogs use images with text wrapped around them.
This is done by using the align feature.
Alternatively, you can also use the Media & Text block instead of the Image block.
This block is made specifically for adding images next to the text.
You can then upload an image and text side by side.
You can also use the block toolbar to change the image or text side.
For detailed guidance, you can check out our guide on how to align images using the WordPress block editor.
How to Add Captions Below Images
WordPress allows you to easily add captions for images. After you upload an image, you will see the option to add a caption right below the image preview.
Similarly, you can also add captions to image galleries in WordPress. For more details, see our guide on how to add captions to images in WordPress.
How to Display Photos in Columns and Rows
Often, users ask us how to neatly display photos in columns and rows.
Let’s say you want to share photos of a birthday party or vacation photos. You can add them one by one into a post, but this will look like a lengthy list of images.
The better way to group your photos is by creating image galleries.
WordPress comes with a built-in Gallery block that allows you to easily add images in rows and columns with thumbnail previews.
Simply add the Gallery block to the post editor and select the images you want to upload.
For more detailed instructions, see our guide on how to create an image gallery in WordPress.
How to Create Responsive Image Galleries in WordPress
You will notice that the default WordPress image galleries lack several features. For instance, they are also not very easy to browse.
If you often upload images and photographs to your WordPress site, then you will need a WordPress photo gallery plugin.
We recommend using Envira Gallery. It allows you to easily create beautiful and fully mobile-friendly image galleries on your WordPress site.
The best part is that it adds additional functionality like albums, gallery templates, social sharing, slideshows, watermarking, pagination, password protection, tagging, fullscreen view, and much more.
Another popular WordPress photo gallery plugin is NextGEN Gallery. It offers many gallery layouts and a beautiful lightbox gallery for displaying images in WordPress.
NextGEN Gallery also includes powerful features for professional photographers like photo proofing, print fulfillment, image protection, Adobe Lightroom addon, PayPal and Stripe payment gateways, and more.
How to Fix Missing Post Thumbnails / Featured Image
Most WordPress themes allow you to prominently display a featured image with your articles. Let’s look at how to set a featured image in WordPress to avoid missing thumbnails.
First, you need to click on ‘Set Featured Image’ to upload your post thumbnail.
After uploading the image, you will be able to see your post thumbnail in the featured image meta box like this.
For more details, see our guide on how to add a featured image or post thumbnail in WordPress.
How to Add Cover Images in WordPress Posts and Pages
Cover images are wide or full-width images that can be used as a separator between different sections of an article or a lengthy sales page.
They are highly engaging and help users easily scan a page without feeling overwhelmed by too much text.
To add a cover image, you simply need to add the Cover block to the content editor.
Next, you need to upload the image you want to use from your computer or select one from the Media Library. If you don’t want to use an image, then you can also select a color background as the cover.
Tip: It is best to use a large image for a better result.
You will now see a live preview of your cover image in the editor. You can change the cover image display options from the block toolbar or use the settings on the right.
To learn more, see our guide on the difference between cover image vs. featured image in WordPress and how to use them effectively.
How to Fix the Featured Image Appearing Twice Issue
Inserting the featured image inside content is a common mistake made by beginners.
Once you set a featured image, you don’t need to insert it into the post along with your content.
Doing so will make your featured image appear twice. Once as the featured image and once as an image inside the post.
You can add other images inside your post, but your featured image goes in the featured image box.
For more details, see our guide on how to fix featured images appearing twice in WordPress posts.
How to Crop Images in WordPress
When you are uploading images from your phone or camera, they are usually too big.
WordPress automatically creates small, medium, and large image sizes for your original upload. But sometimes, you may need to crop the image in a different size.
WordPress is no Photoshop, but it comes with some basic image editing features like scale, crop, flip, and rotate images.
Simply go to Media » Add New and upload your image. After uploading the image, you will see an ‘Edit’ link next to the uploaded image.
Clicking on it will open the Edit Media screen, where you will see an ‘Edit Image’ button right below the image. This will open the WordPress image editor.
From here, you can click on the ‘Edit Image’ button below the image preview. This will open the image editing screen.
On the image editor screen, you will see buttons to perform some basic image editing tasks such as cropping, rotating, resizing, etc.
If you use the Block editor, you can crop images by using the built-in crop feature in the image toolbar.
Simply click on an image block and select the ‘Crop’ icon in the toolbar.
After that, you can adjust the image’s aspect ratio and the cropped area of your image to your preference.
You can use your original aspect ratio or a predefined one by WordPress.
For more detailed instructions, see our guide on how to crop, rotate, scale, and flip images in WordPress.
How to Add a Header Image in WordPress
A header image in WordPress is a theme feature. Many WordPress free and premium themes come with support for header images.
Some WordPress themes allow you to set a site-wide header image, while others allow you to only set a header image for the homepage.
You can upload your own custom header image from the Appearance » Customize page.
If you use a Block theme, the location to edit your theme’s header is different.
First, you need to go to Appearance » Editor.
Then, select ‘Patterns.’
This will bring you to a page where you can access your theme’s header pattern.
After that, scroll down to the Template Parts section.
Once you’ve done that, just select ‘Header’ and click on the header template to edit it.
From there, you can add an image block to the header pattern like you would in the first section of this article.
How to Add a Background Image in WordPress
Just like the custom header image, a custom background image is also a WordPress theme feature. Many WordPress themes come with support for custom background images.
Visit Appearance » Customize to launch the Theme Customizer. If you can see the Background Image option, then your theme has support for custom backgrounds.
It is a theme feature, which is why it varies from one theme to another. Depending on your theme, you will see different options for styling your background image.
If your theme does not support a background image, then you can still use a plugin to add full-screen background images to your website.
How to Find Free Images for Your WordPress Blog Posts
Images can make your articles stand out. However, you must respect the copyrights of other people and find images that you are legally allowed to use.
We are often asked by our readers about how to find the best, royalty-free images to use in their posts.
There are many websites where you can find free images to use. However, you will soon notice that images on those sites look overused and generic.
See our list of the best sources for free public domain and CC0-licensed images on the internet.
How to Tag Images in WordPress
If you run a photography blog, then you will notice that WordPress does not allow you to sort photos and images.
Wouldn’t it be great if you could add tags to your images so that you and your users can easily browse them?
Luckily, there are some great plugins that allow you to do just that.
For a photography-related blog, the best option is to use Envira Gallery, which comes with an add-on to add tags.
Envira Gallery allows you to create beautiful, mobile-ready photo galleries in WordPress. Using tags, your users can easily filter and sort photos without even reloading a page.
For more details, see our article on how to add categories and tags to the WordPress Media Library.
How to Import External Images in WordPress
This question often comes up when you are migrating your site to WordPress. Some images on your website may still be pointing to an older location.
While the images on your site may appear correctly, they are still loading from an external source. To solve this issue, all you need to do is install and activate the Auto Upload Images plugin.
The plugin will check for external images once you update or save any post or page. You can manually do that for each post or page, or you can bulk edit all posts and simply click the update button.
For detailed instructions, see our guide on how to import external images in WordPress.
How to Require Featured Images for Posts in WordPress
In this case, you may want to remind yourself or your users to upload a featured image whenever they are submitting a post in WordPress.
You can do this by installing and activating the PublishPress Checklists plugin.
Once activated, the plugin will display a red exclamation mark and a Checklist tab informing users that this post requires a featured image.
You and your users will be able to save posts as drafts, but you cannot publish the post until you add a featured image.
See our article on how to require featured images for posts in WordPress for more instructions.
How to Set a Default Featured Image in WordPress
Finding the perfect featured image for every post or article is a tough task. Sometimes, you may not want to add a featured image to a post, but your theme may look awkward without one.
This is where a default featured image can come in handy. A default featured image is used when an article does not have a featured image of its own.
You can set a default featured image by using the Default featured image plugin.
For more instructions, please see our guide on how to set a default featured image in WordPress.
How to Create Additional Image Sizes in WordPress
By default, WordPress creates and saves different sizes of your uploaded images, including thumbnails. Your WordPress theme might also generate different image sizes.
If you want to create additional image sizes for your WordPress website, then you will need to register them by adding custom code to your theme’s functions.php file.
To learn more, please see our guide to how to create additional image sizes in WordPress.
How to Prevent Image Theft in WordPress
Sometimes, users may steal images from your WordPress website to use on their own sites. This can be very frustrating, especially if you take your own photos or create your own graphics.
Luckily, you can prevent image theft by disabling right-click, adding a watermark to your images, disabling hotlinking, and adding copyright notices.
To learn more, please see our guide on how to prevent image theft in WordPress.
We hope this article helped you fix some of the most common image issues in WordPress. You may also want to see our list of the most common WordPress errors and how to fix them and our expert picks for the best WordPress plugins to grow your site.