Home > Technical > To rotate an image in libreoffice [90 /180]

To rotate an image in libreoffice [90 /180]

We cannot rotate directly rotate image in libreoffice writer.

Right click on image –> edit with external tool… –> open in external editor .

Rotate to required Degree & save & close. Image get automatically get updated in writer.


If you are using Linux, you can use gthumb for editing the image.

If image is in png format while inserting, You can rotate desired degree in gthumb & Save. The following option should be used – image size to bounding box & background to transparent.

Screenshot from 2013-02-06 16:02:09

You can use any image editor that support png image, image size to bounding box & background to transparent.

But text  will have square area bounded to image. To re-flow the text you can use contour option in wrap menu.

Screenshot from 2013-02-07 11:16:02

You can get as shown in the image below.

Screenshot from 2013-02-06 15:54:44


you can open the file in draw & rotate. Then paste file.


Note:  Now this bug has fixed in the Libre office version 4.1.


  1. December 18, 2012 at 3:35 PM

    It’s really weird that LibreOffice/OpenOffice Writer can not rotate an image by 90° by itself. You can add and edit tables in Writer without the need for Calc, but you have to use an external tool for rotating a picture. Yet cropping, scaling, flipping etc. are implemented. Seems odd to me.

  2. February 24, 2013 at 8:48 AM

    well Torban, you say weird – I say f’ing stupid !!

    I was trying to print a screen shot using Libre Writer and what do I find – no rotate ! bah

    to think a Windows 98 version of MS Paint has more capability and is easier to use is plain ludicrous.

    : (

    • March 4, 2013 at 10:56 PM

      I was just trying to sound more diplomatic 😉

      I once was happy using Writer, Calc and Draw, but I am not happy by how those changed over the time (slower without expanding basic functionality or improving the interface). Now I rarely use any of them. Writer is the only thing I still use on occasion and to be honest: I will be glad once that is gone as well.
      But I really hope that in a few years I will be able to change my mind again.

      • March 5, 2013 at 9:47 AM

        I use writer & calc for daily office purpose & installed in our 100 office machines . Only problem is that you need atleast 1GB ram. If 2 GB is there, it will work beautifully. Libreoffice 4.0 improved a lot. Opening speed improved compared to old versions. But impress is still very slow.

        In apache openoffice, they are doing some development work in rotation of images in writer & formating tools in sidebar as seen lotus symphony. We hope that it will land in version 4.0.

  3. Mel
    March 14, 2014 at 12:46 AM

    I have a little time that I use really libreoffice. I’m glad because I do it, thanks James for your help.

  4. mark
    April 17, 2014 at 6:11 PM

    LibreOffice Writer is the most frustrating POS I have ever encountered for Pictures. It does EXACTLY the opposite to intuition. It needs to COPY Word’s default behaviour.

  5. marc
    June 5, 2014 at 1:24 PM

    I consider intuitive resizing, rotating and cropping images in Libreoffice Writer as basic functionality. Missing a proper in-program solution is a major shortcoming and makes Libreoffice feel immature.

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