Use background image for retrace?

I have a picture I’d like to retrace in pixel art in ProMotion. I’d like to put my reference picture in the background for easy retrace. However I’m using a palette (NES palette that is) and if I apply the palette to my project, of course it screws up all the colors in my reference image.

Is there any way to 1. use a background image that has a different color palette? or 2. apply a color palette to an existing image and have it remapped for closest fit (which is something I could do in Photoshop but couldn’t bring into Promotion because colors positions do not match between the two palettes, even though they use the same colors)?

Solution 1. would be the best for my case now.

Thanks a lot!

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There are different solutions…

1.1. You could load the reference image as a second project and use the layer effects to display
it in the background (behind the layer). See here:
Section “Display other Project”.
But be sure to save the reference image to a project file so that you can reload it automatically
with the master project.


1.2. Create the project with your NES preset.
Then add a second layer. It is typically added above the current one, so go down one layer.
Now click this icon:

This deactivates the global palette mode. The layers still use a single palette
for all of their frames (because the G-sign is still active on the single layers)
Now (still being at Layer 1) use File/Animation/Import Image…
Load your reference image here.
It will load into this layer and use its own palette. Switch to the layer 2 above
and see that this layer still uses the NES palette. Draw your image there.


  1. Load your reference image to a new project.
    Now use Colors/Load Palette… and load the NES palette. You will see that
    the image looks weird now. This is because the pixels are not remapped yet
    to the new palette. Remap means: get the color the pixel had before the palette
    change and find the best fit in the new palette that is currently active.
    Use Colors/Remap Colors/Frame(s)…
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Thanks a lot Jan! All of those solutions work perfectly. I’ve settled for remapping the colors automatically in this particular case.