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blender 2.81 I press shift+a to add image - background, and then go to render image, and the background image does not show up in the render result.

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There's a great addon exactly for this.

Go to Preferences > Addons and search for Images as Planes addon.
Check it to enable it.

enter image description here

Then you can easily add a new image that will appear in your render.
Add > Image > Images as Planes

enter image description here

Note:
The way you described is for reference images only - thy're not supposed to be visible in a render.

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  • $\begingroup$ This add-on works as the functionality that I had expected Blender to have. I wonder why this this feature does not exist natively and users had to search the web for a solution and install an add-on for this... $\endgroup$ Commented Jan 21, 2020 at 5:36
  • $\begingroup$ Hello :). It's an official extension shipped directly with Blender. To keep the UI clean, not all Blender features are enabled by default. But you're right, this one should be. $\endgroup$ Commented Jan 21, 2020 at 8:57

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