Quick Lesson - Inserting Shapes in PowerPoint

Quick Lesson – Inserting Shapes in PowerPoint

Inserting shapes in your PowerPoint slides is a very easy task.

First, click the ‘Insert’ tab in the ribbon, and then click the shapes button that appears in the illustrations groups.

You will be shown a drop-down menu of all of the various shapes that you can insert. Once you determine which shape you want to insert, simple click on that shape.

Your mouse planner will then appear as a black cross on your current slide.  Next, determine where you the graphic to appear on the slide and then click and drag across that area in the slide.

When you release the mouse button, the shape will be inserted into your slide.

In addition to simply inserting a shape, there are a few “advanced” techniques you can employ to help you create the perfect shape for your slide.

  • Hold down the shift key as you click and drag to insert the shape in order to create a “perfect version” of the selected shape.  For example, holding the shift key while drawing the lines will make the line you draw perfectly straight. This will work for all kinds of shapes, such as circles and squares.
  • In order to draw several of the same shape without having to go back and reselect the shape from the shapes button over and over again, you want to lock PowerPoint into its drawing mode as you select desired shape from the shapes button drop-down menu. To do this, simply right-click the shape that you want to draw within the drop-down menu instead of just clicking it.
  • If you want to significantly change the shape, right click on the shape and a drop-down menu will appear.  Click on “format shape” to reveal all the various adjustment options you can do with your shape.  The formatting section will allow you to change the transparency, change the size, fill color, etc.   One cool technique is to use shapes to add a color filter over images or text in order to mute the vibrancy or allow you to place text over that shape, making it more visible.
  • Use shapes to highlight areas on your slides by selecting “no fill” in the format shape section from above.  Then you can change the thickness and color of the shape outline to meet your design needs.

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