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One of PowerPoint's strengths is its vast collection of special effects that you can apply to any of your graphics, and the good news is that some of them will even work on your videos. Once you insert a video into your presentation, you can jazz it up by giving it a pre-designed style effect that combines frames, shadows, reflections, bevels, and more. I am clicked on slide 6 in my presentation, and I'll click on my video. Now, go up to the Picture Tools > Format Ribbon, and in the middle is a gallery of Picture Styles.
Now, the most important thing about applying these styles is realizing that they're not really being applied to your movie; they are only being applied to the media object on the slide before the movie starts. When the movie starts, it will always play in a rectangle. If you use one of the presets that keeps the rectangular shape in place, your movie will look like it has the preset applied. But if you choose one of the styles that has a tilt, shape, or complex set of effects applied, your movie clip will layer over these graphics and look terrible. Let's take a look at the good, the bad, and the ugly.
Click on the More button in the lower-right corner of the gallery so that you can see all of the options. Hold your cursor over all of the different styles and you'll see a live preview on your slide. They look great now because all we see is the effect applied to the video outline. Let's start with one that won't work at all. Try the Bevel Perspective. Now, when I play my presentation, I can see the movie play in its rectangle over the starting frame. This looks terrible.
(Male speaker: --my anniversary tonight, and I forgot about it until about fifteen minutes ago--) Press Escape to leave the movie and then again to go back to normal view. This time let's go more subtle. Click on the gallery again and try the fourth option, the Drop Shadow Rectangle. This makes the video stand out from the slide because it has a shadow effect applied. When I play it, I still maintain my original shape, so the effect works nicely. (Male speaker: --awesome. It's actually my anniversary tonight.) I'll press Escape again and go back to normal view.
After you've set your effects, you do have the ability to adjust all of them further, on an individual basis. If you right-click on the video, choose Format Picture at the bottom of the Shortcut menu. A dialog box opens. I'll drag it off to the left. Here you can see the current settings for your video and tweak them as needed. For example, I'll go to Shadow, and I'll increase the Size, decrease the Transparency, to make it a little bit darker, and increase the Angle one click, and the Distance as well, so that the video pops off of the slide a little bit more.
Again, many of the settings may make your movie look strange when it plays, so be sure to test carefully. We'll explore some of these settings in this dialog box in the next videos in this chapter. I'll click Close. Using the Picture Effects presets will allow you to create a style for your presentation. Just keep in mind that the effects are applied to the media object, not the video itself, so that when your movie plays, the two visual styles may overlap. Do be careful spending too much time playing around in order to get these right, though.
You can lose hours trying to get the perfect look just for a few fleeting seconds of video. Use your time wisely.
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