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PowerPoint Tips and Tricks for Business Presentations
Illustration by Neil Webb

Fine-tuning shapes and text boxes


From:

PowerPoint Tips and Tricks for Business Presentations

with David Diskin

Video: Fine-tuning shapes and text boxes

We can now focus on making each individual slide look great. PowerPoint offers a number of tools to alter the appearance of text, lines and other shapes. We can add shadows, glowing edges, reflections, and more. And if we don't overdo things, the result is a polished, professional look. Let's start by touching up our slides, like our New Warehouse Photo, slide #11. In Slide Sorter view, I can double-click to access the slide. Here we see the text, New Warehouse Photo. It's in dark blue over a blue sky.
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  1. 1m 47s
    1. Welcome
      47s
    2. Using the exercise files
      1m 0s
  2. 10m 43s
    1. Adding white space
      2m 13s
    2. Applying a transition
      2m 10s
    3. Reducing the text
      2m 37s
    4. Selecting objects with ease
      2m 26s
    5. Opening with Show
      1m 17s
  3. 15m 36s
    1. What's your point?
      2m 49s
    2. Getting in their heads
      2m 29s
    3. What's in it for them?
      1m 55s
    4. Piecing it together
      5m 49s
    5. Holding their hands
      2m 34s
  4. 30m 49s
    1. Understanding the importance of design
      4m 12s
    2. Using color and fonts
      3m 18s
    3. Maintaining consistency
      4m 57s
    4. Using photographs
      5m 21s
    5. Sharing data with charts
      5m 20s
    6. Making your data meaningful
      2m 23s
    7. Using diagrams and SmartArt
      5m 18s
  5. 46m 31s
    1. Breaking the slide into sections
      3m 56s
    2. Fine-tuning shapes and text boxes
      5m 43s
    3. Enhancing text boxes
      7m 46s
    4. Customizing layouts and templates
      6m 7s
    5. Building your own layouts
      4m 59s
    6. Animating bullets
      3m 12s
    7. Animating photos
      4m 56s
    8. Animating other objects
      5m 41s
    9. Inserting music and other audio elements
      4m 11s
  6. 16m 18s
    1. Taking control
      1m 46s
    2. Setting display resolution and improving clarity
      3m 18s
    3. Including hidden slides and custom shows
      4m 21s
    4. Utilizing speaker notes
      2m 17s
    5. Using Presenter view
      2m 2s
    6. Creating handouts
      2m 34s
  7. 27m 52s
    1. Planning the program
      3m 6s
    2. Using the presenter checklist
      2m 39s
    3. Knowing what to do when things go wrong
      5m 16s
    4. Sharing your message
      2m 40s
    5. Making the motions
      2m 0s
    6. Questions and answers
      1m 43s
    7. Reading your audience
      2m 41s
    8. Dealing with audience distractions
      3m 4s
    9. Setting up and tearing down
      4m 43s
  8. 19m 28s
    1. During the show
      1m 31s
    2. Creating a photo slideshow
      4m 8s
    3. Letting the slideshow be the star
      1m 41s
    4. Sharing with your audience
      6m 36s
    5. Keyboard and mouse tricks
      5m 32s
  9. 6m 30s
    1. The good, the bad, and the ugly: A recap
      5m 32s
    2. Additional resources
      58s

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PowerPoint Tips and Tricks for Business Presentations
2h 55m Intermediate Jan 17, 2012

Viewers: in countries Watching now:

In this course, author David Diskin lays out a practical framework for building and delivering business presentations in Microsoft PowerPoint, and covers tips and tricks for controlling elements in slide decks. This course demonstrates how to engage an audience, present data in meaningful ways, incorporate gestures, and manage question-and-answer sessions. The course also includes tips on creating photo slide shows and utilizing keyboard and mouse tricks.

Topics include:
  • Adding whitespace
  • Applying transitions
  • Using photographs, colors, and fonts
  • Incorporating diagrams and SmartArt
  • Customizing layouts and templates
  • Animating bullets, photos, and other objects
  • Inserting music and audio
  • Utilizing speaker's notes and the Presenter view
  • Creating handouts
  • Planning the program
  • Dealing with distractions
  • Setting up and tearing down
Subjects:
Business Presentations Productivity
Software:
PowerPoint
Author:
David Diskin

Fine-tuning shapes and text boxes

We can now focus on making each individual slide look great. PowerPoint offers a number of tools to alter the appearance of text, lines and other shapes. We can add shadows, glowing edges, reflections, and more. And if we don't overdo things, the result is a polished, professional look. Let's start by touching up our slides, like our New Warehouse Photo, slide #11. In Slide Sorter view, I can double-click to access the slide. Here we see the text, New Warehouse Photo. It's in dark blue over a blue sky.

That's going to make it hard to read. Let's make it stand out. If I click inside the text, my cursor blinks inside the word, Warehouse, right now and if I make any changes, only the word Warehouse will be modified. Instead, I am going to click again, but this time on the boundary of the text box. Any changes I make now will apply to the entire textbox. I want to go a little fancier than the standard font settings. So I am going to access the Drawing tools Format tab and then pull down the Shapes Styles gallery.

Notice that the colors available to me in the gallery are linked to the theme colors that we set earlier in the Design tab. As I hover over the choices, I can apply a variety of different colors, foreground and background, plus other aspects, like the Bevel, the Shadow, and the Reflection. If I am happy with any of these, great; I can select it and move on. After doing that, I can resize the textbox, move it around. I can pull down the Text Fill, Text Outline, Text Effects menu or Shape Fill, Shape Outline, and Shape Effects menus to give this an even more customized look.

Let's try this in our next example. We'll leave this as it is and move on Slide #10. Here's our map and we are going to begin by giving it a nice drop shadow. I'll select the map graphic and from Format, choose Picture Effects>Shadow, and then choose any of the directions that I want. You can see that there's barely any difference. So I'll click here to add the Shadow and then pull the menu down again, and choose Shadow Options. In the Format Picture dialog box, I can adjust things like the Distance, Angle, and Blur of my new shadow.

If I make it a little bit less transparent, it will be darker, and I can also make the size smaller or bigger. Clicking Close returns me to the slide. Now let's make our pushpin stand out a little as well. I'll click on 1 and pull down the same menu, Picture Effects. Let's see how this looks with a glow. The Glow menu is going to give me the same color choices that we have in our Color palette. If I don't like any of these, I can choose More Glow Colors and pick something else like yellow or white.

Again, if I return to the same menu, and choose Glow Options, I can further changes settings like the Transparency and Size of the glow. Let me move the window out of the way so we can see the difference. Once I have added the glow to my pushpin, I'd like the others to look the same. To make this faster, I'll return to the Home tab with my pushpin selected and double-click on the Format Painter icon. The double-click locks the feature on. Now I will just click on each pushpin to apply the changes.

When I am done, I can click anywhere outside or press Escape. Slide #7 has a quick little adjustment we need to make. The photo on the left could really benefit from a nice vertical line stretching from the top to the bottom. From the Home tab, I'll click on the Line icon in the Drawing group. Position my mouse right about here and drag straight down. If you have trouble making a straight line, hold down the Shift key and PowerPoint will lock it in as a straight line. Let go, and now return to the Drawing tools Format tab to adjust the outline's characteristics.

We'll make it a little bit heavier and change the color. Let's see how that turned out in full screen. Finally, we are going to play with a little transparency, and we'll do this on Slide #24. In this slide, we want the numbers for the R-4000 series to stand out. The colors and everything that you see here were created using the actual table formatting properties. I am going to select the entire row and get rid of it. We'll go to Design> Borders, and choose No Border; Shading and choose No Fill.

When I click away, that's been reset. To make this stand out, I am going to create a rectangle around the entire row. With the rectangle in place, I want to make it transparent. So I'll select Drawing tools Format>Shape Fill, and under Fill Colors, I can add Transparency. We'll try it at about 25%. Definitely not enough, we'll pull down the menu again and this time we'll try it much more at about 80%, and there's our new transparent rectangle around the row.

Let me click on it and make one more modification. With the shape selected, I am going to go to the Drawing tools Format tab, choose Edit Shape>Change Shape, and then I'm going to try out the rounded rectangle instead. That looks quite a bit better. Again, you don't want to overdo it using these features and you want to maintain consistency. For example, if I decided to use another full screen picture, like the one on Slide 11, I would use the exact same formatting. I'd probably even create a new layout just for that style, but we'll discuss that shortly.

Let's move on to some text specific changes that we can make.

Find answers to the most frequently asked questions about PowerPoint Tips and Tricks for Business Presentations.


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