Design presentations

Align and arrange objects on slides

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If you have several objects on a PowerPoint slide, you can align and arrange your elements using guides to give your presentation a neat and polished look.

Turn on your guide lines

  1. Select View and then the bottom-right arrow near Guides.

  2. To turn on or double-check that your guide lines are on, make sure that Display smart guides when shapes are aligned is selected.

  3. Select OK.

Use guide lines

  1. Open Windows Explorer, browse to the images or objects you'd like to use, and then drag and drop them into your slides.

  2. To align and arrange your objects using guide lines:

    • Once you've set the size for one object, you can resize another by selecting and dragging it up or down until a guide line—a dotted red line—appears. This will help align objects at the top and bottom. You need to have at least two objects on the slide.

    • To space out your objects, select one and drag it until a red double-arrow line appears—this indicates that your object has been evenly spaced out. You need to have at least three objects on a slide.

    • To resize all objects at once, hold Shift and select all objects. Select a placeholder corner to slide, shrink, or enlarge your objects collectively.

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Align or arrange a picture, shape, text box, SmartArt graphic, or WordArt

A PowerPoint slide is a big square to fill, and one thing that can make a good presentation look really polished is when everything lines up perfectly.

You can do that with the use of guides, which are lines that automatically appear when an object is centered or evenly spaced between another object.

Let's see it in action.

I'm going to create a new slide underneath my Executive Team.

I'm going to make it a Blank slide.

The first thing that we need to do before I start adding pictures is make sure my guides are turned on.

I do that by clicking the View ribbon tab, and clicking the arrow pointing to the right underneath the Guide section.

This is going to give me some more options for my grid and guides.

I need to make sure that I have a checkmark next to Display smart guides when shapes are aligned.

I'll click the OK button to get out of this dialog box, and now I'm going to insert some images.

I'm going to open up Windows Explorer, and drag and drop my images directly onto my slides.

I'm going to navigate to my Assets folder.

I'm going to choose some images of my executives.

I'll choose four.

I can take an image, drag it right on the slide, and let go.

I can do that for each image that I want to add.

You'll notice that it looks like I only have one image on the slide now.

However, if I move the image around, I can see that there is indeed four images.

Currently they're quite small.

I do want to enlarge them, and evenly space them out on the slide, so the first thing I'm going to do is stretch one of them.

Let's make the second one the same size.

If I click and drag, this line is going to tell me when the top of the image lines up with the one next to it, and if I drag and drop with my mouse, it's also going to tell me when the bottom lines uup.

I'm going to do that for each of my images.

Now I've got four images that are all the same size, but let's make sure they're spaced out evenly.

I'm going to slide it over a little bit to the left.

Now you'll notice it's telling me that it's spaced evenly with the image all the way to the right.

What about the one in the middle? It's not evenly spaced up with the one next to it, so I'm going to move this one just a little bit more, and now I can see that they're all evenly spaced out.

Once they're all evenly spaced out, I can select all of them and show you some more neat things we can do.

To select all the images, I'm going to hold down the Shift key and click on them all.

With them all selected, I can take one corner and slide, and shrink, and make my images collectively larger and smaller.

Now remember they're evenly spaced, so it doesn't matter how big I get them, as long as they look nice on my slide.

With them all selected, I can also move them around anywhere I want on my slide also, so I can take them and position them somewhere where they'll look really great.

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