Use drawing tools

  1. Select a drawing tool by clicking its button. Drawing tools such as line, arrow, rectangle and oval are found on the Drawing toolbar itself. Many more tools are found in the AutoShapes menu of the Drawing toolbar.

    AutoShapes menu

  2. Click to create the shape of default size

    Drag to create the shape of a specific size.

Modifiers (Shift, Ctrl, and Alt) for drawing:

  • Hold Shift while dragging to get a "perfect" shape (e.g. perfect circle from the ellipse button). The Shift key constrains the shape to maintain its aspect ratio.

    Holding the Shift key while dragging a line constrains the line to 15 degree increments, making it easier to create perfectly vertical, horizontal, or diagonal lines.
  • Hold Ctrl while dragging to draw from the center. By default, when you begin to drag the shape is drawn treating your starting point as a corner. By holding Ctrl while dragging, the shape is drawn treating your starting point as the shape's center.

  • If the grid is on, the shape’s size will seem to jump—you won’t have fine control over what you’re drawing. Hold the Alt key while dragging to override the grid and get finer control over your shape.

  • The Alt, Shift, and Ctrl keys can be held down in combination to achieve more than one of the above results.

Other tips:

  • If you are going to draw more than one object, you can double-click a drawing tool to make it “stick.” Then click or drag as many shapes as you would like. When you are finished creating shapes, click the tool to turn it off, or press the Escape key.

  • When working with a submenu of the drawing toolbar, you can “tear off” the submenu by dragging its title bar away from the toolbar, thereby making the tools more easily accessible. When you are finished, simply click the menu’s close button (“x”).

  • To add a text object, use the Text Box tool. Click where you want text to appear and start to type—the text box will expand automatically to fit the text.

    Text box objects should be used for non-content-oriented text. In PowerPoint, content text should be entered in the outline, or in an appropriate text placeholder. In Word, content text should be entered in the body of the document.
  • You can also add text to most objects by simply right-clicking and choosing Add Text.

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