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More Chart Gridline Options for Charts in PowerPoint 2011 for Mac

Learn how to format Chart Gridlines in PowerPoint 2011 for Mac.


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Product/Version: Microsoft PowerPoint 2011
OS: Mac OS X







As we explored in our earlier Chart Gridlines in PowerPoint 2011 for Mac tutorial, PowerPoint 2011 only shows Horizontal Major Gridlines on the chart, as shown in Figure 1, below. Yes, you can enable Vertical Gridlines too -- and more importantly you can format these Gridlines to appear exactly as you want them to show. In this tutorial, we will look at these format options.

Chart showing default status of Gridlines
Figure 1: Chart showing default status of Gridlines

Both the Horizontal and Vertical Gridlines contain two sets of Gridlines: Major and Minor as explained in our Chart Gridlines in PowerPoint 2011 for Mac tutorial. By default, all Gridlines may be grey in color and possess a predefined weight (thickness). You can change their color and weight, and also add arrow-heads to their edges. Also, you can add effects such as Shadows, Glows, and Soft Edges. Follow these steps to learn more:

  1. Select the chart that you want to format the Gridlines for. If you don't have a chart, insert a chart.

  2. Now, select either the Chart Layout or the Format tab of the Ribbon. Both of these tabs contain the Current Selection group that you can see in Figure 2 towards the extreme left. Within this group, you can see the Chart Elements selection box (highlighted in red within Figure 2). This selection box contains a list of elements in the selected chart. Within this list, click on the name of the Gridline that you want to format. In Figure 2 you can see the Vertical (Value) Axis Major Gridlines option selected. Now you can see a tick mark prefixed to this option, as shown in Figure 2 to indicate its selected status.

    Vertical (Value) Axis Major Gridlines option selected
    Figure 2: Vertical (Value) Axis Major Gridlines option selected

    Below this Current Selection list is the Format Selection button, as shown highlighted in red within Figure 3. Click this button.

    Format Selection button
    Figure 3: Format Selection button

    Alternatively, carefully right-click (or Ctrl+click) a Gridline -- from the contextual menu that appears, select the Format Gridlines option as shown in Figure 4.

    Format Gridlines option selected
    Figure 4: Format Gridlines option selected

  3. Either way, you summon the Format Gridlines dialog box, as shown in Figure 5.

    Format Gridlines dialog box
    Figure 5: Format Gridlines dialog box

    In this dialog box, the options within the sidebar help you to format the Gridlines. Let us explore each of them as marked in Figure 5, above. For more information on each of these options, refer to the tutorials linked. Even though these linked tutorials are related to Shapes, the same techniques work with Gridlines too:

    1. Line: Selecting this option will bring up three tabs -- Solid, Gradient, and Weight & Arrow as shown highlighted in red within Figure 5, above. With the help of options within these tabs you can:

      • Change the color of the Gridlines.
      • Apply Gradient fill for Gridlines.
      • Change the thickness of the Gridlines and add arrow heads to them.
      Get more info on how to add and edit lines in our Formatting Lines (and Shape Outlines) in PowerPoint 2011 for Mac tutorial.

    2. Shadow: Adds a shadow effect to the Gridlines. When you select this option, initially you will see that all options are greyed out except the Shadow check-box -- select this check-box as shown highlighted in red within Figure 6 to activate all options, so that you can add a shadow to the Gridlines and format it as required.

      Shadow options within the Format Gridlines dialog box
      Figure 6: Shadow options within the Format Gridlines dialog box

      Learn more about the Shadow options in our Advanced Shadow Effect Options in PowerPoint 2011 for Mac tutorial.

    3. Glow & Soft Edges: Glow effect adds a nice halo around the selected Gridlines whereas Soft Edges effect adds an eaten-up, feathered edge to the Gridlines. Select any of the options that you can see in Figure 7, as required.

      Glow & Soft Edges options within the Format Gridlines dialog box
      Figure 7: Glow & Soft Edges options within the Format Gridlines dialog box

      Get more info on how to Apply Glow Effects to Shapes in PowerPoint 2011 for Mac and Apply Soft-Edges to Shapes in PowerPoint 2011 for Mac.

  4. Select the required options and format the Gridlines as required. In Figure 8, you can see that our sample chart with formatted Gridlines -- notice that we have also added arrow-heads to Gridlines (compare with the chart in Figure 1).

    Chart with formatted Gridlines
    Figure 8: Chart with formatted Gridlines

  5. Save your presentation often.

See Also: More Gridline Options for Charts in PowerPoint 2013 for Windows

 

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