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Text Pane For SmartArt Graphics in PowerPoint 2013

Learn about how the Text Pane can help you add text to your SmartArt graphics in PowerPoint 2013.


Product/Version: Microsoft PowerPoint 2013
OS: Windows 7 and higher






We explored how to convert your normal bulleted text to a SmartArt graphic with just a click or two -- however, you'll soon discover that it is neither easy nor intuitive to edit, add, or delete text within a shape inside a SmartArt graphic. Fortunately, all the text edits can be easily performed within the convenient Text Pane of the SmartArt graphic. In this tutorial, we'll help you explore options for working within the Text Pane for SmartArt graphics in PowerPoint 2013:

Showing and Hiding the Text Pane

When a Smart Art graphic is inserted on the slide, you may or may not see the Text Pane. If you don't see the Text Pane, select the SmartArt graphic to make the arrow button (highlighted in red within Figure 1 ) accessible. Then, click this arrow button to show or hide the Text Pane.

The arrow button on SmartArt graphic
Figure 1: The arrow button on SmartArt graphic

This will make the Text Pane visible on the left side of the SmartArt graphic, as shown in Figure 2 .

The SmartArt graphic's Text Pane
Figure 2: The SmartArt graphic's Text Pane

Tip: At any point of time, you can close the Text Pane by clicking the x button on the top right corner of the Text Pane (highlighted in red within Figure 2, above).

Working within the Text Pane

Within the Text Pane start typing to add the text, as shown in Figure 3. Whatever is typed in the Text Pane is also dynamically added on the SmartArt graphic. You will also find that the bottom area of the Text Pane (highlighted in red within Figure 3) displays information about the SmartArt graphic variant you are working with.

Add  text within the Text Pane
Figure 3: Add text within the Text Pane

To create a new line of bulleted text in the Text Pane, just press the Enter/Return key on your keyboard. Type text for the new bullet, and you'll see that your SmartArt graphic has a new shape representing the new bullet, as you can see in Figure 4.

New bullet in Text Pane creates a new shape in SmartArt graphic
Figure 4: New bullet in Text Pane creates a new shape in SmartArt graphic

You can also format the text in the Text Pane – to do that select the individual text within the Text Pane by clicking and dragging the mouse cursor over the text. This brings up a mini toolbar which includes options to change the font, font size, color, etc. within the Text Pane (and also within the Smart Art graphic). If you right-click the selected text, you will see a contextual menu and a mini toolbar which includes Style, Color, and Layout options for the selected SmartArt graphic, as shown in Figure 5.

Contextual menu within the Text Pane
Figure 5: Contextual menu within the Text Pane

The contextual menu allows you to change the hierarchy of the selected text to previous or next bullet levels. You do that by clicking either the Promote (keyboard shortcut: Shift + Tab) or Demote (keyboard shortcut: Tab) options in the contextual menu (refer again to Figure 5 ) -- do note that the Promote or Demote options may be grayed out in some instances -- their availability in the contextual menu depends on what type of SmartArt graphic variant you are working with. For example you cannot add a new bullet level, or even a demoted level to the Basic Matrix SmartArt graphic once you hit the limit of 4 first level bullets (see Figure 6).

Basic Matrix doesn't allow a 5th level bullet
Figure 6: Basic Matrix doesn't allow a 5th level bullet

Some SmartArt graphic variants though let you add more bullets / shapes and are not as constrained as the Basic Matrix variant -- the Diverging Radial for instance lets you add many more bullets / shapes to an existing SmartArt graphic, as shown in Figure 7.

Add more bullets / shapes to the Diverging Radial SmartArt graphic
Figure 7: Add more bullets / shapes to the Diverging Radial SmartArt graphic

See Also:

Text Pane For SmartArt Graphics in PowerPoint 2011 for Mac
Text Pane For SmartArt Graphics in PowerPoint 2010 for Windows
Text Pane For SmartArt Graphics in PowerPoint 2007 for Windows

PowerPoint Keyboard Shortcuts

PowerPoint Keyboard Shortcuts and Sequences:
PowerPoint 2016, 2013, 2011, 2010, 2007 and 2003 for Windows
PowerPoint 2016 and 2011 for Mac

Have your ever used keyboard shortcuts and sequences in PowerPoint? Or are you a complete keyboard aficionado? Do you want to learn about some new shortcuts? Or do you want to know if your favorite keyboard shortcuts are documented?

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