Edit Annotations with Ink Tools in PowerPoint 2010
Learn how to edit your pen and highlighter annotations in PowerPoint 2010.
Author: Geetesh Bajaj
Product/Version: Microsoft PowerPoint 2010
OS: Windows XP, Vista, 7 and 8
When you use the Pen and Highlighter tools to annotate in PowerPoint 2010, you are provided with an option to save those annotations when you exit Slide Show view. If you do opt to save them, then you will actually open doors to new capabilities that will allow you to edit these annotations – in fact you can also change these annotations to shapes and work more with them!
Follow these steps to learn more.
- Open a presentation in PowerPoint 2010, which has saved annotations, as shown in Figure 1, below.
Figure 1: Slide with annotations
- Now select any of the annotations -- and you will see the Ink Tools Pens contextual tab on
the Ribbon, as shown in
Figure 2, below. We selected an annotation done using the Pen tool.
Figure 2: Ink Tools Pens contextual tab
- Now we can change the color and thickness of the selected annotation -- to change color, click the
Color button shown in Figure 3, below which brings up the
Color drop-down gallery -- choose any color you want.
Figure 3: Change the color of your annotation
You can also change the thickness similarly by clicking the Thickness button, as shown in Figure 4, below. This brings up the Thickness drop-down gallery where you can make a choice to make your annotation thicker or thinner.
Figure 4: Change the annotation to be thicker or thinner
- Now while there is a perfectly useable Convert to Shapes button available within the
Ink Tools Pens tab of the Ribbon (highlighted in
red within Figure 5), you will notice that this is often grayed
Figure 5: Grayed out option to convert annotations to shapes
A workaround for this issue is to copy your selected annotation to the Clipboard by pressing the keyboard shortcut Ctrl+C -- you can also access the Home tab of the Ribbon and click the Copy button.
- Navigate to another slide optionally. Thereafter press the Ctrl+Alt+V keyboard shortcut --
or access the Home tab of the Ribbon. Then click the lower half of the
Paste button, as shown in Figure 6. Now click the
Paste Special option.
Figure 6: Paste Special option
- This will bring up the Paste Special dialog box shown in Figure 7 --
scroll down to find the Picture (Enhanced Metafile) option, select it and click the
Figure 7: Paste as an Enhanced Metafile
- You can see this pasted object in Figure 8, below -- note that this is no longer an
Figure 8: Object pasted is no longer an annotation
- You can however not use this as a PowerPoint native shape. To do so, you will have to
ungroup the object twice
in succession (you can use the Ctrl+Shift+G keyboard shortcut to ungroup). The first time you
ungroup, PowerPoint will ask you whether you want to convert it to a Microsoft Office drawing object (see
Figure 9) -- accept by clicking the Yes button. Now ungroup again for a second
Figure 9: Do you want to ungroup?
Tip: Want more keyboard shortcuts? Get a copy of our PowerPoint Keyboard Shortcuts Ebook.
- Ungrouped objects may break up into more than one shape as shown in Figure 10, below -- but
the good news is that you can now use all Shape tools in PowerPoint to edit them -- for more info, look at our
Shapes index page.
Figure 10: Ungrouped object converted into shapes
- Save your presentation often.
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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?
Go and get a copy of our PowerPoint Keyboard Shortcuts and Sequences E-Book.