Drawing Parabolas in PowerPoint 2013
Learn how to draw a parabola in PowerPoint 2013.
Author: Geetesh Bajaj
Product/Version: Microsoft PowerPoint 2013
OS: Windows 7 and 8
Several previous tutorials have explored the different drawing tools in PowerPoint 2013, and how they work -- we have worked with line drawing tools such as line, curve, freeform, and scribble. Using these line tools, you can draw almost anything in PowerPoint that you normally draw in high-end illustration programs. In this tutorial, you will learn how you can draw a parabola in PowerPoint 2013 using some of these drawing tools.
First of all, what is a parabola? Technically, it is a conic section but to make it easier for you, we'll ask you to
visualize the McDonald's logo with just one conic section rather than two -- you can see a representation of a
parabola in Figure 1.
Figure 1: A parabola
To draw a parabola in PowerPoint 2013, follow these steps:
- Launch PowerPoint 2013 -- within the Presentation Gallery, select the Blank Presentation. PowerPoint will open a new slide – you can
change the slide layout to
Blank by selecting the Home tab | Layout | Blank
- Within the View tab of the
Ribbon, select the Guides
check-box (highlighted in red within Figure 2).
Figure 2: Guides check-box selected
Tip: Learn more about guides in our Guides in PowerPoint 2013 tutorial.
- This will show the guides on the slide, as shown in Figure 3. The default guides (one horizontal
and one vertical guide) work fine for us -- so don't worry too much about
adding more guides now.
Figure 3: Guides showing on the slide
- Within the Home or Insert tab of the Ribbon, click the Shapes
button to view the Shapes drop-down gallery that you can see in Figure 4. Select the
Figure 4: Curve selected
- Your cursor will turn into a crosshair. To establish the starting point of the parabola, place the cursor on the position of the horizontal guide, as
shown in Figure 5.
Figure 5: Set the starting point for the parabola
- Then click the primary mouse button once and move the cursor towards the top-right direction until you encounter the
vertical guide, as shown in Figure 6. Now, click on the vertical guide to establish the top point of
Figure 6: Click on the vertical guide to establish the top point of your parabola
- Now move the cursor towards the bottom-right of the top point you created -- and place the cursor on the
horizontal guide, as shown in Figure 7 -- so that the starting and the ending points of your
parabola are on the same horizontal guide.
Figure 7: Place the cursor on the horizontal guide to create the end point of your parabola
- Double click to finish the drawing of your parabola. You'll know your double-click worked if your parabola shows
up with selection handles (see Figure 8).
Figure 8: Completed parabola
- To edit the parabola, right-click on it to bring up the contextual menu you can see in Figure 9.
From this menu choose the Edit Points option.
Figure 9: Edit Points option selected
- Now you can play with vertexes (points), handles, etc. Learn more in our
Edit Points for Shapes in PowerPoint
- You can also change the
thickness of your parabola, or change its
line color, as required.
- Save your presentation often.
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.