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Apply Shadow Effects to Shapes in PowerPoint 2003 and 2002 for Windows

Learn how to apply shadow effects to shapes in PowerPoint 2003 and 2002 for Windows.


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Product/Version: PowerPoint 2003 and 2002 for Windows

OS: Windows XP / Vista






We have already covered the fill and line options in PowerPoint 2003 and earlier. While these versions of PowerPoint do not have a dedicated "effects" set like in PowerPoint 2007, they do offer some effects like shadows and 3D. In this series of tutorials, we will first explore shadows.

You can add shadows to all sorts of objects including AutoShapes, text, and picture. In addition, there's also an added font formatting feature to add shadows, that is distinctly different from the shadows we discuss here.

Scroll down this page to see a sample presentation containing shadow effects in PowerPoint 2003 and earlier versions.

Follow these steps to apply a shadow effect to an AutoShape.

  1. Select the AutoShape that you want to apply shadow. Alternatively, if you just want to follow this tutorial step-by-step, launch PowerPoint. Most of the time, PowerPoint will open with a new slide in a presentation, users can change the slide layout to Blank by selecting Format | Slide Layout, and then choose the Blank layout in the resultant Task Pane.
  2. You will find the Rectangle AutoShape option in the Drawing toolbar located above the Status bar within the PowerPoint interface. Select this option, and click once on the blank slide to place a rectangle AutoShape.

    Note: If the Drawing toolbar is not visible (normally at the bottom of the PowerPoint interface, above the status bar), choose View | Toolbars | Drawing. This is a toggle option that alternatively shows and hides the Drawing toolbar. Learn more about the PowerPoint 2003 interface here.
  3. Select the AutoShape, and from PowerPoint's Drawing toolbar, choose the Shadow Style icon, as shown in Figure 1.

    Shadow Style
    Figure 1: Shadow Style
  4. This opens the Shadow flyout menu as you can see in Figure 2.

    Shadow flyout menu
    Figure 2: Shadow flyout menu

    There are three options in shadow flyout menu which are explained below, as marked in Figure 2:

    A. No Shadow

    Use this option to remove shadow from AutoShape.

    B. Default Shadow Styles

    By default PowerPoint provide 20 ready-to-use shadow styles. Figure 3 shows you a sample of some default shadow styles.

    Sample shadow styles
    Figure 3: Sample shadow styles

    C. Shadow Settings

    Choose this option to create or tweak shadows, and to customize them. Learn more about Shadow Settings.
  5. Save your presentation often.

    Related Link: Learn how to do more with AutoShapes in this free excerpt from my book: Cutting Edge PowerPoint For Dummies, read a free chapter called AutoShape Magic here.

Sample Presentation:

Click below to view an Online Presentation

See Also:

Apply Shadow Effects to Shapes in PowerPoint 2016 for Windows
Apply Shadow Effects to Shapes in PowerPoint 2013 for Windows
Apply Shadow Effects to Shapes in PowerPoint 2011 for Mac
Apply Shadow Effects to Shapes in PowerPoint 2010 for Windows
Apply Shadow Effects to Shapes in PowerPoint 2007 for Windows

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

Have you 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 ebook.


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since November 02, 2000