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Resize, Rotate, and Flip Pictures in PowerPoint 2016 for Windows

Learn how to resize, rotate, and flip pictures in PowerPoint 2016 for Windows. These slight changes can make pictures more suitable for use in slides.


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Product/Version: PowerPoint 2016 for Windows

OS: Microsoft Windows 7 and higher



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PowerPoint provides various picture enhancement options such as Picture Adjustments, Picture Styles, Picture Effects, and Picture Borders. Beyond these options, there are some very significant yet basic picture editing options that you should consider. These include learning how you can Resize, Rotate, and Flip pictures. All of these options help you to enhance the look of your inserted pictures.

We assume that you already have inserted a picture on your slide, and have selected it, as shown in Figure 1. Do note that when you select a picture in PowerPoint 2016 for Windows, the Picture Tools Format contextual tab (highlighted in blue within Figure 1) appears on the Ribbon. Make sure that you click this tab to activate it.

Picture inserted and selected
Figure 1: Picture inserted and selected

Note: The Picture Tools Format tab is a Contextual tab. These contextual tabs are special tabs in the Ribbon that are not visible all the time. They only make an appearance when you are working with a particular slide object which can be edited using special options.

Now, let us learn how to Resize, Rotate, and Flip pictures.

Resize

You can resize your selected picture in any of the two ways mentioned below:

  1. You can click and drag any of the corner white circle selection handles that show on the selected picture, as shown in Figure 1, above. To resize a picture proportionally, hold the Shift key while you drag one of the four corner handles.
  2. Tip: If you have cropped the picture to a shape like a Teardrop, a Trapezoid, or a Star, then you can also drag the yellow circle that appears along with the selection handles to manipulate the picture's edges.
  3. Locate the Size group within the Picture Tools Format tab. Then, enter the required Height and Width values, as shown in Figure 2.
  4. Height and Width values entered within the Size group
    Figure 2: Height and Width values entered within the Size group
  5. Centimeters or Inches?

  6. Do you see the Width and Height values in centimeters rather than inches? That's not an issue since you will either see centimeters or inches everywhere in PowerPoint. However, if you want to change the unit of measurement, you will have to do that globally in your Microsoft Windows operating system. The following tutorials will help you:
  7. Change The Unit Of Measurement in Windows 10
    Change The Unit Of Measurement in Windows 8
    Change the Unit of Measurement in Windows 7
    Change the Unit of Measurement in Windows Vista
    Change the Unit of Measurement in Windows XP

To learn more about advanced options to resize the selected pictures, just right-click the picture, and choose the Format Picture option in the resultant contextual menu. Thereafter, follow instructions within our Resizing Shapes tutorial to proceed further.

Rotate

You can rotate a selected picture in any of the two ways mentioned below:

  1. You can click and drag the white rotation handle that you can see in Figure 3 (highlighted in red) towards the right or left as required.
  2. White rotation handle
    Figure 3: White rotation handle
  3. Tip: Press the Shift key as you drag the rotation handle to rotate the selected picture by 15 degrees. You can continue dragging so as to rotate further in increments of 15 degrees, such as 30, 45, 60 degrees and so inwards.
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  4. Access the Picture Tools Format tab and click the Rotate button to bring up the Rotate drop-down gallery, that you can see in Figure 4. Choose any of the two Rotate options (highlighted in red within Figure 4).
  5. Rotate options within the Rotate drop-down gallery
    Figure 4: Rotate options within the Rotate drop-down gallery

To learn more about advanced options to rotate selected pictures, right-click the picture, and choose the Format Picture option in the resultant contextual menu. Thereafter, follow instructions within our Rotate Shapes tutorial to proceed further.

Flip

As with Resize and Rotate, there are two options available to Flip the picture:

  1. You can click and drag one of the side (not corner) white square selection handles of the picture, as shown in Figure 5.
  2. Drag the side handle towards the other end of the picture
    Figure 5: Drag the side handle towards the other end of the picture
  3. Continue dragging even when you reach the end of the picture until you have flipped it as required (see Figure 6). Remember that if you drag the selection handle too little or too farther, you may end up squishing the picture! You can turn on the Grids as shown in Figure 5 above to help you to maintain the aspect ratio of the picture, while flipping it by dragging.
  4. Drag beyond to the other side to flip a picture
    Figure 6: Drag beyond to the other side to flip a picture
  5. You can locate the Arrange group within the Picture Tools Format tab. Then click the Rotate button to bring up the Rotate drop-down gallery as you can see in Figure 7. Choose any of the two Flip options (highlighted in red within Figure 7) within this drop-down gallery to flip your picture vertically or horizontally.
  6. Flip options within the Rotate drop-down gallery
    Figure 7: Flip options within the Rotate drop-down gallery

To learn about how to do a more controlled flipping of the picture, refer to our Flip Shapes tutorial. You flip pictures in the same way as you flip shapes.

In Figure 8, you can see the selected picture as well as its variations in which the picture has been resized, rotated and flipped. Compare the original picture with its variations.

Variants of the same picture applied with resize, rotate, and flip options
Figure 8: Variants of the same picture applied with resize, rotate, and flip options


See Also:

Pictures Position and Order: Resize, Rotate, and Flip Pictures (Glossary Page)

Resize, Rotate, and Flip Pictures in PowerPoint Online
Resize, Rotate, and Flip Pictures in PowerPoint 2013 for Windows
Resize, Rotate, and Flip Pictures in PowerPoint 2011 for Mac
Resize, Rotate, and Flip Pictures in PowerPoint 2010 for Windows

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Pictures in Presentations

Is a picture is worth a thousand words? You probably have heard this adage so often that we decided not to repeat this phrase throughout this book! Now here’s some more info: the human brain uses a larger part of its area to store visual information rather than textual content. And that’s possibly because a picture describes so much more than text.

Go and get a copy of our Pictures in Presentations ebook.

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