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Insert Pictures in PowerPoint 2010 for Windows

Learn how to insert pictures in PowerPoint 2010 for Windows. There is more than one way to insert a picture within your PowerPoint presentation.


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Product/Version: PowerPoint 2010 for Windows

OS: Microsoft Windows XP and higher



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Adding pictures to a PowerPoint slide is a great way to add some visual detail. There are two ways to insert a picture on your slide in PowerPoint:

  1. You use a layout that includes a content placeholder
  2. You insert a picture within a slide irrespective of its layout

Whichever option you choose depends upon your choice. We cover both options in the following steps:

  1. Launch PowerPoint 2010 for Windows. Most of the time, PowerPoint already has a new slide. Change the layout of this slide to Title and Content by selecting the Home tab | Layout | Title and Content option. This results in the slide layout you see in Figure 1.
  2. Notice that this layout has a Content placeholder that lets you add bulleted text or any of the 6 other content types in the slide. These 6 content types are indicated by the 6 buttons you see in the Content placeholder (see Figure 1). Click on the Insert Picture from File button in the Content placeholder, as highlighted in red in Figure 1.
  3. Tip: A Content placeholder is a flexible placeholder on your slide that lets you add text, pictures, or any other content types. A Picture placeholder, on the other hand, lets you add just a picture. We use the Content placeholder in this tutorial.
  4. Insert Picture from File button within Content placeholder
    Figure 1: Insert Picture from File button within Content placeholder
  5. If you want to add a picture on an existing slide that has no Content placeholder, you can select the Insert tab of the Ribbon, and click the Picture button (highlighted in red in Figure 2).
  6. Picture button within the Insert tab
    Figure 2: Picture button within the Insert tab
  7. Either way, you will summon the Insert Picture dialog box. Navigate to the folder where your pictures are located. You will see the icons or thumbnails of the pictures as shown in Figure 3. Select the picture you need, and click on the Insert button highlighted in red in Figure 3.
  8. Insert Picture dialog box
    Figure 3: Insert Picture dialog box
  9. Can't see picture thumbnails, as shown in Figure 3? Do you see a list instead, or smaller thumbnails, or even a detailed list? It's simple to change between these views. Click the down arrow next to the Change your view button (highlighted in blue in Figure 3, above). This brings up the options shown in Figure 4, below. To see thumbnail previews of the pictures, choose any of the options that end with the word "Icons", such as Small, Medium, Large, or Extra Large Icons. Note that these views are dependent on the version of Microsoft Windows you are using. You may not see all view options shown in Figure 4 if you are using an older version of Windows, such as Windows XP.
  10. View menu options within Insert Picture dialog box
    Figure 4: View menu options within Insert Picture dialog box
  11. As soon as you click the Insert button, you will see the selected picture placed on the PowerPoint slide, as shown in Figure 5.
  12. Picture inserted on the slide
    Figure 5: Picture inserted on the slide
  13. Now, the picture can be edited by resizing, moving, rotating, etc. You can also add effects and more pizzazz to your pictures, as we will show you in subsequent tutorials. For now, don't forget to save your presentation.

Note that the procedure to insert a picture explained above will not retain any relation between the picture in your folder and the picture on your slide. The picture on your slide is an independent copy that is contained within the presentation. If you want to link to the picture, check out our Insert and/or Link Pictures in PowerPoint 2010 tutorial.

Tip: Do you want to insert tens or hundreds of pictures in successive slides? You don't have to insert them one at a time. Look at PowerPoint's awesome Photo Album option to get them all on your slides with two or three clicks.

See Also:

Pictures Basics and Adjustments: Insert Pictures (Glossary Page)

Insert Pictures in PowerPoint Online
Insert Pictures in PowerPoint 2016 for Windows
Insert Pictures in PowerPoint 2016 for Mac
Insert Pictures in PowerPoint 2013 for Windows
Insert Pictures in PowerPoint 2011 for Mac
Insert Pictures in PowerPoint 2003 and 2002 for Windows

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