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Insert Shapes in PowerPoint 2010 for Windows

Learn how to insert shapes in PowerPoint 2010 for Windows. There is more than one way to add shapes in PowerPoint.

Shapes can often be combined to create more complex shapes. For instance, you can place circles of various sizes one on top of the other to create something that looks like a target diagram. Similarly you can create seemingly complicated arrangements of shapes quite easily to create something that illustrates a concept or idea so much better than just bulleted text. To create any such graphic content, you need to start by inserting common shapes. Fortunately, PowerPoint makes it easy to do so.

Follow these steps to insert shapes in PowerPoint 2010 for Windows:

  1. Within PowerPoint, open the presentation (or create a new one) and select the slide where you want to insert a shape and change its layout to Blank or Title Only, as shown in Figure 1, below.

  2. Figure 1: Slide with Blank layout
  3. Access the Insert tab (or the Home tab) on the Ribbon and click the bottom part of the Shapes button to bring up the Shapes gallery, as shown in Figure 2, below.

  4. Figure 2: Shapes gallery


  5. As shown in Figure 2, above, PowerPoint provides several categories of Shapes such as Rectangles, Lines, Basic Shapes, Block Arrows, Stars and Banners, Callouts, etc.
  6. Based on your requirement, choose any Shape by clicking on it. Thereafter use any of these two options to place a Shape on your slide:
  7. 1. Click to place

  8. Click anywhere on the slide to add the Shape in a predefined size (typically 1 inch x 1 inch), as shown in Figure 3, below.
  9. 2. Click and drag to place

  10. Click and drag on the slide to create an instance of the Shape in the size you desire.

  11. Figure 3: Shape placed on the slide
  12. Constrain and Control the Center with Shortcuts

  13. Hold the Shift key while dragging to constrain the height and width proportions. Hold the Ctrl key to draw a Shape from the center. You can also draw while holding both the Ctrl and Shift keys.
  14. PowerPoint Keyboard Shortcuts

    Do you want more keyboard shortcuts?

    Explore our PowerPoint Keyboard Shortcuts and Sequences Ebook that is updated for all PowerPoint versions.


See Also:

06 01 02 - Basics About Shapes: Insert Shapes in PowerPoint (Glossary Page)

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