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Insert Shapes in PowerPoint 2011 for Mac

Learn how to insert Shapes in PowerPoint 2011 for Mac.

Author: Geetesh Bajaj

Product/Version: Microsoft PowerPoint 2011
OS: Mac OS X

Date Created: July 13th 2011
Last Updated: July 13th 2011

Shapes let you do so much in PowerPoint -- once you master them, you can place circles of various sizes one on top of the other to create something that looks like a target. 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 -- PowerPoint 2011 makes it easy to do so. To insert a shape on your PowerPoint slide follow these steps:

  1. Within PowerPoint 2011, open the presentation (or create a new one), and select the slide where you want to insert a Shape. You can change the slide layout to Blank or Title only (see Figure 1).

    Slide with Blank Layout in PowerPoint
    Figure 1: Slide with Blank layout

  2. Access the Home tab of the Ribbon, locate the Insert group and within this group, click the Shape button to bring up the Shape gallery, as shown in the Figure 2.

    Shape gallery in PowerPoint
    Figure 2: Shape gallery

    In this gallery, PowerPoint provides options to choose several sub galleries of Shape types such as Lines and connectors, Rectangles, Basic Shapes, Block Arrows, Stars and Banners, Callouts, etc. If you want to see all shapes placed within one gallery, select the Shape Browser option (the last option in the Shape gallery). This will open the Shapes tab of the Media Browser with all shapes together in one gallery (see Figure 3 below).

    Shapes tab within Media Browser
    Figure 3: Shapes tab within Media Browser

  3. Based on your requirement, choose any Shape by clicking on it. As you can see in Figure 4 below, I have chosen the Rectangle shape.

    Rectangle Shape selected
    Figure 4: Rectangle Shape selected

    Thereafter, use any of the following three options to place the Shape on your slide:

    1. Click anywhere on the slide to insert the Shape in a predefined size (typically 1 inch x 1 inch), as shown in Figure 5.

      Shape inserted by clicking on the slide
      Figure 5: Shape inserted by clicking on the slide

    2. Click and drag on the slide to create an instance of the Shape in the size you desire (see Figure 6 below).

      Shape inserted by dragging on the slide
      Figure 6: Shape inserted by dragging on the slide

      Tip: Hold the Shift key while dragging to constrain the height and width proportions. Hold the Alt (Option) key to draw a Shape from the center. You can also draw while holding both the Alt (Option) and Shift keys.

    3. Drag the shape from Shape Browser to the slide (refer to Figure 7 below).

      Shape inserted by dragging from the Shape Browser
      Figure 7: Shape inserted by dragging from the Shape Browser

  4. Save the presentation.

See Also:

Insert Shapes in PowerPoint 2016 for Windows
Insert Shapes in PowerPoint 2013 for Windows
Insert Shapes in PowerPoint 2010 for Windows
Insert Shapes in PowerPoint 2007 for Windows
Inserting AutoShapes in PowerPoint 2002 and 2003 for Windows


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