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Sunday, January 3, 2010

Image Based Presentations With PowerPoints PhotoAlbum Command

By Andrew Whiteman

PowerPoint presentations are a superb tool for getting a message across to an audience, to potential clients and to your own company and images are great for adding impact to a PowerPoint presentation. So much so that PowerPoint includes a feature that lets you automatically create a complete presentation from a group of images.

Naturally, creating a presentation in this way can only be done if the pictures relate very closely to the main content of your presentation. One example might be a presentation given during product training which requires detailed photographs of each product.

To get started you need to bring up the New Presentation task pane. To do this, choose File - New. Next, click on "Photo Album" in the New Presentation task pane window.

Clicking on the Photo Album option displays a window in which you begin by choosing the images required for your presentation. Just click on the button labelled File/Disk and select the images. Alternatively, click on Camera/Scanner and load the images directly from your scanner or digital camera.

The Photo Album window is very versatile. Once, you have imported your pictures, it allows you to reorder them by selecting and image and clicking on the up and down arrows. If you change your mind and decide to delete an image, no problem. Just click on the name of the image then click the Remove button.

Having got your images in the right order, you can turn your attention to the tonal values in each image. If any of them needs adjustments, you can do one of four operations by clicking the appropriate icon: increase contrast, lower contrast, increase brightness, lower brightness. There are two further icons which allow you to rotate the image clockwise or anti-clockwise.

In addition to the images, you will almost certainly want to add some text on each of the slides. From the drop-down menu marked Picture Layout, you can indicate your preferred slide setup: one, two or four images; with or without a title. There is also a check-box for you to choose whether your titles should be above or below the images.

There is also an option to change what is referred to as the Frame Shape. The default is rectangle. However, the Frame Shape drop-down menu will also let you choose rounded rectangle, bevelled, oval, corner tabs, square tabs or plaque tabs.

That it; you've finished. When you click OK, PowerPoint will create the presentation generating a separate slide for each image, using the settings that you specified in the Photo Album dialogue. The final touch is to go to each slide and type some text into the title box. Once you've done that, you have yourself a PowerPoint presentation. How painless is that!

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