As media director for my church, I am constantly working with Microsoft Powerpoint. While most people cringe at the sound of the presentation software being mentioned, I’ve found that it’s a really useful application if you know around it.
There are some neat features in Powerpoint that are not normally utilized, but are quite useful — outside of just presentations and reports. One of them is to use Powerpoint as a graphics design program. No, it won’t come close to Illustrator, Photoshop, or any of the other nifty (and expensive!) applications out there.
But if you need to create some decent graphics for your website, flyers or any other desktop publishing scenarios, Powerpoint can be your friend.
One of the best features for graphics is Powerpoint’s ability to create and save file in formats other than the .PPT format. Did you know you can create web graphics files with Powerpoint? Microsoft has included a feature to convert any slide (or all of them) to JPG, GIF, TIFF and PNG formats.
Here’s how to do it…
After creating a slide (remember that you can use the Page Set-up preferences to change the dimensions of the “page” — for example, if you wanted to create a 468×60 banner, you can simply change your page to those dimensions), simple go to save the file:
- Go to FILE > SAVE AS. . .
Most times you’ll want to use the JPEG or PNG file formats for web graphics, but the point is that Microsoft Powerpoint gives you flexibility for converting to any of the major graphics file formats.
When done, you can exit out of Powerpoint (make sure to save the presentation in the native PPT file format if you want the ability to EDIT the original graphic/slide later — VERY useful becuase many times you want to revise and tweak your graphic file later.)
And viola! You have a nice graphic file of the slide you created in Powerpoint which you can use in most other programs (Word, Excel, Email, Web). Here’s the final outfile I made today as a .jpg file and you can also see the original Powerpoint file used to generate this jpg file if you wish.
CONVERTED .JPG FILE CREATED BY POWERPOINT:
ORIGINAL POWERPOINT FILE: valentine-john316.ppt
Here’s one other tip for using this feature — insert any photo into a new slide, and then you can overlay type or other graphics on top of it. After saving it as a .jpg file, you can print it out as a photograph on your photoprinter or at your local drug store photo lab. It’s a neat way to personalize photos, add “watermarks” like for dates, captions, borders, badges, etc.
Let me know if you like this feature and post links to sample graphics you’ve created with this Powerpoint feature — use the comment section below.