Microsoft PowerPoint can be a powerful tool to convey your message or tell your story. However, when it comes to sourcing images for your presentation the Internet can be a minefield of copyright laws and stock image hazards.
Fortunately PowerPoint already has a multitude of ways in which you can find and use free graphics to help illustrate your point. We take a look at some of the ways you can insert memorable and compelling images at the click of a mouse, without ever having to leave PowerPoint.
Themes and Templates
The existing themes and templates within PowerPoint are a great start when looking to give your presentation a professional feel. These themes and templates not only have built in colour schemes and backgrounds but some also include ready-to-use images as well.
Microsoft's ClipArt has come a long way in recent years. It now includes some excellent stock photography as well as various modern images. All of these graphics are easily searchable under a range of different categories.
SmartArt graphics are a way to give visual representation to your information. Illustrations help people to understand and recall information better than plain text. SmartArt is a quick and easy way to design quality graphics for your content.
Don't discount the simple shape. Putting squares, circles and triangles together is a great way to create unique images relevant to your presentation. Think outside of the box in order to give visual clues that are both effective and memorable.
The symbols section within PowerPoint is not just for the Greek alphabet. Again, think about how you might use these symbols in a special way. It might be using a dollar sign in place of a 's' or using a tick box in place of bullet points.
Webdings and Wingdings
Make your own icons using the different fonts of Webdings. Enlarge these graphics, string multiple ones together and play with colours. If you're not quite sure what you're looking for, try this handy cheat sheet.
Remember to consider your colour scheme and layout when using PowerPoint images and graphics. You want your presentation to look sharp and not too busy or distracting.
It is important to make your presentation pop but it needn't be difficult. These tools are designed to help you make the most of this software. Use them to your advantage and get creative.
What is your favourite tool when sourcing images and graphics within PowerPoint?