PowerPoint Artistic Effects and Recoloring


PowerPoint comes with some really cool picture effects that you can apply to your images. In this tutorial, I’ll show you how to create my favorite 5 effects when I work with background images: pencil sketch, blur, cutout, photocopy, and also some recolorization effects.

Video Script

Today I’m going to talk about artistic photo effects in PowerPoint 2010, and show you how you can recolor your background photos to create some visual interest and contrast in your eLearning courses.  Back before PowerPoint 2007 and PowerPoint 2010, anytime you wanted to create effects like this you actually had to do it in Photoshop or another graphic editing tool.

With the addition of PowerPoint 2007 you can see here on the format tab, there is some recoloring options, which are pretty interesting as well as within PowerPoint 2010.  There is now these artistic effects.  So I’d thought I would walk through both of those and show you how I created a few styles.

And today we’ll walk through creating a pencil sketch, a cut-out, blurring an image, creating a photo copy effect, and then a combination of a photo copy and recoloring to create some nice contrast.  So the first effect that we are going to look at is the pencil sketch effect.

So what you will want to do is click on the image and that opens up the format tab, so click format, artistic effects, and then want you want to do is go to artistic effect options because that opens up some more of the controls.  So you’ll see here…  I like to move this maybe off-screen a little bit so I can see more of the image.

One of the drop downs here.  I think this is it, the pencil sketch.  So you’d click on that.  And you’ll see that it allows you to control both the transparency and the pressure.  I think that is a little bit too bold, I like to make the backgrounds blend in a little bit.  So I might add some of the transparency.  Okay.  So there it is with the transparency of forty, and the pressure of twenty-two.

So the pressure would change the pencil strokes, but I think that looks pretty good.  You can drop some characters right in front of that.  So let’s go ahead and reset the image and try one of the other styles as well.  So the other one I like to do a lot to add depth is to, a blur.

Blur is pretty easy, you just select blur, and what you can control there is the radius.  So if I were to increase it, you see it becomes a lot blurrier, and if I decrease it, it becomes less blurry.  But I think that I like it at about a ten.  So that looks pretty good, nice and out of focus so you can drop a character that would be in focus in front of that.

The cut-out is another one of my favorite artistic effects.  So let’s go ahead and go to cut-out.  And it gives the background kind of a cartoony feel.  And you can change the number of shades so I could increase that and it will change the – the photo a little bit.  And now actually I kind of like a little bit more realism to that.  So I might increase the transparency to say twenty-five.  And actually I think that looks pretty good, so I’d leave that at that.

All right, let’s go ahead and look at another one.  One of my favorite effects is what PowerPoint calls the photo copy effect.  I actually call this one line art, in my style.  But you’ll see it really simplifies the edges.  And what I would do is actually decrease the detail to one, and you’ll see how it really just focus on the outline, and then I would make the transparency zero.  So watch what happens when I do that.  You can see it, makes it really just focus on the edges and then everything else just becomes white.

I really like that effect, and when you put a colored character in front of it, it looks really nice.  So one of the other things that you can do within PowerPoint is you can do a combination of effects.  So let’s say that we have this photo copy effect, now I can colorize it.  Again, clicked on the image under the format tab, I go to color, I can look at the recolor options, and I can just scroll through there.

And the photo copy works really well with the recoloring.  So these versions will recolor the white, and this will recolor the lines.  So if I wanted to create some, you know, some drastic contrast between the background and a character, I might select this orange one here, pink, whatever, and a character again would contrast that very nicely.

So those are some interesting ways within PowerPoint that you can actually stylize your backgrounds.  What used to be required in – require a program like Photoshop, or another graphic editing software, you can now do within PowerPoint 2007 and even more so in PowerPoint 2010.  Hope you found that useful.  Thanks.

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