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Tutorial for Design Elements 026 – Vertically Sliced Circles

People won't believe you did this all in PowerPoint. They're very pretty and a "cut above" what you normally see in presentations.

These frameworks are design elements, because it is difficult to get text in the tall and narrow fields. This series is more suited for use with pictures, semitransparent colors, patterns, and maybe just a small amount of vertically oriented text. The series example is a good illustration of how to use these frameworks.

Customizing the vertically sliced circles

Adjust size

If you want to change the size/shape of the circles, be sure to group it and resize the entire group. Once resized, ungroup to proceed with other customizations. If you are using more than one framework in this series, import them both and size them at the same time. Then place each on their respective pages and begin customizations. They will be uniformly sized.

Color variations

Most of the time the sections in this framework will contain pieces of photographs. If you wish to color the photographs (as in the series example), go to the Gradients, patterns, and pictures section below.

PowerPoint 2007 options

The bevels look especially good when applied to the photo layouts (see the series example). The drop shadows are also appealing when applied to the individual sections of the layouts.

3D variations

3D effects can be used, but use short depths and apply 3D consistently or the set will not work as a set any longer. Be sure to change the layer order depending on the direction of the 3D.


Shadows can be used, but use short depths and apply shadows consistently or the set will not work as a set any longer. Be sure to change the layer order depending on the direction of the shadow.

Gradients, patterns, and pictures

If you are going to be importing photographs and are using PowerPoint 2007, you can tint the photographs to give them the same "value." Many times the perfect photograph cannot be used because the colors don't sync with the rest of the collage or the template colors. The ability to tint photographs in PowerPoint 2007 eliminates this problem. The photographs can be tinted by clicking on the imported photograph – the picture format menu will pop up – and selecting a color from the "Recolor" menu. If you want to change the colors in the Recolor menu, select a different color scheme in the Design menu.

You can still "tint" in pre-PowerPoint 2007 versions, but it takes a couple of steps (these steps are for importing different photos into each segment):

  1. First you need to duplicate the layout you want to use and set one layout aside. You'll need the extra set to apply the "tint"
  2. Then format the photograph(s) you want to use as grayscale. You can do this in the "Format picture" menu – just change color to grayscale
  3. Import the photographs into the shapes (use the link below to go to the FAQ about working with photographs)
  4. The last step is to overlay the duplicate layout perfectly over the layout that contains the pictures. Apply a color to the layout and make them semitransparent (maybe between 50-75% transparency). The layout is tinted.

The next step is to import the photographs into the sections of the layout. Refer to the FAQs below for instructions.


A simple animation scheme might be to format the circular WordArt to spin slowly around the segmented circle. This would give your audience to read the text that is upside down in the circle.

Another more interesting and eye-catching animation scheme might be to use a series of simple reveals. This would mean that you would need to create layers of segmented circles and animate them to fade in over each other. Download the series animated example to see how you might do this.

Series that relate to this tutorial:

DE026 – Design Element 026 – Vertically Sliced Circles

Possible use example

Links to instructions for getting the framework into your presentation

  1. Determine the best file type for your needs
  2. Download the file
  3. Import the framework into your presentation
    1. Importing a PPT file
    2. Importing a EMF or PNG
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